Posts Tagged ‘tucscon personal injury lawyer’
23 Jun2016If you are like most Americans, you document nearly every single major event in your life on social media. From graduations to birthdays, and from all life’s wins to life’s unfortunate losses, social media has become a way for individuals to share, vent, celebrate, and grieve. All that sharing has the potential to be damaging—especially in personal injury lawsuits. If you have been involved in a car accident or other serious accident, it may seem like a good idea to inform your close friends and family members via social media that you are okay. You may even be tempted to use social media to keep them updated on your health status, the status of your pending lawsuit, and any bumps you hit on the road to recovery—but do not do this. Sharing any details about your injuries and the accident on social media can seriously hurt your chances of winning your case and of receiving the compensation and care you need and deserve. Social Media Accounts are Not Private Nothing on the Internet is private, despite all the passwords and protective measures we take to make sure that our information is safeguarded. Social media is one of the least private places on the Internet, and accessing information via social media is as simple as typing in a name. Insurance providers are not above using social media to gather evidence against an individual and using it to dispute their claim. If you have one or more social media accounts, be sure that the privacy settings are set as high as they can go, which means only allowing direct friends to view your profiles. Make sure that “friends of friends” cannot view your profiles, and that your profiles are blocked entirely from public view. Do not befriend anyone new that you do not personally know. Even with your account privacy settings set to high, you still want to be careful about what you post to social media. While it is human nature to put on a brave face for friends and family members, do not downplay the severity of your injuries. Even a post as innocent as informing your followers that you are doing fine could raise a red flag to insurance adjusters, making them believe that you are, in fact, fine. If you claim to have a back injury from the recent accident, do not post pictures of you rock climbing with your friends. If you claim to have an injured shoulder, do not post pictures of you splashing around in a pool or performing a triathlon. Insurance companies will look for any information that suggests you were exaggerating or flat-out lying about your claim, so do not give them any ammo by carelessly posting information about your health status or accident to social media. The best way to ensure a personal injury lawsuit victory, though, is to tell the truth. Be honest about how badly you were injured, and do not over-exaggerate or lie. Not only is lying morally wrong, but you can get into a lot of trouble for filing a fraudulent claim. Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer At Hofmann Law Offices, PLLC, our Tucson personal injury attorneys advise our clients on every aspect of their entire personal injury suit, including where, when, and with whom to share information about their case. If you have been involved in a personal injury accident in the Tucson, Arizona area, contact Hofmann Law Offices, PLLC at 520-797-1041 or online to schedule your consultation today.
14 Jun2016According to Arizona Department of Transportation’s Arizona Motor Vehicle Crash Facts 2014, Section 8, there were 3,127 motorcycle accidents in Arizona in 2014. Of those 3,127 crashes, 127 resulted in a death, 2,655 resulted in injury, and 526 resulted in property damage. Motorcycle accidents account for 2.85% of all motor vehicle accidents in the state of Arizona. Because of the size of the vehicle and the structural integrity (or lack thereof) of a motorcycle, motorcycle drivers are much more vulnerable to injury than other vehicle operators. This fact alone makes it extremely difficult for motorcyclists to get covered by insurance companies. Those that are covered by insurance, though, still find it difficult to file a successful insurance claim, as there are many more stipulations with their plans than with typical motor vehicle plans. If you drive a motorcycle in the state of Arizona, and if you have been in a motorcycle accident, you deserve the peace of mind that comes with the full auto-insurance coverage that other drivers receive. Furthermore, you deserve the right to work with an experienced Tucson personal injury attorney should you run into complications filing your insurance claim. When to Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer in the Event of a Motorcycle Accident In the state of Arizona, liability is determined based on the state’s comparative negligence laws. In the event of a motorcycle accident, you – the motorcyclist – would not be liable if one of the following occurred:
- Another driver hit you and/or caused the accident because they did not see you;
- Road hazards; and/or
- Defective motorcycle conditions.
04 Jan2016Personal injury victims often feel that their worlds fall apart during the years following their injuries. They can suffer pain and agony, multiple surgeries, medical debt, crippling financial disasters, loss of employment, and social stigma from scarring and disfigurement. The list of injuries goes on and on. Yet, when they turn to lawyers for help, they are often confronted with a lack of communication and years of waiting. In fact, one of the biggest reasons clients complain about their lawyers is poor communication. Sometimes attorneys are doing a great job and achieving terrific results, but their clients wait forever to find out. As a client, you deserve a Bill of Rights that outlines just exactly what you can expect from your lawyer. When it comes to the lengthy process of getting justice, clients often do not fully understand why their case is taking so long. In general, there are three big reasons why your case might take longer than you expected. Reason #1: Evidence Takes Time Now, to be clear, every case is unique. However, in general it can take a lot of time to gather records, especially from defendants. For auto accident injuries, you may go to several doctors – family practitioners, emergency rooms, and specialists – and undergo multiple procedures. Your lawyer has to request records from each and every related treating provider. After all, your lawyer cannot prove the extent of your injuries without full and complete records and billing statements. For instance, you would not want your lawyer demanding $100,000 for your injuries, only to later realize there were nearly half a million dollars in bills. This would be a disaster. So, it is always best to be patient and let the lawyer spend the time gathering documentation. The same is true of reaching out to witnesses and finding other evidence relevant to your case. When it comes to medical malpractice, some defendants will use every delay tactic possible to avoid turning over records. This is no reflection on your attorney; it simply means things can take a lot longer when dealing with those types of defendants. Reason #2: The Court Controls the Timeline, not Your Attorney Although your choice of lawyer plays a huge role in how your case will proceed and how you will fare if the case goes to trial, when it comes to deadlines and court appearances, the judge is in charge. Defendants may return to court several times seeking more time to reply to allegations or requests for depositions and records. There may be scheduling conflicts that require the court to reschedule things. Your attorney may have to work around witnesses’ schedules. You may be required to wait for new defendants to be added to the case. The Arizona Court System provides a great resource to better understand the process. Finally, defendants may file dozens of motions seeking dismissal of the case, even when there is no valid reason to do so. Many of these attempts are genuine legal tactics used to defend against the case. Others are merely stall tactics used to make you more likely to settle or accept a lesser amount. Regardless, the reasons or purposes, all of these things can make a case go on for much longer than it should, and for the most part, a lot of it is out of your hands and your attorney’s. Reason #3: Litigation is a Tennis Match When you are a plaintiff in a lawsuit, it helps to think of the case like a tennis match. You and your lawyers are on one side, and the defendant and its lawyers are on the other. You serve first by filing the case. Then, the court gives them a chance to respond or “answer.” Once they answer, you must file requests for discovery, which includes requesting documents, depositions, and other types of evidence. The other side will do the same thing. The parties may file motions back and forth. Each time, one side files, the other side replies, then there may be court appearances and arguments. Ultimately, this volley between plaintiff and defendant can last a long time. At each step, your lawyer must keep you informed and seek your input when necessary. Judges can be very generous with time, often allowing a party to take upwards of a month or more to respond. In other words, it can take months to get the ball back over the net. When hiring a Tucson personal injury lawyer, look for someone who guarantees to keep you in the loop and communicate regularly. Your case will seem quicker, and you will ultimately be happier if you know what is going on. Remember, though, no matter what you do, a personal injury case can easily take more than a year from start to finish. So you want to choose your lawyer carefully, because you will be working with that person or firm for a long time.
24 Oct2015As you drive around Tucson, you will probably see the billboards. They say, “Auto Accident? Call Now!” Or maybe you have heard the big firm promises on late night television, urging you to call if “you or a loved one has been injured through no fault of their own.” Many of these firms are wonderful. But beware. Not all advertised firms are the same. Many clients are absolutely shocked and appalled when they learn that almost half of all the advertised firms, especially the large multi-state firms, refer the majority of all clients they talk to. Here are some problems you can avoid. There is a time and place for referrals There is nothing inherently wrong with referring clients. Good attorneys do it all the time. Perhaps a client comes to a lawyer seeking representation for injuries suffered in a hospital. If that attorney focuses mostly on automobile accidents, then he or she will likely do the client a great favor by referring the matter to a trusted colleague who has significant experience and success handling medical malpractice. Likewise, clients often ask a family or probate lawyer to help them following an injury. This is usually due to years of trusted service. Those attorneys often refer those cases to talented and experienced personal injury lawyers. Finally, maybe someone is injured while visiting the area, and they consult a lawyer back home. It is very common for those lawyers to refer the clients to a skilled Tucson personal injury attorney. But not all referrals are a good idea. Some firms are glorified referral services While many referrals are perfectly honorable, some large firms in recent years have begun aggressive advertising campaigns that are aimed at getting as many clients as possible then referring almost all cases to other attorneys for a fee. Although fee splitting is also acceptable, you should beware of big national firms who only want your business so they can send it somewhere else. Problems with some referrals Referral arrangements are governed by local state rules of ethics. The American Bar Association (ABA) is a national organization that serves attorneys and the legal profession. They often release advisory statements regarding professional conduct. The ABA has repeatedly cautioned attorneys about inappropriate referral agreements, where the attorneys handling the case must pay large sums of money from their own fee to compensate the advertising firm. Although this is not always a bad thing, in some cases, clients waste valuable time going through lengthy consulting and intake processes, while waiting to hear whether the firm will take their case. Then, months later, they get a random call out of the blue from a second firm, telling them their case was “transferred.” This can create mistrust and confusion for a client who is already suffering. What to look for when selecting a personal injury lawyer When you speak to your potential lawyer, ask if the firm will be handling the case directly or referring it to someone else. If they simply plan to refer the case, you should ask yourself if perhaps it would not be wiser to just consult that firm instead. After all, what do you get out of having a middleman? Next, you should ask if the firm ever makes more than its clients. If so, leave. Call a skilled and trustworthy Tucson injury lawyer who will never keep more of your money than you do. Ask for a guarantee that a real lawyer is handling your case. While no lawyer can ethically promise you will win or tell you how much you will get, a good lawyer should tell you how your case will be handled and what to expect during the process. Hoffman Law Offices, PLLC receives many referrals from other attorneys, because its attorneys are skilled and knowledgeable and treat clients with dignity and respect. Do not settle for an attorney who will waste months deciding what other lawyers they will send your case to. Call a lawyer who can handle your case from beginning to end.