If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident in Utah, you will not have the same insurance coverage as if you were in a car. You may want to speak to a personal injury attorney soon after any motorcycle accident. In Utah, all vehicles must have personal injury protection (PIP) coverage. This covers medical expenses up to $3,000.00, lost wages and other benefits regardless of who is at fault. Motorcycles are treated differently. Very few insurance companies provide any coverage similar to PIP. This can have a big impact on what will be covered if you are in an accident.

If you are the one at fault for causing the accident, you are on your own when it comes to your injuries. You will need to send everything through you own health insurance to be paid or pay for your treatment directly to the doctors if you do not have health insurance [Note: some insurance companies offer No Fault Insurance but it is rare. Check with your carrier to see if it is available.]

If another person is at fault for causing the accident, you will eventually be able to collect from the other person’s insurance but you will have to wait until all of your injuries are resolved before the insurance company will offer you a settlement. This usually takes a minimum of 4 months because many injuries are still unresolved and it is difficult to determine the full extent of the damages.

The best thing to do is submit all bills to your health insurance first. For all non covered expenses, we recommend that you do your best to pay them or see if the doctor will wait for payment. Do what you can to avoid more damage to your credit than necessary. Unfortunately, there will not be any immediate coverage for lost wages you may suffer following the accident. You will be able to collect lost wages when you negotiate a final settlement.

Because of the lack of PIP insurance, motorcycle accident victims can suffer more than other accident victims. Contact a local personal injury lawyer who is experienced and can answer your questions. Call an Advocate who can help you weather the storm while you are waiting for a settlement.

Slip and Fall Injuries

August 20, 2010

It happens to the best of us:  Wham, bam, before you know what happened, you may be laying on the ground after slipping, tripping and/or falling.  Fortunately, most often the only thing injured is our ego. However, sometimes serious injuries can occur as a result of a slip, trip or fall.  In these cases, the question may arise as to who may be responsible and what may be done about it. You may ask yourself, “Do I need a personal injury attorney?”

Who’s responsible:

Owners of stores, office buildings, restaurants, landlords, and businesses are not expected to ensure or cover any accident or injury that occurs on their premises.  Rather, they may be liable only when they fail in their duty to use “reasonable care” in protecting their patrons or tenants from accident.  More particular, Utah courts have recognized two legal theories under which an injured person may recover against a business owner in a slip-and-fall accident.

The first theory applies in cases involving an unsafe condition of a temporary nature such as a slippery substance on a floor.  The Supreme Court of Utah explains in the case of Schnuphse v. Storehouse Markets, 918 P.2d 476 (1996) that in these situations, liability cannot be established unless two conditions are met.  First, the injured party must show that the business owner knew or should have known of the hazardous condition.  Second, the party must show that the business owner had enough time to remedy the unsafe condition had the owner exercised reasonable care, and the owner failed to do so.  In other words, liability in this type of case will only be imposed when the condition existed for a long enough time that the owner should have known about it and had time to correct it, but didn’t.

The second legal theory giving rise to liability for a slip, trip and/or fall accident involves unsafe conditions of a permanent nature.  For example, if the unsafe condition exists due to the structure of a building, stairway, machinery, manner of use etc, then it may not be necessary for the injured party to prove that the owner was on notice of the hazard.   Moreover, an owner of property may be liable for failing to warn patrons of dangers that are not apparent.  On the other hand, an owner may be partially or fully absolved of liability if fault can be apportioned to the person who fell.  For example, it may be difficult to prove liability if the injured party was impaired by drugs or alcohol or wasn’t paying attention and fell on something that was open or obvious.

Steps should be taken in the event of an accident:

  1. Report the accident to management as soon as possible and see that a report is made of the incident.  If a report has not been made, then write a letter outlining the details of the accident.
  2. Obtain photos of accident scene and injuries.  Ask the owner or management if security film exists of the accident and that it be preserved.
  3. Get names of witnesses and contact information such as addresses, phone numbers and emails.
  4. Seek medical help as soon as is reasonably possible.  Make sure that you let your medical provider know that your injuries resulted from the accident.
  5. In most cases it is a mistake to try and settle the claim until the full extent of injuries is known and how much the costs are for current and future medical care lost wages, etc.
  6. The property owner, manager or insurer may ask the injured party to sign a release, however, do not sign anything until having it reviewed by an personal injury lawyer.

(Salt Lake City, UT) – Recently Utah personal injury attorney Dave Tullis of The Advocates was named a Rising Star in the legal industry by Super Lawyers Magazine as part of the 2010 Mountain States Super Lawyers & Rising Stars. Tullis is trial lawyer with the Advocates, specializing in personal injury, truck and motorcycle accidents. He received his J.D. from the California Western School of Law in 2005.

“I am excited about Dave’s recognition. It shows he and our firm are recognized as top lawyers in the personal injury field,” said Advocates founding partner Matt Driggs. “This honor highlights the remarkable work we do for our clients in the personal injury field and shows the legal community recognizes our ability and integrity.”

Super Lawyers identifies only the top 2.5 percent of attorneys in each state as Rising Stars, chosen by their peers and through the independent research of Law & Politics, focusing on attorney who are under 40 and have been practicing for less than ten years. The objective of the Super Lawyers selection process is to create a credible, comprehensive and diverse listing of outstanding attorneys that can be used as a resource to assist attorneys and sophisticated consumers in the search for legal counsel. The process is a comprehensive, good-faith and detailed attempt to produce a list of lawyers that have attained high peer recognition, meet ethical standards, and have demonstrated some degree of achievement in their field.

The Utah Advocates at Driggs, Bills and Day is a Utah personal injury law firm with offices in Salt Lake City, Ogden and Provo. The Advocates handle all types of accident case to get clients the results they deserve. The personal injury attorneys at Driggs, Bills and Day have recovered over $100 million dollars on behalf of their clients. The Advocates hold the highest distinction of AV from Martindale-Hubbell law rankings and were named as Legal Elite by Utah Business Magazine.

If you have been attacked by a dog in Utah or if the dog caused you an injury, (i.e. knocks you over) you have the right to pursue a claim against the dog owner for your injuries. If you have been injured by a dog, you need an Advocate who will help you understand your rights and will help you resolve your claim fairly.

Dog Bites and Other Injuries Caused by Dogs

In Utah the law protects people who have been injured by dogs. Utah code section 18-1-1 makes dog owners or dog keepers responsible for all injuries caused by their dog. You do not have to show that the dog owner was negligent or that the dog had bitten someone before. You merely have to show that the dog caused the injury. Even if it was an accident, the dog owner must pay for the injuries caused by their dog.

Animal Attacks in Utah

If you have been bitten or injured by a cat, bird, snake or any other domestic animal in Utah, you must show that the owner was negligent in order to recover for your injuries. Although more difficult to prove than dog bites, you can still recover if you show the owner was irresponsible or careless. Every situation will be different and it is important to contact a personal injury attorney in Utah to discuss the facts and your rights.

What to do After Being Injured by a Dog or Domestic Animal

1. Seek Medical Attention: Doctors can help minimize infections and can reduce future scaring.
2. Determine the owner of the dog or animal.
3. Contact the local animal control services or report the attack to the police department.
4. Take photos of the injuries and dog, if possible.
5. Determine if the animal is current on all vaccinations.
6. Keep copies of all medical records and bills.
7. Contact the home owner’s insurance company of the dog owner; report the claim.
8. Contact a personal injury lawyer in Utah who is experienced in dog bites or animal attacks. You deserve an Advocate who will help you with all aspects of your claim.

(Salt Lake City, UT) – Utah personal injury attorneys, The Advocates at Driggs, Bills and Day, recently won a case for an injured client who was hurt in automobile accident over three years ago. In November of 2006, the man was rear ended while stopped at a red light. The other car slammed into his car, leaving him with spinal medical issues. After years of pain and suffering, he went to The Advocates.

 “When insurance companies won’t work with you, getting what you need can be a long process,” said founding partner and personal injury attorney Matthew Driggs. “But we don’t give up. Because of that, our client was able to get money to pay for his past and future medical bills and make up for the lost work time.”

 Prior to trial, the highest offer from the insurance company was $9,650, which would do little to help pay for personal injury and lost work time. The client had over $15,000 in past medical bills and another $35,000 to pay, plus had not been able to work full time in over three years. With the help of The Advocates, the jury awarded the man $120,000 to pay for his past medical bills and lost work compensation, and to pay for a future spinal fusion surgery, which should greatly alleviate his pain.

 “Our client was a flooring subcontractor, which means he spends all day on his knees installing flooring. With the injuries to his back and neck, he has been at half capacity, losing money and piling up medical bills. With this settlement, he will be able to get the surgery he needs to put him back at 100%. This is how every case should go; the compensation was fair and reasonable and will really help our client get back to work and provide for his family.”

 The Utah Advocates at Driggs, Bills and Day is a Utah personal injury law firm with offices in Salt Lake City, Ogden and Provo. The Advocates handle all types of accident case to get clients the results they deserve. The personal injury attorneys at Driggs, Bills and Day have recovered over $100 million dollars on behalf of their clients. The Advocates hold the highest distinction of AV from Martindale-Hubbell law rankings and were named as SuperLawyers by Mountain States Lawyers Magazine and as Legal Elite by Utah Business Magazine.

(Salt Lake City, UT) – Martindale-Hubbell, the premiere lawyer rating organization in the United States has awarded Utah personal injury law firm, The Advocates of Driggs, Bills and Day, its highest distinction for practicing lawyers, the AV rating, indicating the highest level of legal ability and ethics.

The AV rating identifies lawyers with the best legal ability and is the highest reflection of expertise, skill, experience, integrity and overall professional excellence. AV denotes strict adherence to professional standards of conduct, ethics, reliability and diligence.

“It is an honor to receive this rating from such a respected entity. At The Advocates, we share an unyielding commitment and dedication to our clients and their cases. We understand that personal injury is a difficult area of law and that our clients have real needs. We are excited to see our efforts and talents recognized by a national group,” said Matthew Driggs, founder of The Advocates.

Martindale-Hubbell ratings are considered invaluable when evaluating an attorney. When looking for a lawyer, consumers need to have confidence in the individual under consideration. By reviewing the ratings, they can select counsel with superior ethics, as well as the desired level of professional experience.Martindale-Hubbell ratings are established by lawyers for lawyers, in several areas including personal injury. Ratings are based on the confidential opinions of members of the Bar and the Judiciary, including both those who are rated and those who are not. Martindale-Hubbell representatives conduct personal interviews to discuss lawyers under review with other members of the Bar. In addition, confidential questionnaires are sent to lawyers and judges in the same geographic location and/or area of practice as the lawyer being rated.

For over 130 years, Martindale-Hubbell has been the most respected source of authoritative and dependable information about members of the legal community in the Unites States, Canada and throughout the world.

The Utah Advocates at Driggs, Bills and Day is a Utah personal injury law firm with offices in Salt Lake City, Ogden and Provo. The Advocates handle all types of accident case to get clients the results they deserve. The personal injury attorneys at Driggs, Bills and Day have recovered over $100 million dollars on behalf of their clients. The Advocates were named as Utah’s Legal Elite by Utah Business Magazine and included in SuperLawyers by Mountain States Lawyers Magazine.

(Salt Lake City, UT) – Recently Utah personal injury attorneys Dave Tullis, Steven Linton and Damian Kidd of The Advocates were named as the best of the best in Utah law with a ranking in Utah’s Legal Elite 2010 by Utah Business Magazine.

“I am proud that so many members of our law firm were named members of Utah’s Legal Elite, especially since this award is determined by the best legal minds in Utah stating who they would recommend to others,” said founding partner Driggs. “This recognition underscores the remarkable work we do for our clients in the personal injury field and shows that others in the legal community recognize our ability and integrity.”

Utah’s Legal Elite is a statewide listing of top Utah lawyers decided by peer ballot within the legal profession. Honorees are selected by members of the Utah State Bar, which were then voted on and the list pared down by a blue ribbon panel of prominent attorneys.

More than 5,000 ballots were sent to State Bar members, asking them to vote for peers whom they deem to be Utah’s best lawyers in several areas, including personal injury. Bar members were encouraged to vote for lawyers whose work they have observed firsthand to be above and beyond, and whose services they would recommend to others. The judging panel included a collection of senior attorneys covering practice areas and bringing a wealth of knowledge regarding Utah’s legal community to the table.

The Utah Advocates at Driggs, Bills and Day is a Utah personal injury law firm with offices in Salt Lake City, Ogden and Provo. The Advocates handle all types of accident case to get clients the results they deserve. The personal injury attorneys at Driggs, Bills and Day have recovered over $100 million dollars on behalf of their clients. The Advocates hold the highest distinction of AV from Martindale-Hubbell law rankings and were named as SuperLawyers by Mountain States Lawyers Magazine.