Car Accident And Personal Injury Cases Vsam1040 Chicago Llc

Speaker 1:

Hello, Mike and Taylor. How are you doing today?

Mike:

Doing well. Thank you.

Speaker 1:

Good. All right. Are you ready for the holiday season, Christmas time?

Taylor:

As ready as I'm going to be, I guess.

Mike:

Okay. We're ready.

Speaker 1:

Yeah. Before we enjoy the holiday, we need to solve some problem here, some cases. Welcome to the talk show of general law. We've been talking so many cases, but we not actually go directly to general certain case for the detail. And today, hopefully, you can share some of your experience in certain case. So make sure the people, audience and your clients, they understand totally what you... AGRUSS law, for the customer, right?

We do appreciate your time. And this is a very good opportunity for everybody when they get involved in an accident, they need some expertise, some lawyer, getting for and help the people that way. So the first question I have here is what happened in the first case you want to discuss with your client and a ride share company.

Taylor:

So we've been talking on the show a lot about auto accident, personal injury matters, insurance coverage. And today we want to focus this show on giving you, the viewers, real life examples of cases that we've worked on, that they can relate to. And the first case is a really interesting case. Our client was riding her bicycle, downtown Chicago in the Loop, in the bike lane. And where the accident occurred, there is a lane for parking, a bike lane and then a traffic lane.

So the bike lane is in between two lanes for vehicles. Our client's riding along the bike lane when a ride share company pulls over to let a passenger in the rear seat out. And the passenger opens the door as our client's riding by on her bike and our client goes flying off of her bike.

Speaker 1:

Wow.

Taylor:

Yeah.

Speaker 1:

[crosstalk 00:02:19]

Taylor:

Fortunately, the passenger from the ride share vehicle stayed at the scene of the accident so we were able to get all the information that we needed about the ride share company and the driver, because the driver left the scene of the accident.

Speaker 1:

Oh, really?

Taylor:

Yes.

Speaker 1:

Oh, okay. So how do you resolve that case?

Taylor:

Oh, well, we'll get into that.

Speaker 1:

Right. [foreign language 00:03:04]. Yes, please continue.

Taylor:

All right. So what happened in the case is we ended up filing suit against the ride share company, the driver, and the passenger in the back of the vehicle. And what's important about that is there were a lot of insurance companies that played a role into this accident. And Mike's going to explain what insurance companies were involved once we filed suit.

Speaker 1:

Okay. [foreign language 00:04:53]. Yes. Please continue.

Mike:

So in this case, we represented this woman who was on her bike. The Uber passenger opens up her door. It's called a dooring accident, where our client hits the door, flew over her handle bars and injured herself. So, with ride share cases, it's important to figure out whose insurance is involved. And so in this case, we looked at the driver of the Uber and whether or not we could go after his personal insurance, then we looked at Uber's insurance. Then we looked at the passenger who opened up the door to see whether or not she had auto insurance.

And we also went after our own client's insurance company, because, as it turns out, the passenger who opened up the door that caused the accident didn't have insurance. So what was ultimately interesting about this case and the way it sort of played out is Uber's insurance kicked in to settle. And then our client's uninsured motorist coverage also kicked in to pay part of the settlement.

So it goes to show, we've been on this show a bunch where we're always talking about, make sure you're all right, get treatment right away and talk to a lawyer. And this is a perfect real world example of a case that Taylor and I worked on where it was so important for us to do the investigation because there were multiple insurance companies involved and potentially multiple insurance companies that could pay. And then in this case, what ended up happening is there were two different insurance companies that paid to settle our client's case.

Speaker 1:

Okay. All right. So, let me make sure the Uber driver opened the door, right?

Mike:

The passenger in the back seat of the Uber opened up the car door. Our client hit the door. And then the question is, whose insurance company should pay?

Speaker 1:

Right, right. [foreign language 00:07:23]. Yes. So what is the outcome? Are you still working on the case or...

Taylor:

So the case was resolved. Our client sustained injuries when she fell off the bike. She had torn ligaments and her leg and fortunately the ambulance came to the scene of the accident, took her to the ER, where she was diagnosed with torn ligaments and she needed to undergo surgery. So this was a very serious injury. She had months of physical therapy treatment. She had to take time off work. She missed out on a lot of things in her life, which is something that you can get compensated for. It's called loss of a normal life.

She had planned trips with her mother and her sister, a couple of trips. One was a European trip that she couldn't go on because the doctor said she couldn't bear that much weight and do that much walking. She was going to go to a trip, I think it was in Nashville, to go see a concert with her friends. So, these injuries greatly impacted her life and we were able to secure a settlement and get her compensation for the injuries.

Speaker 1:

Yes. And the case has been resolved, right?

Taylor:

Yes. The case was resolved. Yes.

Speaker 1:

What is the result? What is the compensation?

Taylor:

So we can't-

Speaker 1:

Yes, of course you can't say, but your clients, are they satisfied?

Taylor:

Yes, she was really happy. Really happy. It was a pretty quick result. Even after filing as soon as we got to through discovery. We're very fierce and fast litigators. The case settled and she was ecstatic. Wrote us a great review along with the many online reviews that we have.

Speaker 1:

Wow. So you are excellent. And how long does this take to resolve the case? One year?

Mike:

I think this case took maybe just over a year from the date of the accident. Oftentimes you can settle cases without filing a lawsuit, but because we had so many different parties and potential insurance companies involved, we realized that right away. And so, rather than waiting to see if we could settle, we immediately filed suit. And after we filed the lawsuit, both sides answered written discovery, which is answering questions, turning over documents.

We did depositions of all the parties, which is question and answer session under oath. And then, once everyone had given a deposition, the case resolved. So considering it was filed and we litigated it, it settled pretty quickly. And our client was very happy. Because it's a complicated set of facts and we were able to get her a good result.

Speaker 1:

Yeah. Okay. [foreign language 00:10:47]. Yes, that's a very interesting story, right? I just tried to explain what a law firm get involved, from the treatment and then the insurance, because there's multiple insurance companies, so which one is appropriate for you to pursue them, right? Next question is what insurance company were involved?

Mike:

The insurance companies involved in this case we talked about were the ride share insurance company, the passenger who opened up the door, her insurance company, the insurance company for our client because she went through the uninsured motorist claim. And I think what's probably the most important takeaway from this case, when we've been talking, we talk a ton about how important it is to get treatment, make sure you're okay, talk to a lawyer. We've also talked a ton about uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage.

And I think the last thing about this ride share case that I think the viewers would want to know about is the fact that our client was lucky that she had uninsured motorist coverage and she had a decent policy. And here's what people should know, which is really important. If you have auto insurance coverage, most of the time you're covered as a pedestrian. And you're also covered if you're on a bike.

So let's say you're in the Loop. There's tons of traffic, cars, Ubers, Lyfts, taxis, people. The Loop's very congested and crowded. If you're a pedestrian, if you're on your bike, and you're injured by someone who doesn't have insurance, you can go after your own insurance, which is what our client did here. What's interesting about this case is initially the ride share company said, "We didn't do anything wrong. It was the passenger," because the passenger's the one who opened up the door, right?

Speaker 1:

Yes.

Mike:

So whether that argument held up or not, our client was so fortunate that, although she was on a bike, she had uninsured motorist coverage. You would never think that uninsured motorist coverage would protect you as a pedestrian or on a bike but oftentimes it does. And most of the times it does. So I think one of the biggest takeaways from this first case is hire a lawyer right away so we can figure out what insurance is involved. And then also, if you have auto insurance, maximize your uninsured and under...

Speaker 1:

Okay, Mike. [foreign language 00:15:02]. Yes, that's a very interesting case. I'm happy you handled an excellent case. All right. Another question for you here. I think this is this question for Taylor here. What were the client's injuries? What was her treatment and who paid for the medical bills?

Taylor:

Yeah, so we discussed a little bit of her treatment. She had torn ligaments in her leg. She underwent surgery and several months of physical therapy. One thing that's really important for the viewers to know is if you are injured in seeking treatment, listen to what your doctors tell you. If they say you need to come to physical therapy three times a week, go three times a week. If they say you need to see a pain management doctor, go see the pain management doctor.

Whatever you're told from your healthcare providers, listen to them. They're experts. So our client had surgery, several months of physical therapy. And fortunately she actually had health insurance. So her health insurance paid the vast majority of her bills and then they were eventually reimbursed a portion of that amount through this settlement. But that's how our client was treated and that's who paid her medical bills.

Speaker 1:

Oh, okay. That's great. Right. So she didn't pay anything out of her packet or anything.

Taylor:

No, but, as we've discussed on the show, if you don't have health insurance, that shouldn't deter you from getting the treatment you need. Call us. We have a network of doctors who will treat you, even if you don't have health insurance, to make sure you get the treatment that you need.

Speaker 1:

Okay. All right. [crosstalk 00:18:13]. Yes, I think this case explains very well, when you get involved in a car accident or when some people hit, a bike or something like that, right? Yes.

Taylor:

So that, we call it a pedestrian versus auto case. And then the next case that we're going to talk about involves two cars, actually. No pedestrians.

Speaker 1:

Yeah. Wow. Okay. Some people, they have to watch out when they walk along any street, or cars at a traffic light, or something like that. Even stop sign, right? [foreign language 00:21:08]. Well, next question. I think this question is for Mike. How long did it take, the case, of the settlement?

Mike:

Sure. So we litigated this case for about a year. We knew early on that it wasn't going to settle without filing a lawsuit just because there were so many parties and insurance companies involved. So what we did is we filed the lawsuit while our client was still getting treatment and both sides answered discovery, turned over documents, answered questions. They gave depositions, which is a question and answer session under oath.

And after that, we were able to settle the case, once all of the potential defendants and their insurance companies realized who was at fault, what percentage of liability each of them have, we were able to get the case settled. I believe this one settled just over a year after the accident. So we were probably litigating the case for about eight or nine months.

And she hired us right away, which is also really important. She hired us within a couple of days of the accident, which allowed us to do an investigation, figure things out quickly. And we quickly learned that we were going to need to file suit, which is what we did in this situation. And, by filing suit, litigating it efficiently, aggressively, we were able to get a settlement within a year or approximately a year after the accident. And the case was in litigation. It's pretty fast.

Speaker 1:

Yes. Okay. [foreign language 00:23:01]. Yes. I tried to explain as much as I can here because there is three different parties. So people, they have to understand there's so much involved. And there's different company as well, so it takes time and luckily your client, they claimed right away. They called you right away. That's very important, right?

Mike:

Very important.

Speaker 1:

[foreign language 00:25:23].

Mike:

And you bring up a good point. She called us right away. As Taylor mentioned, she got treatment. She listened to her doctor's advice. She got surgery. She was going to physical therapy a couple of times a week. She did everything right. And what that means is we were able to maximize her settlement. She called us early, which allows us to investigate. Like Taylor said, she got her treatment. She followed her doctor's advice, which allows us to maximize her settlement.

I also think it's important to let your viewers know, while we were litigating this case for a year, we spent time filing a lawsuit. We spent time taking depositions. It costs money to file a lawsuit, it costs money to take a deposit. We ordered records and bills. We're paying for all of that. We front all those costs. So this whole time our client doesn't pay us a penny. And then at the end, when we settle, we take our contingency fee and we get our costs back.

So, I don't want any of the viewers to be discouraged thinking, "Oh, how much is this going to cost me? This is going to take a really long time." Our client didn't pay us a penny. And then when we settled the case at the end is when we got paid our fees, yes.

Speaker 1:

Okay. [foreign language 00:26:34]. Yes. It's very useful today. I learned a lot in this case. We will be back. We will take a short break and please just stay tuned. Thank you.

Voiceover:

[foreign language 00:28:17].

(silence)

Speaker 1:

[foreign language 00:30:51]. You must call the lawyer right away. [crosstalk 00:31:27]. Just, thank you very much for your experience sharing today. Let's move along. Okay. I got another question. And this is your different case, I believe. What happened, the second case, if you want to discuss where your client was in the rear-end accident.

Mike:

Yes. So the first case we talked about dealt with ride shares and people on their bikes in the Loop, it was a dooring accident case. Happens all the time. Ride share accidents, people in the Loop, on their bikes, pedestrians, all of that. That's a very common fact pattern. The second one happens often at our office where our client was at a stoplight. She was rear-ended. And you would think it's a pretty straightforward case that the person who hit her was at fault for the accident and their insurance was going to pay for it and everything would be fine.

And these rear-end accidents are also very common nowadays with people on their cell phones, they're distracted, they're doing a million other things besides paying attention. So this client contacts us and says, "Hey, I was at a stoplight. I was rear-ended. I'm injured. I'm getting treatment." And as it turns out, the woman who rear-ended our client did not have insurance.

Speaker 1:

Oh, okay.

Mike:

Right. So then it runs into the situation of, now what? What do we do? And so our client then had to pursue a claim through her own insurance company. So she was rear ended. The other person was at fault, but the other person didn't have insurance. And so our client ended up going through her own insurance company, which is, we were just talking about a few minutes ago about uninsured motorist coverage. So that's what this case is about.

Speaker 1:

Okay. All right. [foreign language 00:33:56]. Yes. So what are going on? How do you resolve this case?

Taylor:

So, because the other driver didn't have insurance, we were able to pursue the claim under the uninsured motorist coverage. However, her uninsured motorist coverage limits were only one third of her actual medical bills. So she treated for an entire year. I think she had like $150,000 in medical bills. She was in physical therapy, seeing a pain management doctor, getting cortisone shots or injections regularly.

So she had really significant bills, but unfortunately she only had $50,000 in uninsured motorist coverage. Which is why we cannot stress enough, maximize your insurance coverage. Because if she had a $150,000, $200,000, $250,000 in coverage, she would've been compensated a lot more than she actually was, but she only had $50,000 in coverage so that was the most that we could get under the uninsured motorist coverage claim.

Speaker 1:

All right. [foreign language 00:35:55]. Yes. What was the client's injuries and what was her treatment and who paid for her medical bills?

Mike:

Sure. She had what's known as soft tissue injuries, so she didn't have any broken bones. There was nothing physical that you could see that was wrong with her. However, she had pains and strains. She got physical therapy. She went to a pain management doctor. She got injections, nerve block injections. And then she also ran a daycare. So she had significant lost wages because she couldn't run the daycare while she was getting treatment.

And what's interesting about this case is she had extensive medical bills, like Taylor said, well over a $100,000 in medical bills, but she only had $50,000 of uninsured motorist coverage. The first case we were talking about with the ride share and the person on her bike who was doored, she had $100,000 in uninsured motorist coverage. This client only had 50. And what's interesting here, too, that people should take into consideration is initially this client, her insurance company denied the claim.

Speaker 1:

Oh really?

Mike:

And said, "We're not paying for it." So this is a perfect example of not all insurance companies are the same. So people should really do their research, look online to see who's good. And please, if you have any questions about insurance, Taylor and I, we can talk to you all day about it. People can call us, we'll give them free advice because it's so important. One, it's important to have coverage. And if you can only afford the bare minimum and a company that's maybe not the best, that's better than nothing.

But if you can afford a better company, it makes a lot more sense to pay for better companies. And we can certainly share that information as well because here, this woman, her insurance company initially denied the claim and said, "We're not paying it." But then Taylor got involved and litigated it a little bit against her insurance company. And Taylor can tell you next what happened.

Speaker 1:

Okay. [foreign language 00:39:36]. You can call directly for free consultation. [foreign language 00:40:14]. Yes. The information about insurance, that's very critical and a lot of people, they don't pay attention. They say, "Well, I got my insurance, but I don't know what do I have in that, and how much is covered for liability or a collision." And uninsured motorists, they have no clue, until you get involved in a car accident or you hit someone, and say, "Oh. I have no clue. I don't know. Why would I pay very little? And now I need more money."

I tried to mention to the people what to buy, what they have to learn, as you just explained why they have to do more research. They rather pay a little bit more. They maximize the benefits and when they get involved to the car, so they are not worried. They're worry-free. Otherwise, they're in trouble, deep trouble. Okay. Another question for you. How long did you take to settle in this case?

Taylor:

So this case, once she was done with treatment, which was about a year, we were able to order all of her medical records and bills and then prepare a demand package to send to the insurance company. That includes a copy of the police report, all her medical records and bills, wage loss verification documentation. She owned a daycare and, after the accident, she couldn't care for the children in the daycare and actually had to hire an assistant to help her run the daycare.

So that's something we could claim as well. As an attorney, this seems like a pretty straightforward case. Her bills and damages and losses are way in excess of the policy limits. We were shocked that they wouldn't pay it right away. And our client was certainly disappointed, because this is her own insurance company. Your insurance company is supposed to have your back. And they really didn't.

However, after having her sit for a statement, which was requested by the insurance company, she sat down and a representative from the insurance company just asked her a bunch of questions about the accident, all her treatment, her lost wages, really just to ensure that her injuries were caused by the accident and all the treatment was related.

And I think the case settled for the policy limits two days after, even when she was done with the statement, the attorney told me that he was going to recommend that they pay the limit. So that was a bit unusual of a case. However, this is why it's important to go with a good insurance company because insurance companies, they want to pay the least amount of money out possible. So you want to just put yourself in the best position possible so that, if you're in an accident that you are, and you're injured, you are compensated for those injuries.

Speaker 1:

Okay. All right. [foreign language 00:44:45]. Yes. It's very interesting because you know a lot of things involved and nobody they pay attention what they should do. I got, I think, when we still have a few more minutes. The last question for you is how can someone prevent this from happening?

Mike:

Have insurance. Have insurance. Have insurance.

Speaker 1:

It's that simple, right?

Taylor:

Yes.

Speaker 1:

Buy insurance.

Mike:

Have good insurance. I mean, like what Taylor said, imagine this. So our client is paying her insurance company premiums every single month, year after year. Someone hits her who doesn't have insurance and she turns to her own insurance company and says, "Hey, pay this claim out," and they say, "No." Literally, it took them to hire a lawyer, take her statement, and then a lawyer went back to the insurance company and said, "Look, you've got to pay this."

It just goes to show that insurance companies, you hear all their jingles that, "Oh, they're on your side like a good neighbor," and all this other stuff. It's really just not true. So have insurance, have insurance, have insurance. Maximize that insurance you have. And then also make sure to get good insurance, and you can just do a Google search saying, "Top 10 car insurance companies."

And if anyone has any questions about this, I'm being serious, the phone number's up on the screen. Call me, call Taylor, call Qui Ngoc, text us, email us. And you can literally just take a picture of your insurance card and say, "Hey, is this good enough?" And I'll tell you, yes or no. Or Taylor will. And we'll give you some suggestions.

And the difference in, "Yeah, that's okay," or "This would be much better," literally could be $5 or $10 a month. And it's totally in your control up until you need it. I can't stress it. So once again, my policy I have, I have a million-dollar coverage. If I hit someone and I'm at fault, they can come after my insurance for a million dollars. If someone hits me and they don't have insurance, I can go after my own carrier for a million dollar. That's how important it's. And I'm not saying everyone needs a million-dollar coverage. I don't think all insurance companies offer it. But I'm not just saying this because I'm saying it. And sometimes I don't do what I say. Taylor knows that.

Taylor:

This, he actually does.

Mike:

There's a lot of times I do what I say, not what I do. Anyway. I'm such a firm believer in this. Literally, get insurance and maximize it. If you have questions, call, email, text any of us, and we'll be able to tell you within 30 seconds if you're covered or what you can do better.

Speaker 1:

Okay. All right. Thank you. [foreign language 00:49:41] law firm and the telephone number is on the screen. So you can call and any question. [foreign language 00:51:32]. Yes. Thank you so much. Thank you very much for your time and for your expertise here. I believe that your clients, or maybe you new customer, they very, very appreciate your expertise and hopefully next year you will resolve and you will bring lot of good compensation to your new clients.

And, before we say goodbye today, again, one more time I represent for Vsam 1040 at Chicago. We do appreciate your help and then your representation. And also this show is talking about the laws we believe in, the law is always on your side. Right? Okay. That's what we need to hear. So before we say goodbye, please say goodbye to your client, your new audience.

Mike:

Sure. Thanks for having us on. Happy holidays. We'll see you next week with more tips on personal injury car accident cases. It's always a pleasure being on.

Taylor:

Absolutely. To a happy and healthy new year.

Mike:

Okay. Thank you so much. [foreign language 00:52:50]. More insurance. You must have insurance. Thank you. Goodbye.

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