Auto & Trucking Accidents

Law Office of Igor A. Shapiro

DON’T DELAY YOUR SETTLEMENT

We are proud to say our team has extensive experience in successfully representing clients for personal injury claims. Please feel free to call or e-mail us with any questions. Get a free consultation today.

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Seeking medical attention in auto accident cases:

If you have any doubts, seek medical attention for your injury either at the emergency room or as soon as possible with your primary care physician. Delay in care could exacerbate your injuries. Also, your injuries require documentation. Without documentation, any claim you might pursue could be adversely affected.

The importance of auto accident police reports:

For many auto accidents there is a police report. Although this is certainly a good place to start, the police report in and of itself does not determine who was at fault, even if one or more drivers in the car accident were cited for a traffic violation. The police officer investigating the car accident can cite a driver for a traffic violation, but the police officer is not a judge, and does not have legal authority to make a final determination about who was at fault.

How attorney fees work in auto accident cases:

Auto accident attorney fees are generally on a contingency fee basis. That is what we offer. If our client does not recover any damages, we do not get paid. The attorney fees come out of the injury settlement. But, the insurance company or governmental agency may be legally obligated to pay a pro rata share of your legal expenses if you retain an attorney. This may apply by state law, federal law, and/or contract.

The role car insurance plays in auto accidents:

If another driver causes an auto accident you may be entitled to property damage, lost wages, medical expenses, and compensation for pain and suffering. An injured person’s medical expenses are not awarded automatically. The injury victim must prove that the medical expenses are reasonable, related to the auto accident, and necessary. Just producing the medical bills is not adequate proof legally. An auto accident attorney can help. The party at fault may not have enough, or any, insurance. In that event you will need to consider how to ascertain what other assets the party may have and how to establish a claim under your uninsured motorist or underinsured motorist coverage. If your insurance company–whether auto insurance or health insurance–paid any benefits to you and you collect from an at-fault party, then your insurance company is legally entitled to be reimbursed from the settlement. This is also true of DSHS benefits as well as worker’s comp (or “L&I”) benefits. This legal rule is called subrogation. It is important that a personal injury settlement adequately account for this.

Things to know:

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Don't give a statement

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Don't sign anything

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Take photos of your accident or injuries

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Don't discuss your injuries with anyone

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Do not agree to any independent medical exams

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Hire a personal injury lawyer

FAQ

Who will pay for my car?

Hiring a lawyer will give you the peace of mind that the process is fair. You can choose where you want to get your car repaired. The at-fault insurance company will typically issue payment for the cost of repair, if the costs are less than the total value of your car. In the case your car is totaled, they will issue you a check for the fair market value of your car.

Who will pay for my medical bills?

An attorney will prepare a demand letter that meticulously details how your life has been affected by the auto accident. You may be entitled to treatment on behalf of the insurance company for your injuries.

Who will pay for my wage loss?

An attorney protects your rights and makes sure you are receiving every benefit that you are entitled to, including wage loss. This means that we demand the responsible party pays you for your lost wages as a result of the auto accident. This includes time off work because we understand the stressors that come along with missing work.

What is diminished value?

Diminished Value is the loss of a vehicle’s market value after an accident. Buyers tend to be less likely to purchase a repaired vehicle, so its value diminishes after an accident. In many cases, you are entitled to the loss in market value. We help guide you to make sure that you receive accurate diminished value appraisals to help you potentially recover more from your insurance company.

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