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[post_content] => There are many things that you can and should do if you have been injured in a car wreck and you can read or watch a video about them here. But most folks do not realize that there are also certain things that may kill your personal injury case and your lawyers ability to recover what your injury is worth.
Know the Rules
So here is a list of the most common problems we face in working up personal injury cases:

1. Understating your injuries.

Many times, people don’t want to think that they have been injured so they say that they are fine in an optimistic effort to avoid falling into a litigation-hungry stereotype perpetuated by corporate America. Most, if not all, of our clients are not litigation hungry. In fact, they are litigation averse. They do not want to sue another person or even an insurance company, but find themselves in a situation where they are left with no choice. If you are injured, follow our advice here.

2. Failure to seek treatment and/or gaps in treatment.

Money is usually a problem when it comes to seeking treatment. Without health insurance, Medicare or Medicaid, most people cannot afford to seek medical treatment. The insurance company and the jury for that matter, will interpret your failure to seek medical attention as a red flag that you are not injured and not in pain. People who are in pain seek medical attention. If you were injured in a car wreck, you need to seek medical attention for your injury. Don’t ignore the pain thinking it will go away. It might go away, it might not go away. Depend on your doctor's expertise in making these decisions. Don’t go to a doctor just to help your case, go to a doctor to get better. One quick and easy fix is to increase your medical expense payments on your auto insurance policy. You will pay an additional premium for this benefit but the cost is minimal. Call your insurance company today and increase your med pay benefits to at least $20,000.00.

3. Failure to follow doctors orders.

If your doctor refers you to a specialist, go and see the specialist. If your doctor refers you to physical therapy, go to every physical therapy appointment until your therapist releases you. If your doctor or physical therapists sends you home with a home exercise program, do every exercise as instructed every day. If you doctor says your only option is surgery or live in pain for the rest of your life, get the recommended surgery. Your doctors are experts in their fields, trust them to develop a plan that will heal your injuries and increase the quality of your life. Do what they say and your chances of physically recovering from your injuries are good. That is the most important thing you can do.

4. Waiting till the last minute to hire a lawyer.

Preparing to file suit takes time. Your lawyer needs to know how much to sue for, in what court, etc.  To do that, your lawyer needs to review all of your medical records and any records relating to prior injuries to the injured part of your body. I takes weeks to get medical records from your doctors and it takes more time to organize them in such a way to review them to determine the extent of your injuries. You have two years to file suit or you are forever barred from recovering anything. Don’t wait until a month before the two years is up to hire a lawyer. If you wait too long, there might not be a lawyer out there willing to take your case. Don't make these Mistakes I hope this post helps you make good decisions about your body, your health and your recovery from your collision related injuries. If you find yourself in one of these positions, we provide free consultations for personal injury cases and we are here to serve you. We will tell you what you should do in your circumstances and help you recover.  Visit our frequently asked questions page to learn more. [post_title] => Four Mistakes That Will Kill Your Personal Injury Case [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => four-mistakes-to-kill-your-personal-injury-case [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-01-23 15:44:10 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-01-23 15:44:10 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://overbeylaw.com/?post_type=news&p=113 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => news [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [1] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 112 [post_author] => 1 [post_date] => 2014-08-17 14:05:22 [post_date_gmt] => 2014-08-17 14:05:22 [post_content] => You’ve heard the saying, “there is no time like the present.” If you have been in an automobile collision, you should hire a lawyer right away. If you’ve just been injured in a collision, hire a lawyer now. If you were injured in a collision a year ago, hire a lawyer now. This one small step will accomplish several goals that inure to your benefit. Watch-close-up First, the insurance company adjuster will stop calling you. Everyone is different and everyone’s case is different. However, everyone gets phone calls from an insurance company adjuster after she or he has been injured in an automobile collision. If you have been in a serious wreck, you may still be in the hospital recovering from your injuries. Contact a lawyer right away and he or she can stop those phone calls by sending a letter of representation to the adjuster. Our lawyers will come to you if you are unable to come to us. You shouldn’t make any statements to adjusters while dealing with your injuries and our lawyers can protect you from preying insurance company adjusters. Second, your lawyer can help get you the medical attention you need. Your lawyer can help you get access to medical payments from your car insurance company or other sources. If you have health insurance, most health insurance companies are required to pay benefits even though someone else might be liable for your injuries. Medical providers are now required under the Code of Virginia to submit your bills to your insurance company for payment. Our lawyers can help you deal with your own insurance company to obtain benefits to which you are entitled. Lastly, your lawyer can reduce the burden on you while you recover from a traumatic event. You worry about getting better, and we worry about the legal process. The peace of mind that comes with eliminating that burden of adversarial negotiations and litigation is worth its weight in gold. If you hire the right personal injury lawyer, you will have that peace of mind that you desperately need. Our lawyers at Overbey, Hawkins & Wright care about the folks in our community because we live and work in the greater Lynchburg area including Campbell County, Bedford County, Amherst County, Appomattox County, and more. We have relationships with medical doctors and offices around town and we care how you are treated both personally and medically. Our lawyers talk to and negotiate with car insurance company adjusters daily. Our lawyers will stop those annoying phone calls, we will help you get the treatment you need to recover from your injuries and we will do everything we can to provide you comfort during this difficult time in your life. Call us for a free personal injury consultation today. Posted by Brandon S. Osterbind, Esq. [post_title] => When Should I Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer? [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => when-should-i-hire-a-personal-injury-lawyer [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-09-23 14:39:20 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-09-23 14:39:20 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://overbeylaw.com/?post_type=news&p=112 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => news [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [2] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 282 [post_author] => 1 [post_date] => 2014-06-01 21:19:40 [post_date_gmt] => 2014-06-01 21:19:40 [post_content] => If you have a legitimate personal injury case and the insurance company will not settle for a fair value on you case, then the only way to get the insurance company to pay is to file suit and go to court. civil-subpage Our lawyers are trained to draft legal pleadings and take your case to court. Your lawyer will explain that, depending on the size of your case, you will have two choices: (1) file suit in circuit court, or (2) file in General District Court. The difference is simple. General District Court permits personal injury suits up to $25,000. If your claim is worth less than $25,000, then it would be more cost effective to file in General District Court as opposed to Circuit Court. In GDC there is no discovery, no interrogatories, no depositions, no significant motions to limit evidence and no need to bring in expensive doctors to testify. It is also a lot faster to get to a trial. All of that means that your case will be cheaper to try but it also comes with its restrictions. For example, there is no process for a jury trial in GDC and you leave your case in the hands of a judge. Additionally, you are limited to $25,000. If you are unhappy with the result of your GDC trial, then you can appeal to Circuit Court and you can get a new trial with a jury. You should seek the advice of a qualified personal injury lawyer to help you with this complicated decision process. At Overbey, Hawkins & Wright, we offer free consultations to discuss matters such as this with you. Posted by Brandon S. Osterbind, Esq. [post_title] => No Settlement? How Do I Go to Court? [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => no-settlement-how-do-i-go-to-court [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-01-21 16:09:18 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-01-21 16:09:18 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://overbeylaw.com/?post_type=news&p=282 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => news [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [3] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 298 [post_author] => 1 [post_date] => 2014-01-01 21:48:41 [post_date_gmt] => 2014-01-01 21:48:41 [post_content] => No one thinks that they will be in a car accident. When it happens, it is usually a complete surprise to you and the person who hit you. car-accident-subpage While it may not be intentional, the negligence of the other driver causing your accident gives rise to legal liability in Virginia to pay for your damages including medical expenses, lost wages, loss of earning capacity, pain and suffering, inconvenience, etc. You should be prepared for the most unexpected event by reviewing the following list of things to do if you are in a car accident:
  1. Always call the police so a report will be made.
  2. Gather your thoughts so you can be coherent and organized. Review the scene and reconstruct what happened in your mind.
  3. Tell the officer what happened. The other driver may spin the facts differently so you need to be heard. If you can’t do this at the scene, the officer may come to see you in the hospital or you should call him or her.
  4. If you are able, take photographs or have a friend do so at the scene showing the damage to both vehicles and the scene. If you are unable to take photo’s at the time, take a lot of photos from different angles of the damage later. Use a camera rather than a cell phone if possible.
  5. Check the speed limit and be sure you were not speeding.
  6. If you think you may be hurt, do not tell the officer that you are ok. He will check a box on his report that there are no injuries. Soft tissue injuries often exhibit stiffness or no symptoms at the time of injury but usually get worse later. The adrenaline pumping through you at the accident scene may mask injury symptoms.
  7. If you think you may be hurt, seek treatment as soon as possible. Delays may lead to the insurance company saying you were not hurt in the accident. Think carefully when you relate your injuries to a health care provider. Often only the major area of immediate pain is related and other minor injuries become problematic later but were not mentioned at first.
  8. Call you insurance company as soon as you can. We recommend that you call within 24 hours.
  9. Pay attention to potential witnesses. If someone saw the accident, get their name and phone number.
If you are injured, see an attorney as soon as possible.  At our firm, the first consultation for a personal injury case is free.  For more information call 1-800-201-9987 or (434) 332-5155 or fill out a consultation form here. [post_title] => Be Prepared: Know What To Do If You Are In a Car Accident [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => be-prepared-know-what-to-do-if-you-are-in-a-car-accident [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-09-23 14:36:49 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-09-23 14:36:49 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://overbeylaw.com/?post_type=news&p=298 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => news [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [4] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 75 [post_author] => 1 [post_date] => 2013-08-17 00:26:52 [post_date_gmt] => 2013-08-17 00:26:52 [post_content] => As trial lawyers, the attorneys at Overbey, Hawkins & Wright are always looking for new and better ways to present evidence and make arguments in a jury trial.  We balance key factors such as the law, the facts, the sensibilities of the jurors and our tried and true experience.  Our clients hire us to make strategic choices that optimize their ability to receive compensation from defendants who have caused injuries through inattention or negligence.  Choosing how to present the facts and how to compensate many seemingly immeasurable injuries, a lot of thought goes into the best, most effective way to communicate to the jury. iStock_000059888966_Medium Lawyers are limited in what they can and cannot say to a jury.  Obviously, the lawyer can argue the facts and the law to the jury.  The issue may be negligence on the part of the defendant or contributory negligence which bars recovery all together in Virginia.  Or, the issue may be how much the injured plaintiff’s claim is worth.  Valuing a particular case is very difficult and takes many factors into account. Virginia has multiple “elements” of damages including the obvious current and future medical expenses and current and future pain and suffering and the not-so-obvious elements such as past and future inconvenience, bodily injury, past and future lost wages or lessening of earning capacity, etc.  Here is a snapshot of a sample damages jury instruction upon which the jury will base its verdict: [caption id="attachment_277" align="aligncenter" width="700"]Sample damages pictures, personal injury damages example A snapshot of a sample damages jury instruction upon which the jury will base its verdict[/caption] As a general rule or perhaps it’s more like a guideline, the most universally accepted trial practice has been to explain all of the elements of the plaintiff’s damages and ask the jury for a lump sum amount of damages that fully and fairly compensates our client for her injuries.  This practice was difficult in many cases because it seems like that number is too high, but in reality, the number is intended to represent all of the individual elements of damages.  That number is the sum of all the parts, if you will.  And lawyers were generally prohibited from breaking the lump sum down and telling the jury how much ought to be awarded for each element. Not any more. On March 2, 2012, the Supreme Court of Virginia issued an opinion, Wakole v. Barber, which affirmed a plaintiff’s lawyer who did just that.  The lawyer created a chart with all of the elements of damages that were relevant to the case, and assigned an amount to each one.  This way, the jury could see why the lawyer was asking for a specific amount and how the lawyer arrived at that number.  This method seems to more accurately communicate the issue of damages to the jury.  It also helps plaintiffs’ lawyer's the ability to build credibility with the jury. For example, now, the plaintiff’s lawyer can present the following chart to the jury. DISCLAIMER: THIS CHART MUST BE READ IN CONTEXT AND DEPENDS ON A VARIETY OF FACTORS UNIQUE TO EACH SPECIFIC CASE.  EVERY CASE IS DIFFERENT AND DEPENDS ON THE CIRCUMSTANCES.  NOTHING IN THIS ANNOUNCEMENT SHOULD BE INTERPRETED TO GUARANTEE OR PREDICT A SIMILAR RESULT IN ANY FUTURE CASE.  OVERBEY, HAWKINS & WRIGHT CANNOT GUARANTEE ANY RESULTS FOR ANY CASE.   Advertising., Prof. Conduct Rule 7.2 (2002).
Bodily Injuries Sustained $15,000
The Effect on the Plaintiff’s Health According to Degree and Probable Duration $15,000
Physical Pain Suffered in the Past $15,000
Physical Pain Suffered in the Future $50,000
Mental Anguish Suffered in the Past $15,000
Mental Anguish Suffered in the Future $50,000
Inconvenience Suffered in the Past $15,000
Inconvenience Suffered in the Future $30,000
Medical Expenses Incurred in the Past $30,000
Lost Wages $15,000
Total Damages $250,000
This example is not based on any mathematical formula other than adding the sum of the parts to arrive at a lump sum damages amount.  Other than past medical expenses and lost wages, these numbers are difficult to arrive at and here are not based on any facts.  However, depending on the case, the facts will support different variations of formula above.  There may be a case where the injuries do not last very long so the effect on the plaintiff’s health according to the degree a probable duration will be much less than listed above. A lot of thought and planning is involved in valuing your case and presenting that value to a jury.  If you have been injured in a car accident, trucking accident, bicycle accident, or any other type of accident through no fault of your own, call us at Overbey, Hawkins & Wright for a free consultation on your personal injury case. [post_title] => Trial Strategy: A Method to the Madness & Valuing Your Case [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => trial-strategy-a-method-to-the-madness [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-05-15 11:06:43 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-05-15 11:06:43 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://overbeylaw.com/?post_type=news&p=75 [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] => 113 [post_author] => 1 [post_date] => 2014-09-12 14:05:54 [post_date_gmt] => 2014-09-12 14:05:54 [post_content] => There are many things that you can and should do if you have been injured in a car wreck and you can read or watch a video about them here. But most folks do not realize that there are also certain things that may kill your personal injury case and your lawyers ability to recover what your injury is worth. Know the Rules So here is a list of the most common problems we face in working up personal injury cases:

1. Understating your injuries.

Many times, people don’t want to think that they have been injured so they say that they are fine in an optimistic effort to avoid falling into a litigation-hungry stereotype perpetuated by corporate America. Most, if not all, of our clients are not litigation hungry. In fact, they are litigation averse. They do not want to sue another person or even an insurance company, but find themselves in a situation where they are left with no choice. If you are injured, follow our advice here.

2. Failure to seek treatment and/or gaps in treatment.

Money is usually a problem when it comes to seeking treatment. Without health insurance, Medicare or Medicaid, most people cannot afford to seek medical treatment. The insurance company and the jury for that matter, will interpret your failure to seek medical attention as a red flag that you are not injured and not in pain. People who are in pain seek medical attention. If you were injured in a car wreck, you need to seek medical attention for your injury. Don’t ignore the pain thinking it will go away. It might go away, it might not go away. Depend on your doctor's expertise in making these decisions. Don’t go to a doctor just to help your case, go to a doctor to get better. One quick and easy fix is to increase your medical expense payments on your auto insurance policy. You will pay an additional premium for this benefit but the cost is minimal. Call your insurance company today and increase your med pay benefits to at least $20,000.00.

3. Failure to follow doctors orders.

If your doctor refers you to a specialist, go and see the specialist. If your doctor refers you to physical therapy, go to every physical therapy appointment until your therapist releases you. If your doctor or physical therapists sends you home with a home exercise program, do every exercise as instructed every day. If you doctor says your only option is surgery or live in pain for the rest of your life, get the recommended surgery. Your doctors are experts in their fields, trust them to develop a plan that will heal your injuries and increase the quality of your life. Do what they say and your chances of physically recovering from your injuries are good. That is the most important thing you can do.

4. Waiting till the last minute to hire a lawyer.

Preparing to file suit takes time. Your lawyer needs to know how much to sue for, in what court, etc.  To do that, your lawyer needs to review all of your medical records and any records relating to prior injuries to the injured part of your body. I takes weeks to get medical records from your doctors and it takes more time to organize them in such a way to review them to determine the extent of your injuries. You have two years to file suit or you are forever barred from recovering anything. Don’t wait until a month before the two years is up to hire a lawyer. If you wait too long, there might not be a lawyer out there willing to take your case. Don't make these Mistakes I hope this post helps you make good decisions about your body, your health and your recovery from your collision related injuries. If you find yourself in one of these positions, we provide free consultations for personal injury cases and we are here to serve you. We will tell you what you should do in your circumstances and help you recover.  Visit our frequently asked questions page to learn more. [post_title] => Four Mistakes That Will Kill Your Personal Injury Case [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => closed [ping_status] => closed [post_password] => [post_name] => four-mistakes-to-kill-your-personal-injury-case [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2016-01-23 15:44:10 [post_modified_gmt] => 2016-01-23 15:44:10 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => http://overbeylaw.com/?post_type=news&p=113 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => news [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [comment_count] => 0 [current_comment] => -1 [found_posts] => 40 [max_num_pages] => 8 [max_num_comment_pages] => 0 [is_single] => [is_preview] => [is_page] => [is_archive] => 1 [is_date] => [is_year] => [is_month] => [is_day] => [is_time] => [is_author] => [is_category] => [is_tag] => [is_tax] => [is_search] => [is_feed] => [is_comment_feed] => [is_trackback] => [is_home] => [is_404] => [is_embed] => [is_paged] => 1 [is_admin] => [is_attachment] => [is_singular] => [is_robots] => [is_posts_page] => [is_post_type_archive] => 1 [query_vars_hash:WP_Query:private] => 0617edc17883d76073f79356b04c7e81 [query_vars_changed:WP_Query:private] => [thumbnails_cached] => [stopwords:WP_Query:private] => [compat_fields:WP_Query:private] => Array ( [0] => query_vars_hash [1] => query_vars_changed ) [compat_methods:WP_Query:private] => Array ( [0] => init_query_flags [1] => parse_tax_query ) )
Friday, September 12, 2014

Four Mistakes That Will Kill Your Personal Injury Case

Understanding The Process From The Insurance Company's Perspective

There are many things that you can and should do if you have been injured in a car wreck and you can read or watch a video about them here. But most folks do not realize that there are also certain things that may kill your personal injury case and your lawyers ability to recover what your injury is worth.

So here is a list of the most common problems we face in working up personal injury cases:

Category: Personal Injury
Continue Reading >
Sunday, August 17, 2014

When Should I Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer?

There is no time like the present

You’ve heard the saying, “there is no time like the present.” If you have been in an automobile collision, you should hire a lawyer right away. If you’ve just been injured in a collision, hire a lawyer now. If you were injured in a collision a year ago, hire a lawyer now. This one small step will accomplish several goals that inure to your benefit.

First, the insurance company adjuster will stop calling you. Everyone is different and everyone’s case is different. However, everyone gets phone calls from an insurance company adjuster after she or he has been injured in an automobile collision. If you have been in a serious wreck, you may still be in the hospital recovering from your injuries. Contact a lawyer right away and he or she can stop those phone calls by sending a letter of representation to the adjuster.

Category: Personal Injury
Continue Reading >
Sunday, June 1, 2014

No Settlement? How Do I Go to Court?

The decision to go to court is not easy. Consider your options.

If you have a legitimate personal injury case and the insurance company will not settle for a fair value on you case, then the only way to get the insurance company to pay is to file suit and go to court.

Our lawyers are trained to draft legal pleadings and take your case to court. Your lawyer will explain that, depending on the size of your case, you will have two choices: (1) file suit in circuit court, or (2) file in General District Court.

Category: Personal Injury
Continue Reading >
Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Be Prepared: Know What To Do If You Are In a Car Accident

9 steps to follow after a car wreck

No one thinks that they will be in a car accident. When it happens, it is usually a complete surprise to you and the person who hit you. While it may not be intentional, the negligence of the other driver causing your accident gives rise to legal liability in Virginia to pay for your damages including medical expenses, lost wages, loss of earning capacity, pain and suffering, inconvenience, etc.

You should be prepared for the most unexpected event by reviewing the following list of things to do if you are in a car accident . . .

Category: Personal Injury
Continue Reading >
Saturday, August 17, 2013

Trial Strategy: A Method to the Madness & Valuing Your Case

As trial lawyers, the attorneys at Overbey, Hawkins & Wright are always looking for new and better ways to present evidence and make arguments in a jury trial.  We balance key factors such as the law, the facts, the sensibilities of the jurors and our tried and true experience.  Our clients hire us to make strategic choices that optimize their ability to receive compensation from defendants who have caused injuries through inattention or negligence.  Choosing how to present the facts and how to compensate many seemingly immeasurable injuries, a lot of thought goes into the best, most effective way to communicate to the jury.

Category: Personal Injury
Continue Reading >