My dad was involved in a car accident July 23. He was rear ended while still driving. 100% not at fault. He went to the ER the moment and felt better for 2 days. Now he is having worst pain and doesn't know what to do. His insurance only wants to give him 10k for his car which he bought for 19k in 2010. 10k isn't even enough to buy him another car and pay for medical bills. The other insurance hasn't offered anything this is just what my dads insurance is trying to offer to clear it out. We just don't know how to get the most we can to pay off all the damage physically and emotionally.
Your dad needs to go back for medical care if he is still having problems from injuries in this crash. get an atty. if the cost to repair exceeds fair market value, the car is totaled. then they pay the fmv. if you are dealing with your dad's ins, try to get the other persons ins co to look at vehicle. if they think its totaled, they may offer more. Do some homework and find out what the car was worth. if you have documentation that the car is worth more than ins co says, present that to them. Just because he paid 19k in '10 doesnt mean it is worth more than 10k now. If your dad overpaid, or has put a lot of miles on it, has other damage etc, all affects fmv.
It cannot be said too often... insurance companies exist to make money and they make money by paying out less on claims than they collect in premiums... a very easy to understand business model.
Personal injury lawyers seek cases where their client was rear-ended - as that takes a lot of guess work out of who caused the accident... and also seek cases where someone is physically injured and gets medical treatment as that takes some of the guess work out of whether there were true injuries or not... The smallest policy limit in California is $15,000 which is really not a lot at all if someone is hurt... so, a general rule... a very general rule... accidents with provable bodily injury and ongoing medical treatment are worth at the very very least... 15 grand... the experienced personal injury attorney will know how to find out the policy limits, whether there are other sources of recovery, and how to get the fair amount for his or her client.
Fortunately, most of us personal injury types offer free consultations and take such cases on contingency no matter where the case is in California, so there is nothing to fear in calling us.
Paul J. Molinaro, M.D., J.D.
Attorney at Law, Physician, Broker
Fransen & Molinaro, LLP
4160 Temescal Canyon Road, Suite 306
Corona, CA 92833
www.fransenandmolinaro.com / www.888MDJDLAW.com
"When you need a lawyer, call the Doctor... Call Paul J. Molinaro, M.D., J.D... Call (888)MDJDLAW."
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** Fransen & Molinaro, LLP practices in the areas of personal injury, medical malpractice, and real estate law and does so anywhere in the State of California.
I live and work in California and deal with accidents like yours all the time, so I am happy to answer your question. The answer to your question is that the best thing to do is to hire an attorney and have the attorney deal with your your request for payment of pain and suffering and payment of medical bills. Do you feel that your dad is the same medical condition that you were before the accident? As a basic premise I wouldn't handle your claim by yourself. The attorney you hire can likely refer you to a doctor, if you ask for one, who will see you with no upfront payment! I've done this many times to help my clients out. You should not wait a single day to hire a lawyer, we will advise you on the strategy of your case and get you a rental if you need one.
You have some great facts, but your case definitely needs to be developed further to corroborate your story. You should hire an attorney so you're not bullied around! There is no upfront cost to hire an attorney. With a case like yours it seems like you have some good facts in order to get a high settlement. The most important thing when building your case are: liability (were you at fault); how bad are your injuries to your body. A lot of these things sound like they are not complete yet in your case so its something that is worth hiring an attorney for in order to get a sense of whether you have a case and what the strategy would be for you to build a strong case! I've handled many of these cases in the Ceres area.
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