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How to Protect Your Rights After a Car Accident

There are a number of actions to consider after a car accident. However, a roadway incident is a traumatic event and slinging a bunch of actions at you will only compound the trauma you might be trying to heal from.

Therefore, we are going to keep this straightforward and simple, so the most critical items are dealt with immediately. Other tasks can be worked on throughout the process. Here are the top two actions you want to take to protect your rights after a car accident.

The First Step – Seek Medical Treatment

Chances are if you were injured in an accident, this step has already taken place. However, we reiterate this because, while important for your health and well-being, this step is essential in protecting your legal rights.

Records of your medical treatments and diagnosis will prove invaluable to your claims as you seek justice and/or compensation. If you have been given specific medical do’s and don’ts by your physician, the worst thing you can do is not follow that direction. When you do not follow up, or procrastinate, insurance companies see your claims less credible. Meaning, you might be overstating how injured you really are if you’re not seeking immediate medical treatment.

Make sure you collect all medical documentation such as records, x-rays, diagnosis, follow up information, prescriptions, etc.  Make a list of all doctors and medical providers; keep a copy of all medical bills and prescription receipts; and keep records of lost time from work.

The Second Step – Contact a Car Accident Attorney

There is a lot of legalese involved in a car accident case, and if you are attempting to recover, the last thing you’ll want to do is chase down information, miss a legal deadline or talk to a biased insurance company representative. When you decide to work with an attorney, you can be guided through the process and avoid any sabotage of your case. A lawyer will protect and serve you in the following ways:

  1. A car accident lawyer will collect data and evidence, with your help, to support your case.
  2. An attorney will file the appropriate legal paperwork on your behalf.
  3. An attorney will communicate on your behalf to avoid any missteps.
  4. An accident lawyer will explain the legal process, so you’re not left in the dark.
  5. A lawyer will conduct their own investigation to gather supporting evidence.
  6. An attorney will consult with their network of resources to support your case.

Some Final Thoughts

Remember: It will cost you nothing to speak with an attorney, and it could cost you a lot to make a mistake before you speak to an attorney.  The insurance company is in the business to make money by collecting premiums, not to pay claims no matter how many years you have paid in premiums without filing a claim.

Even if you are unsure if you have a case or not, consulting with an attorney is always a good idea. What might not seem like a case to you, might be seen differently through the lens of a qualified practicing car accident attorney. The number one thing you do not want to do is talk to the at-fault driver’s insurance company. These representatives do not have your best interests in mind and are trained to find fault in anything you do or say. Hiring an attorney will help you easily avoid this.

These two actions are truly the first steps in building a solid car accident case. These steps show the insurance company that you are proactive about your health and serious about your claim.

 

Social Security Disability – Wounded Warrior Program

With decades of military service men and women serving overseas, it is promising to see the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) disability program help those who have served our country. This program is called the Wounded Warriors Disability Program and is designed to expedite their disability claims so they can start getting benefits as soon as possible.

Anyone who has served on active duty from October 1, 2001, and on; and was injured at any time either overseas or closer to home, will get priority disability claim processing. These benefits shouldn’t be confused with your Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) benefits. There are some aspects of the program that should be considered, and we are going to break that down below.

What You Need to Apply

While the processing time will be faster than most transactions at the SSA office, the application isn’t “easy” per se. If whenever you don’t understand what you will need to apply, your best action would be to work with a Social Security Disability lawyer who can help you through this process. Here is the list of items you will likely need, but there could be additional things they request depending on your unique situation.

  • Your Medical Records
  • Social Security Numbers (yours, spouse and children)
  • Proof of U.S. Citizenship
  • W-2 Form
  • Military Pay Proof
  • Banking Information
  • DD 214 Forms (if discharged)

Options for Filing

You can qualify for the SSA benefits and the DVA benefits at the same time. Qualifying doesn’t necessarily come down to using one or the other. Additionally, within SSA, you can apply for two different benefits.

  • The first is Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) – Benefits that are based on your work history and how much you have paid into the SSA system.
  • The second is Supplemental Security Income (SSI) – Which is based on what you need financially above and beyond the income you receive.

The Medical Qualifications Needed to Apply

The SSA defines a disabled person if they are unable to work based on medical conditions that have been recorded with a qualified physician. The condition must prevent you from functioning at a basic level daily, to be considered. Here are the other points to take into account in your SSA filing.

  • Your disability is expected to persist or exist at least one year or longer.

 

  • If you are seeking medical treatment and are on active duty, you can still apply. Active status doesn’t mean you are unable to receive benefits.

 

  • A Wounded Warrior can apply either while still in the military or post-discharge.

 

  • The treatment program isn’t specific, and it can include rehab, hospitalizations, or outpatient treatments.

 

  • Treatment can be sought either through military resources, such as a VA hospital or at a standard civilian medical facility.

 

You can apply for the Wounded Warrior SSA benefits by walking into their offices at your closest location. You should identify yourself as military immediately so the SSA official can treat your case with an expedited hand. If this feels overwhelming, you can also reach out to a lawyer who specializes in this type of legal work and they can help you collect everything you’ll need and process your claim.

10 Tips For Applying For Social Security Disability Benefits How To Maximize Your Chances Of Approval

Table Of Contents

Introduction

1. Determine The Date Your Disability Began To Interfere With Work

2. List Every Condition That May Interfere With Your Work

3. Never Downplay Your Symptoms…

4. But Don’t Exaggerate

5. Make Sure To Get Into The Details

6. Discuss How Your Activity Interferes With Your Day-To-Day Life

7. Keep A Log Of All Of The Treatment You’ve Received

8. File As Soon As You Can

9. Submit As Many Medical Records As You Can

10. Be Patient – Approval Takes Time

Get Help From Metts Law Firm, LLC

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Introduction

Wondering how you can make sure that your disability application is approved? The team at Metts Law Firm, LLC is here to help. Check out these 10 tips!

1. Determine The Date Your Disability Began To Interfere With Work

You’ll want to make sure that you know exactly when your disability began so that you can get all of the back pay that you’re eligible for once you’ve been approved.

2. List Every Condition That May Interfere With Your Work

Don’t just focus on the major conditions that you have, or the one that you think will get you approved. If you have multiple conditions that interfere, list all of the ones that apply.

3. Never Downplay Your Symptoms…

Don’t be embarrassed about your symptoms, particularly mental ones. Be honest and truthful, and be as accurate as possible when discussing how you’re suffering from a disability.

4. But Don’t Exaggerate

At the same time, though, don’t over-exaggerate, or list symptoms you’re not experiencing. This could lead to a rejection of your application.

5. Make Sure To Get Into The Details

Be very clear and specific when talking about your symptoms, how they interfere with your work responsibilities, how often they put you in the hospital, and other such details.

6. Discuss How Your Activity Interferes With Your Day-To-Day Life

You should also make sure you talk about how your disability affects you when you’re trying to live your normal, day-to-day life, and any limitations it puts on your lifestyle.

 

7. Keep A Log Of All Of The Treatment You’ve Received

Keep a list of all of the doctors you’ve seen, appointments, information about each visit, medications that you have tried and how they’ve affected you, any surgeries you’ve undergone, and so forth.

8. Submit As Many Medical Records As You Can

Along with your log of treatments, submit all applicable medical records that you can get, to help bolster your case.

9. File As Soon As You Can

You shouldn’t wait weeks – or even months – to file your claim. File as soon as you think you need to, or you risk getting into financial trouble.

10. Be Patient – Approval Takes Time

Even in the best of times, approval can take months. That’s why it’s so important to apply early and provide thorough, honest, complete information.

Get Help From Metts Law Firm, LLC

Need help with a Social Security Disability case? We’re here to help! Get in touch with an attorney at Metts Law Firm, LLC now, and we’d be happy to review your case and help you get the compensation you deserve.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

temp-social-security-benefits

Family Court Mediation Process – The Benefits of Mediation

Dissolving a marriage has to be done through a legal process, but it doesn’t have to be the combative way that many have known divorce to be. Today, couples are seeking a mediation process which requires less tumultuous situations and tends to be more focused on the priorities after a split. Mediation is typically guided by third-party, which helps spouses feel better about the stressful situation. In this article, we are going to discuss the mediation process and some of the benefits that come with choosing this option to end a union.

The Mediation Process

When two people seek a mediation alternative to divorce, they will typically go through a version of this process. For amicable separations, this process may only take one session. If there are some disputes, additional mediation sessions may be needed.

Introductory Statements – Both parties and the mediator will gather in a room and give statements (if they choose) about the dissolution of the marriage and the overall goals for mediation.

Main Problems Revealed or Discussed – The mediator will then guide both parties to discuss the main issues of the marriage and the dissolving of the union. These statements, and the discussions that follow, will help the mediator understand where the problems exist and create compromises for both parties to consider. This part of mediation is an information gathering pursuit for the mediator so they can come up with appropriate solutions that both parties will be satisfied with.

Presentation of Potential Solutions and Negotiations – After the mediator has a good grasp on what both parties are seeking, they can start offering up different solutions and compromises. Each party can then negotiate their points, so they feel they’re getting treated fairly in the process.

Reaching an Agreement – Once an agreement is reached, a mediator will draw up the contract for both parties to sign. A final hearing can then be requested to put the agreement on the record and get it approved by the Court.

The Benefits of Meditation
Mediation is a mandatory part of the family court process in South Carolina for any contested case.   It can be difficult, especially if there has been significant mistrust or carelessness in the marriage. However, for those who are splitting on a more amicable level, mediation has many benefits.

More Financially Beneficial – Divorces can rack up thousands of dollars in legal fees, which only hurts the family as a whole, not to mention children if they are involved. In fact, the average cost to end a marriage in America is thousands of dollars, that could be going into the raising of the couple’s children.

More Private – Divorces done in the traditional court system are public record and can open each party up to scrutiny and wandering eyes. Mediation is a more private way to handle a very personal situation.

Better for the Kids – Mediators tend to keep spouses focused on the children, which can sometimes be lost in traditional litigation. This creates tension among spouses that can sometimes be seen and heard, or intuitively felt by the children.

Every mediation is different and is customized according to each family. Spouses who decide to use a mediator are more likely to end up with an agreement they are more comfortable with and serves the main priorities of all parties. While not an option for everyone, mediation is an excellent choice when couples decide to mutually part ways.

What to Do if Hurt on The Job  – Worker’s Compensation Process

Workplace injuries are a common thing, and many people find they can make a full recovery. In order to do that, an injured person will need to file a claim with their employer. A victim needs to take the appropriate legal steps, so they have the resources necessary to make a recovery. No matter how insignificant or significant the injuries are, the steps below should always be followed for the protection of the injured person.

Step One – Seek Medical Attention

It’s crucial that anyone who experiences a workplace injury seek medical attention, as this is important for both recovery and a worker’s compensation claim. A physician will offer a professional opinion and give the victim follow up care instructions. These directives will be needed in the event a claim needs to be filed.

Step Two – Report the Injury or Accident

It’s crucial that the injury sustained be reported to the proper chain of command at work. For some, that will be a manager and others may have to report the incident to their human resources department. This should be done as soon after the event as possible and done in both verbal and written forms. An email report is also a smart action since it will be time-stamped and support your account of when the injury happened.

Step Three – Seek Legal Guidance

While legal guidance isn’t always necessary, it’s worth the time and energy to find a good worker’s compensation attorney to learn more about the laws and rights of those hurt on the job. This step can ensure a victim is adequately cared for and compensated for their injuries.

Step Four – File a Worker’s Compensation Claim

The manager or HR professional at work should be able to direct a victim how to file a claim and walk the injured individual through the works compensation process. A claim can also be addressed with the help of an attorney, especially if any part of the accident is being disputed or fought. There is a step by step process involved in this claim which will be laid out by either one of these parties.

Step Five – Work Through the Process

After a claim has been filed, there will be an offer to consider or a claim that was denied. The victim can work with the works compensation representative to either accept or appeal the decision. If a victim is dissatisfied with the outcome, they can choose to hire a lawyer and work towards a better result.

 

This is the basic process of a worker’s compensation claim and the steps that should be taken after an injury. Legal professionals suggest being leary of fast settlements or pushy adjusters seeking a quick remedy. This could be a red flag and a tactic often used to get a victim to settle a claim that they otherwise could be awarded more money for.

What to Do After an Automobile Accident – Do’s and Don’ts

 

Auto accidents can have a devastating result on someone’s life resulting in long term physical injuries and expensive damages. If the proper measures aren’t taken after a crash, the chances of having the resources to recover from those injuries might be lost. Here are the do’s and don’t actions to take after an auto accident.

The “Do’s” After a Car Accident

Seek Medical Assistance – The first priority is to seek medical attention regardless of how minor or severe the injuries might seem. Injuries from an accident can take days or even weeks to emerge, which will not only impact someone’s ability to heal but could also hurt a legal case.

Contact Law Enforcement – Depending on the result of the accident, law enforcement should be contacted so they can conduct a report about what took place. This report can be valuable in a car accident claim and can validate a driver’s account of what occurred.

Collect Evidence – If possible, take photos and video of the car accident scene as well as the damage to the vehicles involved. Don’t forget to do a 360-degree photo which may provide additional details about surveillance cameras, witnesses, or other crucial information for a legal claim.

Consult an Attorney – Regardless as to whether or not someone feels they have a case, they should always consult with an attorney to understand their rights. A car accident lawyer will know the laws and can guide a victim through the legal process successfully.

The “Don’ts” After a Car Accident


Don’t Move the Vehicles – It’s essential that law enforcement has a clear picture of where each vehicle ended up to get an accurate assessment of what happened. The only exception to this is if it is just too dangerous to keep the car where it is.

Don’t Leave the Scene – No matter who is at fault or what the circumstances are, no one who was involved or who saw the accident should leave the scene until law enforcement releases them. Again, an exception to this would be if there are life-threatening injuries.

Don’t Discard Potential Evidence – It can be tempting to throw away clothes that have blood stains, damaged items in the car, or a bumper that was damaged. Hold on to everything until there is legal guidance about what does or doesn’t constitute evidence by a lawyer.

Don’t Attribute Fault – There will be plenty of time to figure out who is at fault from an accident. Allow the investigators to come to a conclusion and interview everyone involved first. Then take that information to an attorney before pointing the finger at any one party.

Don’t Speak to Insurance Adjusters Yet – Adjusters will attempt to get a statement about the crash so they can find a way to discredit the victim’s story about the accident. Always speak to an auto accident attorney before making any statements or settling on a claim. This can negatively impact how much a victim can collect from an accident claim.

Hopefully, these do’s and don’t offer a more clear picture about how to handle the aftermath of an accident. Always consult with a car accident attorney to learn more about the specifics of a car accident claim and laws involved.