Car Accident Insurance Settlement

Icy Road Accident Leads to a $350,000 Settlement

Oregon Car Accident Attorney | Oregon Car Injury Attorney | Oregon Inclement Weather Car AccidentCircumstances of the Case

Our client was driving her Jeep Cherokee eastbound on U.S. Highway 26, about three miles north of Madras.  At the same time, the adverse driver was driving an Oldsmobile Bravada – owned by his mother – westbound on the same stretch of highway.  The road surface was covered in ice and snow.  Our client estimated her speed at the time at 30 miles per hour and the adverse driver estimated his speed at 45 – 50 miles per hour.  However, his SUV began to fishtail, he lost control, then continued to slide sideways into our client’s lane of travel, directly in front of her Jeep.  A high-impact crash resulted, and both vehicles were a total loss.

The Jeep’s driver’s side of the vehicle was crushed, leaving our client trapped inside.  Firefighters worked with hydraulic tools for about a half hour before they could extricate her from the Jeep.  During that time, paramedics immobilized her spine, but were unable to reach her right ankle, which sustained an open and comminuted fracture in the crash.  She also had broken ribs and suffered a severe concussion in the accident

Our client was taken by ambulance to Mountain View Hospital in Madras, where surgery was attempted.  Physicians there determined that she needed a higher level of care and, about three hours after the accident, she was taken by ambulance to St. Charles Medical Center in Bend.  Given the road conditions, the trip was slow going, and ended up taking two hours and 10 minutes.  Doctors at St. Charles performed emergency surgery on her ankle, placing a plate and multiple surgical screws.

Our clients injuries in the accident required immediate surgery.Unfortunately, the anchoring screw placed in the first surgery broke and, as such, there was no fracture union.  After developing severe erosive degenerative arthritis and bone-on-bone contact in the joint, our client underwent two additional surgeries; one to fuse her ankle and a second to remove the hardware, which was causing her a great deal of pain, with permanent residual deficits.

Difficulties of the Case

Another local attorney was handling this case, and had filed a lawsuit after being unable to obtain a reasonable settlement.  However, he retired soon after, and his firm felt it was unable to handle the complexities involved in personal injury litigation, so they hired our firm to take over the case.

The defendant’s insurance company denied that the accident was their driver’s fault – arguing simply that people lose control on ice.  It also disagreed as to the amount a reasonable jury would compensate our client for her pain and suffering (noneconomic damages).

Action Taken by Dwyer Williams Dretke

We took over the case in litigation, and proceeded through discovery.  We obtained detailed records concerning the other driver’s driving record, insurance, and property damage.  We also worked up the facts about the accident, how it happened, and what he could have, and should have, done differently to avoid the collision altogether.  Additionally, we worked closely with our client’s medical team to determine what her related injuries were, what treatment she might need in the future, as well as how much that treatment was expected to cost.

How We Resolved the Case

We pushed the case into mediation where, with the aid of an experienced mediator, we convinced the insurance carrier that it should take this case seriously.  After nearly a full day of mediation, we were able to settle the case for $350,000 in additional to what had already been paid by our client’s motor vehicle insurer (who would be reimbursed from the bad driver’s insurance company independently).  We also reduced the amount of money our client was obligated to reimburse her health insurance company out of the settlement.  Ultimately, our client was very pleased with the result, as was the firm that referred us her case.

At Dwyer Williams Dretke Attorneys we aggressively pursue justice and fair compensation for all of our clients.  If you or a loved one have been involved in an accident, please contact us today for a FREE consultation.  If you need more proof of our success take a look at more of our settlements.

$363,000 Settlement for Truck Accident While on the Job

Client's Isuzu work truck from accident in Eugene, OR

Facts of the Case

This recent settlement involved an accident while performing work dutiesOur client was the driver of an Isuzu Truck traveling north on SR 99 nearing the intersection of SR 99 and Milliron Road in Eugene, Oregon.

The other driver was traveling west on Milliron Road approaching the intersection with SR99.  Westbound traffic on Milliron Road is controlled by a stop sign at the SR 99 intersection.  The other driver failed to stop at the stop sign and entered SR99 into oncoming traffic causing our client’s vehicle to collide with the other driver.  The police cited the other driver for Careless Driving.

Our client sustained very serious fractures to his left leg and injuries to his right thumb and chest.  He was hospitalized following the accident for 10 days.

While in the hospital, he underwent surgery to repair an open right tibial wound with tibial plateau fracture and closed right femur fracture.  Multiple small bone fragments were removed during surgery and his ruptured patellar tendon and patellar tendon avulsion required extension repair and well as repair of a rupture of the medial retinaculum.

A second surgery was performed on his right thumb to repair the MP joint ulnar collateral ligament.  Upon release from the hospital, he underwent rehabilitation for another two weeks.  Our client’s medical care was monitored by orthopedic specialists and he was unable to return to work for one and half years.

His medical expenses totaled over $202,000.00 and he received wage loss benefits in the amount of $65,750.51.

Reason for Contacting Dwyer Williams Dretke

Our client was on-the-job at the time of the accident and his worker’s compensation carrier was required to pay for all of his medical bills and lost wages, which created a lien against his recovery in the amount of $242,001.55.  By Oregon law, the worker’s compensation carrier is entitled to reimbursement of their lien from the settlement from the bad driver.  The bad driver’s insurance company refused to reimburse the worker’s compensation carrier for their entire lien, which meant that their reimbursement would affect the amount that our client received from the settlement.

Actions Taken by Our Attorneys

We filed a lawsuit, but we were able to continue negotiations with the bad driver’s insurer and the worker’s compensation carrier.

Final Resolution

We were able to negotiate with the worker’s compensation carrier and convince them to accept far less than they were legally entitled to recover pursuant to Oregon statutes.  Further, we were able to convince the bad driver’s insurer to increase their offer to $363,000.00 so that our client was able to put more money in his pocket.

If you or a loved one have been in a car accident, contact us today for a free consultation.  At Dwyer Williams Dretke we fight to ensure our clients are fairly compensated for all their injuries.

Portland Fire Department Official with Multiple DUI Accident History

One of Portland’s Fire captains has been arrested three times for drunk driving. The most recent DUI accident resulted in injuries for 2 motorists who were on their way home when the Fire Captain crossed the center line and drove them off the road, nearly hitting them head-on.

The crash caused extensive damage to the victims’ car, breaking all of its windows, and wrecking the entire car. In addition to physical injuries and car damage, the two victims appeared traumatized by the crash.

Captain’s DUI Accident Record

Court records reveal a history of DUI arrests for the fire captain. He was first arrested in 2006 for drunk driving, and again in 2008 for DUI, reckless driving, and reckless endangering. His most recent arrest was for DUII, reckless driving, and 4 counts of reckless endangering.

It’s important to remember that if you or a loved one is involved in a DUI accident, you may be entitled to compensation.

Claiming Compensation for Portland DUI Accident

Anyone who is injured in a DUI accident can claim economic and noneconomic damages against the negligent driver who caused their injuries. Economic damages refer to past and future medical bills, lost income or wages, loss of earning potential, and other out of pocket expenses.

Noneconomic damages refer to the injured party’s pain, suffering, anguish, humiliation, damage to reputation, and other subjective non-monetary losses.

In addition to economic and noneconomic damages, the injured party may also be entitled to punitive damages – a monetary award intended to punish the drunk driver for his/her recklessness which caused the accident.

Punitive damages are awarded in court and are often excluded by insurance companies in out-of-court settlements. Your DUI accident attorney can assess your situation, prepare the necessary evidence to support your claim, file the appropriate case against those responsible, and represent you in the litigation.

In Portland, Oregon and neighboring towns, the accident injury attorneys at Dwyer Williams Dretke have over 75 years of combined experience, handling more than 600 cases in the last three years, including many DUI accidents.

We handle a wide range of personal injury cases such as car accidents, slip and falls, pedestrian accidents, dog bites and dog attacks, motorcycle accidents, and wrongful death. Call us today at (541) 617-0555 to schedule a free consultation. All personal injury cases are handled on a contingency fee basis, meaning you don’t pay any attorney fees if we can’t win your case!

Should You Talk to the Insurance Adjuster After an Accident?


We will be the first to tell you that you may not need a lawyer to settle your automobile insurance claim.  There are some circumstances where an automobile accident victim can resolve his or her own claim.  We typically find that a lawyer is not necessary when the medical treatment involved includes a simple hospital visit, and maybe a follow-up with a primary care doctor.

Where more extensive medical treatment is required, however, a lawyer’s input can be vital.  Insurance companies know this, and the first trick in their book is to cut the lawyer off at the pass by settling accident claims early.  In many cases, they will attempt to negotiate the claim within a day or two of the accident—sometimes even when the victim is still in the hospital.  They do this because they know that by settling early, many people will lose the right to recover the full value of their accident claim.

Settling an accident claim quickly after the collision can be a mistake.  It is difficult to know what your damages are so quickly.  Medical expenses may not have been fully calculated by your medical providers, your vehicle may have damage under the surface, and you may not recover as quickly as you expect.  Adrenaline and early pain medication may mask symptoms following an accident, which will become all too apparent in the following weeks.  It is best to refrain from negotiating your accident claim until you are 100% sure that your damages have been fully calculated, and that you will not require any further medical treatment.  You can’t go back after a settlement and request more money, even if new injuries or damages have cropped up.

Contact Us

If you’ve been in an automobile accident, contact our personal injury lawyers at 1-541-617-0555, or fill out our internet Contact form on the right side of the page.  We have been working against insurance companies for years, and we know how they try to take advantage of automobile accident victims.  We can help you to understand the value of your case which id determined by many factors, including the venue of any possible court case, the medical expenses and lost wages, and the degree of property damage involved.  We can help you to level the playing field.

For More Information

Pedestrain Injured in Oregon Hit and Run Accident Gets Settlement

Our client in this case was injured while walking south on the shoulder of South Main Street in Myrtle Creek, Oregon. The defendant was driving southward in his pickup truck when, as witnesses observed and testified, he swerved to the right over the fog line and hit our client.

Our client was sent “flying through the air” then the defendant moved back onto the roadway where he “accelerated, and took off traveling south on South Main Street.”  Three days after the accident occurred, the defendant contacted the Myrtle Creek Police stating that he had read about the accident and thought he might have been involved.  Following the police interview, he was arrested and cited for the Class B Felony of failure to perform a driver’s duties to injured persons.

Oregon Hit and Run Accident Injury Lawyers

Our client was transported by ambulance from the accident site to a local hospital.  He was admitted to intensive care with the following injuries: splenic laceration, right renal injuries, multiple left rib fractures, multiple lumbar transverse process fractures, multiple contusions/abrasions, and a left fibula fracture. He was discharged five days later.

Two months after being released from the hospital, our client began to experience headaches. He was also experiencing continued pain in his middle to lower back. He sought treatment at the emergency room in Eugene, Oregon, where he was diagnosed with high blood pressure. Because our client was on the road for work at the time, his treating physician instructed him to seek follow-up medical attention in the next town he hit.

Approximately one month later he was seen at a medical clinic in Salem, Oregon, where he was again diagnosed with high blood pressure. He was prescribed Clonidine, Tramadol, and buffered aspirin and was provided with a blood pressure kit for self-monitoring his blood pressure. Our client was then scheduled for a renal ultrasound and referred to a cardiologist for consultation. His medical bills for all of this accident-related injury treatment were through the roof.

Because our client was unsure who was to pay his medical bills, and was unsure how to proceed with a claim against the at fault driver, he contacted the experienced Oregon auto accident injury lawyers at Dwyer Williams Dretke Accident Injury Lawyers to represent him.

We were able to establish a PIP claim with the at fault driver’s insurance company and get all of our client’s medical bills paid. This was his main worry and he was thrilled when it was put to rest. Once our client’s treatment was complete, we obtained all of his medical records and bills and sent a demand package to the adverse insurance company. We were able to guide our client through his treatment and to obtain a fair and reasonable settlement with the at fault driver’s insurance company. Our client was fairly compensated for the pain, suffering, and disruption to his life that their irresponsible insured driver has caused.