Where to start? Start by hanging up on the insurer. Every conversation you have with them will be recorded and used to lower any payout in your case. You should expect to get at least 80% less without a lawyer than with one in a typical injury case. Hopefully you have not too much harm with the calls to date. Retain counsel soon, as in immediately.
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Stop talking to the insurance adjuster and hire a local personal injury attorney to handle your mother's claim. He/she will know the law and the damages to which your mother is entitled.
Three months off the job? Get an attorney that does personal injury work and put an end to the calls so your mom can concentrate on getting well.
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The information provided is for general informational purposes only and is not intended to be legal advice. I am only licensed in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and I am not providing you with specific legal advice. The law changes frequently and varies from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. Being general in nature, the information provided may not apply to any specific factual and/or legal set of circumstances and/or the jurisdiction where you reside. No attorney-client relationship is formed nor should any such relationship be implied. The information provided is of a general nature is not intended to substitute for the advice of an attorney, especially an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction. Your question, although you may believe is simple, it is not simple. You require legal advice, please consult with a competent attorney licensed to practice in your jurisdiction.
To answer the question in the title, when you file suit against the at-fault party, you will seek to recover not only special damages, which are damages you can place a specific figure on such as the amount of medical expenses and your mom's lost wages, but also general damages such as your mom's pain and suffering, you dad's loss of consortium, and other such claims. If you allow the at-fault driver's insurance company to handle everything you can essentially forget about the general damages as the insurer will try and pay as little as possible. Simply stated, you will be doing your mom, your dad, yourself and your boys a huge disfavor by not hiring an experienced personal injury attorney. it sounds like your family is clearly entitled to compensation, and an experienced attorney is much more likely to obtain it for you than if you do it yourself. There are a number of fine attorneys on this site, myself included, who offer a free consultation. Please, PLEASE, do yourself and your family a huge favor and contact one. Another good thing about hiring an attorney is he/she can put an immediate stop to the insurance adjuster bothering your mom at the hospital which I'm sure is very aggravating. Feel free to check out my site for some advice on dealing with insurance companies.
You should start by getting your mom an experienced local personal injury lawyer who will look out for her best interests. Stop talking with the insurance company. The insurance company is working hard for the best interests of the insurance company, not your mom.
I am so sorry to hear about your mother’s accident. Your mother needs to contact a local personal injury attorney who has experience handling car accident cases. An initial consultation is free, and an attorney will be able to tell her what steps to take next. Unfortunately, the insurance company’s only interest is settling the case for the lowest amount of money possible. They are looking our for their interests and you and your mother need someone to look out for her and your family’s interests.
It sounds like your mother has sustained some pretty serious injuries. Once you hire a lawyer, the lawyer deals with the insurance company and you and your mother can worry about what is most important – that she gets the medical attention she needs and heals. If your mother does not the means to pay for medical care, a personal injury attorney may be able to help. For example, I have relationships with several local doctors and have been able to arrange for my clients to obtain medical treatment at no cost to them, with the understanding that the client will reimburse the treatment providers once the case settles or we win at trial.
Whenever someone is injured as a result of another person’s negligence, the person may be entitled to compensation for (1) medical bills, (2) lost wages for missed work, (3) pain and suffering, (4) any permanent injury or disfigurement, and (5) inconvenience and loss of enjoyment of life. Depending on the details of the accident, your mother may also be entitled to “punitive” damages, which are intended to punish a person for acting in a way that endangers others. An attorney can make certain that your mother is fully compensated for her losses.
In the meantime, neither you nor your mother should not speak to anyone in person or over the phone about the accident without an attorney present. Insurance adjusters are trained to minimize the damages an injured party can recover and may try to get your mother to admit fault in the accident. While it can seem bewildering, an experienced attorney will know exactly what to do so that your family can get the compensation that it deserves. Good luck.
You only sue the other party if you are unable to settle with their insurance company. You are really suing the other insurance company as they are required to hire an attorney for their insured and pay any judgment. You should definitely beware as all insurance companies train their adjusters to tell you exactly what you want to hear and act like they will take care of you. This is so you think that you do need an attorney. Then when it comes time to pay you they will never offer a fair amount. At that point they have benefitted as they know if you hired an attorney early on that your attorney would have made sure to document everything so that your case is worth more. You should contact an attorney as soon as possible. Good luck.
Peter J. Ross
Ross & Pines, LLC
404 812 4300
You are only "suing" the other party once you file a lawsuit. Many times, in clear liability cases, the insurance company for the at-fault driver will offer to pay all costs and expenses. When this happens, be careful! The are many items of damages that the adverse insurer will omit from its initial offer. Lost wages, pain and suffering, loss of consortium, and the full value of your medical bills (without deduction for health insurance payments) are just a few examples. Unless your out of pocket expenses exceed the amount of available liability coverage (and any applicable UM) coverage, you would be well advised to check with a lawyer to make sure you are not being low-balled by the insurer.
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