Hiring A Personal Injury Lawyer

If you are considering hiring a personal injury lawyer, this article will help you understand a few factors to consider, together with the typical lawyer-client relationship involved between the personal injury lawyer and the injured client. If you would like to speak to an injury lawyer, call us at 704.749.7747 or click HERE to request a call today.

The Contingency Fee

You will find that most personal injury law firms—including ours—work on what is known as a contingency basis. This means that the law firm only gets paid if they successfully reach a settlement or court award for you. If the firm does reach a successful outcome for you, the payment is typically based on a percentage of that settlement or court award.

The contingency fee is unique in that it allows individuals access to legal representation at no up-front cost. Without the contingency fee, individuals deserving of legal representation would not be able to afford that protection. It is our opinion that personal injury lawyers who work on a contingency basis are playing an important role in keeping auto insurance companies and premises liability carriers (Think: Grocery Store Slip And Falls) in check. Individuals injured by the negligence of others not only deserve representation, but they need it, to be sure they are treated fairly.

Why We Like The Contingency Fee

There are many cases or claims that personal injury lawyers take on, which do not pan out. This means the firm works tirelessly in hopes of achieving a good result for the client, and in the end, loses the case. The downside of course is that neither the injured client nor the law firm receives any compensation.

That being said, we actually like the contingency fee for a few additional reasons. Often, during the course of the representation, the client will need to rely on the advice of the lawyer. It could be that the lawyer is advising the client that the offer received it the best offer we are going to receive. It could also be that the lawyer feels the offer is low and a lawsuit should be filed. In any case, the client finds themselves at a crossroads—whether to accept the offer or not. Because the law firm is getting paid a percentage of whatever they recover for the injured client, we believe the client can trust their lawyer during these critical conversations. The decision is always the client’s in the end, but the lawyer is the trusted advisor.

The Personal Injury Process

We have written about the process of a personal injury claim in the past (How Long Will My Personal Injury Settlement Take?). It is important to establish expectations at the outset with clients. Often, the process is long and drawn out. First, the client must finish treatment. This could mean surgery and recovery time for physical rehab. Second, the law firm must gather medical records and medical billing. Providers are slow to respond and process these requests and it requires diligence on behalf of the law firm—and the delay often frustrates clients. Third, the law firm must put together a demand package for submission to the insurance company in hopes of negotiating a settlement. Many times, after all of these efforts, the lawyer and client do not receive a settlement offer and must consider filing a lawsuit. If so, the timeline starts over again. Finally, once an agreement is reached, medical billing and medical liens can often be negotiated by the law firm to benefit the client’s bottom line from settlement.

Choose Your Personal Injury Lawyer Carefully

Care should of course be taken when hiring a personal injury lawyer. You will work hand in hand with your lawyer for quite a long time. Frustrations can grow if phone calls are not returned, or if progress is not being made on the file. We are sensitive to this, of course. While you should not expect to be able to speak with your lawyer every day, it is important to establish that there will be regular updates to keep the client informed.

Most personal injury law firms operate as a “team” in the office. Each attorney has one or two paralegals assisting with processing the file, gathering information, and keeping the client informed. Our firm is no different. This means you have numerous individuals you can contact for an update at any time.

Speak With A Personal Injury Lawyer Today

If you have been in a car accident, a slip and fall, or have been injured in some other way, we would lHiringove to hear from you. The call is free, and the consultation is designed to help you understand your options. Plus, you get a chance to speak with the lawyer who you may be working with if you decide to move forward with our firm. Call us at 704.749.7747 or click HERE to request a call. We know you have choices. We hope you choose Layton Law.

In A Car Accident? Call Layton Law

If you are in a car accident, the great news is your lawyer is only a phone call away. Our firm works on a contingency basis when representing personal injury clients. This means you don’t owe us anything unless we are able to recover something for you.

Call Us From The Scene Of The Accident

We know even minor accidents are stressful. If you’re in a car accident, It’s never too early to hire a personal injury lawyer. After you’ve made any necessary calls to Medic and the police, you can call us from the accident scene if you need guidance as to what to do next. We’re here to help. Our office can answer questions on the spot, help you understand your options in any given situation, and assist with any other concerns you have before leaving the accident scene.

Early Mistakes Can Cost You Your Case

Statements that clients make to police officers on the scene end up in police reports. Clients who speak with insurance adjusters prior to obtaining counsel, rarely know those statements are recorded. Often, those recorded statements serve to compromise their case.

Turn It Over To Layton Law

When you sign with us as a personal injury client, we handle all communications with insurance adjusters going forward. We also obtain copies of any recorded statements so we can analyze them and get ahead of any weaknesses in your claim or case.

You receive regular updates from our office as we obtain medical records and medical billing once your treatment is complete. These records serve as the basis for the value of your case, and are submitted as part of a Demand Package to the insurance company.

Put Our Experienced Attorney and Staff To Work For You

Our office is equipped to stand up to aggressive insurance adjusters and opposing counsel when necessary. When you hire us, you put our experience to work for you. We are familiar with insurance strategies for claim denials, and we stay the course throughout the life of your case. It is not uncommon for our office to turn a denial into a fair settlement for a client.

Five Star Reviews Tell Our Clients’ Stories

We are most proud of our client interaction, and the care we show our clients. We know you have been through a lot, and that there is no amount of money that can undo the long-term physical and mental anguish of a life-altering car accident. Our clients have been generous enough to leave us reviews across the internet which confirm for us that our message of care and compassion for them is received. When combined with a result the client is happy with, we consider our mission accomplished.

Speak With A Personal Injury Lawyer Today

In a car accident and need help? Call us at 704.749.7747. Or you can click HERE to request a free phone consultation. You will get your questions answered and the call is free. When it comes to choosing a personal injury lawyer, we know you have choices. We hope you choose Layton Law.

Will I Win My Personal Injury Claim?

Will I win my personal injury claim – 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 a 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 provide 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.

How Do Insurance Companies Calculate Pain And Suffering

Clients often wonder how insurance companies calculate pain and suffering. Technically, if you take any settlement and subtract out the medical billing and the lost wages, you are left with what might be referred to as pain and suffering. Essentially, this is anything above and beyond actual expenses. Logic would tell you that is what is being offered to compensate you for your suffering.

Pain And Suffering Isn’t That Simple

Truthfully, your Average Personal Injury Settlement doesn’t really work that way. Two different personal injury attorneys may end up with two different results for the same client. This tells us that pain and suffering is a component of each settlement, but in the end the skill set of your personal injury attorney will determine whether your pain and suffering is maximized in your settlement or jury verdict.

Your damages can be broken into a few categories:

Current Damages – Current medical expenses, Lost wages, and General damages. These include of course your doctor visits and prescriptions, physical therapy, chiropractic, etc.

Future Damages – Future medical expenses, Future lost wages, and Future general damages. While these are not always certain, a doctor’s opinion can be attained in most cases, to try to prove the likelihood for the need of future treatment.

Rehabilitation Damages – If your recovery will involve or require training or re-directing of a career or vocation, you may have rehab damages.

Punitive Damages – Lastly, though uncommon in North Carolina, punitive damages are meant to punish the at fault party. These go above and beyond your pain and suffering, and usually are a dollar amount chosen which represents the desire to “send a message” to the at fault party that this type of behavior will not be tolerated. A classic example is the award given in the McDonalds hot coffee case. The amount of the award was very high, presumably to send the message to corporations that they need to be more careful with hot coffee.

Forget Pain And Suffering And Focus On Value

If you could listen in on your personal injury attorney’s conversations with the insurance adjuster or opposing counsel, you would find the attorney rarely mentions the phrase pain and suffering. There’s a reason—both sides can strongly disagree about a dollar amount which is fair. Instead, the attorney works to build your case based on facts and categories of damages such as those mentioned above. Rather than argue about what you’ve been through, your attorney will argue what it’s going to take to get you back to where you were before the accident.

There are of course accidents which involve a terrible amount of pain and suffering, and in those cases they play a larger role. For instance, if a claimant witnessed the loss of a loved one, or the experience itself was horrific. A vehicle that rolls over three times on the highway involves more pain and suffering than a fender bender on a city street, even if the injuries are the same.

You Need Someone Who Enjoys Arguing

It sounds funny to say, but it is our opinion that you need a personal injury lawyer who actually enjoys arguing. Not in the sense that it makes their day to argue with someone. Instead, you need someone who is interested in building an argument for you. A personal injury attorney and law firm that looks at your case with fresh eyes and can tell the story of your case in a convincing manner will help to maximize the value of your case. In the end, that means a better result for you.

Our clients love that we take a genuine interest in defending their right to be fairly compensated. While none of our Reviews specifically indicate that we love to argue, we find that a client feels satisfied when they know their lawyer went the distance for them– this includes standing our ground against opposing counsel in a personal injury matter.

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.

 

Estimated Personal Injury Settlements

Personal injury attorneys learn very quickly the pitfalls of discussing estimated personal injury settlements with their clients. The value of your personal injury claim is dependent upon numerous factors. As a result, two cases with the exact same injuries may have very different results in terms of a personal injury settlement. Below are some common factors which affect your personal injury settlement.

The Facts – As you might imagine, depending upon the facts, two cases with the same injuries may have dramatically different results in terms of what they may settle for, or what a jury awards. For example, an individual who is rear-ended in a car accident and suffers a concussion has a different case than an individual who has a grocery store slip and fall and suffers a concussion. Strong facts which clearly establish liability or fault will boost the value of your personal injury claim. Weaker facts, for instance where each driver claims the accident was not their fault, may lead to complications unless evidence can be obtained firmly establishing fault of the other driver. If your claim involves wrongful death, pedestrians, or passengers, the outcome will differ as well.

Contributory Negligence – You can’t discuss estimated personal injury settlements in North Carolina without discussing Contributory Negligence. We’ve written extensively about Contributory Negligence in our blog because it affects many North Carolina personal injury claims. Generally speaking, Contributory Negligence is an affirmative defense. It is a rule in North Carolina which says that if a jury determines the plaintiff is 1% or more at fault, the jury is instructed to give the plaintiff nothing. This is an outdated rule and one your personal injury attorney must wrestle with in order to prove your case. While most claims do not go to court, insurance adjusters commonly introduce Contributory Negligence into the settlement conversation, to remind the plaintiff that there is a very serious risk in litigating a personal injury claim in North Carolina if it’s possible the jury determines the plaintiff was even 1% at fault.

Pre-Existing Injuries – While you are entitled to be compensated for your injuries, you will find the insurance company for the at-fault party will diligently research whether you had a pre-existing condition before this accident. Even a note in your prior medical records indicating a simple complaint regarding back pain, will be used to demonstrate you had existing back pain prior to this accident. The two sides will end up arguing over the extent to which this accident worsened the back pain, and assign a value to that.

Rule 414 – Rule 414 is a rule of evidence which personal injury plaintiff’s attorneys are familiar with. The rule says that the only evidence of medical billing which can be introduced into evidence in court, is medical billing which has actually been paid, and medical billing which is still owed or outstanding. In short, if you have $100,000 of medical treatment, and Medicaid pays $5,000 to the hospital, unless there is a remaining balance, your attorney will only be able to enter $5,000 into evidence at trial as medical billing. Because juries use medical billing dollar totals to help them calculate what they believe is a fair settlement, you can see how this tends to under-emphasize the extent of your injuries at trial. Your lawyer will also need to determine whether you have any Medical Liens as a result of your claim and negotiate them as part of settlement. Once again, two clients who have the same exact injuries but different insurance coverage, may see very different jury results in their personal injury verdicts.

Standard of Care – Generally, a claim of negligence requires you show that a standard of care was owed to you by another person and was not fulfilled. This is called a Breach of Duty, in the personal injury world. In many slip and fall claims, obstacles arise in proving that the standard of care was breached. For instance, you may be able to prove that there was water on the floor of the grocery store, and that you slipped in that water. However, if the store can prove that another customer spilled that water on the floor three minutes before you slipped in it, they will prevail on their argument that the store did not breach it’s duty to you—there wasn’t enough time for the store to discover and fix the dangerous condition. While there is no set rule for the amount of time a hazard must exist, slip and fall cases routinely turn on who created the hazard (another shopper or an employee), whether the store knew or ‘should have known’ about the hazard, and how much time passed since the hazard was created.

Pain and Suffering – Pain and suffering is essentially what you endure as a direct result of the accident. When reviewing your settlement, the amount attributable to pain and suffering is anything above and beyond payment for medical bills and lost wages. Your lawyer will submit a demand package as part of the personal injury settlement process. That demand package will outline your pain and suffering and you will have a chance to review it prior to its submission.

Lost Wages – Lost wages are part of your claim. They will need to be verified by your employer. Your attorney will provide you with a form for your employer to complete, indicating your rate of pay, dates missed, and total lost wages. If you are self employed, you will need to provide copies of tax returns from prior years and other evidence that your lawyer will use to construct a lost wages claim for submission.

The Reputation Of The Personal Injury Lawyer – If your personal injury attorney has a reputation of following through on claims, thoroughly investigating claims, and negotiating claims in good faith, we believe that you are able to maximize your settlement offer in your personal injury claim. If your attorney has a reputation of threatening to file a lawsuit but never follows through on that threat, you can imagine the insurance company may not take that lawyer’s claims as seriously as they will a claim from another law firm. One way to check the reputation of your lawyer is to look at their Google Reviews. We are proud of our history with clients, and thankful that they choose to leave reviews about their experience.

Hiring a personal injury attorney is key in successfully negotiating your claim. The attorney is not simply arguing over dollars and cents; instead, the attorney is building your case using all of the above factors. By persuading the insurance adjuster that the lawyer will succeed with their case, you are more likely to maximize the settlement offer from the insurance company. Estimating personal injury settlements prior to having all the facts, medical records and billing in hand is a bad idea for both you and your personal injury attorney. This process will require some patience, but hopefully your patience will pay off with a fair settlement or jury verdict.

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 about estimated personal injury settlements 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 which 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 which 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 horse back 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 every day 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 which 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.

 

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 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 work load 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 insures 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.

Contusions From Car Accidents

Our clients’ medical records often reflect contusions from car accidents. Often, insurance adjusters seek to minimize the impact of contusions when it comes to settlement offers. Working with a personal injury lawyer will help to make sure you are treated fairly when you reach a personal injury settlement.

What Is A Contusion?

A contusion is a condition where a capillary or blood vessel is leaking into the surrounding area. While it can be painful and take time to heal, put more simply, a contusion is a medical term for a bruise.

Soft Tissue Contusions From Car Accidents

The most common type of contusion is a a soft tissue contusion. Muscle contusions are bruised muscles or tendons. These can result from impact with your dashboard or steering wheel in a car accident. You will have some or all of the following symptoms:

Discoloration

Swelling

Stiffness

Soreness

While you should seek medical attention for your injuries, there is not much a physician can do to treat a contusion. They will recommend Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation or “RICE”. They will also prescribe anti-inflammatory drugs to help reduce the pain and inflammation. Lastly, they may recommend a brace or wrap to keep the area in place while it heals.

Bone Contusions From Car Accidents

A second type of contusion is a bone contusion. While the end result is similar to a soft tissue contusion, bone contusions are less common. They also take more time to heal. Whereas a muscle contusion may take a few days to a few weeks, a bone contusion can take a few months to heal.

How Do I Know If I Have A Broken Bone?

Quite often, doctors will take x-rays or an MRI to confirm that your condition is in fact a contusion and not a broken or fractured bone. This is simply a process of elimination. While an x-ray won’t show a bone bruise, it can help to eliminate a fracture as the culprit.

What Is A Contusion Worth In Personal Injury?

Your personal injury claim is made up of numerous elements. While a contusion alone is not a high value personal injury, you deserve to be treated fairly by the insurance company for the at fault driver. A personal injury lawyer can help to build your case from many aspects—lost wages, pain and suffering, and special damages.

Contusions from car accidents help to tell the story of the accident. A contusion on your head or face shows you made contact with your vehicle upon impact. While the injury alone may not give rise to a large personal injury settlement, it helps to establish the violent nature of the car accident.

Speak With A Personal Injury Lawyer Today

If you’ve been in an accident and would like advice, we’re here to help. You can reach us at 704.749.7747 or click to request a FREE CASE EVALUATION. We know you have choices. We hope you choose to Recover With Us.