Seattle Personal Injury Lawyers

Everything You Need To Know About Personal Injury in Seattle

If you are someone who has been on the receiving end of another person’s inability to follow safety laws, there is a chance that you are capable of receiving compensation for the harm that they caused. Not all situations where one person’s actions or inactions result in a legal claim. The answers you provide to three questions will decipher whether or not are able to make a personal injury claim. First of all, you will need to figure out if the other party intentionally caused you harm and breached their legal duty. In order to file a legal claim, we must prove that the person who caused your injuries acted negligently and ignored their civic obligation to uphold the law.

Only those who have a legal duty are able to be sought after in response to injuries they caused you. The police department is a prime example of individuals who may cause you harm but cannot be sued, due to a Supreme Court ruling that permits police officers to decide whether or not they address a complaint.

A court case dating back to 2005 resulted in this Supreme Court outcome.

The husband kidnapped her three children and she reported him to the police. Despite making several requests for the police to find her husband and the children, they took no steps to do so.

After the husband killed all three children, the mother sued the police department for their failure to take action.

The Court declared her suit invalid because, under the law, a police department is not required to protect citizens upon request. Police are given the space to implement discretion with the complaints they receive and therefore they do not have to respond to every claim that is brought to their attention.

The next question looks to understand if the individual who holds the legal duty caused injuries as a result of their carelessness. This question is at the heart of many personal injury cases. A common example of legal duties being breached is a car crash that is caused by an oncoming car running a red light. There are statutes governing how we are required to act when driving and they include coming to full stops at red lights.

Negligence is defined as unruly behavior that results from the failure to adhere to regulations, causing damage in the process.

In many situations, there is a fine line between negligence and dutiful behavior, which makes it difficult to prove negligence transpired. A scenario where negligence is tricky to corroborate involves the health spector because you must compare the behavior of the doctor in question to all other providers in similar practices. This is described as “standard of care.” The expectation for doctors is higher than for drivers operating motor vehicles.

The third question is whether or not the negligent actor caused the suing part harm. The injuries that the plaintiff sustained are considered harm. The injuries go beyond physical wounds; harm also refers to financial burdens, destruction of vehicular property, and all other inconveniences. Damages and harm are essentially the same thing. Proving that the negligent actions caused harm by displaying evidence is just as important to a personal injury case as showing that the defendant acted negligently.

For example, say you are driving home and someone in an oncoming lane runs a red light, causing you to have to stop suddenly. The behavior is negligent on their end, but if they do not cause a car crash, you do not have the grounds to file a lawsuit. This is because harm did not ensue from their negligent actions.

You were inconvenienced, certainly, and likely scared. Unfortunately, if the inflicted damages were not caused by negligent behavior and a failure to uphold legal duty, then the court will not deem your situation as worth receiving compensation.

In personal injury cases, the intent behind causation is highly contested. Your injuries may be evident to you, but the defense attorneys will find any reason to oppose your statement and deter the blame away from their client. They will attribute the damages to prior incidents, blame psychological factors, or belittle the severity of the injuries, suggesting that the injuries are not nearly as bad as the hurt person claims.

They act in this way because they want to discredit your claims for compensation. The law requires that the party bringing suit, referred to as the plaintiff, proves that the care they received was “reasonable and necessary” as a direct result of the incident. Defense attorneys might call upon doctors to testify against your claims that the care you received was necessary.

Types of Personal Injury Cases

Learn More: https://www.wienerandlambka.com/areas-practice/

What should you do if you have suffered a personal injury? Before you do anything else, you should contact a personal injury lawyer.

Many personal injury law firms will charge a small fee to meet with you and discuss your situation. The initial consultation is free when you meet with us. Contact us via our website to start your case today.

seattle personal injury lawyer - wiener and lambka

Wiener & Lambka, P.S. – Personal Injury Lawyers Serving Seattle Washington

You should not be expected to understand everything that personal injury cases require overnight. There is a lot of information involved, pertaining to subjects like insurance, the legal system, and medical care. Many personal injury attorneys don’t fully understand each of these areas of law themselves. Your personal injury case is unique to you and it should be treated as such.For example, you might experience a generic automobile accident where someone struck you from behind. Occurrences like this are widespread.You are not the only person who has ever been rear ended by another vehicle, but your case is still unique in its own rights. You definitely want to implore legal assistance sooner than later. Depending on the details of your case, there are multiple different outcomes that could happen. Follow the link below to get an understanding of how we go about handling our cases:

https://www.wienerandlambka.com/areas-practice/

What is the Statute of Limitations for a Personal Injury Case?

A statute of limitations is a date by which you must either resolve, or properly file and serve, your lawsuit against the negligent party. The statute of limitations for personal injury cases in Washington State is three years. Attempting to seek reimbursement for the harm caused to you more than three years after the incident will restrict your ability to claim compensation.

If other statutes of limitations affect your case, the time limit may be drastically reduced. If assault is involved, then the statute of limitations drops to two years instead of three. Consult an attorney immediately if you think that you have a case.

The statute of limitations determines whether or not your claim is valid and timely, so pay close attention to this limitation. It is especially important to begin the steps of a lawsuit earlier on because the duration of lawsuits can stretch for years.

Compiling information about the person who caused you harm is a lengthy process in and of itself. We have had clients come to us without any knowledge of contact information for the driver who negligently caused a collision with them. If you do not know who injured you, your attorney cannot file a lawsuit on your behalf. Even with the information, the insurance companies acting as defense for their client will take every opportunity they can to have a case dismissed, especially if it is not properly carried out.

While the statute of limitations allows three years to take action, we advise that you begin the process much earlier. For all the reasons explained and many more, the most crucial thing to do when you suspect you have a case is to reach out to an attorney who specializes in personal injury.

Finding A Personal Injury Lawyer Who Is Right For You

It is important that you find an attorney that you trust. Your case will either settle without a trial or it will be taken to court before a judge and jury. No matter what results from the case, you will need to place your trust in the hands of your attorney. We tell all of our clients that it is our priority to provide them with important information and risk analysis so that they can make a good decision about their case.

We do not personally make the big decision for our clients. Our client gets to determine whether we accept a settlement package or we seek further compensation in the courtroom. The client gets to decide how much money they are willing to settle for as well.

Most personal injury attorneys will talk with you for free about your case and provide advice on how to best proceed. We do the same, and in all honesty, there is no advantage in charging people to discuss their situation with us because most people would not benefit from legal guidance. We look at each detail of personal injury cases on their own, and then once we have the full story, we analyze the details against one another as well. The sooner you address your situation, the more beneficial your outcome will be for you.

Selecting a law firm to hire onto your case is imperative to success with your case. While not all ratings are equal, looking at all of the different pieces of information is still valuable. At Wiener & Lambka, PS, we are very proud that almost all former clients endorse us and many have taken the time to do so online. You can find these reviews here:

The most important thing to consider when hiring an attorney is that you trust them. The most telling attributes of a lawyer is the way her or she interacts with people, how much experience he or she has acquired, and whether or not they uphold their client in court. The client comes first, always, so make sure you lawyer acts in accordance with their fiduciary duty.

Having an attorney who is as passionate about your situation as you are is key. At the end of your case there will only be one settlement or award. Once a case is closed, it can very rarely be reopened. You won’t ever get a chance to come back later for another bite at the apple. If your attorney isn’t clearly doing a good job by being responsive to your questions and concerns, you should consider seeking out counsel that will value your lawsuit.

Personal Injury Settlement Stats

The Centers for Disease Control made public their data from 2015, demonstrating that motor vehicle accidents were responsible for a total of 37,757 deaths that year. After heart disease, cancer, and respiratory illnesses, car accidents were the fourth main incidents that resulted in death. You can read more about the CDC’s findings on their website.

What Does a Personal Injury Settlement Look Like?

Many personal injury cases do not require a trial, seeing as they end in a civil agreement. Neither side receives exactly what they hoped for. Settlements involve a lot of deals that allow the parties to reach a happy medium. The person who sustained injuries usually just wants to be reimbursed for the financial burden the injuries created.

If injuries have healed and are a thing of the past, then it is easier for the injured party to reach a settlement. When injuries are still being treated by medical personnel, it may spark a sense of discomfort in the minds of the defending party. Not being given a numerical amount that is set in stone makes them worry that they will owe much more than they are agreeing to compensate. Unfinished medical treatment means more payments will be made along the way and that is a stress inducer. If you are still injured at the time of the suit, it creates a vulnerable space for them to make claims about your healing process.

The longer we wait to accept a settlement, the more money you can receive. They want to see how little they can offer. Once they pass the phase of offering low rates of reimbursement, they will offer larger amounts because they want to pay upfront rather than stretch the money that is due over a lengthy period of time.

Compensation is typically based on bills that you had to pay as a result of your injuries, but this is not always a reflection of how much you are owed, since harm includes aspects that are priceless. Such is an instance where compromises are necessary in order to reach a settlement. If an offer is made by the defendant, and accepted by the plaintiff, then the discussion is over.

All personal injury cases are different to some extent. Someone who breaks a rib will likely have lower medical bills than someone who has suffered a whiplash injury. Broken ribs require time to heal. Whiplash, on the other hand, can cost upwards of $10,000 in medical bills and rehabilitation efforts. This is not to say that one injury is more painful or debilitating than the other. They both may have the same value in terms of the patient’s pain, suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life as well. However, a broken rib might require an ER visit and one or two X-rays to be taken. The main point is the medical value tends to determine the amount of compensation you receive. Whiplash injuries require far more visits and types of care.

Damages in personal injury cases range in severity and form, including:

  • wage loss
  • damage to cars, eye equipment, valuable items, etc
  • impairment of future earning capacity
  • additional expenses for caretakers in the home as a result of injuries
  • loss of consortium – the loss of love and affection of a spouse or other family member due to death or serious injury
  • bills for medical care
  • detrimental alterations in lifestyle

Settlement Periods Vary for Personal Injury Cases

Every case is unique but most cases follow a similar time table.

First, the client gets to a point where they no longer require medical care. Ideally, if a client can completely resolve their injuries, then that places them in a prime position for settlement. The insurance companies and attorneys working on behalf of the defendant are more willing to pay outright than to agree to pay future medical bills, due to the uncertainty they pose. Once a case has been settled, it cannot be reopened and you cannot try the defendant for the same liabilities, so we strive for the best possible outcome every time.

Since defense attorneys, defendants, and their insurance companies are more readily willing to comply when the future is not unknown, we wait to proceed with negotiations until injuries are stable. After the healing process has transpired, we collect the medical records of our client and base our settlement package upon the injuries and the care they received. Obtaining medical records usually takes about 8 weeks. Not all providers respond to our request for payment history and medical records, so we always anticipate a waiting period. Once we receive your medical records, we then have to comb through the details and make sure nothing is missing in the documents. Often, we find that not all records or bills are included in the official paperwork, so we have to submit another request for the missing documents. Having to wait longer for content we initially requested adds time to the already lengthy waiting period.

After we have ascertained that all necessary information is present, we can proceed with the analysis portion, which takes a few weeks as well. This package then needs to be sent to the insurance company and then time is needed for it to also review the matter. After the insurance company receives the package, they are allotted some time to refute our claims and offer other options. Not all insurance providers have the time to get back to us immediately, so additional time can be spent waiting for their reply to arrive. The hope is that we can reach an agreement with the insurance company, but if we cannot do so, then a lawsuit begins.

Your Free Consultation Appointment with Wiener & Lambka

We will not bill you for your initial consultation with us. We can conduct the initial meeting over the phone or through emails. No matter what, we would love to talk to you about the specificities of your situation and inform you about your options. We are honest in our approach and we will truthfully tell you if we do not think we can help you to the greatest extent.

If we feel that we are suited to help you and that your case requires legal aid, we will travel to a location near you to discuss the details of your situation. We will explain what lies ahead for you in respect to your legal claim when we meet with you. If you would like to meet us at our office, you can do so, but we grant clients with the option of having us come to them to eradicate any inconveniences travel may cause. We often meet our clients at local coffee shops, libraries, or meeting spaces, but the ultimate location is up to you!

As of 2010, our firm has worked on cases for over 3,500 clients from all over the State of Washington and many other states in the country. We provide each client personal attention. Unlike many personal injury firms that have one or two attorneys overseeing a group of legal assistants who do almost all of the work, each of our clients has a team of one attorney and one legal assistant assigned to them. All attorney teams are then supervised by a partner in the firm. We have a registered nurse on staff, and access to experts in every applicable field across the country. Since we opened our doors in 2002, we have obtained over $65,000,000 in awards and settlements for our clients.

We Come To You

We are happy to come to our potential clients in order to establish an attorney client relationship. We do not make injured people travel in order to get the legal help they need. We accept cases throughout Washington State. Our initial telephone or internet consultations are free of charge. Our representation is done on a contingent fee basis and we charge lower fees on those cases that settle without the need for a lawsuit. We have also been successful in settling over 85% of our cases without having to put a client through litigation.

We’re On Your Side

If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of the negligence of another, please contact our office for a free consultation. At Wiener & Lambka, PS, we’re on your side – every step of the way.

“Wiener & Lambka get the job done. I appreciated their concern and interest in my case, and would definitely recommend them to a friend.” - Y. Martin
“The Staff at Wiener and Lambka are friendly and understand customer needs. They reduced their fee on my case and didn’t even take any on my son’s.” - M. Ngo
"It was a stress free experience. I particularly enjoyed when, on my initial call, they sent someone out to my house to speak with me in person. I would certainly use or recommend Wiener & Lambka in the future." - M. Randall
“I was satisfied by the timely manner with which my case was handled. I would definitely recommend Wiener & Lambka to a friend in the future.” - D. Yusuf
“The service and the staff were great. I was happy with everything, and would refer Wiener and Lambka to someone else in the future.” - I. Aleman
“Everything was great. It was the best legal experience I have ever had!” - T. Hoskins
“Calls were returned in a timely manner, and the office staff is friendly. I’d recommend Wiener and Lambka to a friend in the future.” - T. Their
“Wiener & Lambka helped me through the process, always discussing all of the available options. In particular, I was happy about the ease with which I was able to access my attorneys.”- B. Froton
“Everyone was great. The staff at Wiener and Lambka make a good thing out of a bad situation, and for that, I am very thankful.” - D. Grami
“Wiener & Lambka took care of the leg work for me and even managed to get a larger settlement than expected.” - J. Hanson
“You minimized my stress levels on a process foreign and scary to me. Very professional, caring, and patient with me.” - A. Maas
“A job well done! The staff at Wiener and Lambka made a point of explaining everything to me and if necessary I’d work with them again in a heartbeat.” - O. Yusuf
"Wiener & Lambka always kept me up to date with my case. I'd certainly suggest them to a friend." - J. Trujillo
“Wiener and Lambka did a good job of keeping me up to date on my case, and I’d definitely suggest their services to someone looking for an attorney.” - L. Lafond
“In my moment of Crisis Wiener & Lambka lent me a helping hand. Their dedication to my case was outstanding. They stuck by my side and fought for my rights. Thank you!” - K. Tuazon

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