accident related medical expenses

Client With Preexisting Back Injury Recovers Auto Accident Settlement

Our client in this matter was a passenger in a car being driven by her husband. Their car was stopped at a traffic signal, five cars back from the light. When the light turned green, our client’s husband began to move forward with traffic. As he looked in his rear-view mirror, however, he saw another motorist approaching at a very high rate of speed. That motorist rear-ended our client’s vehicle.

Oregon Back Pain Injury AttorneysPrior to this accident, our client suffered from age-related degeneration in her spine. She was receiving treatment for this degeneration when the accident occurred. We knew that we would need to provide documentation of her back condition because, often and in this case, insurance companies will attempt to blame preexisting conditions for accident victims’ injuries rather than accepting responsibility on behalf of their insureds.

In addition to ordering our client’s accident-related medical records, we ordered prior records in order to determine exactly what condition her spine was in leading up to this traumatic collision. It was very clear based on those records that the accident exacerbated our client’s preexisting back condition.

We provided the at-fault driver’s insurance company with our client’s complete medical records and, after several rounds of negotiation, the case settled for the amount we had previously determined to be the top value for our client’s case. Our client and her husband were happy with the results.

Dog Bites Represent One Third of Homeowner Insurance Payout Costs

In honor of national dog bite prevention week, recently published data from State Farm Insurance’s Insurance Information Institute reveals that dog bites continue to represent one-third of the payout dollars for homeowner liability claims.  Homeowners’ liability insurance covers you if your dog bites someone visiting your home or if it bites someone when you take it out for a walk.  Insurers paid more than $489 million for such claims last year.

Oregon Dog Attack and Dog Bite Injury AttorneysHomeowners’ insurance generally covers dog liability as part of the policy’s standard coverage, with limits of up to $100,000 or $300,000.  State Farm paid more than $136 million to cover nearly 4,500 dog bite claims last year. The company said it did not refuse insurance based on the dog’s breed, but it urged owners to be responsible with their pets.

According to the Insurance Information Institute, most insurers don’t ask about dogs when initially writing a homeowner’s policy even though some of them exclude certain breeds of dogs from coverage.  Once a dog bite has occurred, however, insurance companies can and do increase your premium.

If you or someone who you love has been injured in an Oregon dog attack and you don’t know what to do next, call the experienced dog attack lawyers at Dwyer Williams Dretke PC today for a free consultation at 541-617-0555.

How Can You Get an Oregon Auto Accident Injury Settlement?

In the video below, our founder and senior partner Roy Dwyer answers a common question posed by many new clients: how can you get a settlement in your Oregon auto accident injury claim?

As Roy explains, the first thing you have to be able to prove is fault. You must demonstrate that the person who injured you is liable. In other words, if you cannot prove that they have done something wrong, then there is no way that you can recover any damages.

If you have been injured in an accident in the state of Oregon, call an experienced personal injury attorney right away. Call us for a free consultation at 541-617-0555 or visit our website for more information.

To view additional informative videos about personal injury law in the state of Oregon, visit Dwyer Williams Dretke PC’s You Tube channel.

Insurer Settles with Oregon Woman Injured in Slip and Fall Accident

Dwyer Williams Dretke Personal Injury Attorneys just settled a premises liability case on behalf of a young woman who was injured in a slip and fall accident several months ago.  The details of this case are as follows.

Medford Oregon Premises Liability Attorneys | Oregon Premises Liability Attorneys | Oregon Slip and Fall Injury AttorneysOur Oregonian client was taking an early morning walk on her way to meet a friend for coffee when she suddenly tripped and fell into an unmarked, gaping hole in the sidewalk.  As she would later learn, on the previous day a car had driven into a pole at that very location, knocking it over and leaving a sizable hole in the sidewalk.

The local power company failed to finish repairing the downed power line and it left the site unmarked and openly dangerous to pedestrians.  Before consulting her lawyer, our client made an official statement to the power company’s claims representative describing the accident. Shortly thereafter, she completed treatment for her accident-related injuries and retained the compassionate Oregon slip and fall attorneys at Dwyer Williams Dretke PC to help her recover in this Oregon slip and fall case.

Once we had reviewed our client’s claim, we began negotiating with the power company’s insurance company.  The claims adjuster attempted to escape responsibility for our client’s extensive injuries by using her prior statement. After several rounds of negotiation, our experienced Oregon premises liability attorneys convinced the power company that it was largely responsible for failing to make the accident site safe for pedestrians walking along the street.  At the end of the day, our client’s claim settled for a generous amount that she was happy with and that covered her accident-related medical expenses.

How to Bring a Ski Resort Accident Claim

Regardless of who is legally responsible for causing your ski or snowboard accident injury,  if you have been injured at a ski resort then you must notify the ski area operator of the injury by registered or certified mail within 180 days of discovering your injury.  Failure to notify the ski resort within a time designated by Oregon law bars a claim for injury or wrongful death.  However, there are a few exceptions to this rule:

  • If a ski operator had knowledge of the injury or death within 180 days of its occurrence, then failure of the injured party to provide notice will not bar the claim;
  • If there is good cause for the failure to give notice, then the claim will not be barred; and
  • If the ski resort operator failed to inform the skier or snowboarder of these notice procedures, then the claim will not be barred if it is submitted after 180 days.

After proper notice has been given to the ski area operator where the injury occurred, Oregon law requires that the injured party or his/her representative either settles the claim or files a lawsuit within two years of the date of injury.  As with all personal injury claims in the state of Oregon, there is a two-year statute of limitations on these types of cases: if you snooze, then you lose your ability to recover damages for your ski or snowboard injury.

There are several exceptions to this general statute of limitations rule.  First, claims brought on behalf of minor children and mentally disabled individuals have a longer statute of limitations because these classes of individuals are protected.  Second, if someone injured in a ski resort accident dies before two years have elapsed after the time of their injury, then an action may be commenced by that injured party’s representative within one year of that person’s death.

Oregon case law provides examples of scenarios that do not fit within skiing’s “inherent risk” as defined by Oregon’s Legislature as well as other examples that fit squarely within the definition.  For example, assume you are riding a ski lift when it breaks, sending you crashing to the ground.  You are severely injured in this accident and later you learn that the ski lift had not been regularly maintained in the months preceding your accident.  The ski area operator in this scenario is negligent and you have a good claim: falling off of an unmaintained lift is not an inherent risk of skiing even if riding a lift is.

The bottom line in ski resort accident and personal injury cases is that they are fact-specific and that it is difficult to prove a third party’s fault since skiers and snowboarders assume certain risks when they decide to hit the slopes.  That said, if you or a loved one has been injured in a ski resort accident and you believe that the negligence of another skier or the ski resort itself is primarily responsible for your injuries, then contact an experienced personal injury attorney immediately.  The personal injury attorneys at Dwyer Williams Dretke PC can evaluate your ski resort injury case and advocate on your behalf with adverse parties and insurers.