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                    [post_content] => Why do we need uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, also known as UM/UIM? What is it? Am I being sold something that I do not need? These are questions you may be asking when you look at your insurance bill. Or, these are question you may have asked when you are contracting for automobile insurance coverage with your insurance agent. But if you are not asking these questions, maybe you should.

[caption id="attachment_791" align="aligncenter" width="759"]The insurance section of a collision report. The insurance section of a collision report.[/caption]

Uninsured motorist coverage is coverage that protects you when the driver that hits you is driving an uninsured vehicle. So in other words, you have coverage in a wreck where you are hit by an uninsured vehicle. Similarly, underinsured motorist coverage is coverage that protects you when you are in a bad accident and the driver that hits you is driving a vehicle with minimal coverage.

[Tweet "Uninsured motorist coverage is coverage that protects you when the driver that hits you is driving an uninsured vehicle."]

Consider this true story: our client comes in after an awful wreck. She was hit by a crazy driver who was raging up the road. Our client was severely injured and ends up with substantial hospital and medical bills. The crazy driver was uninsured and he was driving an uninsured vehicle. Our client told us that she had “good insurance.” We had her to bring in her declaration sheet and policy. As it turns out, she had good insurance coverage ($300,000) if she caused the wreck, however, she had recently reduced her UM/UIM coverage from $300,000 to $25,000, in order to save a few hundred dollars in car insurance per year. It is this latter coverage that applies in this case. Unfortunately, she made this change just a couple of months before the accident. So this change just cost the client up to $275,000 worth of coverage for medical bills, pain and suffering, and other compensation!

When you are purchasing car insurance you should consider this real world story and ask yourself whether you are really covered by your policy. Every time you watch TV there is a commercial advertising cheaper auto insurance. Just because the insurance quote is cheap does not mean it is "full coverage." For more information about insurance coverage, you can go here and here.

[Tweet "Just because the insurance quote is cheap does not mean it is "full coverage.'""]

As always, call or email us if you find yourself in this situation. We would be happy to help.

Posted by Samuel "Sam" F. Vance, IV
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                    [post_content] => If you haven’t already, you need to start keeping a daily journal of events related to your claim for your attorney to use in preparing your case for a jury. This is important for a number of reasons.

Journaling

First, you can use your notes to refresh your memory later as the case progresses. It is amazing how you forget some of the most painful physical feelings, and corresponding emotions, in your life. Include in your journal examples of how your life and physical pain have affected your daily life.

For example, if you have a lower back injury and you cannot wash dishes, cut your grass, unload your groceries, or find a comfortable position in which to sleep, you should make notes in your journal about these difficulties and what you had to do to compensate for them.

As a result of these difficulties, you may rely more heavily on your spouse or significant other to perform household duties such as washing dishes or vacuuming; you may hire a company to come cut your grass and perform other landscaping tasks; you may purchase a new mattress at your doctor’s suggestion that alleviates some of your pain while lying in bed.

All of these items are a significant inconvenience to you and you should record them so that you remember them later.

Second, it will help your attorney later to get a glimpse into your life and your pain and suffering. This glimpse will help your lawyer to prepare a demand package to send to the insurance company, and it will give him or her ammunition to challenge the insurance company’s refusal to offer a reasonable settlement. It will also better equip your lawyer to prepare for trial in your case if the insurance company refuses to offer a reasonable settlement.

And third, at the end of the day, journaling is good for your spirit. Ten years from now, you can look back at all you have experienced and remember, “I have come this far, I am better today than I was then.”

In the example of Samuel after Israel defeated the Philistines, Samuel “took a stone and set it between Mizpah and Shen, and named it Ebenezer saying, ‘Thus far the LORD has helped us.” 1 Samuel 7:12.

It is good to remember the victories of recovery whether it be spiritual, emotional, physical, or financial. Thus, it is good to record memories whether they are good or bad. So write your journal and record everything related to your injuries. Set your Ebenezer stone in your journal and say, “Thus far the LORD has helped me.”
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                    [post_content] => Noise, there is a lot of it in the personal injury lawyer space. Personal injury lawyer marketing ranges from the blatantly silly to the obscenely insincere. Both give personal injury lawyers a bad name.



Every law firm that practices personal injury law advertises and you are only confronted with the best side of that law firm on a billboard, television commercial, radio commercial, yellow pages, internet, etc. All of this can be confusing if you are a novice personal injury victim, which is true of almost all.

In full disclosure, Overbey, Hawkins & Wright uses all of these mediums (and then some) to get our message to you. Some means are more effective than others. But with all of the noise in this space, how are you, the victim, suppose to discern which law firm is the best for you. This is not an easy question and I do not purport to have all of the answers.

From our perspective, there are several things you should look for in your personal injury law firm before you sign documents hiring that firm. As a general matter, the law firm should be concerned with your physical and emotional recovery just as much as your financial recovery. Often your financial recovery is entirely dependent on your emotional and physical recovery.

Here is a short list of what I think should be important to you. The law firm should
  1. Help you with obtaining your med pay
  2. Help you get treatment when you have limited resources to give to your doctors
  3. Encourage you to make all of your appointments and get all of the necessary treatment
  4. Teach you through the process of litigation.
  5. Teach you how cases are evaluated.
  6. Negotiate your medical liens and insurance liens discussed more fully here.
You’ll notice that I used the word teach several times. Don’t let your lawyers talk down to you. Hire a lawyer who is willing to teach instead of dictate. If you don’t understand, ask your lawyer to explain. Ask you lawyer about these things when you meet for the first time. If you feel like the law firm is interested in you as a person, then hire them. If not, then don’t. These are just a few examples of what you should look for when you are interviewing lawyers and law firms to represent you in your personal injury case.   [post_title] => What to Look For In Your Personal Injury Law Firm? [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => what-to-look-for-in-your-personal-injury-law-firm [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-06-16 13:56:26 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-06-16 13:56:26 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://overbeylaw.com/?post_type=news&p=1295 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => news [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [3] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1294 [post_author] => 1 [post_date] => 2015-10-14 18:59:02 [post_date_gmt] => 2015-10-14 18:59:02 [post_content] => We all know that there are very different types of people in this world. And the same in true in the practice of personal injury law. Tragedy is an equal opportunity destroyer; it is no respecter of persons. So, when you work with victims all the time, there are some trends that you notice in people in the midst of their suffering. Often times, people and personalities range on a spectrum that runs from two very different extremes. holding Here, there are two very different extremes and most people fall somewhere in between them. The bad extremes, however, create the stereotypes that often shape our responses to suffering in others. Without demeaning anybody who has suffered an injury through no fault of their own, I have created a list of the two different types of personal injury victims and a description of each. 1. The Greedy Know It All I have heard from many people that personal injury victims are just greedy and out for a quick buck. However, this is by far the minority of personal injury victims. Like any other class of people, a few bad apples spoil the bunch. This is where most stereotypes come from. This person has an entitlement mentality. He believes that his accident was more egregious than all other wrecks and that he has suffered more than any other personal injury victim known to man, which entitles him to significant amounts of money even though the treatment and injuries were standard, soft-tissue injuries. Practically, this person refuses to listen to his lawyers recommendation for how to proceed with his treatment, his case, and ultimately his recovery. In the end, this victim will never recover emotionally. Perhaps this person will never fully recover physically, and all of this has a drastic impact of whether this person will fully recovery financially. This person is the most difficult to deal with for personal injury lawyers. This person can appear as the broken, humble and hurt victim but might into the greedy know it all after the dollar sign goes off in his head. For obvious reasons, this person is impossible to identify until he shows himself. Lawyers tend to avoid the greedy know it all victims because no one will ever be happy at the end of the day. This person drains the energy from the lawyer and is actually counterproductive to the process. Michael Hyatt writes about that in the retail context here. This person is almost like a unicorn. Existing in theory, but very rarely in reality (hence the almost). 2. The Broken, Humble, and Hurt This victim is much more common and I would venture to say that this is the vast majority of personal injury victims. This person what injured unexpectantly, just like the greedy know it all. But this victim comes to a lawyer only because the task of recovering physically, emotionally, and financially is too much to handle all on his own. This person has likely never been involved litigation before and comes to his lawyer asking questions and earnestly seeking advice. This person gets the treatment recommended by his doctors and keeps his appointments. He speaks to his lawyer with respect and deference when it comes to his treatment, litigation strategy, and his financial recovery. This person usually fully recovers emotionally, physically, and financially. [Tweet "Tragedy is an equal opportunity destroyer; it is no respecter of persons."] A Perfect Example:  McDonalds did an excellent job of painting Stella Liebeck as the greedy know it all in the hot coffee case. The big corporate spin doctors did an amazing job of destroying her character when she was forced by them to file suit in court. The truths, however, that Stella Liebeck was the broken, humble and hurt victim. She had no intention of filing suit and would have settled for her medical expenses and lost wages ($20,000.00) before she hired a lawyer. Because McDonalds trusted their spin doctors, they refused to settle and a jury in New York awarded a judgment in the amount of $2,900,000. McDonalds admitted numerous facts that resulted in a significant punitive damages award intended not to compensation Ms. Liebeck, but to punish McDonalds. You should read more about it here. If you are like most people, you probably thought that Stella Lieback was the greedy know it all. She was not and most personal injury victims are more on the broken, humble and hurt end of the spectrum. The type of person you are before you accident will determine the type of person you are after the accident. If you are a jerk and you have a lot of money, then you are a rich jerk. But the contrary can be true too. If you are humble, caring, and giving, and you come into money, then you will be humble, caring, and giving but to a greater extent. Money is just an amplifier for who you are so be humble, caring, and giving. [Tweet "Money is just an amplifier for who you are so be humble, caring, and giving."] [post_title] => Two Different Types of Personal Injury Victims [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => two-different-types-of-personal-injury-victims [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-06-16 13:58:06 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-06-16 13:58:06 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://overbeylaw.com/?post_type=news&p=1294 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => news [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [4] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 279 [post_author] => 1 [post_date] => 2015-09-01 21:15:23 [post_date_gmt] => 2015-09-01 21:15:23 [post_content] => If you have been in a car accident then chances are you’ve already talked to an adjuster before coming in to talk to a lawyer.  If you haven’t already noticed, the adjuster represents the insurance company, not you.  So when the adjuster says certain things, it is important to be cautious and skeptical about those things. A businessman has his fingers crossed as if telling a lie to his staff or clients.   When folks come to see a lawyer, it is usually because their case has become too big to manage on their own or because the insurance adjuster refuses to offer a reasonable settlement. The adjuster will try to piecemeal your settlement to reduce the value of each element of damages.  Usually, the adjuster will say something to the effect of “we will pay all of your medical expenses and $1,000 for your pain and suffering.”  Sometimes, they’ll include your lost wages. What he won’t tell you is that you are also entitled to other items of compensation. For example, if you have been to the doctor 10 times, or 100 times, you have been inconvenienced because of the other driver’s negligence.  Inconvenience is an element of compensation in Virginia.  The degree of your inconvenience is a matter of controversy and the amount necessary to compensate you for that inconvenience will likely be an issue in the case. There are many elements of compensation in Virginia that the insurance adjuster will not tell you about.  If you are frustrated with the offer you’ve received from the insurance adjuster, give us a call and we will honestly tell you if your case is worth more or not. We offer free consultations for all potential personal injury cases. Contact us by phone or email and we’d be happy to discuss your case with you for free. No obligations. [post_title] => The Insurance Company Said… [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => the-insurance-company-said [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-06-16 13:59:05 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-06-16 13:59:05 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://overbeylaw.com/?post_type=news&p=279 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => news [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) ) [post_count] => 5 [current_post] => -1 [in_the_loop] => [post] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 1296 [post_author] => 1 [post_date] => 2015-11-13 19:04:23 [post_date_gmt] => 2015-11-13 19:04:23 [post_content] => Why do we need uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, also known as UM/UIM? What is it? Am I being sold something that I do not need? These are questions you may be asking when you look at your insurance bill. Or, these are question you may have asked when you are contracting for automobile insurance coverage with your insurance agent. But if you are not asking these questions, maybe you should. [caption id="attachment_791" align="aligncenter" width="759"]The insurance section of a collision report. The insurance section of a collision report.[/caption] Uninsured motorist coverage is coverage that protects you when the driver that hits you is driving an uninsured vehicle. So in other words, you have coverage in a wreck where you are hit by an uninsured vehicle. Similarly, underinsured motorist coverage is coverage that protects you when you are in a bad accident and the driver that hits you is driving a vehicle with minimal coverage. [Tweet "Uninsured motorist coverage is coverage that protects you when the driver that hits you is driving an uninsured vehicle."] Consider this true story: our client comes in after an awful wreck. She was hit by a crazy driver who was raging up the road. Our client was severely injured and ends up with substantial hospital and medical bills. The crazy driver was uninsured and he was driving an uninsured vehicle. Our client told us that she had “good insurance.” We had her to bring in her declaration sheet and policy. As it turns out, she had good insurance coverage ($300,000) if she caused the wreck, however, she had recently reduced her UM/UIM coverage from $300,000 to $25,000, in order to save a few hundred dollars in car insurance per year. It is this latter coverage that applies in this case. Unfortunately, she made this change just a couple of months before the accident. So this change just cost the client up to $275,000 worth of coverage for medical bills, pain and suffering, and other compensation! When you are purchasing car insurance you should consider this real world story and ask yourself whether you are really covered by your policy. Every time you watch TV there is a commercial advertising cheaper auto insurance. Just because the insurance quote is cheap does not mean it is "full coverage." For more information about insurance coverage, you can go here and here. [Tweet "Just because the insurance quote is cheap does not mean it is "full coverage.'""] As always, call or email us if you find yourself in this situation. We would be happy to help. Posted by Samuel "Sam" F. 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Friday, November 13, 2015

Why Do We Need Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage

A Case Study From Real Life

Why do we need uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, also known as UM/UIM? What is it? Am I being sold something that I do not need? These are questions you may be asking when you look at your insurance bill.

Or, these are question you may have asked when you are contracting for automobile insurance coverage with your insurance agent. But if you are not asking these questions, maybe you should. This post will answer some of those questions.

 

Category:
Continue Reading >
Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Winning Your Personal Injury Case: Keeping A Journal

If you haven’t already, you need to start keeping a daily journal of events related to your claim for your attorney to use in preparing your case for a jury. This is important for a number of reasons.

First, you can use your notes to refresh your memory later as the case progresses. It is amazing how you forget some of the most painful physical feelings, and corresponding emotions, in your life. Include in your journal examples of how your life and physical pain have affected your daily life.

Category: Personal Injury
Continue Reading >
Wednesday, October 21, 2015

What to Look For In Your Personal Injury Law Firm?

Noise, there is a lot of it in the personal injury lawyer space. Personal injury lawyer marketing ranges from the blatantly silly to the obscenely insincere. Both give personal injury lawyers a bad name.

Every law firm that practices personal injury law advertises and you are only confronted with the best side of that law firm on a billboard, television commercial, radio commercial, yellow pages, internet, etc. All of this can be confusing if you are a novice personal injury victim, which is true of almost all.

Category:
Continue Reading >
Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Two Different Types of Personal Injury Victims

We all know that there are very different types of people in this world. And the same in true in the practice of personal injury law. Tragedy is an equal opportunity destroyer; it is no respecter of persons. So, when you work with victims all the time, there are some trends that you notice in people in the midst of their suffering. Often times, people and personalities range on a spectrum that runs from two very different extremes.

Here, there are two very different extremes and most people fall somewhere in between them. The bad extremes, however, create the stereotypes that often shape our responses to suffering in others. Without demeaning anybody who has suffered an injury through no fault of their own, I have created a list of the two different types of personal injury victims and a description of each.

Category:
Continue Reading >
Tuesday, September 1, 2015

The Insurance Company Said…

Remember, the adjuster is not your friend

If you have been in a car accident then chances are you’ve already talked to an adjuster before coming in to talk to a lawyer.  If you haven’t already noticed, the adjuster represents the insurance company, not you.  So when the adjuster says certain things, it is important to be cautious and skeptical about those things.

When folks come to see a lawyer, it is usually because their case has become too big to manage on their own or because the insurance adjuster refuses to offer a reasonable settlement.

Category: Personal Injury
Continue Reading >