What You Should Know When You’ve Been Injured

The Law Provides For Compensation For Personal Injuries

The law provides for compensation for personal injuries caused by the wrongful act of another.  This compensation is typically in the form of money.  You will usually be compensated for past medical expenses, future medical expenses, pain and suffering, disability and disfigurement, loss of a normal life, aggravation of a pre-existing condition, lost wages, and loss or reduction of income earning ability. The amount of compensation will be determined by the nature and extent of your loss.   You may be entitled to recover for your injuries, even if you have had a similar injury in the past.

Insurance Companies Do Not Pay Money Willingly

That is why you need an aggressive attorney on your side with the experience to handle your personal injury claim.   If an insurance company willingly offers you money for your injuries without an attorney involved, most likely the amount offered is substantially less than your claim is worth.

You May Be Covered By Insurance Even If the Party At Fault Has No Insurance

“UM” stands for “Uninsured Motorist” Coverage. If you have this kind of coverage under your own insurance policy, this will cover you if you sustain a bodily injury in an auto accident in which the other party was at fault and the other vehicle was uninsured.    You may be able to collect from your own insurance company what you would have been able to collect from the other driver’s insurance company for your bodily injury up to the limits of your UM Coverage.  Under current California law, it is often faster and less difficult to resolve a UM claim than a typical third party liability claim.

Insurance Companies Maintain a Central Database

Insurance companies maintain a central database that records all personal injury claims made by any person against an insurance company.  Consequently, all insurance companies will usually know if you have filed a claim for injuries in the past, and they will usually know the nature of the claim and the results.

The Insurance Company Will Thoroughly Investigate

Expect the insurance company to thoroughly investigate the facts of the incident, the claim for medical treatment, and any past injuries or claims.  They may use this information to try to minimize your recovery.  The insurance company may hire a private investigator to take pictures or movies of any physical activity you engage in.  These pictures and movies may be used to discredit your claim for injuries.

It Sometimes Takes Time to Properly Settle a Claim

In fact, it is dangerous to settle certain types of claims too soon because it often takes time for the full extent of some injuries to become evident, and even longer for the full effects of those injuries to be known.  Generally, your case cannot be settled until you have fully recovered or reached a point where the nature and extent of your injuries and future medical treatment are known.

Deadline for Filing a Claim

If you suffer a personal injury, you must file your lawsuit before the applicable deadline (known as the “statute of limitations,”) passes or your claim will be forever barred.  It is incredibly important to immediately consult with an attorney if you have been injured.  The specific time limitation will depend on the type of injury and the circumstances.    To further compound the problem, if you wait until near the end of the period to file a claim or lawsuit, your attorney may not have enough time left before the deadline to help you.

Your Insurance Rates Should Not Increase

Your insurance rates should not increase if you pursue a claim for injuries against another party and that party’s insurance company pays all damages.   Even if the person who caused your injuries does not have insurance, you may still be able to obtain compensation for your injuries from your own insurance policy.  If your insurance policy pays for your injuries and damages, your rates should not increase for that reason alone.

You will find a great deal of helpful information on this website. If you don’t find what you’re looking for, call us at any time. You will be able to speak directly to an attorney who will answer your questions. There is never a charge to call and talk about a personal injury matter. You may also go to our online personal injury questionnaire and submit your information online. An attorney will contact you right away. If you prefer, we can also visit you in your home, place of business or care facility to discuss your personal injury claim.

Click here to fill out our online case questionnaire.

Since most of the time injured victims will suffer some form of loss (be it income, physical, emotional, or other), our legal system provides for compensation in these instances. However, the law only provides a limited time within which to pursue your claim, so you should contact us right away. If you wait too long, you will be forever barred from pursuing your claim.

If you have been injured in an accident, call Altemus & Wagner so you can avoid mistakes commonly made by injured individuals. Most likely, there will be a source of recovery for you. Don’t forget our online personal injury questionnaire where you can submit your information online.



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