What Are the Common Types of Auto Accidents in Utah?
The most common type of auto accident in Utah is rear-end collisions, and with that, it really comes down to distracted drivers. The evidence in the majority of the cases points to the fact that there are a lot of people driving distracted, most likely on their phones, whether texting, calling or checking Facebook. There are a lot of different things that distract people while driving, and that’s the majority of the cases involving auto accidents in Utah.
How Has Your Experience Been in Handling Auto Accident Cases?
Our firm has been doing strictly auto accident cases, or personal injury cases, for the last four years. Before I became a Layton car accident attorney, I did a little bit of everything but I was really drawn to personal injury because of a couple of things. First, I like the fact that these cases are done on a contingency basis, so there’s no billing for hourly rates and clients don’t need to worry about the clock starting whenever they call in and talk to me, so I prefer that type of billing. But also, unlike criminal defense or family law, personal injury is rewarding in the sense that it feels like there’s a good end game. There’s a chance to win a case.
In other cases, there’s just too much compromise, and no one leaves happy. But the vast majority of personal injury cases have a good result in the end with happy clients. They know they got the medical care they needed and the money in their pocket they deserve.
What Are the Top Misconceptions About Auto Accident Cases?
There are a number of misconceptions. The first thing that clients don’t realize is that cases can take some time. A lot of that comes from the pressure that the insurance company puts on them when they don’t have an attorney involved. Many of the clients we sign have already talked with the insurance adjusters, who have tried to get them to sign final paperwork and settle the case. We can educate them as to why there’s no rush in a personal injury case. The most important thing is to take the time to make sure the client is getting proper treatment before a case is ready for negotiation and settlement. Cases don’t settle within a month or two: they typically settle based on when a client is finished treating.
Another thing is that people think that insurance companies are going to be fair with them. We have to dispel that notion up front pretty quickly. To be fair to the insurance companies, they’re occasionally honest about paying for medical bills as long as they look a certain way, but they’re not reasonable at all when it comes to paying for general damages, which involve mental and emotional anguish and mental anguish, along with the inconvenience of life that occurs when an accident happens.
We have to educate clients that on their own they may get the insurance to pay for medical bills, but the insurance company will not pay for things above and beyond that, which clients are entitled to. Also, most people don’t know that Layton injury lawyers only work on a contingency basis. So there are no retainers or hourly rates that they have to pay; it’s all on a contingency fee, which means if we don’t win their case, they don’t pay us.
The final thing is there are clients that are worried about the size of their accident. In other words, they have this misconception that because it wasn’t a very severe accident or major damage to their vehicle, their injuries can’t be that bad. The science has proven that there is no real correlation between the damage to a vehicle and the injuries to an occupant. So you can have a major injury even though there’s a minor impact.
How Do Liability Laws Apply to an Auto Accident in Utah?
Utah is a no-fault state. That means that your personal injury protection insurance or PIP for short will initially cover you even if you were at fault. Every driver in the state of Utah, unless they’ve specifically waived it with their insurance agent, has a PIP policy attached to their insurance policy. The PIP insurance is typically $3,000. So in the state of Utah, whether you are at fault for the accident or not, your insurance will pay up to $3,000 of your medical bills.
Some people elect for higher PIP insurance rates while some people waive it, but the vast majority of the cases have $3,000 available, whether the policy holder was at fault for the accident or not.
For more information on auto accidents in Utah, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (801) 499-5060 today.