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Personal Injury FAQs

Charlotte Personal Injury Lawyers - (704) 710-8182

In regards to personal injury cases, we hear many common questions asked among our clients. We are happy to answer any and all questions a person might have regarding accident and injury cases. Below are a few examples of frequently asked questions that may be of help to you and if you need more information don't hesitate to contact us today at the Saffa Law Firm.

Do I have a case?

If you are injured due to the negligence of another, you most likely have a legitimate personal injury case. Our experienced Charlotte personal injury attorneys can determine whether or not you have a case. After thoroughly examining the facts of your individual case, we can recommend whether or not to move forward with a settlement or lawsuit.

What is "negligence"?

A person is negligent if they fail to exercise a reasonable care for the safety of others. As such, if a person fails to act as a reasonable person would, and this failure leads to someone being injured, the negligent person could be liable for any resulting damages.

Should I speak with the defendant's insurance adjuster?

If you think you may have a claim to make related to an accident, you should always consult an attorney before speaking to the defendant's insurance adjuster.

Insurance adjusters are trained on how to approach you and get you to agree to sign a release (wherein you give up your rights to pursue a claim for your injuries). They are also trained on how to word questions to you so that your answers make it look as though you weren't really injured in the accident.

Our attorneys rarely allow the defendant's adjusters to speak with our clients. On the other hand, if you are pursuing a uninsured motorist claim (i.e. UM claim) (wherein you recover from your own carrier under your UM policy), you should always agree to speak to them. Failure to speak to your UM adjuster could give them grounds for denying you coverage for the accident, claiming you "failed to cooperate". However, even in cases where you are injured by an uninsured motorist, it is extremely important to consult with an attorney before even speaking to your UM adjuster!

Should I sign a release?

Always consult with a personal injury attorney before signing a release. Insurance adjusters will sometimes provide you with a release wherein you release the defense from liability for everything, when you thought you were only settling the property damages part of the case.

Adjusters are trained to contact you as soon as possible. This way you may be more inclined to settle your case for less, not fully appreciating the extent of your injuries or how long you may actually require medical treatment.

What if I do not have health insurance?

For clients who are injured in an accident and do not have health insurance, our attorneys are able to get them medical treatment by providing them with an extensive choice of medical facilities and doctors that will forego receiving payment until after your case settles. Once the case settles, the doctor's office is paid out of the settlement proceeds. Under these circumstances, the doctor's office has a "doctor's lien" against the settlement proceeds.

Does hiring a lawyer mean I will have to go to court?

No. Hiring an attorney does not mean you will need to testify in court or even file a lawsuit (See "What are the stages of a personal injury case" below).

What types of questions will I be asked if I ever give a deposition?

The typical questions you could be asked during a deposition include:

  • Have you ever sustained any injuries before the subject accident?
  • What was your past medical history before the accident?
  • Do you know of any witnesses to the accident?
  • Did you give any statements to anyone regarding the accident?
  • What injuries did you sustain in the accident?
  • Who have you treated with?
  • Are you done treating?
  • What is your employment history?
  • Did you miss any work due to the subject accident?
  • What types of hobbies did you enjoy before the accident?
  • How has your life changed as a resul of the accident?

How much is my case worth?

Just like every person is different, every case is different. There is no blueprint or formula that is used to determine a case's worth.

The value of a case depends on many different factors including (but not limited to):

  • liability (i.e. who was at fault)
  • damages
  • physical damages (what type of injuries you sustained)
  • pain & suffering (past & future)
  • psychological or emotional damages (past & future)
  • property damages
  • lost income (past & future)
  • punitive damages

Our experienced personal injury trial attorneys are able to discuss the potential value of your case after reviewing the facts and circumstances surrounding your accident.

How long will my case take to resolve?

There are different factors which can affect how long it takes to resolve a case.

Generally speaking, cases are not usually settled until after you have reached your MMI (i.e. maximum medical improvement) for the injuries sustained in the accident. MMI doesn't mean that you have necessarily recovered 100%, but rather that you have reached the point in your recovery where you doctors do not expect any additional improvement in the future.

So for clients who reach their MMI in a few months, their cases may be resolved in as little as 4-5 months. On the other hand, cases involving clients whose injuries require additional time to reach MMI could take more than a year to resolve. While each is different, our attorneys can generally advise you as to how long your case is likely take to resolve.

What is a UM claim?

This is an " uninsured motorist" claim. When you are injured in an accident caused by a person who did not have insurance coverage, you can still recover for your injuries under your UM policy. A UM policy is a type of insurance coverage, that you have already paid for, that is designed specifically to cover your injuries if you are ever injured by an uninsured motorist.

If you are injured by an uninsured motorist, our attorneys can determine if you have UM coverage that can compensate you for your injuries.

What is a "doctor's lien" and what are they used for?

For clients who are injured in an accident and do not have health insurance, our attorneys are able to get them medical treatment by scheduling them to treat with doctors who agree that they will not be paid until after your case settles. Once the case settles, the doctor's office is paid out of the settlement proceeds. Under these circumstances, the doctor's office has a "doctor's lien" against the settlement proceeds.

I'm not certain I can afford the help of a lawyer. How can I afford this?

At Saffa Law Firm, there are no out-of-pocket costs to you.

We assume complete financial risk and are paid only if and when we win your case. Your chances for compensation are much greater with the assistance of a professional attorney.

Is it too soon for me to file a lawsuit?

In many cases a statute of limitations can apply, meaning the law limits the amount of time you have to file an injury or accident claim, so it's important to consult an attorney sooner rather than later.

It is in your best interest to contact our firm as soon as possible following your accident or injury. Keep any documentation of what happened such as any law enforcement involvement and medical records. Also, steer clear of signing any documents or papers you may be presented with from another source, especially an insurance company.

Do I still have a case if I was partly at fault for the accident?

Most states have laws extending rights to a person even if they were at fault in some way. Because laws such as this can be ever-changing, retaining professional help to protect your rights is critical.

I think I am ready to seek legal help. What should I do next?

Contacting our law offices for a free consultation, will enable us to start working on your case right away. With experienced legal counsel, successful compensation is possible and we could walk with you through every stage of the case. Document in detail every aspect of the incident you possibly can, such as where and when something took place, and any others who might have been involved at the time.

Sign nothing, no documents should be signed whatsoever without the presence of your attorney. If an incident report was taken, mail the department to obtain a copy of the report. Gather any information in regards to witnesses, if applicable.

Call today to schedule an appointment for a free evaluation with our firm. In doing so, you will be taking the first important step toward achieving justice for yourself and your family.

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