Yesterday, I told you not to sign statements in personal injury accidents. But if you do sign a statement, make sure you read it and get a copy of it BEFORE you leave. I know this sounds like common sense, but it’s not. Most people are so shook up from the accident they forget to leave the accident scene with a copy of either the accident report or their statement. Having a copy ensures that you have the copy that was completed at the time you left the scene. I have seen statements altered after the victim leaves the accident scene and the only way we could prove it was altered was because my client had her own copy. This is short and to-the-point today, so again, don’t sign statements, but if you do GET A COPY! If you have any questions regarding statements or anything else you may have signed or may be asked to sign by an insurance company, The Nashville Law Firm is here to help. You can reach us at 615-844-4034 or on the web at www.thenashvillelawfirm.com.
Continuing the series of things not to sign, our next focus is on Statements involving a personal injury case or slip and fall. You may have heard someone tell you not to put something in writing. This is important with letters, emails and even Facebook. Once you write it down, it becomes, many times, written in stone. Statements are included in this list. Immediately after an accident, typically an accident involving a premises type injury, the property owner or store manager will try to get a statement from you. It’s acceptable to inform them how the accident happened and if you are injured, but DO NOT sign anything, including a Statement. This is especially important if you haven’t written the statement yourself or if it is written in pencil. The statement may have been altered without your knowledge and now you’ve placed your signature at the bottom. These statements are never collected for your benefit. They are collected because after every accident the property owner has to act under the assumption that they are going to be sued and must protect themselves and the company. If you have any questions regarding statements or following up on an accident, injury or slip and fall where you may have had an accident, please contact The Nashville Law Firm at 615-844-4034 or find us on the web at www.thenashvillelawfirm.com . We are always here to provide a Free Consultation with a lawyer.
Judging by the headline, you may be thinking, “What? But I want my money!” I’m here to tell you, the individual or family signing a settlement release, to have an attorney review the settlement release before you sign. The best illustration I can give you is a recent client who contact my firm to pursue an action against a defendant after he signed the settlement release. Typically, you can’t go after a defendant once the release is signed. However, like many insurance companies, this insurance company rushed the client to settlement and did not inform him that he would be responsible to repay his health insurance company back for all the medical bills it paid out. In fact, this put him in a position where he would have to pay close to 3 times the settlement value back to his health insurance company. The defendant’s insurance company provided him with an attractive settlement that put a significant amount of money into his pocket, but didn’t tell him what he would owe to health insurance, so now he pockets nothing. If you are settling without the representation of an attorney, at the very least pay an attorney to review the settlement release and advise you on what you are signing and any possible ramifications from signing the release. If you every have any questions regarding settlement releases, please feel free to contact The Nashville Law Firm at 615-844-4034 or visit us on the web at www.thenashvillelawfirm.com .
A few times a year I will get a call from a family to let me know that a loved-one has been seriously injured in an accident. They will ask me to investigate the accident, determine liability and find out what kind of insurance the at-fault driver has. And those few times I discover that the defendant has either no insurance or just the minimum required coverage. After learning this, what is even worse is that the injured party didn’t have health insurance or uninsured motorist coverage on their own car insurance policy. I have seen families left with hundreds of thousands in losses due to medical bills and wage loss. I have even seen families have to file bankruptcy as a result of an accident that they weren’t at fault in. My plea to you today is to buy Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist coverage and buy the Stacked form, not the Unstacked. And buy a lot, at least $200,000.00. Here is a great site for calculating how much insurance you should purchase http://www.carinsurance.com/Articles/content1.aspx . If you need help in determining what you currently have on your policy or help with selecting new coverages, please feel free to contact The Nashville Law Firm at 615-844-4034.
Yesterday I received a call from a prospective client who informed me that both his daughter and granddaughter were injured in an automobile accident. You may be asking yourself, what’s unusual about that? This daughter and granddaughter were injured as the result of a drunk driver. The granddaughter is still in the hospital, after being there nearly a month. This drunk driver was going nearly 80 mph, in a 45 mph zone. He struck them head-on. It makes my skin boil! Even worse, this guys “buddies” claimed they tried to hide his keys from him. Nice job! A bunch of drunk guys hiding keys from another drunk. I’m guessing they held them in front of his face and told him that they were invisible now. Please, please, please don’t drive drunk – ever! There are services out there that will help you get home safe and let others get home safe too. If you’d like more information, please contact MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) and if you have a problem with alcohol or a loved-one does, please contact Alcoholics Anonymous (AA). By the way, what puts this case over-the-top for me, this drunk driver didn’t have car insurance. So not only did he injure them physically, now they are injured financially. If you or anyone ever needs to speak with an attorney about insurance or an accident, please contact us, The Nashville Law Firm or at 615-844-4034.