Utah Personal Injury Lawyers
If you have been seriously injured due to someone else’s negligence, please contact our experienced Utah personal injury lawyers today to arrange a free consultation. Personal injury is a term that covers a lot of different branches of accidents and incidents. Generally speaking, when you are injured due to someone else’s carelessness, it is important for you to know that you may be eligible for a personal injury claim. You will have your medical bills covers along with your lost wages and any other expense that you have had to incur because of your accident. That will hopefully help you to get back on your feet and return to normal. Our Utah personal injury lawyer is here to help you through your personal injury claim to ensure that you will be getting the fullest and fairest compensation available after your accident. We understand how vulnerable you may be feeling and we want to be there for you.
Types of Personal Injury Cases We Handle
As mentioned, personal injury is a kind of umbrella term. There are many types of accidents and incidents that our Utah personal injury lawyer can help you with. Here are the types of cases we handle:
- Bike accidents
- Bus accidents
- Car accidents
- Construction accidents
- Dog bites/attacks
- Motorcycle accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Slip and falls
The injuries people suffer from these accidents range from minor to life changing. It is possible that you will never be the same. When we ask the liable party’s insurance company for compensation, we take into consideration the amount of suffering you have undergone and we fight hard to get you a compensation reward that reflects that.
Tips for a Successful Claim
Our hope is that you will walk away from this taking valuable information. After your injury, it is important for you to take the proper steps to make sure you are going to have a strong case. Here are a few tips for a strong and successful personal injury claim.
- Seek Medical Attention – You should do this as soon as possible. Your health is so much more important than anything. Our top concern is you getting back to normal after your accident; you should be seeking medical attention if needed. Do not try to brush off the pain and walk away from the accident. In doing so, you run the risk of seriously harming yourself. Also, what you need to know is that if you delay or avoid going to see the doctor, the liable party’s insurance company will take that as an opportunity to deny you compensation and claim you don’t need it.
- Collect Any Evidence – Every scene of any accident has evidence that needs to be collected. If you were hurt in a slip and fall, there was a cause to that and you should get a photo of it. If there was an auto accident, there were probably witnesses and you should get their contact information. If you are too injured to do anything, you can call on a friend or family member. You can even hire an attorney who may be available to get to the scene of the incident and collect the evidence for you. Anything that you think is important pertaining to the accident, you should get a picture of.
- Statute of Limitations – There is an allotted amount of time for you to bring your claim or to settle it in civil court. In Utah, you have four years from the date of the accident to do this or you will be barred from receiving compensation. It is not a loose rule, and once that date passes, there is nothing anyone can do to fix it. Four years might be a long time, but it is not wise to wait to bring your claim. Your witnesses may forget important details, your evidence might disappear, and your case will subsequently be weakened.
- Hire an Attorney – To help make sure you are on track with everything, it is wise to hire an attorney early on. They will take over communication with the insurance company so that they can’t bully you into a low settlement offer. They will take the weight of this personal injury case off of your shoulders.
Frequently Asked Personal Injury Questions
What are the steps in a personal injury lawsuit?
If you’ve been injured in a personal injury case in the state of Utah and the insurance company isn’t treating you fairly, it’s required for you to file a lawsuit and take the matter towards trial or to trial. There are several steps in that process. To start the lawsuit, there’s a complaint that’s filed. Then the other side files an answer. After that, there’s a period of time called discovery, which lasts several months. This includes figuring out what happened in the case. That’s done by written questions to the other side, taking depositions, and doing informal investigations. Everybody’s trying to figure out what happened, why it happened, and who’s to blame for it.
There’s a period of time where they have expert discovery. The experts take the information that was learned and say how they view it, and why they think somebody’s at fault or not at fault. The medical experts are saying why they believe an injury is related or not related to the accident. You’re going to have some period of time for that. Then you’re going to have a period of time to file motions and to do all the final pretrial workup, and then you actually have the trial.
If it gets that far, you need to have somebody who’s prepared to go to trial, who’s prepared from the minute the complaint’s filed, to take that case all the way through to trial.
Should I speak with insurance companies after my injury?
I’m often asked, “Is it a good idea to give a recorded statement to an insurance company?” My answer to that is it’s not a good idea. Insurance adjusters are trained to ask questions in a specific way to get the information they need to help their case, which means hurting your case. Their entire goal is to reduce the amount of damages they pay out. I would recommend that you not speak to an insurance company or give them a recorded statement until you’ve talked to an attorney.
Should I take the first settlement offer from an insurance company?
When negotiating with an insurance provider in Utah, we never recommend taking the first offer. In fact, unless the insurance adjuster is offering one-hundred percent of the insurance policy, we have never had a situation where an insurance adjuster is unwilling to give more money above and beyond their first offer. We do not recommend that if an insurance adjuster offers some amount of money, that that is an offer that you should take. It’s our experience that there is typically more money to offer, more room to negotiate with, and we can help you through that process.
Do I need a minimum amount of medical bills to file a personal injury claim?
In the state of Utah, if you’ve been injured in an incident, you need to have $3,000 worth of medical bills before you can file a claim. The caveat is that it only applies if you have PIP protection. If you have a slip and fall case, that doesn’t apply. If you have a motorcycle case where you don’t have personal injury protection, that doesn’t apply. If you’re in a car crash case, you would be required to have $3,000 worth of medical bills. Unless there are some other circumstances, you would have to have $3,000 worth of medical bills before you could file a claim.
Will pre-existing conditions affect my personal injury claim?
Preexisting conditions are interesting because insurance companies look at them and say, “You’ve already had the injury; we didn’t really cause an injury.” The problem is with the preexisting injury, you’re more susceptible to a new injury or a re-aggravation of that injury, and so when they cause something new, oftentimes because of the preexisting, it makes it worse.
Can I receive compensation for emotional damages?
One of the areas that an injured party is able to recover is for the damages of emotional distress. People come in and they ask me about that, and sometimes initially chuckling about it and then we get a few weeks down the road and they understand the reality of emotional distress. They understand that when you’re in pain, any aspect of life is less enjoyable. It doesn’t matter what you’re doing; if you’re hurting, it’s more difficult to enjoy and appreciate the life that you’re living. One of the areas of damages that somebody who injures another person is required to compensate you for is your emotional distress. In Utah, you do get compensation for the emotional stress caused by the injury.
What is the role of an expert witness in my personal injury case?
If you’re in a lawsuit involving a personal injury, one of the things that may happen is you deal with expert witnesses. Expert witnesses put evidence in front of a jury to show things that the average person may not understand or may not have the expertise to understand. An expert witness could be hired on a variety of different topics to come in and explain to the jurors how a particular thing happened, how it should have happened, or how it works. It’s expertise beyond what a normal juror would have, so they are used to provide additional information to the jury and to the court.
Will my personal injury case go to trial?
A lot of my clients are wondering, “Is my case going to go to trial?” The reality is most cases do not end up going to trial or being decided by a jury. Many cases can settle prior to filing litigation; you can negotiate a claim with an insurance adjuster and you reach an agreeable resolution. We’re unable to do that with some cases, and so we file litigation and start the litigation process. During that process, there are a lot of things that happen that can help the case continue to negotiate and work towards a resolution. Even most of the cases that do end up in litigation still end up settling before trial. In the event that a case does go to trial, rest assured that we are attorneys that handle cases that go to trial, we’re not afraid to take a case to a jury verdict, and we will make sure that you’re comfortable with the process, understand what to expect, and are well-prepared for a trial.
Will I have to go trial for my personal injury case?
I was meeting with a client the other day and they said, “No matter what, I do not want to go to trial. Is that a possibility?” I explained to them that in Utah, you always have the option of settling the case before trial. This is your case. We’re not going to file a lawsuit without asking you first and explaining to you what the process is. The ultimate decision is the client’s decision. What we offer is our opinion and our expertise on whether or not we think filing a lawsuit and taking the case to trial will add value and give you the opportunity to settle your case for more and fair money.
How much is my personal injury case worth?
One of the questions that I’m asked most frequently is, “What is my case worth?” Those are very difficult questions to answer because there’s no formula that can be used; it’s based on the specifics of the case. It depends on how severe the injury is, how bad it impacts the individual who’s hurt, how long it’s going to impact them, and how severely it’s going to impact them. What are they going to lose for work? What kind of future medical bills are they going to incur? All of those things go into it.
One of the other things that you have to factor into it is the amount of insurance that’s available to cover that loss because you could have a significant injury but not enough insurance to cover it, and that affects the value of a case.
Call Our Office for a Free Consultation
If you are in need of a strong, dedicated, and experienced Utah personal injury lawyer, please call our office today to set up a free initial case evaluation. We will go over the details of your case, talk about your current health condition and get the ball rolling on your case. We want it to be a successful claim for you so that you can get on with your life after the accident. We will take the stress of a legal situation off of your shoulders and let you focus on yourself and your recovery. You don’t owe us a dime unless we win your case and we will make sure that you are fully and fairly compensated by the liable party’s insurance.