In general, accident victims working with our experienced injury counsel will begin by meeting and going over the basic facts of the accident case with emphasis on gathering the important liability and damage assessments. This usually involves a review of the accident report; to include measure of any charges brought against the other driver for violating Arkansas traffic laws and accepted rules of the road.
Care is taken to note pending court dates and actions while making contact with the adjuster for the insurance company.
The primary efforts will be directed towards gathering all of the important records and advocating payment as required under the law of Arkansas. Sometimes the matter is concluded without filing suit against the negligent driver. Other times, we file a legal claim with the goal to get the legal relief compelled by law, which is primarily in the form of money paid to our clients for their losses caused by having to miss work, seek out and recover medical treatment, loss of consortium, pain and suffering, permanent injury and wrongful death claims made on behalf of the deceased for loss of life and claims owed to heirs suffering the loss of a loved one.
What is comparative fault?
Liability is one of the first determinations made that can affect the value of your personal injury claim. Comparative fault is the term the law uses to “compare” the negligence of the drivers involved in the accident. In some cases, innocently injured accident victims are faced with an untruthful driver who enlists the aid of his/her insurance company to attempt to shift the blame from his or her self to the innocently injured driver. This problem can be compounded when there are no witnesses and seemingly a lack of reliable evidence reflected in the police report. If you or someone you know is seeking the assistance of a personal injury attorney and comparative fault is an issue, please feel free to call and we will be pleased to provide a free consultation to go over this important issue. Comparative fault may have a significant bearing on the amount of monetary compensation you receive for the harms and losses you or a loved one suffered ftrom the accident. Our skilled attorneys are deeply familiar and experienced in identifying and handling legitimate comparative fault issues. We know how to confront those that are not. If you or someone you know is dealing with a comparative fault issue, our law firm is here to help.
What is negligent entrustment?
Under Arkansas law, when someone that owns a vehicle or has control over it turns it over to a person who is intoxicated, or clearly a danger to themselves or others, the person turning over the vehicle and putting it under their control may have to answer under the law for negligent entrustment. In this way the law provides accountability for those who put innocently injured drivers in contact with those who are knowingly intoxicated, underage or incompetent. This is a complicated issue in the law and one that our attorneys have significant experience in resolving. If you or someone you know has been injured by an intoxicated or drunk driver, or anyone else that seems to have been negligently entrusted with a motor vehicle, then please call us for a free consultation and evaluation of this specific type of complex claim.
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Is a business responsible for injuries caused by one of its employees?
When an employer provides a vehicle to an employee to conduct its business, then the law provides the employer must answer for any negligent conduct of the employee while using that vehicle. This means that if you are injured by a negligently driven commercial vehicle (also known as a “company car”) or commercial truck driver, then you may have a claim against the employer in addition to a claim against the negligent driver and any other person causing the accident. This is typically an important distinction that can have significant effect on the value of your case and the remedies provided under the law. If you have been injured by a commercial vehicle, our attorneys are standing by to answer your questions and evaluate your potential claim, free of charge.
Should I provide a letter of protection to my healthcare providers?
Ordinarily, the answer is no. In most cases those innocently injured due to the negligence of another driver do not benefit from signing a medical lien. A medical lien is a way medical care providers can seek the aid of the law to compel full payment from those treated by medical and health care providers from the accident. While it certainly seems fair that medical care providers be paid for their services, what is often overlooked is that the medical care providers may directly submit billing to your health insurance provider and seek payments under the terms of the health insurance contract.
Additionally, with Medicare and Medicaid, the health care provider already has plans in place to provide payment at certain fixed amounts for certain provided services. Many health care providers, for various reason, are not satisfied with being held to the terms of these agreements and may seek more compensation from innocently injured drivers. The result is that a medical lien may exist wherein health care providers seek payment from any settlement or money judgment collected in satisfaction of an innocently injured persons claim.
This is a very complex issue and requires efficient handling to successfully determine whether a medical lien is valid, and whether there are any defenses provided under the law. Commonly, if a person agrees to pay a medical lien, courts will likely enforce it. However, if patients forgo signing these documents they may be able to workout payment with the medical care providers in a way that allows them to keep more of the settlement or judgment money; money which the injured party was awarded to compensate for his or her individual pain and suffering and other losses.
If you have any questions about this topic or any other legal issue surrounding your personal injury claim, give our office a call. Our firm is dedicated to providing our clients with top-notch legal services and representation.