Justice Law Center Personal Injury Attorney Services
At Justice Law Center we have been helping the residents of Winnemucca get what they deserve in their personal injury cases for decades. Wherever you are injured in an accident, the insurance agencies are going to pull out every trick in the book to try to save themselves as much money as possible, and to close your case quickly. That is why you need an experienced and dedicated personal injury attorney to represent you.
The insurance agencies employ whole teams of lawyers who are tasked with trying to shortchange you on your payout after an accident. While personal injury lawyers are not cheap, their fees far outweigh the possibility of not even being able to pay your medical bills or cover lost wages. If you try to go it alone, you may run the risk of being buried in debt due to an incident where another person was at fault. As adults we have learned to take responsibility for our own actions, but when you are blameless, you need a personal injury lawyer to get you what is fair.
Our legal professionals have put together a detailed step by step outline of just how a regular personal injury claim will go. Keep in mind that every case is different, and some of these details can be very much different, depending on your particular case and situation.
Phase One – Finding a Good Personal Injury Lawyer
After you have been injured in an auto accident, a slip and fall, or a workplace incident, the very first thing you should focus on is yourself and your family. If you are hospitalized chances are the last thing you are going to want to do is talk to a lawyer. It is important to understand however, the insurance agencies like to take advantage of people while they are in a vulnerable state and try to get them to submit a “statement” of the accident as quickly as possible.
They will tell you this “statement” is to help you get your money faster, when its actual purpose is to try and get you to admit on paper that you are responsible, or partly responsible for the incident that caused the injury. This is just one of the tricks they will try to pull in order to shortchange you on your payout.
Hopefully you, or a close friend or relative will be able to contact an injury attorney as quickly as possible so that the lawyer can deal with the insurance agency on your behalf. A good personal injury attorney will know all of the little tricks the insurance agency tries to pull on injured and vulnerable people.
Phase Two – The Demand Letter
Your lawyer will first gather all of the current hospital bills and other medical expenses that were incurred from the accident. Then they will make a detailed accounting of any lost wages, property damage and other expenses as well as try to put a reasonable dollar amount of your pain and suffering and lost time and experiences with friends and family that the accident has caused. All of this accounting will be detailed in a letter, along with the reason and any evidence that shows why the insured is responsible for causing the accident and damages.
This letter is called the demand letter and it will clearly state to the insurance agency that you are seeking financial compensation for the accident, and that you are holding a particular party responsible for the damages that were incurred. The responsible party is normally the person who holds the insurance plan, and is called in a personal injury claim the “liable party.”
The demand letter will “demand” that the insurance agency pay the dollar amount that was calculated by your attorney to cover the whole amount of damages. Often the insurance agency will not pay the amount listed on the demand letter and will ask for additional documentation. During this phase your injury lawyer will be constantly exchanging documentation with the insurance agency while trying to negotiate a reasonable payout for you.
Phase Three- Filing a Personal Injury Complaint
If your personal injury attorney and the insurance company cannot come to a reasonable agreement on the amount of money that is to be paid to you, your lawyer will have to file a complaint in civil court. This complaint will notify the court that you are seeking compensation under civil law. On the complaint you will be listed as the plaintiff, the one who is seeking compensation from the liable party, who is listed as the defendant. Most often, the liable party will be insured, so the insurance agency itself will be listed as the defendant. There are situations where both the liable party, the insurance agency as well as other third parties will be listed as defendants.
After filing the complaint, your lawyer will have it formally served on all of the defendants, and file affidavits of service of process with the court. These affidavits serve as proof that the complaint was received by all the defendants. After proof of service has been filed, in Nevada the defendants have 20 days to respond/oppose the complaint with the court. If they do not file a response in the allotted time frame, your injury lawyer can file a motion for judgement in default.
Phase Four – Discovery
The discovery phase of your personal injury claim is often the longest and most drawn out of all the phases. It is during this phase that both sides compile all of the evidence that they intend to use in court. According to the law each side must provide any and all evidence they intend to use to the other party for review. In personal injury cases a majority of the evidence will include medical records, doctor’s reports, diagnostic reports like X-rays, MRI’s and CAT scans. There will be pay stubs to show lost wages, bills from mechanics and other property repairs as well as any police reports that were made regarding the incident.
During the discovery phase either side can file motions with the court. These motions can be to ask the court to dismiss the case based on evidence gathered, or to rule in favor of the plaintiff because of the evidence presented. Often there well even be hearing held on these motions where the moving party presents their case in support of the motion and the opposing party will present their case in opposition of the motion.
Phase Five – Mediation
After both parties have litigated, motions have been filed and hearing have been held, a mediation will likely be scheduled. Mediation is a meeting between the insurance agencies lawyers and you and your personal injury attorney. This meeting will be aimed at trying to agree on a settlement before the case goes to trial. A mediator will oversee the meeting and will attempt to help both parties to come to an agreeable settlement. Sometimes if the first mediation fails, another will be scheduled before trial.
Phase Six – Trial
It is rarely ever in either party’s best interest to take a personal injury case to trial. Trials are always very expensive and time consuming. They can be held either just in front of a judge that will make a final ruling, or in front of a jury. A large majority of cases will settle before they go to trial due to the huge expense that is incurred if a case goes this far.
At trial, both parties will meticulously present every piece of evidence before the court, as well as call witnesses to testify. There will likely be witness that will testify as to the events that led up to the injury causing incident, and the incident itself, as well as witnesses that will collaborate evidence that has been presented.
Trials tend to take days, sometimes up to a week to complete. At the end either the judge or the jury will make a ruling in favor of either the plaintiff or the defendant. If the ruling is in favor of the plaintiff, the judge or jury will also order the defendant to pay a certain amount. If the ruling is in favor of the defendant, the case will be dismissed.
Justice Law Center Personal Injury Attorney
Here at Justice Law Center, we will never charge you a large retainer to represent you in your personal injury case. We will take our fee out of the money that we have fought and won for you. If you don’t get paid, neither will we.
Our team of personal injury lawyers have been representing the Winnemucca community for decades, and we care about the town and the community. We are a Nevada based law firm and we believe that everyone in Nevada should have capable and professional legal representation, regardless of how big or how small their town is.
All of our personal injury attorneys offer free consultations, so that we can go over your case in detail. Call us today, because the longer you wait, the harder it will be to get you a fair payout for your injures.