Frequently Asked Questions in Bay St. Louis / Hancock County Mississippi
should I do I after I have been injured in an accident?
first thing you should do is seek immediate medical treatment if you
believe you are injured. Many times people do not experience any pain
or soreness until hours after the accident (in some cases the pain
does not even begin until days after the accident). You should try to
attend all of your medical appointments and avoid any gaps in
treatment while you are recovering from your injuries. Some people
delay medical attention because they think the soreness or pain will
simply go away. It has been our experience that any delay in seeking
medical treatment can adversely affect a person's health, and
jeopardize their ability to receive fair compensation for their
should I do and say when I go to the doctor?
and foremost you should be truthful. It is important to clearly and
accurately explain to your medical providers everything that has
happened to you and to list all of your injuries and complaints. You
should also be accurate and complete when describing any prior
injuries or conditions, even if you no longer suffer symptoms from
your earlier injuries which affected you prior to this accident. It
is also important for you to follow your doctor's advice and
I trust the insurance companies?
companies are corporations who profit by taking in more money in
insurance premiums than they pay out in insurance claims to people
who have suffered injuries or losses. They view anyone with a
personal injury claim as an expense, and just like any other
corporation they will do everything in their power to maximize
profits and minimize their expenses. Insurance companies spend
millions of advertising dollars each year trying to convince the
public that they are fair and will treat your claims appropriately.
The fact is that if insurance companies routinely treated people
fairly, plaintiff personal injury attorneys like us would be out of a
job. We have years of experience fighting for the “little guy”
against these multi-million dollar insurance companies. We know how
to protect the rights of injured victims and to ensure that they have
the ability to achieve fair compensation for their injuries.
Insurance companies can be very difficult to deal with and sometimes
they will be unfair and even unscrupulous. Because we have battled
them for so long we know their “tricks of the trade” and we are
not afraid to take them to court to do what's right for our
I talk to the insurance company or give them a statement?
an accident, the other driver's insurance company (and possibly
your insurance company) will likely try to contact you. Do not, under
any circumstance, provide the other insurance company with a
statement without the presence of an attorney. Of course we expect
that when you are ready to give your statement you will be truthful.
Unless we are present during your statement, we cannot protect you
from being harassed or badgered by an experienced claims examiner who
may be trying to trick you. You should however promptly report any
accident to your own insurance company. If you choose to hire our
firm (or any other firm) your attorney will cooperate with the
insurance company to make sure they have all of the information
necessary to evaluate your claim. Rest assured that we have the
experience and expertise to work with the insurance company to
document your claim while at the same time protecting your rights.Top
much is my case worth?
one of the most common questions we face, it can rarely, if ever, be
answered truthfully right after an accident. A lawyer is hired to
provide an expert legal analysis -- not wild guesses. Would you want
your doctor to guess on your diagnosis without needed diagnostic
tests? You should be very wary and suspicious of any attorney who
will be quick to fill your head with big dollar amounts (particularly
at the initial consultation). The short answer is that your case is
worth whatever the judge or jury will award at trial. There is no
magic formula to evaluate the worth of a case. Many factors are
considered in determining a case's value, including the seriousness
of the injury, the amount of medical bills, the place where the case
may be tried, and whether there are any inconsistencies in testimony
or the medical records which could weaken the case. Remember that
every case is different and the amount your relative or friend
recovered for a similar injury probably has no predictive value in
estimating how much you might receive for your injuries. Once the
victim's medical condition is better known, and the case fully
investigated, we should be able to at least advise you of a “range
of value” for your case based upon our extensive experience.
funds advanced by an attorney in the handling of a case are known as
costs. These can include charges to obtain copies of police reports
and medical records, fees for expert witnesses, fees charged by court
reporters for depositions and charges by the court for filing suit or
issuing subpoenas. Costs vary in every case. A competent lawyer
should be able to advance all costs to properly prepare your case.
You should never be asked to pay interest on costs. Not only do we
not charge interest, you have no obligation to repay our costs unless
your case is settled or we obtain a favorable verdict following a
judge or jury trial. Top
your firm try cases?
Our firm has extensive experience in the courtroom. Collectively, the
attorneys in our firm have tried hundreds of cases. We believe it is
important for the insurance companies to understand that not only
does our firm have the courage to launch all necessary attacks, we
also have the determination and resources to finish the war!
there a charge for meeting with your firm to discuss my potential
do not charge a fee to simply meet with you to evaluate the facts of
your case. If you decide to hire our firm to handle your case, there
is no fee unless there is a recovery. If you or someone close to you
has been the victim of personal injury, please contact our firm for a
much do you charge?
handle most cases on a contingency fee. A contingent fee is paid as a
percentage of your monetary recovery. A contingent fee is what is
meant when you hear "there is no fee unless there is recovery".
Our contingent fees vary based upon the type of case you may have.
Though we typically charge about one-third of the gross recovery
(before lawsuit is filed) to forty percent (after lawsuit is filed). If you can afford to pay an
hourly rate, you have the right to hire an attorney on that basis. We
will be happy to discuss with you the exact terms of our contract for
representation when we meet with you to discuss your case.Top
I hire your firm, how will I know what's going on with my case?
pride ourselves on keeping our clients informed as much as possible.
It is our policy to return client calls within 24 hours. You
will also receive copies of any important mail and court papers that
we send out. Many of our clients also choose to keep in contact
with us by e-mail.Top
if I cannot afford to go to the doctor or have an expensive test?
first thing we will do is to closely examine all possible sources of
insurance to make sure that you are not overlooking any insurance
available to you for medical treatment. If you have no insurance and
you cannot afford to receive medical care, we will assist you in
finding a medical provider who will treat you and agree to be billed
later or from the proceeds of your settlement. Where necessary, we
will pay for and arrange medical treatment for you (provided its
allowed by state law). You deserve the best available medical care
and we will do our best to make sure you get it promptly. In
many instances workers hurt on the job are entitled to medical care
at the employer's expense and we will force the employer's insurance
company to provide the care to which you are entitled. In
Louisiana and Texas, and in all maritime cases, we are legally
permitted to pay for medical care and we will, in most cases, provide
the funds for you to receive the care that you need to heal from the
injuries you suffered. In Mississippi, the rules regarding
paying for medical care are more strict, but there are enough
exceptions and options to allow us to help you obtain most necessary
medical care. For example, in Mississippi and any other state
our firm can guarantee payment of your medical expenses so that your
doctor can treat you without delay, and wait for your case to settle
before collecting his or her bill. Also, Mississippi
rules permit us to pay for expensive diagnostic tests if it will help
establish medical evidence in your case.
much time do I have to file suit?
state has very specific laws that set forth time limits to file suit.
These laws are sometimes called “prescription” or “statutes of
limitation”. If you delay pursuing your claim and do not file a
lawsuit within the required time limit, your rights will be lost and
your case will likely be thrown out of court. When the statute of
limitations expires on your case, you simply don't have a case
anymore. That is why you should always consult with a competent
attorney as soon as possible so that your claim is not lost due to an
avoidable delay. Contact us for a free consultation.
Statutes of limitation differ not only from state to state, but also
in regard to the kinds of lawsuits involved and whether federal law
is involved. In some states the statute of limitations for medical
malpractice, suits against governmental agencies, and for intentional
torts wrongful death are shorter than that for other types of
personal injury cases. Our experienced attorneys will closely examine
your case to make sure that your rights are protected and your case
will not expire.
I have to pay any of the expenses on my case?
will not have to advance any expenses on your case, although all case
expenses will be deducted from your settlement after the contingency
fee is charged. Our firm has the ability and the resources to
fully fund practically any type of case no matter the challenge and
regardless of the size or wealth of the opponent. We understand
that you have already suffered a loss which causes financial strain
and hardship. We provide you with access to the courtroom to
give you a chance to obtain just compensation for the harm suffered.
At the time of settlement, we will provide you with an itemized list
of expenses which will be clearly related to the prosecution of your
case. We will also provide you with any receipts if requested.
Again, our firm does not charge any interest for advancing these
expenses, and in the unlikely event there is no recovery our firm
will never bill you for these expenses. We will assume the
risk, not you.
much money will your firm have to spend to handle my case.
it takes. We do not accept a case unless we are confident that
we have the experience, expertise and resources to see it all the way
through trial and, if need be, appeal. Unfortunately, as with
practically everything these days, costs keep rising. We have
spent millions of dollars over the years in investigation and
evidence gathering, as well as in the presentation of our clients'
cases for trial. Of course, we will always use common sense
when developing your case for trial so that we do not spend more than
is necessary to get a fair recovery on your behalf. We
understand that the goal is to achieve you full and fair compensation
for the harms and losses suffered, as quickly and as efficiently as
possible. We will educate you on the cost to do so, and will
spend wisely to obtain for you a fair result.
I be able to receive compensation for the time I lose from work due
to my injuries?
who have been injured through the fault of another are entitled to
receive any and all compensation which will make them whole and will
restore them to the position they were in prior to the injury. The
defendant must compensate you for the time you miss from work (even
if you are able to use sick time, vacation days or other leave time).
The defendant will also be responsible for any loss of fringe
benefits. In cases involving serious personal injury, you may not be
able to ever return to work, or you may be able to work but due to
your injuries you may not be able to earn the kind of money you were
making beforehand. Our firm has a great deal of experience in
handling these types of claims. We will work with top-notch
vocational experts and economists to fully document your wage loss
I am injured by a driver without liability insurance, can I still
make an insurance claim?
Possibly.Mississippi require's that
a driver have liability insurance, there still are thousands of
uninsured motorists on the road. When the negligent driver either
does not have liability insurance or not enough liability insurance
to adequately compensate an individual's injuries, we will look to
see if you have purchased uninsured or under insured motorist
protection. There are many instances where there are less
obvious sources of liability insurance. Our firm will fully
explore your rights and options and we may find that fair
compensation awaits you!
is uninsured or underinsured motorist protection?
motorist protection (also called “UM” or “UIM”) is optional
coverage that you might have purchased from your insurance company.
When purchased, this insurance protects you in instances where you
are injured by another individual who has failed to purchase any (or
enough) liability insurance. You may even benefit from uninsured
motorist coverage purchased by your relatives and friends. Our firm
strongly encourages everyone to purchase UM insurance coverage to
protect against the many uninsured drivers on the roads.
is medical payments coverage?
automobile and homeowners' insurance policies have provisions which
provide for the payment of a person's medical expenses regardless
of fault. Sometimes we even find this coverage under a building or
business owners' policy in premises liability cases.
your firm help me recover for the property damage?
Our firm does not charge a fee for property damage recovery unless it
becomes necessary to file suit to recover your losses to property. We
understand that in the days immediately following a collision you are
in need of quick and experienced legal assistance in order to get
your vehicle fairly appraised. When necessary (and if allowed by
state law) we will arrange and pay for your rental car. We will
promptly negotiate with the insurance company to have your vehicle
repaired and put back on the road. If your vehicle is considered a
total loss we will work hard to make sure that you get the most
compensation that the law will fairly allow. We will also try to
negotiate compensation for your inconvenience while your vehicle is
being repaired or appraised (either in the form of a rental vehicle
or money damages for daily loss of use).
do I need a lawyer?
truth is that sometimes you don't. An honest, ethical lawyer will
tell you when you may do better by settling a case yourself. In cases
involving significant or serious injuries or death claims, the
insurance company will offer you a small percentage of the fair value
of your case. Sadly, we hear stories every day about accident victims
who succumbed to the pressure from insurance adjusters to “settle
now, before we withdraw the offer” and later discovered that their
injuries were far more severe than they anticipated. An honest,
competent lawyer will explain your rights and alternatives – before
suggesting that you sign a contract – so you can make an informed
decision if you need a lawyer.
This web site is designed for general information only. The
information presented at this site should not be construed to be
formal legal advice nor the formation of a lawyer/client
relationship. Every case is different and the specific legal advice
appropriate for your situation can only be determined after
consultation with an attorney you hire.