Dear Reader,

Picture this…You’re driving down the freeway.  Maintaining a decent speed and keeping up with the flow of traffic.  You’re keeping a safe distance from the car in front of you and listening to your favorite song on the radio.   Not a care in the world until…

You crest a hill only to find traffic on the other side standing still.  Traffic is backing up quickly.  You have time to hit your breaks. You don’t slam them, but it’s a hard stop.  The driver behind you isn’t so quick. He was coming up too fast and simply couldn’t stop in time.  His lifted truck hits you, crumpling your little car.  For a moment, all you know is slamming breaks, screeching metal, and pain. Then, a whirlwind of activity.  Paramedics. A trip to the hospital in an ambulance. More pain.

You’re leg is broken in two places, and your back hurts terribly.

You’ve been involved in a serious auto collision.

Two days and one major surgery later, you’re lying in a hospital bed.

Your family is there with you. They’re telling you to call an attorney. They say you need to file a personal injury claim.

But what does that mean?

What exactly happens during a personal injury claim, and what is involved?

Many people are reluctant to call an attorney. They think they can handle a claim on their own, and they believe the polite insurance agent who calls them while they are at the hospital is really on their side.

This is a mistake.

Pursuing a personal injury claim can be complicated. There are many moving parts, targets that must be hit on time, and pitfalls along the way.  If you’re not an expert in personal injury law, your best first step is to call my office.

We will review the details of your case and help determine if you have a valid claim.  If so, we can guide you through filing against the at-fault party.

Once your claim is filed, the insurance company investigates the accident and your injuries. They may request your medical records, police reports, or anything pertinent to your claim.   While it’s important to cooperate with an insurance company’s demands, except for the smallest of injury claims or claims not involving any injury, having the right personal injury attorney on your side will keep you from being bullied or treated poorly by an insurance adjuster. Translation:  don’t work with insurance company adjusters yourself if you have any appreciable injury. They will take advantage of you.

After the investigation, the insurance company will accept “liability” (responsibility) or not. If they do, they may offer a quick settlement.  Ninety-nine times out of one hundred, this first settlement offer is ridiculous and will not cover nearly enough of your losses or medical bills.  Again, this is where having an experienced personal injury attorney matters.  You need to be sure your offer is fair and properly considers your future medical needs.  Insurance adjusters are notorious for throwing out lowball offers that hardly offer any true compensation for pain, suffering, injuries, and loss.

During a personal injury claim, having an experienced personal injury attorney working for you will help you keep detailed records of all medical expenses, lost wages, and other damages related to the accident.  These records will be vital in helping calculate the amount of compensation you are entitled to.

If you or someone you love is ever involved in an auto collision, I am here for you.  Please call my office immediately at 703-761-4343 and 301-949-1515.

Until next time, please be safe, and NEVER text while driving!

Paul Samakow

Attorney Paul Samakow

WordPress Video Lightbox Plugin