Personal Injury Attorney Mesa, Arizona | The Law Office of J. Ridge Hicks, P.L.C.
Let’s talk about a big number. That number is 39.5 million. This would be a great number if it denoted the amount of dollars in your bank account, but in the context of this piece it is not money but injuries for which the number stands, and in that context it’s a bad number. According to the National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey: 2016 National Summary Tables, 39.5 million is the number of physician office visits for unintentional injuries that occur annually in the United States.
With so many injuries occurring annually, noting that you’re probably reading this right now sitting in the US, you may be coming to the sober realization that accidents are bound to happen, and they may happen to you—at any time.
Personal Injuries: Can You Avoid Them?
The answer is—perhaps, at least to some extent. You can make smart decisions to try and avoid accidents of course. Some obvious ideas that come to mind are: never text while driving, never walk down a sidewalk while staring into your smartphone, take the subway instead of driving if there is freezing rain on the roads, etc. There are thousands of ways we can have accidents and thousands of ways we can choose to work safer, drive safer, and live safer.
Thus, implementing smart choices in everything you do will certainly decrease your chances of becoming an accident victim. But no matter how smartly you prepare, or how cautiously you live your life, accidents can absolutely happen to anyone due to no fault of their own, and when they do, you need a personal injury attorney to represent your interests, to ensure that you receive the maximum compensation for your injuries. Whether your accident or injury is in Mesa, Arizona or another area, make sure you hire an attorney who is knowledgeable and experienced, because personal injury is a serious issue.
Personal Injuries: Can You Plan for Them?
The answer is—you can most certainly be prepared with a plan of action, and part of that plan involves knowing who you will call to defend your rights when you’ve been injured by a negligent party. At The Law Office of J. Ridge Hicks, P.L.C., our track record of success speaks for itself, and we’ll be pleased to work with you. Our firm is consistently recommended by satisfied former clients as the best accident attorney in Mesa, Arizona.
But whether you work with us, or another firm, you must know this: there is no substitute for experience. You don’t want a green attorney working on your personal injury claim or case. Personal injury suits and cases can be complex and from the minute your injury happens, insurance companies will be doing their best to find a way to either pay you nothing or at least pay you as little as possible. A negligent party’s insurance company will try to settle quickly if they know they cannot avoid culpability, and they will aggressively push you to settle and sign before you have an attorney defending your rights. Don’t let them. Always take your time, and never settle without speaking to a personal injury attorney about your accident and claim in the Mesa, Arizona area. Thus, the answer is—you can plan for accidents by knowing in advance who your personal injury attorney in Mesa, Arizona will be, and informing your close friends and family about your choice, so if an accident happens, you’ll be in good hands.
What Is a Typical Settlement for a Car Accident, or Other Accident?
While it is difficult to say exactly what financial settlement your case will deliver, as there are so many variables involved that are specific to personal circumstances of every case, there are, however, some ways of assessing the financial value of a case in terms of how insurance adjusters may view it. Insurance providers do compile data that seems to set averages, but again, every case is unique. Any claim’s particular value is determined based upon a large number, possibly hundreds, of factors.
One common method insurance companies utilize is the multiplier method. Adjusters multiply the ‘special damages’ by a factor, which provides them with a base to consider. As defined, ‘special damages’ are essentially all of the financial losses that a car accident (or other accident type) victim suffers due to the accident. As you would expect, financial losses are medical expenses, lost wages, etc. The insurance adjuster may use a multiplier of two, or three in their determination of a claim’s value. This is a rudimentary explanation, but in effect if the adjuster assesses your immediate financial losses to be at ‘x’ amount, then using a factor of two, your claim’s value would be ‘2x.’ Using this formula, a financial loss of $20,000 would then be valued at 2x, which would be $40,000. A factor of 3 or 4 would obviously yield higher estimations of a claim’s relative value. This is by no means the end of their consideration, nor is it true that any two insurance companies would use the same formula, or that either would use the formula at all, but it is one method some insurance companies use to begin their claim value estimation.
It often comes down to statistics, which is the foundation for insurance companies’ use of formulas and factors. Ultimately, the insurance company is trying to estimate what a jury might assess your damages to be if the case went to trial. But again, it is important to underscore that every case is different, and what one attorney is able to get for his client can be vastly different from what another attorney may be able to demand, and get. Experience and savvy counts, so if you are seeking a car accident attorney, or truck accident attorney in Mesa, Arizona, be sure to ask about their track record. You’ll want to go with an accident attorney who can demonstrate that they have been successful, and have turned around cases to the benefit of their accident victim clients. Personal injury suits and claims are complex and there really are some attorneys who are better at this than others. We are proud of our track record for success and you will be too, when you become our client and we get you the maximum compensation you deserve.
Factors That Can Significantly Raise or Lower Your Claim Value
It is your pain and suffering, but when it comes time to value what that’s ‘worth,’ insurance companies often use pretty standard methods that may seem fairly soulless. Adjusters consider their own work experience regarding past claims, their particular company policy for valuation that could involve computer applications for factoring, and of course—your personal skills in persuading them. Getting deeper in, insurance adjusters consider many specific issues from injuries sustained to even who represents you legally.
Keeping in mind that the adjuster’s number one goal is to, at best, deny your claim altogether, and at minimum, reduce it so their company has to pay you as little as possible. It’s not a very friendly situation, and you really need a personal injury attorney on your side to fight all the strategies and tactics they use to shirk their responsibility to you. Whether your claim is in Mesa, Arizona, Kalamazoo, or Timbuktu, you can count on the fact that the insurance adjuster is working to pay you as little as possible. That said, let’s look at some of the basics that could influence your claim.
Soft Tissue Injuries
Bumps and bruises, sprains and twists, are all common types of soft-tissue injuries that will probably not be revealed in an X-ray or CT scan, thus without this hard proof in a visual image, many adjusters take issue with them. Adjusters are reluctant to pay out very much for pain and suffering claims limited to these types of soft tissue injuries. Unless pressed hard, adjusters typically offer very little for these.
If your injury comes from a fender-bender, let’s hope you have some innate sales skills, because it requires a particular level of persuasiveness, backed by great evidence, to get an insurance adjuster to take a fender-bender injury seriously.
Your Share of the Liability
Make no mistake, if the adjuster can demonstrate that you were partially to blame for the accident, they will absolutely not pay you the full estimated value of the claim. So be careful about this when making your claim. Seek advice from your personal injury attorney in Mesa, Arizona, and make sure you have your evidence ready to go.
While we certainly hope that your injury does not cause any permanent disfigurement, you should be aware that facial scars, amputations, and severe burns often drive the valuation of a settlement far above a standard accident settlement. A permanent disfigurement is a tragedy and can cause a lot of emotional suffering. In cases of which there is a permanent disfigurement, be sure that you hire a very experienced personal injury attorney. A personal injury that stays with you for life is an injury that the negligent party must pay heavily for, to compensate you for what you need and deserve, but also to hit them hard financially in hopes that they will implement better safety measures and clean up their act, to protect the public from potential negligence in the future.
Your Specific Attorney Representation
Who you hire to represent you matters; it really does. Insurance adjusters are well aware of the personal injury attorneys who handle claims, and an adjuster is much more likely to offer a fair settlement early on if they know that a particular attorney has a solid track record of getting juries to be empathetic with her or his clients. While jury trials are never a sure thing, an insurance adjuster knows that an empathetic jury could decide to award a very large sum for damages, and it is this fear that sometimes allows for early settlements out of court—if your accident attorney in Mesa, Arizona strikes a little fear in the heart of an adjuster.
Personal Injury Attorney Mesa, Arizona | The Law Office of J. Ridge Hicks, P.L.C.
The Law Office of J. Ridge Hicks, P.L.C. has the experience, the savvy, the relationships, and the drive to get you the maximum compensation for your injuries. Whether you have been the victim of a car accident, truck accident, motorcycle accident, or a slip and fall injury, we are your personal injury attorney in Mesa, Arizona. We get results. Contact us today to discuss your case.