Workers’ Compensation

Posts containing useful information about Workers’ Compensation for anyone considering a North Carolina personal injury lawyer.

Can You See Your Own Doctor For Workers’ Comp?

According to the North Carolina Industrial Commission, your employer or its insurance company chooses the doctor for your workers’ comp claim. This includes all medical treatment related to your work injury. You or your lawyer can request that you be treated by a different doctor or medical facility. Keep in mind that payment by workers’ comp is not guaranteed unless the change of medical provider is approved.

What If I Saw My Doctor Before I Knew The Rules?

Often, the workers’ comp insurance company will pay for your treatment, provided they deem the treatment was reasonable. Your workers’ comp attorney may need to put some pressure on the adjuster in order to receive a reimbursement, but it is not unusual to receive one.

If the treatment for which you seek reimbursement falls outside of normal accepted treatment, you may find the adjuster pushes back on reimbursement requests for acupuncture and chiropractic treatment that was not conducted at their direction.

Will My Workers’ Comp Lawyer Direct Me To A Doctor?

You may find that the doctor hired by the workers’ comp insurance company favors the employer. This may manifest itself in a few ways. First, the doctor may choose conservative treatment and forego additional testing to discover injuries. Second, the doctor may not write you out of work for as many days, weeks, or months as another doctor might. Lastly, if you are seeking a physical impairment rating, you may find that one doctor gives you a more favorable impairment rating than another doctor. The impairment rating affects the value of your workers’ comp claim.

Who Pays For My Workers’ Comp Treatment?

If the insurance company chooses the doctor, they will pay for the treatment. If you choose your own doctor, you can either seek reimbursement from the workers’ comp insurance company or you can pay the doctor out of your workers’ comp proceeds. As mentioned above, there are times it makes sense to seek your own treatment from a doctor of your choosing. Your attorney can assist with this choice.

Speak With A Workers’ Comp Attorney Today

If you have questions about workers’ comp, call us. We’re here to help. We can be reached at 704.749.7747 or you can click HERE to request a consultation. All consultations are free, and it is our job to help you understand your options. We know you have choices. We hope you Call Layton Law.

Will I Win My Personal Injury Claim?

Will I win my personal injury claim? – A great question. First, let’s take a step back and recognize that one client or lawyer may define winning differently than another client or lawyer. Our goal is to get the best result possible for you. If it’s a settlement offer, we negotiate to the highest offer and help you decide whether to accept that offer. If it’s a trial result, our goal is to convince a jury that the other party is responsible and that you deserve to be compensated fairly for your damages.

We work on contingency, which means we don’t get paid if you don’t get paid. As a result, we believe clients can feel comfortable that if we are willing to work on their case without guarantee of payment, that means we believe in the claim or case.

Getting A Fair Result In Personal Injury Is Tough

We work every day to help clients receive fair treatment from at-fault parties. If you’ve negotiated with an insurance company before, you know that they are not generous. Because North Carolina is a Contributory Negligence state, insurance adjusters commonly argue your case has a low value and that you would most likely lose in court.

If insurance companies aren’t arguing that you were partially at fault, they will often look for gaps in your treatment, or a failure to complete treatment, or a prior injury. Each of these will be used to convince you that your case is worth less than you think it is.

Personal Injury Attorneys Protect You

It is our firm belief that a personal injury attorney will not only help you achieve the best result but will help protect your rights along the journey. Whether you choose to work with our law firm or another personal injury law firm, you should strongly consider hiring legal counsel to help you with your car accident claim or slip and fall claim.

In addition to persuading insurance companies and opposing counsel that your case deserves fair compensation, your personal injury attorney will work to negotiate your medical billing and address any health insurance liens resulting from your accident. A failure to address these when negotiating a claim on your own often means you are pursued by medical creditors or lienholders after settlement—a horrible result.

Winning your personal injury claim is a combination of achieving the best offer possible, combined with making sure you are not left to deal with your medical bills after settlement. Federal and State law provides a set of rules by which all settlements should abide. Your personal injury lawyer will be familiar with these laws and apply them to your settlement. In many cases, you can limit the medical bills which are paid out of your settlement or negotiate the medical bills down so that your settlement is not used to simply pay your medical bills, leaving nothing for you.

Determining Your Case Value

While every case is different, we will discuss the value of your case with you once we have enough information about your injuries, lost wages, and medical treatment. Because there are numerous components to a personal injury claim, our team will work with you to uncover the true nature of your losses, to build value in your case.

Once our firm has gathered all billing, records, and other items related to your case, we will work with you to set an amount to demand from the insurance company for settlement. Presenting your claim to the insurance company is done through a demand package which the law firm builds throughout the representation. We will review the demand package with you before submission to the insurance company, and use the contents of the demand package to attempt to negotiate a settlement with the other side.

Speak With A Personal Injury Lawyer Today

If you’d like to speak with someone today, the consultation is free. Our job is to help you understand your rights and explain whether we think we can assist you with your claim. Our goal is to help you achieve the best outcome possible. You can reach us at 704.749.7747, or click HERE to request a call from a lawyer today.

Do I Qualify For Workers’ Comp  in NC?

In a typical Workers’ Comp case, you will qualify for Workers’ Comp in NC if your case meets these requirements:

You must be employed

Your employer must carry Workers’ Comp insurance

You must have sustained a work-related injury or illness, and

You must meet North Carolina’s deadlines for reporting the injury and filing a workers’ comp claim.

After promptly notifying your supervisor about your desire to file for workers’ comp, a form 18 should be completed and filed within 30 days. The employer and/or insurance carrier should receive a copy while you keep one for yourself. This form must be filed within two years of the injury taking place. All of these components are critical for you to qualify for Worker’s Comp. You can hire a Workers’ Comp lawyer at any time during the process of your claim; however, it is best to involve an attorney earlier rather than later, to help preserve your rights under your case and to help build your case as time goes by.

Common On The Job Injuries that Qualify for Workers’ Comp

Getting hurt on the job is never a good outcome. Unfortunately, some injuries do not qualify for Worker’s Comp in NC. Generally speaking, injuries that occur in the workplace or while doing something on behalf of your employer, are qualifying injuries for Workers’ Comp in NC. Other injuries include those sustained while operating a company vehicle or traveling as a passenger in a company vehicle. For example, delivering mail, or traveling to a client destination. If you are injured during a company sponsored event, you may have the option of choosing between Workers’ Comp and Personal Injury. Your choices will depend upon the facts which led to the injuries. Your injury attorney can help you understand the factors which trigger pursuing Workers’ Comp vs. Personal Injury. Lastly, while you may have a claim for mental injuries such as anxiety or depression, you will typically need a physical connection to those injuries in order to claim them. If you claim PTSD as part of your injury, and you can tie the PTSD to a physical injury you sustained on the job, you are well on your way to making the necessary connection.

Which Employers Must Carry Workers’ Comp Insurance?

Any employer in North Carolina who employs three or more individuals must carry Workers’ Comp insurance. Often, a Workers’ Comp lawyer will devote resources to establishing that an employer actually has three or more employees. In ever-changing work structures, there are many times that an employer employs only independent contractors. While it is permissible to employ an independent contractor, an employe cannot use the status as a way to avoid Workers’ Comp insurance or paying a Workers’ Comp claim. Your attorney can help to successfully recover against the employer in these situations.

There are some allowable exceptions to the requirement to carry Worker’s Comp for an employee whether they are in independent contractor or not. Housekeepers and/or domestic servants that are directly employed by the household, certain farm laborers, and certain railroad employees are among them. Employers who fail to carry workers’ compensation insurance may face stiff financial penalties, be charged with a misdemeanor, be charged with a felony, and be imprisoned. If your employer fails to carry required workers’ compensation insurance, you should report the lack of workers’ compensation insurance or approved self-insurance to the NCIC Fraud Section and, if injured, should file a form 18 and form 33.

Coverage For Permanent Partial Disability

Permanent partial disability cases are some of the most common Workers’ Comp cases. The disability can originate from either a work related injury or an occupational disease. Permanent partial disability means that there is a permanent impairment which causes an employee to be unable to complete certain work related tasks to the best of their ability. This disability can be a physical impairment caused by a work related accident, or even a mental condition caused by the job. For example, post traumatic stress disorder. Physical examples of permanent partial disabilities include losing a limb, carpal tunnel syndrome, loss of vision in one eye (both eyes would be considered total disability), nerve damage, or a knee injury that causes walking or standing for prolonged amounts of time to be painful.

Workers’ Comp claimants routinely find themselves in a battle between their doctor and the Workers’ Comp doctor, over the percentage disability and whether it will be permanent or temporary. Good Worker’s Comp claims are won and lost over these distinctions and your lawyer will assist with building a case for the worst case scenario for your injury, to combat the insurance lawyer’s attempt to minimize your injury and the amount you should be compensated for it.

Lost Wages Claims

Lost wages are compensable in Workers’ Comp; however, even if you qualify for Worker’s Comp in NC, only a percentage of your lost wages will be paid under a Workers’ Comp claim. While this is true, when combined with a permanent partial disability, the total compensation is meant to compensate you for the injury and the financial loss you have suffered and will continue to suffer over time.

Speak With A Worker’s Comp Lawyer Today

If you would like to speak with an attorney about your Workers’ Comp or personal injury case, we’re here to help. The call is free and you will come away with a much better understanding of your options. You can reach us at 704.749.7747 or click to request a FREE CASE EVALUATION, and we will be in touch shortly.

Further Reading

If this article was helpful, you may find other helpful articles on our Personal Injury Blog. Thank you for visiting the website—we hope it has been helpful.

Can I File A NC Workers’ Compensation Claim

If you’ve been injured on the job, you can file a North Carolina Workers’ Compensation claim. Whether your claim will be successful will depend upon the facts of your case and how well your Workers’ Compensation attorney constructs the arguments in favor of recovery.

Procedure Steps For Filing A Workers’ Compensation Claim

Step 1 – Report the injury. You should report the injury to your employer as soon as possible. This should be done in writing, to establish evidence that you provided your employer with notice of the claim. The employer can be unfairly prejudiced if they are not given an opportunity to evaluate the claim in a timely manner. Additionally, in an accepted Workers’ Comp claim, the employer has the right to direct where you receive treatment.

Step 2 – Complete Form 18. Form 18 is the Notice of Accident to Employer and Claim of Employee, Representative, or Dependent for NC Workers’ Compensation Benefits. The form can be found online for download. A Workers’ Compensation attorney with a North Carolina Industrial Commission ID and login can submit the form for you electronically. This form should be filed with the Industrial Commission, provided to the employer, and finally, a copy should be kept by the employee for their records. Ideally, the form is filed within 30 days of the injury, and certainly within two years of the date of the injury.

Step 3 – Await your employer’s response. If you need medical attention in the meantime, you should pursue it. However, within 14 days of submitting the form, your employer should respond either by denying the claim, accepting the claim, or requesting an extension from the Industrial Commission. If your claim is denied, it doesn’t mean you can’t still fight for a Workers’ Compensation award. It just means your employer has spoken as to their belief that the injury should not be covered by the Workers’ Compensation Act.

Consult With A NC Workers’ Compensation Lawyer

Workers’ Compensation differs from a personal injury in a few ways. Specifically, when you have a denied claim, it’s important to seek counsel from an attorney familiar with Workers’ Compensation in North Carolina. The denial of your claim means you will need to seek medical treatment on your own and pursue your employer for reimbursement after the fact. While you may ultimately have to request a hearing with the Industrial Commission in hopes that they decide the claim should have been covered by the employer, there are many additional steps along the way.

Your Workers’ Compensation attorney will keep track of your recovery progress with you, and when treatment is complete, he or she will submit a demand package to the employer. Even though the claim is denied, this package will present the facts of your injury together with the medical treatment and billing, in hopes the employer will reconsider. At this time, your Workers’ Compensation attorney will most likely be dealing with opposing counsel representing the employer.

The two parties can enter into mediation together, in hopes of resolving the claim. Mediation is usually conducted prior to requesting a hearing on the matter. Quite often the parties are able to reach an agreement—even on a denied claim—through the mediation process. If mediation fails, requesting a hearing is the next step in the process. While the ultimate goal of mediation is to reach an agreement, the parties are forced to mediate prior to the hearing for the purpose of saving the time and efforts of the Industrial Commission. Each matter that settles at mediation is one less case for the commission to facilitate.

The Workers’ Compensation Settlement Agreement

If you’re able to reach an agreement, it will be memorialized in a document known as a Clincher. This 10-page document is drafted by defense counsel and edited and approved by your attorney. It details the facts leading up to the injury, together with the details of the injury suffered, and all medical bills associated with the injury. The Clincher is accompanied by a Release—a document where you are settling the matter once and for all in exchange for the settlement.

Lastly, your settlement agreement will detail your responsibility with regard to your medical bills, and address for the commission how you are proposing to address Medical Liens in your Workers’ Compensation settlement.

Workers’ Compensation Attorney Fees

Whereas personal injury attorney fees are generally one-third of your settlement (and slightly more if a lawsuit needs to be filed), Workers’ Compensation attorney fees for the plaintiff are capped at 25%. The paperwork your Workers’ Comp attorney provides you will clearly spell out the attorney-client fee agreement. One important note is that much like personal injury if your Workers’ Compensation lawyer doesn’t recover anything for you, you should not owe them anything.

Speak With A Workers’ Compensation Lawyer Today

If you would like to speak with an attorney about your personal injury case, we’re here to help. The call is free and you will come away with a much better understanding of your options. You can reach us at 704.749.7747 or click to request a FREE CASE EVALUATION, and we will be in touch shortly.

Further Reading

If this article about North Carolina Workers’ Compensation claims was helpful, you may find other helpful articles on our Personal Injury Blog. Thank you for visiting the website—we hope it has been helpful.

 

 

 

Will A Pre-Existing Injury Affect My Personal Injury Case?

A pre-existing injury will affect your personal injury claim because your attorney will need to establish the difference between your physical and mental condition at the time of the car accident, and after the car accident. In other words, the at-fault party is only responsible for the damage they cause as a direct result of the accident.

Most commonly, pre-existing injuries are back or neck injuries, shoulder injuries, and knee injuries. As you might imagine, it’s easy to distinguish a pre-existing shoulder injury from a head injury that stemmed from the accident. In that case, the at-fault party would not be responsible for the shoulder injury because it is not related to the accident. A much more difficult situation to sort through is one where a client has a pre-existing back injury, and the most recent car accident worsens that back injury. The at-fault party only wants to pay for the additional damage which was caused by the car accident.

Medical Records Prior To The Accident

One way to prove that the injuries you are experiencing are a direct result of the accident is to prove you did not have those conditions prior to the accident. Quite often, insurance adjusters will ask you to provide a few years of prior medical records. If you were treated for back pain the year prior to the car accident, you can count on the insurance adjuster arguing that the car accident only aggravated the back injury, but did not cause it. As a result, the adjuster will lower the value of your claim, affecting the settlement value of your case.

Treatment After The Accident

The insurance adjuster will also carefully review your medical records after the accident. For this reason, if possible, you should treat with the same physicians or team of health professionals after the accident, that you treated with before the accident. Those professionals are in the best position to make a statement as to your injuries prior to the accident, versus after the accident.

The Eggshell Plaintiff Theory

There is an eggshell plaintiff theory in North Carolina. While this is not a statute, it is a result of common law or case law over the years. The general rule that comes from the eggshell plaintiff theory essentially states that just because an injured party was prone to a particular injury does not mean they should not be compensated for it. For example, assume a particular individual has a condition that makes them more susceptible to suffer PTSD from a traumatic event. If the accident causes them PTSD, the at-fault party is still responsible for that. This is true even if most other individuals would not have had PTSD from the event. The at-fault party is not responsible for the underlying susceptibility to PTSD, but they are responsible for the PTSD which was caused by the accident.

Before And After

Your personal injury lawyer will address any pre-existing injury concerns by demonstrating to the adjuster the difference between your life before the accident and after the accident. While medical records and medical billing help to establish this, the attorney can also gather additional evidence to support this. Your inability to participate in activities such as horseback riding or running, or your inability to interact with your grandchildren in the same manner after the accident as before the accident, all count toward the value of your car accident or slip and fall claim.

Speak With A Personal Injury Lawyer Today

If you would like to speak with an attorney about your personal injury case, we’re here to help. The call is free and you will come away with a much better understanding of your options. You can reach us at 704.749.7747 or click to request a FREE CASE EVALUATION, and we will be in touch shortly.

Further Reading

If this article was helpful, you may find other helpful articles on our Personal Injury Blog. Thank you for visiting the website—we hope it has been helpful.

How Much Does It Cost To Hire A Personal Injury Lawyer?

It doesn’t cost anything to hire a personal injury lawyer when you work with The Layton Law Firm, PLLC. Our firm works on a contingency basis. This means we only get paid if we are able to reach a settlement or a jury verdict for you. If we are unable to reach a settlement or verdict for you, you will not receive a bill.

The contingency arrangement allows those injured in car accidents, workers’ compensation accidents, and slip and fall accidents to obtain legal representation without spending money to do so. This is an extremely important aspect of our legal system. By providing clients with legal representation, personal injury lawyers are protecting everyday consumers from large insurance companies and their corporate legal teams.

How Do I Hire A Personal Injury Lawyer?

Hiring a personal injury lawyer is easy. When you work with The Layton Law Firm, PLLC, you can complete most of the intake online. There are a few docs that need to be signed. We can meet with you in the office to sign that paperwork, or if it’s more convenient for you, we can mail or email it to you to sign. We’re flexible. Whatever is easiest for you works for us.

Once you have signed a contract with the firm, we will send a Letter of Representation to the insurance company for the at-fault party. The letter of representation will confirm we represent you in the personal injury matter. It also requests all transcripts or recordings of conversations or statements you may have made to the insurance adjuster for the other side.

Will The Layton Law Firm Take My Case?

We can’t take every case that we are presented with; however, you deserve to speak with a lawyer about your case so you can understand your rights. Our free consultations are meant to help us understand your case, and provide you with what we believe to be your options for moving forward. If we are unable to take your case for some reason, we will explain why, and try to refer you to another law firm we think would be a good fit for the case.

Is My Case Too Small For A Personal Injury Lawyer?

Many clients mistakenly believe that personal injury lawyers only take large cases. This simply is not true. We take on minor accident cases every day at our firm, and we are just as interested in helping and protecting those clients as we are in working on larger cases.

Speak With A Personal Injury Lawyer Today

If you would like to speak with an attorney about your personal injury case, we’re here to help. The call is free and you will come away with a much better understanding of your options. You can reach us at 704.749.7747 or click to request a FREE CASE EVALUATION, and we will be in touch shortly.

Further Reading

If this article was helpful, you may find other helpful articles on our Personal Injury Blog. Thank you for visiting the website—we hope it has been helpful.

 

Are My Workers’ Compensation Payments Taxable?

Workers’ Compensation payments are generally not taxable. If you are injured at work and receive compensation under the North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Act, those payments will be tax exempt. Your workers’ compensation payments are a fraction of the amount you were earning at the time of the accident. This is based on a percentage of your average weekly wage, and it is based on how severe your injury is.

Much like a personal injury settlement which is compensating you for your injury, you will not have to pay tax on the benefits you receive. While this may not sound logical, keep in mind that you are only being a paid a fraction of what you would have earned, and that you are being reimbursed for an injury—the fact that the reimbursement or payment is based on your salary or hourly rate is irrelevant as it relates to taxation.

Are My Workers’ Compensation Payments Taxable If I’m Receiving Social Security Income?

That question may lead to a different answer. There are circumstances under which some of your workers’ compensation payments may be taxable. One example is if you are receiving supplemental security income and also receiving workers’ compensation payments.

When you are receiving social security, your workers’ compensation payments serve to reduce the amount you are receiving from social security. To the extent this is true, that portion of your workers’ compensation payments are treated as social security payments and as a result, they are taxable.

While it is uncommon to receive both social security disability and workers’ compensation payments, this situation arises when the injured worker fails to recover from a work-related accident. In that circumstance, the worker may be entitled to both social security disability and workers’ compensation payments.

Speak With A Workers’ Compensation Attorney Today

If you have questions about workers’ compensation payments, social security disability payments, or taxation, you should speak with an attorney. Consultations with workers’ compensation and personal injury attorneys are free and help you decide your next steps. This includes choosing a personal injury attorney.

If you would like to speak with an attorney about your worker’s compensation case, we’re here to help. The call is free and you will come away with a much better understanding of your options. You can reach us at 704.749.7747 or click to request a FREE CASE EVALUATION, and we will be in touch shortly.

Further Reading

If this article “Are My Workers’ Compensation Payments Taxable ?” was helpful, you may find other helpful articles on our Personal Injury Blog. Thank you for visiting the website—we hope it has been helpful.

How Are Personal Injury Settlements Paid Out?

Personal injury settlements are paid out in accordance with the North Carolina statutory requirements regarding personal injury liens, together with the Federal rules surrounding ERISA and Medicare liens. Our goal is to put as much money in our client’s pockets as possible. In doing so, we have to abide by the rules which govern your personal injury settlement proceeds.

Personal Injury Settlement Checks

Once we reach a settlement with your approval, the insurance company will issue a check made out to you and The Layton Law Firm, PLLC. This check will be deposited into our trust account. The funds will remain in our trust account until they clear, and until you sign a personal injury settlement statement. By signing the settlement statement, you are indicating that you are in agreement with the proposed distribution of funds. This allows your personal injury attorney to disburse the funds with confidence.

Personal Injury Settlement Statements

When you settle your personal injury claim, you will sign off on a personal injury settlement statement. This statement will show all incoming funds related to your injury as credits, with corresponding debits shown as items going to third parties including your attorney fee, health insurance lien payments, medical provider lien payments, and any other items which need to be paid as part of the settlement. The bottom figure will of course be a line item showing you how much you are receiving as part of the settlement.

Limits On Payments To Lien Holders

Fortunately, there is a limit on the amount of your personal injury settlement that needs to be paid out to lien holders and other medical providers. The statutory language in N.C.G.S. 44-49 and 44-50 dictates whether or not a medical provider has a lien. It also limits those providers with liens to a certain percentage of your settlement. Your personal injury attorney will apply this rule of law to the facts of your particular personal injury settlement, and disburse accordingly.

It is important to understand that you will have a choice when reaching a settlement. You can decide whether to pay the statutory minimum to lien holders under N.C.G.S. 44-49 and 44-50, which may leave some billing left over for you to address after settlement. In the alternative, you can work with your personal injury lawyer to negotiate the billing and reach a final settlement on those bills. Our office will make sure you understand the options and work with you to make a choice that is best suited to you.

Receiving Your Personal Injury Settlement Check

Once you sign off on your personal injury settlement statement, your attorney can issue a check to you on the same day. Because you must sign off on the statement in person, most checks are delivered simultaneously. The funds should clear your account as soon as they are deposited, as NC attorney trust account funds are considered to be certified funds and treated as such by banking institutions. If you need your funds wired directly into your account, we can assist with wiring the funds. This will save you a trip to the bank and in special situations makes sense to do.

If you would like to speak with an attorney about your personal injury case, we’re here to help. The call is free and you will come away with a much better understanding of your options. You can reach us at 704.749.7747 or click to request a FREE CASE EVALUATION, and we will be in touch shortly.

Further Reading

If this article about “How are personal injury settlements paid out?” was helpful, you may find other helpful articles on our Personal Injury Blog. Thank you for visiting the website—we hope it has been helpful.

 

 

Friendly Charlotte Personal Injury Firm

It may seem counter-intuitive to desire a friendly Charlotte personal injury firm, but in our opinion that is exactly what you need for your Charlotte personal injury. We all often forget that working with a law firm means interacting with that law firm on a routine basis. While you want your Charlotte personal injury lawyer to be aggressive for you when pursuing compensation for your personal injury claim or personal injury lawsuit, you also want them to be easy to work with. For that reason, finding a friendly Charlotte personal injury firm is important.

Responsive Staff And Attorneys

One of the most frequent complaints about Charlotte’s personal injury firms—even those rated as Charlotte’s best personal injury firms—is a failure to communicate effectively with clients. Part of this failure is due to the heavy workload that Charlotte personal injury law firms take on; however, there’s no excuse for not responding to a client’s inquiry or desire to be kept up to date.

At The Layton Law Firm, we end each conversation by agreeing with you on the next time you can expect an update from us. This helps us, and it helps you. From our perspective, it ensures that we have it marked on our calendar to reach out to you when the future date arrives. From your perspective, it gives you peace of mind that you know you will be updated at the agreed-upon time.

Mutual Respect Is A Critical Part Of Success

The personal injury law firm and the client must work as a team to reach a successful result on a personal injury claim. This means the client must also commit to responding in a timely manner to their lawyer or paralegal. Quite often, the insurance adjuster in a car accident will request additional support for lost wages or medical records. We need our clients to assist us in quickly gathering that information so the claim can move forward.

On our end, we do our best to keep in mind that most clients have never filed a personal injury claim before working with us. They are not the type of individuals who sue people. So, the experience can be stressful. Not only is it an emotionally draining process, but it’s also hard to understand how long a personal injury settlement will take. We do our best to maintain compassion, empathy, and understanding for what our clients are going through. After all, they are working with us because they were harmed in an often life-changing motor vehicle accident, slip and fall injury, or workers’ compensation-related injury.

Speak With A Charlotte Personal Injury Lawyer

If you would like to speak with an attorney about your personal injury case, we’re here to help. The call is free and you will come away with a much better understanding of your options. You can reach us at 704.749.7747 or click to request a FREE CASE EVALUATION, and we will be in touch shortly.

Further Reading

If this article was helpful, you may find other helpful articles on our Personal Injury Blog. Thank you for visiting the website—we hope it has been helpful.

 

Should I Give The Personal Injury Adjuster A Statement?

No, you should not give your personal injury adjuster a statement regarding your car accident, slip and fall injury, or any other injury. No matter how kind the adjuster may appear, you can trust that your statement(s) will be used against you at a later date. Adjusters work for the insurance company. While they may be assisting you with reaching a personal injury settlement, their loyalty is always to the insurance company.

The Adjuster Is Probably Recording Your Statement

North Carolina is a One Party Consent state, under N.C.G.S. Ann 15A-287.  This means that phone conversations can be recorded by one of the parties to those conversations. Effectively, this means that the adjuster does not have to ask your permission or even tell you the call is being recorded. It also means the recorded call could become evidence at trial.

Inconsistencies In Your Statement Will Be Used Against You

While you may tell the truth when giving your personal injury statement, you are only human. First, if the adjuster has multiple conversations with you, they may record all of them. Second, you may explain the facts in a slightly different manner to the adjuster on different calls. Lastly, these differences in the versions of your story could be used to establish your inconsistency, or your inability to accurately remember what happened. This is specifically true of a slip and fall accident. At least in a motor vehicle accident, there is a police report to help memorialize the facts. If you’ve been in an accident we can provide you with a free copy of your police report,

Refusal To Give A Statement Will Not Hurt Your Case

As a general rule, we advise adjusters that it is our policy that our clients not give a statement. Much the same way the insurance company does not have to provide us with a copy of the store video for a slip and fall, we retain the right to refuse to give a recorded statement. Additionally, if a lawsuit is filed, both sides will be given a chance to take depositions during the Discovery phase of the lawsuit, governed by N.C.G.S. 15A-902. A deposition is the equivalent of a recorded statement given by our client, or anyone else. That is also when any existing video of an accident or slip and fall would be turned over for review.

The Pitfalls Of Settling A Claim Without A Personal Injury Lawyer

This article is just one example of how having legal representation can dramatically change the results of your personal injury claim or personal injury settlement. Whether it’s guidance regarding a personal injury statement to an adjuster, or assistance with negotiating medical liens in personal injury, your personal injury attorney will fight to protect you. Having your legal rights protected has to be a top priority when dealing with a large corporate insurance company.

Speak With A Charlotte Personal Injury Lawyer Today

If you have been injured and would like to speak with a lawyer today, call us at 704.749.7747. Press the “New Client” option when prompted, and you will be connected immediately with a lawyer. You can also request a FREE CASE EVALUATION and we will reach out shortly to discuss your case with you. Even if you’ve already given a personal injury statement, we can help.

Further Reading

If you’d like to read more articles, check out our Personal Injury Blog or our Bankruptcy Blog. Thank you for stopping by the website. We hope it has been helpful.