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Recent Blog Posts in April 2010

April 28, 2010

Medical Malpractice Procedures RCW 7.70

Posted By Park Chenaur

In Washington, and around the country, medical malpractice claims have been on the rise.  The new RCW 7.70 and related statutes attempt to minimize the cost of medical malpractice claims in Washington by requiring a pre-suit notice.  An injured party, or her attorney, must give the health care provider a 90 day notice prior to filing suit.  Presumably this will facilitate negotiations and potentially resolve the case before a costly litigation ensues.  If notice is not given, per statute, you may be precluded entirely from pursuing your claim.  Thus, legal counsel is imperative if your claim is worth a substantial sum of money or if you are nearing your three year statute of limitations.

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April 27, 2010

Vehicle Property Damage

Posted By Park Chenaur

Generally you can handle property damage without the help of an attorney.  Insurance companies typically get an appraisal of the vehicle damage and payout within a reasonable time.  Sometimes, however, the estimate for vehicle repair does not fairly compensate the vehicle owner.  For example, if a person just purchased a new Mercedes Benz, was subsequently hit by another vehicle, and the estimated repair exceeded $20,000.00, the vehicle owner would not be happy about accepting a check for just the estimated repair.  In this case, the value of the vehicle would be significantly less even if fully repaired.  Thus, they would want both the amount for the repair AND the loss in value due to the accident.  No one wants to purchase a vehicle that has been in a previous accident.  As an owner, you are required to disclose this fact if asked.  Insurance companies will not hand you over the "loss in value" without the help of an attorney.  

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April 26, 2010

How do you value your case?

Posted By Park Chenaur

No amount of money can put you back in the position you were prior to the accident.  The law, however, attempts to make the injured person whole by monetary damages.  The injured person is entitled to two kinds of damages:


1.  Special Damages
a.  medical bills
b.  wage loss
c.  future medical bills and wage loss
d.  household services
e.  mileage
2.  General Damages
a.  pain and suffering
b.  loss of enjoyment of life
c.  mental anguish
d.  emotional distress
e.  loss of consortium

While special damages are fairly easy to calculate, how do we value your pain and suffering?  How can we accurately put a figure on the loss of your enjoyment of life?  Historically, attorneys, insurance adjusters, and arbitrators have used a basic general formula of taking the medical specials and multiplying them by 3 or 5 depending on the facts and circumstances surrounding a case.  Now, most insurance adjusters will deny use of any formula, but arbitration awards seem to suggest it is a fair and somewhat sensible approach in valuing general damages.

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April 25, 2010

How much should i get for pain and suffering?

Posted By Park Chenaur

The value for pain and suffering is a question of fact.  This means a jury and not a judge decides the value of your pain and suffering.  Every case is different.  There are factors, however, that strongly influence how much your pain and suffering is worth.  The most important factor in my opinion is medical specials that are reasonable and necessary.  Your general damages (which include pain and suffering) are typically several times more than your medical bills.  Most insurance companies will value your general damages at typically less than the medical specials.

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April 21, 2010

Future Medical Expenses

Posted By Park Chenaur

Damages are awardable for medical expenses that are reasonably certain to be necessary in the future.  Leak v. U.S. Rubber Co., 9 Wn. App. 98, 103 (1973).

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April 11, 2010

Subrogation

Posted By Rick Park

Subrogation is an important concept to understand in a personal injury claim.  Subrogation literally means the substitution of one person for another in reference to a lawful claim.  An example in a personal injury claim would be as follows:  You are injured in a car accident.  You get medical treatment from a chiropractor and massage therapist.  Your car insurance pays your medical bills weekly while you are being treated, even though you were not at fault for the accident.  At the end of your case, when your attorney recovers your medical bills and other damages from the insurance company of the negligent party, your insurance company requests repayment of those monies used to pay your bills.  They are asserting a subrogation interest.

Washington case law, such as Mahler v. Szucs, is our state's leading case on the issue.  The question is, who should get the windfall - you or the insurance company?  Essentially, the case allows attorney's fees to be collected proportionate to the amount you had to pay in order to recover.

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April 05, 2010

Welcome to Our Personal Injury Blog

Posted By Personal Injury Attorney

Our Attorneys are pleased to announce the launch of our Personal Injury blog with an RSS feed available at   http://www.federalwayinjuryattorney.com/Blog/Recent-Blog-Posts/RSS.xml

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