You never dream of being in that situation. The sudden impact, the violent and abrupt interruption to a normal day driving on the road. When you’re involved in an auto accident, it can turn your entire life upside down and seem daunting and scary to deal with. The reality of the danger we face every day while driving never arrives when we’re expecting it.
Any injuries that occur during the accident instantly mix with the physical damage to your vehicle. Oklahomans are forced to rely upon a personal mode of transportation to live their lives in this state, and losing that can cause even more stress and hardship in your life.
Dealing with insurance can be another huge pain after an accident. You’ll have to make a tough decision: Do you want to handle the insurance company and settle the claim on your own? If the accident is minor and no one got hurt, this is often a no-brainer. These accidents are routine, and you can definitely manage it on your own in most cases.
But, what if the accident caused physical and emotional pain along with damage to property? Not only are you at less than 100 percent to deal with the insurance companies, but the stakes become much larger when it comes to compensation for your pain and suffering. This is when you need to strongly consider contacting a law office to ensure you get justice. We’ll break down just a few of the reasons why a lawyer can be beneficial following an auto accident.
Lawyers Will Help Obtain Important Evidence
When it comes to evidence gathering, you’ll want a trusted attorney on your side. A lawyer will often recruit investigators to collect evidence from the accident as well as talk to potential witnesses and emergency personnel who were present during the accident. This is to gather the first kind of evidence: liability evidence.
Liability evidence is important to prove fault for the accident, and a good lawyer will leave no stone unturned when working through this kind of evidence. Even the smallest details could be important to your case.
The next phase of this stage is for your lawyer to obtain evidence of damages. Contacting a lawyer quickly after a large-scale accident is vastly important, as well as documenting your injuries. The process of obtaining official documents from doctors and specialists can be extremely difficult and time-consuming, many times involving multiple requests and constant diligence of the attorney on the case. Often times, a special note of opinion from the doctors will need to be obtained as well.
Evidence of damages are integral to the success and settlement amount for your case, so you’ll need to trust in a lawyer who will go the extra mile to prove the damages of the case, as well as the liability.
Lawyers Will Handle the Case on Your Behalf
Once you get on board with a qualified, professional car accident attorney you trust, much of your work is over. They will be your champion and advocate in and out of the courtroom with the other involved party from the accident as well as their insurance company. It’s incredibly important to maintain close contact with the insurance adjusters and your lawyer will maintain those lines of communication on your behalf to keep the process moving forward.
Additionally, in many cases, there are other lien holders involved. These parties often try to get their hands on as much money as possible from any damages you incur after litigation. A lawyer will negotiate with these lien holding parties to reduce their lien. This creates larger net settlement earnings for you and your family.
All of this gets wrapped into a settlement demand letter. From there, the path to settling the case or going to court is completely taken care of by your attorney. Peace of mind about your litigation is just one small comfort you can count on after a bad accident. Having a lawyer out there fighting for your justice on a daily basis gives you time to heal both mentally and physically and get on with getting back to normal life.
If you’ve been in an accident in Oklahoma that you feel might benefit from legal counsel, Laird Hammons Laird is here to talk. Contact us today for free legal consultation, and meet with our team who is always ready to fight for justice on your behalf.
A spoliation letter helps keep evidence from being lost or destroyed. It makes obtaining evidence for a case much easier by putting the evidence holder on notice. The letter is given to the involved parties and ensures that they must do their due diligence to keep key evidence from being destroyed, tampered with, or misplaced.
The most important part of any personal injury, workplace injury, or trucking accident case is to gather meaningful evidence to be used in court. This vital step will ensure that proper information and facts pertaining to the accident can be preserved and prepared to fight for justice.
A Spoliation Letter is All About Preserving Physical Evidence
In the video above, Chris Hammons, Founding Partner at Laird Hammons Laird, explains the benefits of acquiring a spoliation of evidence letter. “As soon as we sign up with the client, we’re finding out the contact information for the trucking company,” he said. This is important, because, according to Chris, “the spoliation letter puts the trucking company on notice that there is a dispute, and it tells them [that they] need to preserve all evidence in this case.”
In a trucking accident case, evidence includes any black box download that they might have had and keeping the truck available for inspection. If the truck is preserved, the law firm is able to inspect the brakes, the inside of the vehicle, and the mechanical parts of the vehicle that might not have been taken care of by the truck company.
This also allows the law firm to inspect the trailer, which is a very important aspect of the process, as sometimes the brakes are not working properly and that trailer could lead to other sources of liability. Other companies could be involved, such as the trailer manufacturer, and you need to know this information to ensure the correct cause of the accident can be identified.
These are just a few reasons why it’s crucial to get a spoliation of evidence letter out. In any injury case, there will be plenty of valuable potential evidence to uncover. It’s key to get ahead of the situation so that all that evidence is kept from being destroyed or misplaced. If you’ve done the diligence of sending a spoliation of evidence letter, the notified parties will have a legal obligation to keep that evidence safe from destruction down the road when litigation occurs.
Preserving evidence can have a huge impact in your case, with legal rulings that will go in your favor if done properly. Those same situations might not favor you if the spoliation letter never gets sent.
If you’ve been involved in a commercial, trucking, or other personal injury accident, you’re not alone. If you want to make sure no evidence is lost that could affect the outcome of your case, contact Laird Hammons Laird. We’ll get back with you as soon as possible, and fight for the justice you deserve following this tragic event.
Federal trucking regulations and standards keep our roads safe in this country. Their chief goal is to reduce and prevent life-threatening accidents. Truckers and other large commercial vehicle drivers who fail to adhere to these regulations put everyone on the road at risk.
There are some situations where Oklahoma state regulations outweigh federal regulations concerning intrastate travel. As long as the truck or commercial vehicle stays within the state, different laws apply. In the infographic below, we examine many important federal regulations, as well as some Oklahoma trucking regulations that affect or supersede the federal laws. As you’ll learn in the graphic, there are many, many regulations that truckers and trucking companies are required to follow. Any failure to follow just one of these rules can cause an accident, and place the truck driver or company at fault.
When truck drivers or trucking companies fail to follow these regulations, they can cause catastrophic accidents. Individuals involved in these accidents could be entitled to compensation for pain, suffering, or loss of work. At Laird Hammons Laird it’s our goal to educate and provide your family with comfort and support in the court room during these traumatic times. Learn how Laird Hammons Laird can represent you or a loved one following a trucking accident or commercial vehicle wreck.
Several benefits are available to Oklahoma workers who’ve been hurt at work, depending on the severity of the injury and length of time the injured employee can’t work. One such benefit is temporary total disability (TTD).
Workers’ compensation insurance pays lost wages and medical expenses to employees who have been hurt at work. Each state has its own workers’ compensation laws. Although many share similarities, there are some differences, so it’s important to understand Oklahoma laws if you are injured on the job here. With very few exceptions, all employers in Oklahoma must provide workers’ compensation benefits to their employees. If they don’t, they could be prosecuted or fined.
What Is Temporary Total Disability?
Temporary Total Disability means your injury has made it impossible for you to perform your regular job duties, but your disability is expected to be temporary. This determination is generally made by your treating physician, who will evaluate your job duties, the nature and extent of your injury, and how that injury interferes with your ability to perform your regular job.
If your injury prevented you from working for more than three calendar days, you are eligible for TTD benefits up to eight weeks and farther if you qualify.
How Much Compensation Will You Receive
You will generally receive 70 percent of your average weekly wage, but the amount of your particular TTD pay depends on many factors, including:
With one exception, the maximum time you can receive TTD benefits is 104 weeks, which is two years. If you suffer what is referred to as a “consequential” injury, TTD benefits may be extended for an additional 52 weeks. A consequential injury is one to a part of the body that was not originally injured in the work-related accident but is injured as a consequence of the original injury.
Applying for Your TTD Benefits
Injured employees are required to report the injury to the employer, who will arrange for medical care within five days of notice of the injury. Of course, if the injury requires immediate emergency treatment, you may seek emergency care. Employers and their workers’ compensation insurance carriers generally will see to it that injured workers receive the benefits to which they are entitled, according to the Workers’ Compensation Commission. If there is a problem, you can pursue your claim with the Commission yourself.
How an Attorney Can Help
It would be nice if everything always worked according to plan when you are injured on the job: Your employer works to be sure you receive all the compensation to which you are entitled. He or she does not question the length of time your doctor says you need to be off of work. Your TTD check arrives on time every week.
Unfortunately, in the real world, things often go awry: Your claim does not get filed. Insurers and employers balk and argue that you aren’t disabled and should instead return to work. Claims get denied and appeals need to be pursued. An experienced workers’ compensation attorney will know how to fight to be sure you receive all the benefits you deserve.
Do you have a question about workers’ compensation? Give us a call at 405-703-4567.
Experiencing a medical emergency is difficult enough. No one should suffer more at the hands of an irresponsible doctor.
So what is medical malpractice? Health care providers may be liable for medical malpractice when the care they provide falls below the standard established by other health care providers in their industry. To collect on a claim for medical malpractice, you must be able to prove several facts:
What situations could be considered medical malpractice in Oklahoma?
There are many situations that give rise to a medical malpractice lawsuit. Some common examples include, but are not limited to:
What are settlements based on?
In Oklahoma, compensation for harm caused by medical malpractice is the same as compensation for a personal injury lawsuit. You are entitled to collect for your economic damages, which include your medical expenses and lost wages. You can also collect for non-economic damages, like pain and suffering. There may be caps placed on a number of non-economic damages you can collect in a medical malpractice case in Oklahoma. Discuss this issue with your medical malpractice attorney.
In rare cases, if the conduct of the physician, or health care providers under his or her supervision, was intentional or reckless, you may also collect punitive damages.
What is the statute of limitation for medical malpractice cases?
In Oklahoma, you have two years from the date of the injury to file your medical malpractice claim. It is not always easy to determine the date. The time may not begin until the date you discover you were injured, which may be months or years after the actual event that caused the injury. It is important to consult with a medical malpractice attorney as soon as you suspect you were injured so you do not lose your opportunity to be compensated for your damages.
If you think you have experienced medical malpractice, contact the offices of Laird Hammons Laird today for your free legal consultation.