The results obtained on a case are dependent on a number of factors and circumstances that are beyond the control of the attorney and the client. Unfortunately, the results obtained are not always based on what some would think as common sense and fairness. Set up a meeting with the attorney to have the attorney explain the results obtained and the challenges that presented themselves on the case.
I agree with Mr. Wolf. Have a meeting with your lawyer to see if he or she can explain to you satisfactorily what has happened and what your remaining options are. If you are not satisfied, try consulting another lawyer who may be able to answer your questions based on your exact situations. It is likely the case that the at fault driver had liability limits of $30,000 on his policy and that is all his insurer is obligated to pay on his behalf. Unless you have given a release, you could sue the other driver but it is likely that person is not good for the judgment so that is likely the reason your attorney did not sue that person--it would be a waste of time. You may be entitled to underinsured motorist benefits from your own insurance company and it is unclear from your description whether this is part of the $30,000 that was received. You should ask your lawyer about it. Unfortunately, you may in fact be unlucky. It happens all the time where people are injured by the negligence of others in car accidents and the insurance available does not even come close to covering the injured person's damages. If that's the situation in your case I am sorry that has happened to you.
I am not your lawyer and an answer on AVVO is not intended as legal advice but is provided for general informational purposes only. If you desire legal advice, please consult a lawyer and form an attorney client relationship.
From what you have said it is hard to know if your lawyer got you all the money that was practical to get. You have also not said what the lawyer took in the way of fees.
If someone is catastrophically hurt and there is little available insurance it is an unhappy situation. It is very rare to refuse the insurance policy limits of the guy at fault and go to trial to try and both get and collect an excess judgment. I have done so occasionally, but usually such a plan does not make sense.
Some lawyers refuse to take a case if they know the only result is going to be an unhappy client. Other lawyers take the case and cut their fee to help the client, but from what you have written it looks like there may not have been enough money collect even if your lawyer hadn't taken a fee.
I agree with the other answers: Have a sit down with your lawyer and ask questions.
Talk to your lawyer. I suspect that the reason for the low settlement is that that is all the insurance that they other guy had. Your lawyer should be willing to explain the situation to you.
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