If you or a loved one has been injured, you probably have questions about what to do, what your rights are, and how to receive compensation.  The Law Offices of Daniel T. Goodwin is here to help you with every step of your personal injury case.  Below is a list of our most frequently asked questions.

  1. What should I do after I’m injured in an auto accident?
    • Stay at the scene until the authorities arrive. Don’t let the at-fault driver try to convince you to not contact the police.
    • Identify all the areas of your body that are in pain.  Do not offer the standard statement that you are “all right.”  You will not know the seriousness of the injuries until you have been checked by a doctor. Communicate these injuries to the investigating officer so that they will be included on your accident report.
    • Get to an emergency room as soon as possible.  Take the opportunity to go there in the ambulance if you have any question about how serious you are injured.
    • Explain the collision to the emergency personnel so that they can assess how serious the collision impact was and how it might have effected your body.
  2. Do I have a legal claim?
    • If you were not at fault in the collision, you have a claim.
    • Even if you were at fault in the collision, there may be some part of the collision that you are not aware of how it happened.  In that case, you may have your own claim or you may have a defense to some part of the collision.
    • The extent of the injury will determine the seriousness of the claim.
  3. Do I need a lawyer?
    • The Law Offices of Daniel T. Goodwin provides potential personal injury clients with a free consultation to review the facts of the collision.  If you do not need a lawyer, the Law Offices of Daniel T. Goodwin will advise you of that fact.
  4. Why should I choose the Law Offices of Daniel T. Goodwin to represent me
    • Experience. Dan has over 47 years of experience in handling auto collision cases.  He tried his first jury trial in an auto collision case in September 1970 and he has been at it since then.
    • Solutions. We make every effort to settle your case without the necessity of trial, allowing for a quicker and more effective resolution for our clients.
  5. What does the Law Offices of Daniel T. Goodwin charge for its services?
    • The Firm generally uses a contingent fee agreement meaning that there are no legal fees charged unless there is a recovery.  The contingent fee charged in most instances is thirty-three percent (33%) of the amount recovered.  A signed agreement is always required.
    • The client is given the opportunity to elect a fee agreement based on an hourly rate and there are a few clients who choose that option.
    • The client always has to be aware that the client is responsible for the expenses of the case, but the Firm will make the appropriate arrangements to have the expenses covered in a manner that will be most efficient to the client.
  6. The Insurance Company offered me a settlement, what do I do?
    • Settlements are not provided without absolute release agreements.  In other words, you cannot accept a settlement unless you release all of your rights to further payment.  If the insurance company has already offered you a settlement, you may want to hire The Law Offices of Daniel T. Goodwin to review your medical records and provide you with an opinion on the fairness of the offer.
  7. What is my case worth?
    • You cannot judge the value of your case until your treating physicians have given you a release indicating that you have reached maximum medical improvement (MMI).  Once you reach MMI an assessment of the injury and its effects on your life can be measured and valued.
  8. I was injured in a car accident and the other driver does not have enough insurance to cover my medical bills. What do I do?
    • This is a common occurrence.  It requires that you have your own insurance policy with coverage under Uninsured Motorist (UM) and Underinsured Motorist (UIM).  This is the coverage that will allow you to obtain full compensation for your injuries.
    • It is necessary to make a claim against your own insurance carrier after the case is settled with the carrier for the person who caused the collision.
  9. Will I have to go to trial?
    • The majority of cases are settled before trial, but each one has to be prepared as if it was certainly going to trial.
    • The justice system has a process that must be followed by every person making a claim.  The insurance company lawyers have the same right to defend the case as you have in bringing the case.  There are times when the liability facts of the case are so disputed that a trial on the merits of the case must be held because the parties need a fact finder to determine who is at fault in the collision.
    • Often times the assistance of a mediator will be employed to help determine the liability of the case.  This practice has become more prevalent in the past few years and it is the major reason that most cases are settled.

If we have not answered your question here, please do not hesitate to call us.  We can generally answer your questions in a short telephone call and we do not charge for that advice.