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Are you saving the person money or the insurance company money?

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When you get in a car accident and someone else is at fault, you may have a lot of questions about why you should not make a claim for personal injury damages. However, the answer to most of those questions and assumptions about who is actually going to pay for your bills is surprising to many. Who is actually saving money by not going through the other person’s insurance after a car accident or not making a claim for personal injury damages? Hint, it is a billion dollar industry and not an average person. 

Why do so many people believe that it is better to not make a claim or to just accept cash from a person that causes a car accident to pay for only the repair damages? It may be due to cleaver advertising and news reporting by insurance companies and their agendas. Insurance is great, don’t get me wrong. However, the reason why many people are not making claims is based upon wrong assumptions.

Many people use the following excuses as why they don’t want to hire a Seattle personal injury lawyer to represent them in their car accident injury case or why they don’t even make a claim against the insurance company:

1. They don’t want to cost the person that caused the car accident more money. This could not be further from reality. When making a claim for personal injury or car repair following a car accident, the person that caused the car accident will not pay a dime because they have insurance. If there rates go up, it is rightfully because they are a bad driver and they will only go up a couple hundred dollars a year compared to the thousands of dollars the insurance company probably owes you. 

2. They are not that injured and don’t want to be greedy. This mostly stems from the false idea that the other person will have to pay more money or the idea that they don’t want to be like the McDonald’s lady who sued for a million dollars because of spilt coffee. However, not many people know that the person that sued for a million dollars had severe burns that required her to get a skin graph of her nether region. That was not something anyone would want to go through but some how the media and the insurance companies have made everyone think this was just warm coffee that caused irritation? Moreover, your health is really all you have in this life so to say it is not worth anything is ridiculous. Would you rather go to the chiropractor now to get your spine in alignment and get compensated for your injuries or rather have arthritis and require back surgery because of uncorrected spine alignment in the future without getting it paid for or any compensation?

3. They don’t know what their case is worth. Many people don’t make a claim because they don’t know their case is worth medical bills being paid, lost wages compensated for, and pain and suffering. Your car accident injury case could be worth $10,000 or more.

Andrew CherinAre you saving the person money or the insurance company money?
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Texting and Driving Car Accident Injury Cases: Why Seattle laws aren’t working

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As a Seattle personal injury lawyer, I come across a lot of Seattle car accident injury victims and a lot of police reports. The most common reason that I come across for the cause of these car accident injury cases in the police report is distracted driving. It is hard to pinpoint which of these distracted driving cases are related to cell phone use or something else, but we can assume that most of them are due to technology distracting people in some way or another.

Distracted driving due to texting while driving or manipulating or reading a cellphone while driving is extremely under reported because of honesty of the victims. Let’s face it, not many people are willingly going to admit to a police officer that the cause of the car accident was that they were looking at their cell phone, which caused the car accident injury case. Most people are going to say that they either didn’t have enough time to stop because they looked at their radio or just didn’t leave enough space for the sudden stop of the vehicle in front of them. 

Tailgating is another one of the major causes of car accident injury cases in Seattle. Tailgating is dangerous but many people do it because they don’t want another car to squeak in between them and the car in front of them, especially during rush hour traffic. Couple this type of driving with distracted driving and the ever growing number of apps on our phones and you get a recipe for many car accidents. 

Seattle texting and driving laws are very lax due in large part to the specificity of the type of conduct that is illegal. The only thing that is outlawed as of this date is actually reading or texting a text message while driving. This means that people can text while their car is stopped and not moving. People can text at a stop light or stop sign. People can even search the internet or Facebook while driving because the only thing that is outlawed is texting while driving which is very strictly construed to literal text messaging. Text messaging does not include Facebook, email, internet, games, etc. I don’t understand how it doesn’t encompass all of these very similarly distracting means but it doesn’t. 

Due to the strict meaning of texting while driving laws in Seattle, Seattle police have a hard time enforcing this law. For this reason, we will continue to see Seattle drivers continue to text and drive with little or no ramification, save for getting in a car accident and severely injuring themselves or others. Additionally, there is no punitive damages for car accident injury cases so your Seattle personal injury lawyer cannot get punitive damages to further penalize texting while driving people to send a message that this is highly dangerous driving. 

Andrew CherinTexting and Driving Car Accident Injury Cases: Why Seattle laws aren’t working
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Injured in an Uber or Lyft Car Crash?

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Many people believe that having a case against an Uber driver is difficult and near impossible. The reason for this thinking stems from media somewhat confusing the average car accident injury person into thinking insurance coverage from the defendant’s personal and Uber insurance will deny and point fingers to the other person. This is not the case like it may have once seemed to be. 

The confusion before came where there was an Uber driver who rear ends another person but the Uber driver did not actually have an Uber passenger at the time of the collision. This made it so Uber denied the coverage because they said that the driver did not have a client so they were not working even if the Uber driver was looking for a person to pick up. 

However, Washington State law has stated that Uber must cover all car accidents that their drivers cause while the driver is using the Uber app to look for clients or they are working. This may seem a little grey but it can all be hashed out in one way or another by a Seattle personal injury lawyer if you have questions. 

Therefore, the cases are now much more straightforward and if you are injured in a car accident by an Uber driver, you can rest assured Uber will cover it or their own personal insurance will cover your injuries in a car accident. Uber drivers are required to maintain their own personal insurance in order to drive for Uber and Uber provides at least $50,000 of liability insurance for their drivers. The problem comes if you are seriously injured as $50,000 while higher than mandatory private citizens driving insurance, is not enough to cover major injury car accidents. For this reason, you should maintain a high amount of UIM insurance to cover any gaps. UIM insurance is cheap. Get it.

If you have been injured in a car accident, you need a Seattle personal injury lawyer today. Call today for a free consultation. I charge my clients on a contingency fee basis, meaning I don’t get paid until and unless you recover a settlement. The amount of money that you will gain by hiring a Seattle personal injury lawyer will more than outweigh the cost of hiring a lawyer and then some. Most personal injury victims can stand to gain at least double what they could have obtained on their own, when they hire a Seattle personal injury lawyer including all lawyer fees and medical bills being paid. Make a claim today, the only people you are saving money are insurance companies and not the driver who hit you. Get healed and relieve stress now!

If you have any traffic or car accident questions, please leave me a message bellow in the form or on my Facebook page. Be sure to sign up for our monthly newsletter where you will receive a brief highlight of our three best blog posts from the previous month.

Andrew CherinInjured in an Uber or Lyft Car Crash?
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Top 3 Reasons Why People Don’t Talk To A Lawyer Following a Car Accident

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Who is actually saving money by not going through the other person’s insurance after a car accident or not making a claim for personal injury damages? Hint, it is a billion dollar industry and not an average person. 

Why do so many people believe that it is better to not make a claim or to just accept cash from a person that causes a car accident to pay for only the repair damages? 

Many people use the following excuses as why they don’t want to hire a Seattle personal injury lawyer to represent them in their car accident injury case or why they don’t even make a claim against the insurance company:

1. They don’t want to cost the person that caused the car accident more money. This could not be further from reality. When making a claim for personal injury or car repair following a car accident, the person that caused the car accident will not pay a dime because they have insurance. If there rates go up, it is rightfully because they are a bad driver and they will only go up a couple hundred dollars a year compared to the thousands of dollars the insurance company probably owes you. 

2. They are not that injured and don’t want to be greedy. This mostly stems from the false idea that the other person will have to pay more money or the idea that they don’t want to be like the McDonald’s lady who sued for a million dollars because of spilt coffee. However, not many people know that the person that sued for a million dollars had severe burns that required her to get a skin graph of her nether region. That was not something anyone would want to go through but some how the media and the insurance companies have made everyone think this was just warm coffee that caused irritation? Moreover, your health is really all you have in this life so to say it is not worth anything is ridiculous. Would you rather go to the chiropractor now to get your spine in alignment and get compensated for your injuries or rather have arthritis and require back surgery because of uncorrected spine alignment in the future without getting it paid for or any compensation?

3. They don’t know what their case is worth. Many people don’t make a claim because they don’t know their case is worth medical bills being paid, lost wages compensated for, and pain and suffering. Your car accident injury case could be worth $10,000 or more.

Andrew CherinTop 3 Reasons Why People Don’t Talk To A Lawyer Following a Car Accident
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What is comparative fault and how can it help your case?

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What is comparative fault and how could it impact your Seattle personal injury car accident injury case in Washington State? Comparative fault is a statute created by the Washington State legislature that states that injuries suffered in a case can be separated by their attributed fault and reduced by the percentage each party is responsible for. This means that if you are injured in a car accident and the jury states that you are 10% at fault for causing your injuries, your award at trial will be reduced by 10%. Additionally, where there is two or more defendants responsible for the car accident injuries that you suffered, their share of responsibility for the injuries will be attributed based on the percentage of fault and offset by your fault. 

However, there is also a statute that allows for one defendant to pay for the entire damages suffered by you in the car accident injury case. This occurs only where the plaintiff has not attributable fault and one of the parties is in a better position to pay for the damages suffered in the car accident than the other defendant. At that point, the innocent plaintiff recovers 100% of their damages from one defendant and the other defendant will have the ability to go after the second non paying defendant for the amount they covered for the others’ responsibility. This allows for an innocent victim of a car accident to recover for their injuries from a guilty party and the guilty parties to collect among each other. 

This is a great statute for people that are injured by one party that does not have insurance but there is also another guilty defendant who has insurance. That party will have to pay the full amount, should their insurance have enough coverage to pay for the damages. This often comes into play where there is little or no UIM insurance on the party of the plaintiff or little or no insurance on the part of one of the defendants. If there is no insurance on any side, however, it is very difficult if impossible to realistically see any money from any of the defendants for the car accident injury case.

Andrew CherinWhat is comparative fault and how can it help your case?
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Is it too late to start going to a chiropractor for your car accident injury case?

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After a couple months without treatment, insurance companies will start to deny injury relatedness to a car accident injury case. How long do car accident victims have to start treatment following a car accident? 

Insurance companies will start to deny your claim if you take too long to seek physical therapy, chiropractic care, massage therapy, or other treatment for your back and neck injuries suffered in the car accident. What is too long? This is tailored to each individual case and could be as little as three months without treatment or five months without treatment. Most soft tissue or spinal misalignment injuries should heal within 4 to 8 months according to most insurance companies so any start date following this time period may make it much less likely that you can recover anything in the car accident from insurance companies. 

Insurance companies would like you to start treatment for your injuries following a car accident injury case immediately following a car accident because it makes it more likely than not related to the car accident. However, when there is a large gap in treatment or start of treatment following a car accident injury, it makes it less clear where the injuries actually came from. The reason for this is that there are a lot of unknown activities that could come into play to cause an injury that is similar to the one in the car accident. Well, at least that is the argument they will make. 

As a Seattle personal injury lawyer, I see a lot of car accident injury victims get wrong or inaccurate advice from ER doctors that implant ideas into their head about the actual course of treatment they probably need after a car accident. ER doctors are very good at their job and see very severe injuries all the time. However, they become numb sometimes to less severe injuries like spinal misalignment or soft tissue injuries that really do require chiropractic care to create better alignment of the spine and return victims to full range of motion and health in their neck and spine. Therefore, it is not uncommon to see ER doctors tell patients that they should be fine or back to normal within one month or two following a car accident. This could not be further from the truth and could be mal practice. The good advice is to follow up with your primary doctor following a car accident to get x-rays, MRI, and more tailored advice to treatment of your neck and back injuries rather than take medication and sit around doing nothing for two months.

For these reasons, it is always good to check in with your primary doctor following a car accident injury case and call a Seattle personal injury lawyer to make sure you are doing everything right and that you can pay for your medical treatment while you are awaiting a settlement from the third party insurance company of the person that caused the car accident and your injuries. 

Andrew CherinIs it too late to start going to a chiropractor for your car accident injury case?
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Poor Road Design Cases

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What is considered a poor road design case in Seattle? What’s up with all the triangle streets, are those poor road designs? When do poor road design cases come into play? These are some of the questions many people have when they are faced with a car accident injury case where there is little or no insurance. 

A poor road design case is a car accident injury case that a Seattle personal injury lawyer believes was caused at least in part because of a blind corner, broken road, or some other flaw in the design of the street that made it more dangerous than it needed to be. Seattle is a large city that is growing around existing roads that were built a long time ago that were once perfect for remote areas but are not appropriate for dense urban populations that now flood the city. These roads often are more dangerous now because of the increase in pedestrians, blind corners, bicyclists, and overall far more dense traffic conditions.

A Seattle personal injury lawyer will look into whether there is a case for a poor road design where there is some indication that the road was more dangerous than it should have been and there is little or no insurance on the part of the other driver. Where insurance is sufficient from the other driver who caused the car accident injury case, there often is no need to look into a poor road design case. However, where the damages suffered by the victim of the car accident are large and there is little or no insurance on the part of the defendant, a Seattle car accident injury lawyer will look into all avenues for recover which could be a poor road design or maintenance case against the city, county, or state. 

A poor road design or maintenance case can be brought against the city, county, or state by giving them sufficient notice of a case and then proceeding with trial as them as the named defendant. However, these cases are very tough cases and are often very expensive because of the experts needed to prove that a road could have been designed better or that the design was a known danger that needed fixing soon. Experts will be needed to reconstruct the accident scene, testify to the potential options that should have been available to the city, and testify that the city knew of the dangerousness the road presented and did nothing to rectify it. 

Poor road design cases can be brought by anyone who has been affected by the driver of a car accident. Poor road design cases come up usually when there is some defense that the driver brings up like they couldn’t see the plaintiff or had no way to slow down in time. This is a good indication of a poor road design case but there are many other triggers such as triangle type streets that go from a busy street to a sudden residential street with little warning.

Andrew CherinPoor Road Design Cases
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Hit and Run Cases and UIM Insurance

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People that are injured in hit and run car accidents have a lot of rights if they have the insurance. Hit and run car accidents are illegal and some times there are ways to track down these defendants but more often then not they get away. If you do not have UIM insurance, uninsured or underinsured insurance, you may be out of luck.

Uninsured or underinsured motorist insurance is an automobile insurance policy that steps into the shoes of the defendant and compensates you for pain and suffering, medical bills, lost wages, and more. The policy is very inexpensive but provides a world of relief when you are hit by someone with little or no insurance.

Some statistics show that around 20% of people on the road today have no insurance and most people on the road have the bare minimum insurance. This means that the likelihood of being hit by someone with little or no insurance is probably around 50/50 so why not have UIM insurance which usually costs less than $10 per month for $250,000 worth of insurance – a great deal considering that collision coverage generally costs more than triple that to pay for the damage you cause to your own car. Isn’t your health and wellbeing worth more than the repair value of your car? 

UIM insurance covers people injured in hit and run car accidents but they must follow certain things. If you have UIM insurance and are hit by a defendant that has fled the scene, your insurance policy may state that you must report the car accident to police within 48 hours of the collision or lose your rights to use the UIM insurance. Therefore, it is imperative to call a Seattle personal injury lawyer immediately following a car accident to make sure all of your rights are being preserved and you can maximize your rights and benefits. 

Moreover, it is imperative to know that just because you have the UIM policy in place, you will want a Seattle car accident injury lawyer representing you in the case because the insurance company can and will use anything the defendant could have used as an argument against you for paying out any premiums. While you have the policy, the insurance company will fight hard to keep their money and offer you very little if they can to save money. They are a business and not your friend. 

Andrew CherinHit and Run Cases and UIM Insurance
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Road Rage

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Road rage in Seattle happens presumably because of the high stress of traffic coupled with getting off of work and wanting to get home. When road rage happens, innocent people are often injured by the reckless acts of others trying to get “even” with other drivers who they perceive may have wronged them. 

People who in engage with road rage type behavior often start because they perceive that someone personally has insulted them and they want to make it known to the other person that what they have done was wrong. Often this neolithic type behavior is coupled with the person that was wronged doing the same thing to the other person creating the proverbial two wrongs don’t make a right scenario. Often one person is cut off by another person and then the other person does the same back to the original offender by speeding up and cutting them off. Slowing down by the person in front will ensue to make sure the other person gets the point. This process will repeat itself until one person decides to stop and it’s not worth it. Conversely, this could continue until someone gets into a car accident with the other person or worse, another innocent person. 

If there is an innocent party injured by the reckless behavior of these two, the innocent party may have a personal injury claim against both of these parties. Even if only one of the cars comes into contact with the innocent party, they both could be held responsible for the injuries because they both engaged in the reckless act that created the high probability that someone else would be injured by their negligent acts. 

This scenario could come into help the innocent victim especially where one party has little or not insurance to cover the personal injury damages suffered by the innocent party. In Washington State, there is a statute that allows for the innocent victim to recover in full from anyone of the offending parties 100% no matter the percentage of fault attributed to one party. For example, if one party is found to have caused 90% of the damages for fault because they rear ended the plaintiff in a car accident injury case but they have no insurance and the other party was found to be 10% at fault because they were engaged in road rage type behavior with the other party but they have insurance covderage to cover the damages of the plaintiff, the 10% at fault party will have to pay 100% of the damages suffered and then try to collect the 90% off set from the 90% at fault party. This is created for fairness purposes so that the plaintiff can be made whole and the two offending parties can battle out for the collection of their damages.

If you have been injured in a car accident injury case, you need a Seattle personal injury lawyer now to help you navigate the treacherous insurance waters and find coverage to pay for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Call today for a free consultation. 

Andrew CherinRoad Rage
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