Did you recently suffer personal injuries, and are considering hiring an attorney? Are you curious about what to expect from the claims process? Here, at Torgenson Law, we are always forthcoming and honest with our clients, and we want to give you a general idea of what to expect if you choose our firm for your personal injury case.
From our experience as Arizona personal injury attorneys, one thing is clear: No two personal injury claims are alike. With that said, at Torgenson Law, our process for resolving our clients’ third-party claims before litigation generally remains consistent. From first contact to picking up your settlement check, there are 7 basic steps to almost every personal injury claim.
First Contact with Our Team
After someone suffers personal injuries, they often do not realize that they might have a potential claim against another party. However, it is important to contact an attorney as soon as possible after the injury. For one, your memory of the incident will be fresh, and it will be easier for us to assess the claim. This first contact allows our Torgenson Law team to learn about the your injuries and truly evaluate the validity of the claim from a liability perspective. In addition, this initial conversation, be it in person or over the telephone, gives us the chance to get to know one another.
Signing up with Our Firm
Now that you have determined that you wish to proceed with hiring Torgenson Law as your legal representative for your personal injury case, we prepare the necessary documents, including our contingency fee agreement for you to sign. At Torgenson Law, we provide legal representation on a contingency fee basis. This means you do not owe our firm a dime until we settle your personal injury claim.
Before signing up, we welcome any potential clients to come by our office for an initial meeting to (i) go over the attorney-client agreement, (ii) gather any additional information or documents related to your injury, (iii) answer any questions you may have regarding our firm or your claim, and (iv) discuss your expectations regarding your personal injury claim. Of course, we understand that everyone’s time is valuable, so we are happy to provide any information or documents you need via email. Throughout this process, we are readily accessible by telephone or email to answer any questions you may have.
Your Medical Treatment & Collecting Medical Records
Depending on how much time passed between the injury-causing incident and your hiring of our firm, it is possible that you will still be in active medical treatment for you injuries. After all, the most important thing for you to do following a personal injury is for you to get better. Now, you must remember, that as personal injury lawyers, we are not medical professionals. The key to your recovery is to listen to your doctors, as well as your body. If your doctors recommend continued treatment, you should absolutely continue treatment until you are fully recovered. Also, to better monitor your progress, we recommend that you maintain a journal that details any daily pain, suffering, or other struggles you deal with due to your injuries.
While you are treating, we are constantly requesting updated itemized billing statements and medical records from your treating physicians and facilities. Ultimately, our job is to confirm that your injuries, medical treatment, and related medical expenses were directly caused by the third-party’s negligence. Once your treatment is complete, we collect final records and billing, so we can review and detail your treatment in our Demand Letter.
The Demand Letter
The Demand Letter is essentially the first opportunity the adverse party’s insurance company has to truly to review your personal injury claim and understand everything you have endured as a result of your injuries. At Torgenson Law, we take pride in our comprehensive Demand Letters that truly tell the story of our clients’ injuries. Specifically, these letters detail:
- Facts that led to and caused your injuries
- Specific injuries your suffered
- Your medical treatment
- Out-of-pocket expenses you incurred
- Lost Wages
- Pain & Suffering
Our Demand Letter also includes our legal research wherein we confirm the third party’s liability for your injuries. The purpose of the Demand Letter is to help the adjuster properly evaluate your case and your injuries, so they will make a fair and reasonable offer to settle your claim. While there is never a guarantee that the insurance company’s first offer will represent a fair value of your claim, the demand at the very least initiates the negotiation process.
Negotiating with the Insurance Company
As attorneys, we rely on our years of experience in dealing with insurance companies and their tactics to effectively negotiate your claim to obtain an offer that appropriately compensates you for your injuries. With that said, you and you alone are in charge of settlement in your case. We will always inform you any offers to settle your claim. While we may advise you to accept or reject a certain offer, you are always in control when it comes to settlement. Of course if negotiations stall, litigation is a an option for moving forward with your case.
While it might take time, we will do everything in our power to obtain the highest settlement offer possible. If it is satisfactory to you and your expectations, we will agree to settlement with the insurance company. The insurance company will then send a release for you to sign, which confirms that you will not later sue them or their insured for the same incident at a later date. Once you sign the release, they will send us the check. However, contrary to popular belief, settling with the third party does not necessarily mean our job is done.
Getting You the Compensation you Deserve
When we receive the settlement check, we hold the settlement proceeds in trust, as there are likely still liens and/or medical bills to be paid out of your settlement. Again, we will not be satisfied until you are fully compensated for your injuries. For that reason, we work hard to reduce your unpaid medical bills and settlement liens as much as possible. After all, the more they are reduced, the more money there is that goes directly into your pocket. Once liens and bills are finalized, we deduct our fee from the final settlement amount and issue payment to medical providers to rid you of the burden of unpaid medical bills. Then, you can come by our office to pick up your settlement check, or we can mail it directly to you.
To be sure, resolving a personal injury case is not an exact science. Depending on the circumstances, it can take time to resolve a claim. Also, there can and generally will be surprises along the way to settlement. Nonetheless, no matter the circumstances, Torgenson Law will fight for you to get you the compensation you deserve. Give us a call today for a free case analysis at (602) 759-0012.