Frequently Asked Questions About Personal Injury
Below are answers to questions frequently encountered by the attorneys at the Law Offices of L. Morgan Martin as they represent individuals and families in personal injury and wrongful death arising out of automobile accidents, the use of defective products, and workplace injuries. If you have further questions, see our personal injury overview, or contact us directly by calling 800-506-0311 or 843-484-0993 for a free consultation regarding any specific claim or questions you may have.
Q. What do I do if I am in a car accident?
A. Of course, the first and most important step is to seek medical treatment for yourself and any others injured in the automobile accident. If possible, before you leave the scene, you should try and obtain contact information for the other party involved, as well as any witnesses to the accident. Also, again if possible, it is a good idea to take photographs of the damage to both parties’ vehicles or other property which was damaged, as well as the overall scene of the accident.
As soon as possible after the accident, you should contact an experienced personal injury who will most likely initiate a thorough investigation of the accident before the evidence, such as tire tracks or debris, is erased by time. It is also recommended that you follow up with your doctor for a thorough physical examination. The extent of some injuries is not immediately apparent, and your doctor may want to order several diagnostic tests. If a police report was made of the accident but your injuries prevented you from giving a statement, you will want to obtain a copy of the report as soon as possible to make sure it is accurate and not unfairly influenced by the other party who may have been able to speak to the police when you weren’t.
Q. What if I am struck by an uninsured motorist?
A. If you have Uninsured Motorist (UM) coverage, then your own insurance company will pay you for your property damage and medical bills. It is wise to include UM coverage at least equal to the amount of liability coverage you are carrying. Underinsured Motorist (UIM) coverage will further protect you when you are hit by an insured driver whose policy limits do not cover your expenses. In many cases, however, legal action may be required to obtain a settlement amount that fully meets your needs. Even when dealing with your own insurance company, legal representation is sometimes necessary to ensure that your interests are fairly represented.
Q. How will I pay my medical bills and living expenses until my settlement is finalized?
A. If you have health insurance, then many of your medical expenses will be covered by your insurance company after you meet the deductible and co-insurance (co-pay) amounts. Keep in mind that the insurance company may have a right to reimbursement from the proceeds of your settlement. If you are still having trouble paying your medical bills, your attorney may be able to negotiate a letter of protection, whereby your doctor agrees to withhold billing until you receive your settlement check. Your automobile insurance or umbrella policy may also have medical payments coverage (Med Pay) which will compensate you for your immediate medical expenses. What is important is that you receive the medical attention you need, and that your injuries are fully diagnosed and treated.
If you are disabled from working, you may be entitled to payments under workers’ compensation, social security, or disability insurance. In addition to pursuing a settlement or verdict against the negligent party, your attorney can assist you in uncovering all of the sources of insurance and other compensation to which you may be entitled.