There is no reason why you cannot find a lawyer and file suit in your truck accident case. The prior injury may serve to reduce damages if it can be related but it does not stop you from pursuing the car accident case. You should know that you are unlikely to get anywhere near full value for your case if you negotiate directly with the insurer or company. Good luck.
It sounds like you are trying to resolve this without a personal injury lawyer, and you'd get a tiny nuisance settlement at best. Retain a top-rated Avvo lawyer with a low contingency fee, less than 30%, so you don't get hurt twice.
Good question. No, the favorable social security disability award will not affect your settlement with the truck company for your accident this April as long as you were injured in a different part of your body. I can't tell whether you have retained an attorney or not for your truck accident. If not you need to seek consultation immediately with a personal injury attorney in your local area experienced in this type of action. Most initial consultations are free. Trucking companies are difficult for injured parties to deal with without an attorney.
Merry Fountain is licensed to practice law in Indiana. She can be contacted at 1-888-242-HURT. This is not legal advice and it does not create an attorney/client relationship. It is legal education intended to provide general information about the matter within the question. If the question does not include important timeframes and facts the answer could change. Merry Fountain strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney in your state.
Your SSD recovery will not directly affect your ability to recover for pain and suffering if the injuries you suffered at work are completely unrelated to the injuries you suffered in the truck accident. However, the fact that you are collecting SSD may foreclose any attempt to recover past and future lost wages. Additionally, depending upon the extent of the injuries suffered in the work accident, there may be a claim by the defense that you have a shortened life expectancy. This would impact any award of future damages, as, at least in New York, futures are based on life expectancy.
I may be contacted at 212-553-9300.
I suggest you meet with an attorney to discuss all of this. This is not the type of matter you want to handle alone. The issue is not one of fault - but how to get and keep the most money and insurance coverage.
There may be issues of offset, or credit for the SS benefits you receive. There could be questions about what benefits Medicare will provide through SS if you get a settlement from the accident, and that needs addressed up front or in any settlement - or you could find yourself worse off.
Talk to a lawyer today. Most injury lawyers do a free initial consultation.
The exact answers to questions like this require more information than presented. The answer(s) provided should be considered general information. The information provided by this is general advice, and is not legal advice. Viewing this information is not intended to create, and does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. It is intended to educate the reader and a more definite answer should be based on a consultation with a lawyer. You should not take any action that might affect your claim without first seeking the professional opinion of an attorney. You should consult an attorney who can can ask all the appropriate questions and give legal advice based on the exact facts of your situation. The general information provided here does not create an attorney-client relationship.
The insurance carrier for the truck driver will want to review your medical records and social security forms to determine the scope of your pre-accident disability to evaluate your claim. Under Pennsylvania law the defendant truck driver remains responsible for aggravating a pre-existing injury. A standard jury charge would read:
Damages should be awarded for all injuries caused by the accident even if the injuries caused by the accident were more severe than could have been foreseen because of plaintiff’s prior physical condition, or because a pre-existing medical condition was aggravated by the accident. If you find that plaintiff did have a pre-existing condition that was aggravated by the defendant’s negligence, the defendant is responsible for any aggravation caused by the accident. The defendant can be held responsible only for those injuries or the aggravation of a prior injury or condition that you find was factually caused by the accident.
It will be important for your attorney to obtain medical reports that discuss how your prior injuries were impacted by your new accident in order to allow you to meet your burden of proof and to obtain full compensation for the injuries caused by the truck accident.
Legal disclaimer: The statement above is general information and not intended to be a legal opinion to be followed. The person requesting information and all others reading the answer should retain an attorney before making a decision. The information provided does not create an attorney-client relationship. Contact our office to obtain specific legal advice at (215) 702-2708 for Pennsylvania or New Jersey matters.
You are asking a general theoretical question rather than a specific one about your facts. Can this affect your personal injury case? Certainly it can. if you were disabled from working before the wreck, you won't recover lost earning capacity for injuries sustained in the wreck. If you were taking medication for pain before, this could affect how much you can recover for medication expenses and it could affect a jury's pain and suffering award if it gets into evidence. There are many ways one claim can affect another. You need to sit down with your lawyer and discuss how one affects the other in your specific case.
All information provided here is for educational use only and does not constitute legal advice nor establish any attorney-client relationship. Paul H. Cannon is licensed to practice law in the State of Texas. Laws vary from State-to-State. For legal advice and opinions, please retain the services of a lawyer licensed to practice in the appropriate state or jurisdiction.
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