Auto Acccident Personal Injury Settlement

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by cMcD, Jun 10, 2009.

  1. cMcD

    cMcD Groupie

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    Jun 10, 2009

    I was in a car accident in Nov. of 2007. A woman pulled out in front of the car I was in and we T-boned her. I suffered a knee injury that I'm still dealing with. My settlement date is approaching. I'm going in for a detailed MRI next week to see if things have healed or if I'll need more treatment. I haven't hired an attorney and I don't plan on doing so. Has anyone gone through a personal injury settlement before? Any advice?
     
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  3. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    Yes, we just kept our mouths shut and waited for them to talk. When it got where we wanted, we accepted.
     
  4. cMcD

    cMcD Groupie

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    What do you mean you kept your mouths shut?

    The claims adjuster has called me to check on the progress of my treatment and I've told her (i.e. "I'm in physical therapy... I'm going to the doctor next week...").

    I just don't know where to start. There's nothing saying this injury is worth this much and this injury is worth this month...
     
  5. scienceteach82

    scienceteach82 Cohort

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    Jun 10, 2009

    i'd hire a lawyer...much more versed in that matter...
    they can get you more than what you might get on your own
     
  6. cMcD

    cMcD Groupie

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    I disagree on the lawyer... They take anywhere from 30%-50% of your settlement. People think that having an attorney will help them get more money when that's not the case. I've gone this long without an attorney. I'll only get one if it starts to get ugly.
     
  7. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Mac~I would just continue to do what you're supposed to, keep documentation of everything. When the date comes, be prepared with that documentation, have a number in mind that you want, and don't settle for less. Have them do all of the talking, and limit what you say to agree or disagree.
     
  8. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Right, lawyers just take all your money & of course they're NOT the ones who went through the pain & suffering!
     
  9. ChristyF

    ChristyF Moderator

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    Jun 11, 2009

    I am still dealing with a torn up shoulder from a wreck years ago. The man I hit (the same situation, he crossed in front of me and I t-boned him - me in a Ford Escort and him in a 72 Chevy pickup. Can you guess who got the worse damage?) He was an old man with very little insurance and no money. His insurance paid less than the surgery. Now I'm looking at knowing another surgery is down the road and it'll be on me. That's just the way it happens sometimes.
     
  10. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    What I mean by keeping your mouth shut is: Don't jump into accepting an offer without thinking it over, and don't suggest a figure until you know what your injuries are. The other insurance will keep usually come up with an offer, and then you can open your mouth and talk about it. If you are having on-going problems, you want to have some way of dealing with that in the insurance settlement. The other insurance will try to get you to sign off--don't until you get everything you want. And, they will not pay any of you medical bills until you sign off.
     
  11. TeacherSandra

    TeacherSandra Enthusiast

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    I'm with you, cMcD.
     
  12. lemonhead

    lemonhead Aficionado

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    Jun 11, 2009

    I changed my answer a couple times.

    How bad is your injury and what is the long term prognosis? If you don't think you are going to have ongoing problems with your knee and they are talking about giving you $5000 or something like that then fine.

    However, you really need to look at how this going to effect your future, CMCD. I am not saying you need to get a lawyer but you should hold out if you are going to possibly have problems.

    When I was in college three friends and myself t-boned a drunk driver who pulled out from a junction straight onto a two lane highway, and right in front of us. Well this ass was driving without a license and had several drunk driving offenses- absolutely no insurance or money. (He couldn't even get out of the car. We, at the time thought he was dead, nope, just dead drunk) Anyway, our car was an old 65 classic something and only had lap belts. I had multiple injuries which included my head, both my hands (broken), right ulna nerve damage, torn cartilage (ribs to sternum) and some damage to my mouth due to my teeth going through my lip.

    I still have trouble with my ring finger and pinky of my right hand- they feel prickly like I just hit my funny bone. I still get stomach spasms, at least weekly, that are like a major charlie horse in my stomach. I also had to deal with about 10 years of headaches, which finally subsided, not migraines, thank God!

    Knees are tricky, you are young but you don't know what trouble you may have in the future. Get some good answers from your doctor about long-term outlook before you settle for anything.
     
  13. TeacherSandra

    TeacherSandra Enthusiast

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    Great advice, Lemonhead.
    When you're young; you don't think much about the future health-wise. It's hard, but try to mentally fast-forward what you could be like due to what happened a few years ago...ask your doctor what he can forsee.
     
  14. cMcD

    cMcD Groupie

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    I've been dealing with pain in my knee since the accident. I went to the ER the night of the accident (Nov. 2007) and the doctor wrote me off-- told me to ice, elevate, and take some anti-inflammatory meds. Then when I kept having problems I went to my GP (Jan 2008). He wrote me off and said it was just swollen. Then I went to an orthopedic surgeon who ordered x-rays and an MRI (March 2008). He made me wear a knee brace for a month. I did that and it got a little better. Then last summer it started to get worse again and I got a clicking in my knee. I asked the doctor if I could have another MRI and he said it would do no good because it wouldn't show much change. He told me to bike and swim and wear my knee brace when needed. Finally this January I asked if I could have another MRI. He said yes. I got the MRI. I called and asked him what we should do next and he said nothing! He told me to see how it goes and call him in 3 months. So I called and pulled my records from him and went to ANOTHER ortho doctor who specializes in knee (March 2009). He FINALLY gave me answers. With my type of injury the cartilage in the knee starts to wear away with time, so people like me don't start to experience pain until 6 months to a year after the accident. He was flabbergasted that my other ortho doctor didn't prescribe physical therapy. So I went for 2 months of physical therapy (12 one hour sessions). My knee feels better, but I still have bad days. I'm going for an in depth MRI next week. They're going to inject dye into my knee to see if there are any gaps within my knee where cartilage might have worn away. I'm meeting with my doctor the next week to discuss the results and where to go next-- releasing me or going on to more treatment. I'm going to ask my doctor if he foresees other problems in the future related to this injury. I still have a click in my knee (my knee clicks when I go upstairs and it can be painful) and I've been told that I may have that for the rest of my life... So I've thought about the long term, and not just with possible future knee surgeries but arthritis...

    So all-in-all I've been to 4 different doctors about my injury. My first ortho doctor was obviously a hack so that took up a bunch of my time before showed his true colors. I think he was toting me around for the insurance money. All I wanted was for my knee to be fixed and his answer was to bike and swim. Really?!

    This has obviously been a long and tiring experience. The stress from not knowing what was wrong and how to fix it... Gaining about 10 pounds because I wasn't able to work out (I've since lost it though)... Taking my own time to go to physical therapy to get better... Trying to keep track of all the paperwork... I'm exhausted.
     

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