Experienced and Effective Bend Personal Injury Attorneys Ready To Assist You
A personal injury claim involves a tort – a civil (non-criminal) “wrong” that occurs when someone causes harm or loss to another person, either deliberately or carelessly.
The process of filing an insurance claim for a serious injury can be time-consuming and stressful. Insurance companies set up a complicated procedure to overwhelm the victim with paperwork, phone calls, pressure and deadlines.
People who have been seriously injured or who have lost a loved one due to negligence of others are often overwhelmed. What many don’t realize is that insurance companies try to negotiate the lowest possible settlement as quickly as they can. Injured victims are often persuaded to sign a settlement agreement that benefits the insurance company – not the victim.
“The most important thing you can do to prepare for any injury claim is to take care of yourself” – Tom D’Amore
Get the proper and recommended treatment for your injuries, and follow the advice of your physicians. If you think you need help with your personal injury claim, D’Amore Law Group offers a free consultation. In order to best maximize your time with a Bend personal injury lawyer, gather relevant documents such as accident reports, photographs, insurance policies, and information about who caused the injury.
Read more: Case steps for a personal injury claim
D’Amore Law Group has meeting locations in Portland, Bend, and Lake Oswego, Oregon and Vancouver, Washington. If you need a Bend personal injury attorney, contact D’Amore Law Group via email or at 541-382-2032.
The Personal Injury Recovery Process
After a Bend car accident or any other type of accident for that matter, you can file a personal injury claim. These claims are made against the party or parties responsible for your injuries. If you are successful in bringing a case, you can recover compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, decreased earning capacity, as well as for the pain and suffering you endured. While you technically file your case against the at-fault party, more often than not, it is their insurance company that defends the case on their behalf.
Insurance companies are notoriously difficult to deal with. They make the recovery process harder than it needs to be in hopes that accident victims will get frustrated and walk away. Even when an insurance company extends an offer to settle a case, it is often for far less than the amount of damages the accident victim sustained.
However, insurance companies don’t like taking on any more risk than necessary. And taking a case to trial involves a lot of risk. Even the most sophisticated insurance company can’t see into the future to determine how a jury will decide a case. This is one of the reasons why having a dedicated injury lawyer represent you in settlement negotiations can increase your settlement amount. If you have an attorney, the insurance company knows that the case may go to trial if they don’t settle. To avoid this risk, insurance companies are often willing to offer better settlements.
What Goes into an Insurance Company’s Settlement Offer?
Insurance companies rely on complex formulas to determine how much to offer an accident victim to settle their claim. When an insurance company extends a settlement offer, it takes two main things into account. First, the chances the company has of winning at trial. The better the insurance company thinks its odds are, the less inclined it will be to settle a case. Second, the insurance company considers what it thinks a jury would award if it were to lose at trial.
In evaluating these two factors, however, the insurance company considers a number of things, including:
- The seriousness of the accident victim’s injuries;
- Whether the accident victim’s fault played a role in causing their injuries;
- Whether the accident victim has documentation of their injuries;
- Whether the accident victim had any preexisting conditions;
- The amount of work the accident victim missed;
- Whether the accident victim is expected to return to work, and if so, when; and
- The accident victim’s earnings.
While this is an incomplete list, it shows that insurance companies put a lot of effort into making a settlement offer. An experienced Bend personal injury lawyer can help you better understand what you can do to maximize your potential recovery.
How Long Do I Have to File a Bend Personal Injury Case?
Under Oregon’s statute of limitations for personal injury cases, you have just two years to file a personal injury case. Typically, the two-year statute of limitations begins on the date of the accident. However, there are a few exceptions to this general rule.
First, if the injured party is under 18 at the time of the accident, they will have five years to bring the case, or up until the time they turn 19, whichever occurs sooner. Second, if an accident victim suffers from a “disabling mental condition” that prevents them from understanding their rights, they have one year from the time they are no longer under the effects of the disability. However, in no event can an accident victim bring a claim more than five years after an accident, even if the disability lasts this entire time.
Finally, a court can toll, or pause, the statute of limitations if a defendant leaves the state or conceals their identity after the accident but before being served with notice of the lawsuit. However, this type of tolling is not automatic, and you must petition the court when this situation arises.
If you file a case outside of the statute of limitations, the court may have no choice but to dismiss your claim. Protect your ability to recover by reaching out to a dedicated personal injury lawyer as soon as possible.
Other Practice Areas Our Attorneys Handle
Our committed Bend personal injury attorney also has extensive experience to represent clients on these types of injury cases:
Auto Vehicle Accidents
Bicycle Crash Accidents
Construction Site Accidents
Medical Negligence and Malpractice
Sinus Operation Injury
Nursing Home Neglect and Abuse
Class Actions Lawsuit
Bad Faith & Insurance Fraud