Personal Injury Representation
Q: Do I need a personal injury attorney?
A: Well, we are attorneys so, of course, we are always going to say yes, right? Actually, no, not always.
If you have recovered completely and the insurance company has paid to have your property repaired, paid all of your medical expenses, paid for all wages lost from work, and have offered additional money for your pain and suffering that you feel is fair, then hiring an attorney may not be necessary. However, in our experience, this does not happen very often. More often we see clients who have problems with the insurance company or feel as though they are being jerked around by them. Here are some other examples of when it is usually a good idea to hire an attorney:
(a) You have large medical bills;
(b) You have an injury that is not healing completely and that you fear may negatively impact your life for some time to come, maybe forever;
(c) The insurance company is hard to deal with;
(d) The insurance company is denying liability;
(e) Your medical bills are being paid by several different sources or you are not sure how they are getting paid;
(f) The at fault party has no insurance
In these instances, we have found it is usually a good idea to hire an attorney.
Q: Why should I call Moore & Peden?
A: We are experienced local litigators who are well known and respected by the trial courts in Maury County, Giles County, Marshall County, Williamson County, Hickman County, Lewis County, Lawrence County, and Wayne County of Tennessee. We live in the same community as the judges and juries who may ultimately hear your case. We know how to evaluate your case. We know how to get the best settlement possible. If the insurance company refuses to treat you fairly, we know how to prepare and litigate your case in court. We will stay in touch with you. We will return your calls.
Q: How much to you charge to take an injury case?
A: Generally, our fee is one-third of the amount recovered by settlement or trial. However, depending on the facts of your particular case, the fee may be a smaller or larger percentage. If there is no recovery, then we charge no attorneys’ fee.
Q: The insurance company has already offered me a settlement, can you guarantee me more money if I hire you?
A: In certain cases, yes. We strive to be honest with you upfront when we evaluate your case. In certain cases we are willing to fashion a fee agreement that guarantees more money in your pocket than you had before you hired us. On the other hand, if we think you have already been offered a good settlement, we will tell you that. In those cases, we may still be willing to represent you, but probably could not guarantee more net money in your pocket.
Q: I have gotten a letter from Medicare requesting lots of information about the accident and the insurance companies involved. What is this and do I have to reply?
A: If Medicare paid any of your medical bills related to your accident, you likely will be contacted by the Medicare Secondary Payer Recovery Contractor. Usually the first letter you get from Medicare is called a “Rights and Responsibilities letter”. In order to preserve your entitlement to Medicare benefits, it is important to cooperate with Medicare in this process. However, it is also important to scrutinize any claim of Medicare against your settlement or judgment very closely since, often, Medicare claims reimbursement of medical expenses unrelated to your accident.
At Moore & Peden we are very familiar with working with Medicare and we strive to make sure only medical expenses related to your accident are reimbursed. We also work with Medicare to minimize the amount they will accept as payment in full of their claim against your case.
Q: What compensation am I entitled to for my injury?
A: Tennessee law compensates persons injured by the negligence of others by an award of money damages. Damages are broken down into categories. One category can be calculated with certainty yielding a specific number. These are called “liquidated damages” and most often consist of medical expenses and lost wages. The other category cannot be calculated with certainty yielding a specific number. These are called “unliquidated damages” and include pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life.