1) Stop as soon as you can and move your vehicle only if it is safe to do so. There's no need to unnecessarily hold up all the other traffic. If the positions of the vehicles involved in the accident are important to preserve, take photos of the scene then move if it's safe to do so.
2) If anyone is injured, call 911 and inform the police. If there are no injuries, or relatively minor complaints, the police probably won't come to the scene.
3) If the accident involves a "hit and run" situation, most car insurance policies require that you inform the police within a specified period of time and to also inform your insurance company. Call your company or broker to check on those details. Otherwise, you may not be covered for the hit and run.
4) Try to get the names and addresses of all the people who were involved in the accident. Also try to obtain their driver's licence numbers and vehicle license plate numbers. These days, having a cell phone will make things much easier as you can simply take photos of plates and licenses. If you can, also take photos of any registration information. Oftentimes, the person driving a car is not necessarily the registered owner of the car.
5) Obtain names, addresses, and phone numbers of any passengers involved and any witnesses to the accident.
6) Make sure to take plenty of photos of the accident scene. Also, take several pictures showing the damage to your car. Make sure the photos you take are from several different angles and distances. Also, try to take photos of all the other vehicles involved in the accident. Sometimes, your car may not look so bad, but that's only part of the story. That's why it's important to take photos of all vehicle involved. Also, take photos of any injuries you might have.
7) Notify your insurance company and/or insurance broker of the accident. Keeping the accident a secret from your company may not be wise as many auto insurance companies require you to report accidents to them. If you don't, you might be in violation of your policy in which case you might be denied coverage should you later decide to make a claim or if a claim is brought against you.
8) If anyone involved in the accident was hurt, or if the damage to your vehicle exceeds $750, you need to notify the DMV within 10 days of the accident. This is done by filing an SR1 form. This form can be downloaded from the DMV website. The more information you have, the easier it will be to fill out the form. Ask your insurance company and/or broker for help if you need assistance.
9) If you are injured, you should get medical attention as soon as possible. Your health and well being are very important. This is not the time to be brave and stoic.
10) Consult with an experienced personal injury attorney if you want to review your legal options.
After working for an insurance company for over 13 years as a defense lawyer, I opened my own practice, this time representing victims of car accidents.
One of the biggest questions I get all the time is this: “I’ve been involved in a car accident. What should I be doing?”
Here is a list of things to do after an auto accident.
1) If you are still at the scene of the accident, and if you believe that you’ve been injured (even in the slightest), insist on obtaining a police report. There are several reasons to ask for a police report from the investigating officer. First, it documents the event, making it less likely the other party will change their story later on. Second, a police report documents your injury (the officer will usually as if you are hurt. You must tell them if you are so they can document your injury in their report) which lends credibility to a subsequent injury claim. In my experience, when there is no police report, the other party changes their story in some way, sometimes drastically, about 50% of the time. If there are any witnesses who favor your version of the events, try to get their contact information.
2) Make sure you act quickly in getting medical attention for your injuries. Not only is it the smart thing to do for your health, but delays in treatment will be used against you by most insurance adjusters. They generally argue that delays in treatment are evidence that the injury wasn’t serious. In other words, if you had serious or appreciable injuries, you would have sought treatment. Therefore, by not getting treatment, you must not be injured!
3) Make sure you take extensive photographs of all vehicle damage, not only photos of your vehicle but also of the other vehicles involved in the accident. These days, most people have phones that are capable of taking photos. Therefore, you might even be able to take photos at the scene of the accident. Also, don’t just take one photos. Taking many photos of your car from several angles and distances will help document the extent of damage to your vehicle. Also, while your vehicle may not look so bad, the other vehicle might have extensive damage. A picture tells a thousand words. Describing the damage to your vehicle simply doesn’t have the same effect as showing someone. Remember, if you make a claim in the future, the insurance adjuster is going to make every effort to minimize your claim. Photos of extensive damage can help persuade an adjuster otherwise.
4) Take photos of any and all injuries you may have sustained (even if it is slight bruising, cuts or scrapes). Take them in different lighting situations and from different angles. Sometimes injuries don’t show up well in photographs, so you want to make sure the injury photos are decent.
5) Gather all insurance information, not only regarding the person who caused the accident, but also your policy. Get the other person’s policy number, insurance company, and vehicle information. Make sure you also get their address. Also, get your insurance information and a copy of your “Declarations Page” which has a summary of the coverage you have available. There is a 25% the party at fault either didn’t have insurance or didn’t have enough insurance. In that case, you want to make sure you have Uninsured Motorist Coverage (UM Coverage).
6) Get a property damage estimate. An estimate will usually reveal all the parts of the care that were damages. Sometimes there can be extensive damage that isn’t easily visible, especially frame damage. When there isn’t a lot of cosmetic damage to a vehicle, a showing of frame damage can help persuade an insurance adjuster that an impact was relatively significant.
7) If you get treatment from any medical providers, mention every single thing that bothers you from the accident, even if it doesn’t bother you much anymore. Keep in mind insurance companies are using software to analyze your case. If something isn’t documented in your medical records (including any and all complaints), then it simply won’t be inputted into the computer by the insurance adjuster. Remember, if something isn’t in your medical records, it’s like it never happened. I tell clients to pretend the insurance adjuster is sitting on their shoulder like a parakeet during their doctor visits and therefore they need to be very aware of what they tell their health care providers.
Don't give recorded statements to insurance adjusters until you've spoken with a personal injury attorney. Make sure you know all your rights. A good personal injury lawyer can also educate you about your options. For example, while you might think you have a great case, the attorney may think differently. Also, in some cases, a good lawyer might explain that you are better off without an attorney’s help. A good lawyer will also tell you of strengths and weaknesses in your case. An initial consultation is usually free of charge. Call (661) 414-7100 to see if we can help with your case.
Hello everyone. My name is Robert Mansour. Today, I want to make a very brief video about whether or not it is financially a good to idea bring a claim in a personal injury case. Here's how this situation usually unfolds:
I'll get a call from a client and they'll say, "Look. I was involved in an accident, I was hurt etc, etc." I'll say, "Does the other party admit that they caused the accident? They say, "No. Actually, they don't agree that they caused the accident. They think I caused the accident." Or worse, they have a police report that puts them at fault, and the other party is not at fault. They come in and they want to fight, and they want to take them to court and all this other stuff. I said, "Okay. Well, what are your injuries?" "Oh, I got some sore neck and sore back."
I told them, "Listen, your case is not going to be worth very much. Even if it is, worth say $5000 or $6000. Are you prepared to spend anywhere between $5000 to $10,000 in an effort to recover $5000 to $10,000? It doesn't make any sense. Why would you spend as much as your case is worth, and spend two years in court, and all you're going to do, best case scenario is get that money back?"
Sometimes, even though you want to make your point and you want to prove the other party wrong, and you want to proceed on matters of "principle," you might be putting yourself in financial danger. Sometimes, the best thing to do is to decide not to proceed. Sometimes, that is financially the wisest decision that you can make.
I hope you find this video helpful. If you'd like, feel free to contact my office for further consultation. Also, visit our website valencialawyer.com for lots more information. Thank you.
I used to work for a large insurance defense firm. That means I worked for an insurance company, defending personal injury claims. That's the opposite of what I do now. While my clients were technically the policy holders of the insurance company, my employer was the insurance company. Therefore, I had very little influence (basically none) about how the insurance company conducted business, how they advertised, the way they handled claims, etc. I was a tiny fish in a very big ocean. Those kinds of decisions were made in ivory towers at the corporate level.
After working for 13 years for the insurance companies, I decided it was time to open my own practice. It was something I really had been wanting to do for about 4 or 5 years before actually "jumping ship." There was an entrepreneurial bug in me that had been dormant for years but finally revealed itself to me. I must admit, making the transition was a very scary event, and opening a law practice just before the Great Recession hit was not fun.
In any event, one of the things that I really enjoy about my law office is the ability to have total control about my marketing, my message, how I communicate with clients, the ability to educate...basically the ability to call all the shots. Unlike my former law office, now I have total control over how I do things. While there are certainly burdens associated with being ultimately responsible for everything, there are definite benefits to "being your own boss."
One of the things I most enjoy is the marketing of my law office. For example, this website is managed by me, and pretty much all the content on the website was authored by me. This video above is no exception. Like I said, I really enjoy marketing so I had a lot of fun making this "animated" short promotional video for my personal injury practice. I hope you enjoy it too. It's the story of Frank.
If you need guidance with your personal injury matter, please don't hesitate to contact my office. We will let you know if we can help. Call (661) 414-7100 anytime to see if we can assist you. We serve all of Los Angeles County, particularly the Santa Clarita area and its communities of Valencia, Saugus, Canyon Country, Castaic, Newhall and Stevenson Ranch.
Hello everybody, this is Robert Mansour, and today's video we're going to talk about whether or not bringing a personal injury case is worth it.
Some clients find that it's not worth their time. They come to my initial consultation and say, one client recently said "well, listen, if I don't get $10,000 dollars in my pocket after all is said and done, then this is not worth it for me. So what do you think?"
I told him "well, then it's not worth it for you because I can't guarantee the result in your case. Your case probably won't be worth anywhere near $10,000 dollars. I don't know. But I certainly can't guarantee you some kind of result."
So if you're looking for a guaranteed result, you shouldn't waste your time because there's too many variables when it comes to these kinds of cases. So in some ways, if you have a number in mind, you need to let go of that number or just not proceed at all.
Other clients say "look, I'm not in this for the money. I don't really care. I don't want to make a million dollars. I just want to get fair compensation. I just want somebody to pay for my medical bills and maybe a little bit in my pocket, and certainly pay the attorney for his or her time."
Some clients, it's just worth it for them so they don't have to deal with the insurance company. Now in that case, it might be worth it for you as well.
But you need to talk about these things with your attorney and you need to kind of talk about your expectations. You need to have a lawyer who will give you a realistic expectation and not just tell you anything you want to hear simply to get the case. Because here's the thing. Some lawyers know that they're going to make money regardless of the case that they take and they don't really have their client's best interest in mind.
If a lawyer's going to tell you something like "hey, I'm not really sure this is going to be worth your effort and worth your time, and these are some of the things that might go wrong with your case", that's a lawyer you should listen to because they're giving you a realistic assessment and not just painting a rosy picture for you.
So whether it's worth it or not kind of depends on your own expectations.
Make sure you talk with your lawyer, and then you can make an educated decision.
Again, this has been Robert Mansour. If you want to learn more about my practice or ask me some questions regarding personal injury, all of my contact information is located below on the screen. You can also visit my website at www.valencialawyer.com.
Thank you very much for watching this brief video. (Call our Santa Clarita injury office today at (661) 414-7100 to see if we can assist you).
This video helps clients understand how to get started with their personal injury case. Here is a complete transcript of the video:
Hello, everyone this is Robert Mansour and this brief video is designed to introduce you to how to get started with your personal injury case. So obviously if you've come to this website, you've probably been involved in a car accident and you might be looking for an attorney's guidance regarding whether or not you have a case worth pursuing, whether you're better doing nothing, whether you should handle it on your own, or whether perhaps you should get a lawyer involved. So you've come to the right place and this the starting point. So the first thing you've got to do is call my office. The reason you want to call the office is to setup your initial personal injury consultation and the consultation should occur as soon after the accident as possible, because one of the reasons personal injury cases fail is because clients take too long before they become proactive about their case and sometimes these delays can come back to haunt you.
So during the initial call my office staff will probably ask you some basic questions about the accident just to make sure that it's something that we can help you with and then we'll pick a date that's convenience for you and for our office to meet.
So the next thing you need to do is fill out the personal injury questionnaire or the secure, online accident questionnaire. So, near the middle of the page you're going to find a secure, online accident questionnaire, and go ahead and click on that and it's going to open up a questionnaire in a new window that will walk you through all of the relevant information that I'm going to need during our initial conversation. And don't be overwhelmed by all the information, if you don't have it all, but gather as much as you can. Now, if you don't want to fill out the online form, right below that, you can click on the checklist and that will open up a checklist that you can print. Basically, the checklist will ask you for all of the relevant information including any and all photographs depicting damage to all of the vehicles involved in the accident, any and all photographs of your injuries, bruising, cuts, scrapes, those are the kinds of things that you want to be documented. It will be asking you for all of your auto insurance information, especially something called your declarations page, which shows a review of all of the insurance coverage that you have available to you on your vehicle. Also, we're going to ask you for insurance information for the other vehicle, the responsible party. If you have any property damage estimates to your vehicle, we're going to need those and if you don't have a property damage estimate, you might want to go get one sooner than later.
If you've already been to some doctors or a hospital or you've received emergency treatment, or you went to urgent care, we're going to need all of the doctors and facility information for those places that you visited. In fact, if you can, call those facilities and ask them for a copy of all of your records and all of your bills from your visit post-accident. It makes life a lot easier.
Also, if you've been a Medicare or Medi-Cal recipient, we're going to need your information. We also need your health insurance information.
If there is a police report of any sort, we will need a copy of that and if you don't have a copy, that's all right, we can order one for you, but let us know whether or not there was a police report. Also, if there were any witnesses, we're going to want their names, addresses and phone numbers as well.
Then it's time for our initial consultation where I will sit with you, review everything that you've provided to me and again, the more information you provide to me, the better I can advise you. So during this meeting I'll let you whether or not it's worth having a lawyer on your side, what your options are, what different paths you might want to take and how the case might unfold. And during that consultation you can ask any questions that you have and I'll do my very best to answer them. And then of course, the relationship may begin, if you choose to go forward. There will be absolutely no pressure for you to do one thing or another. It is a purely informational meeting and in most cases, there is no charge.
Thank you very much for visiting my website. Thank you for your interest and go ahead and proceed with the steps and we'll get started in assisting you with your personal injury consultation. Thank you very much, again this Robert Monsieur and I appreciate your time in watching this video.
Some people get into a car accident and think they've won the lottery! They expect lots of cash to roll their way. However, reimbursement and compensation in personal injury cases often doesn't live up to the tall tales some may believe. Years ago, I actually had a client who thought her sprained neck was going to get her $250,000. After this encounter, I make sure my clients have reasonable expectations about their personal injury case.
I'm not really sure why some clients have such unrealistic expectations about their personal injury cases. Perhaps they've heard stories from others who got a lot of money or perhaps they've watched one too many late night TV commercials from attorneys who make personal injury cases look like some kind of lottery system. I suppose the average personal injury cases don't make the news, so people naturally aren't aware of them. They hear about the occasional person who recovers millions from McDonalds for spilled coffee. Without knowing more about such cases, they figure THEIR case must be worth a great deal too.
The trouble is there are still some people out there who think their personal injury case is their path to riches. Your accident case is NOT your lottery ticket, NOT your pension plan, and NOT a retirement plan. If you have unreasonable expectations, you need to reevaluate your position and talk to an experienced attorney who will give you reasonable expectations. Don't go to any lawyer who will tell you what you want to hear.
Attorney Robert Mansour handles personal injury cases in Santa Clarita, Valencia, Saugus, Canyon Country, Newhall, Stevenson Ranch, Castaic, Palmdale, Lancaster, Northridge, Chatsworth, and surrounding communities. If you want a candid assessment of your personal injury case, call (661) 414-7100 for a free consultation.
It's probably one of the top five reasons people screw up their own personal injury case - waiting too long before seeing a doctor after they've been injured in a car accident. How long is too long? Generally, anything beyond a week is too long. Some insurance companies believe three days is too long.
The point is this - if you've been injured, and even if you are not sure, you MUST go seek health care immediately because any delay will be used against you. However, even if you did delay, all is not necessarily lost. Some insurance companies will entertain any kind of self-help you did as "active" treatment. In other words, you have to demonstrate what you did at home to alleviate your pain. Did you ice the injury, did you sleep in and rest, did you take ibuprofen, did you lay down on your couch to rest, etc? You need to explain that you didn't just sit around and do nothing for two weeks, then decide to see a doctor.
However, the key is "convincing" an insurance adjuster you did more than sit around. How can you do that? Well, the best way to convince the adjuster is by telling your doctor about your self-help remedies during your first visit. Therefore, you must not only tell the doctor or the intake person at the doctor's office but also write it down on any intake forms. Documentation is everything. Remind the doctor to include such information in any reports generated by the doctor. At the very least, it needs to be in your records. For example, the doctor's report can say, "Mr. Smith came to seem me two weeks after his accident. He tried pain medication and ice at home to no avail. He tried hot showers and laying down, again without significant improvement. He eventually decided to visit with a doctor as his pain wasn't getting better." Do you see how this is much better than the inference that you just sat around doing nothing? Remember one of the biggest rules when it comes to personal injury cases: If something is not in your medical records or the doctor's reports, then it basically never happened as far as the insurance adjuster is concerned.
Robert Mansour handles personal injury cases in Santa Clarita and its surrounding communities including Valencia, Saugus, Canyon Country, Newhall, Castaic, Stevenson Ranch, Palmdale, Lancaster and beyond. Call (661) 414-7100 for help with your accident case.
Santa Clarita accident attorney Robert Mansour discusses some basic things to keep in mind after an auto accident on "Out of the Rough" with local lending professional Fred Arnold. Fred asks Rob about basic things to keep in mind, what to say to the insurance adjusters, the importance of photographs, getting medical attention early in the game, being wary of recorded statements, fixing your car, the importance of the police report and much more.
If you have been involved in a serious accident and want some advice, free of charge, call the Law Office of Robert Mansour at (661) 414-7100 or visit our Contact page. We are happy to assist the entire Santa Clarita Valley.
HERE IS A TRANSCRIPT OF THE INTERVIEW:
Fred Arnold: Welcome back to "Out of the Rough." I'm joined by Robert Mansour. Did I get that right, Mansour?
Robert Mansour: Yes, Mansour, that's correct.
Fred Arnold: A lawyer with the Law Office of Robert M. Mansour and, uh, a personal injury attorney –
Robert Mansour: That's right.
Fred Arnold: ‑ amongst other things.
Robert Mansour: That's right.
Fred Arnold: And I wanna, since the show is "Out of the Rough," I wanna talk to you about, um, something that happens in life, and it hasn't happened to me in a long time, but ooh, fender-benders or car accidents.
Robert Mansour: Right.
Fred Arnold: Um, what do you do? How do you, you know, where do you start? The first thing, if you get in a fender-bender or you get in an accident, uh, what do you do right away? What's the first thing, step you do? Do you call the police?
Robert Mansour: Well, I think you should call the police if you suspect that you've been injured. And I, some people don't call the police because they figure they need to be bleeding all over the place. I say, look, if you suspect any injury at all, call the police, because there's several reasons. Number one, you document the event. The other party can't change their story later on because it's all written down. Number two, when you tell the police officer about your injuries it's documented, so that the insurance company for the other party will say, oh look, he did complain of injury at the scene of the accident. He was injured. It makes it more likely that you were injured. And finally number three, some insurance companies and some people will actually deny that they were even there. They'll say, "Well, I wasn't involved in a car accident. I, nobody, my car was in my driveway the whole time." If you don't have any witnesses and nobody else, it's kind of hard to prove sometimes that an accident actually happened.
Fred Arnold: So you have a third-party report in case the person is not honest about the accident?
Robert Mansour: That's right, and also the police officer's finding it's in your favor can be very, very helpful when it comes to making a claim for injuries.
Fred Arnold: So let's, fender-bender, middle of the road, when do you pull over to the side, because don't you want to get pictures that'll – let's talk about two things.
Robert Mansour: Yeah.
Fred Arnold: When you pull over, don't you wanna get pictures with your phone?
Robert Mansour: Yeah, the, the – I must say, I think the best thing to do is to move over as soon as you can, unless there is a very strong dispute about liability; who did what to whom. Take a couple of pictures and then get your vehicle out of the way for the safety of others, if you can. If you're immobilized and you can't get out of your car, there's nothing you can do.
Fred Arnold: Obviously, and, and medical attention should be coming at that point.
Robert Mansour: Hopefully, yes and, of course, if you can call for 911 or the police. If you think you've been injured, you should ask for medical attention at the scene of the accident, absolutely and take pictures.
Fred Arnold: And then you can use the phone to document what's going on.
Robert Mansour: That's the thing. A lot of people have cameras on their phones now. But, as I was telling a friend of mine, a lot of people take pictures with their phones but they don't know how to take the picture off of their phone. So you can email it to the lawyer or email it to yourself, but make sure you can take – and also with respect to pictures, take pictures from every conceivable angle. I have clients that come to me and they show me a picture of their car like very, very close up. I'm like that's great, but I don't understand the scene.
Fred Arnold: What...
Robert Mansour: Exactly. So take far, from the side, from every angle.
Fred Arnold: And it's good to seek medical attention just, even if you don't know you're hurt, because you could be but you don't realize it because of the shock?
Robert Mansour: I had a client with a torn rotator cuff. Six weeks going on he feels something is wrong with his shoulder. He waits six weeks before he goes to the doctor. The insurance company is now doubting that the, the rotator cuff injury is from the accident because he waited six weeks. They will use two things against you; gap in the commencement of treatment and gaps during treatment. So if you wait more than ten days to seek medical treatment, that's gonna blow up in your face. And a lot of people try to brave it. They say, oh, I'll be all right. I'll be all right. And the ten days, two weeks go by and they find that, wait a minute, I'm not all right.
Fred Arnold: Yeah.
Robert Mansour: And then it just explodes in their face. And then they start treatment and then they skip therapy sessions and they don't go to the doctor and they miss their appointments and those are also used against them by the insurance company. So yes, get treatment as soon as possible.
Fred Arnold: And, and get advice, and this is sound advice that you're giving, but make sure you get advice.
Robert Mansour: Yeah.
Fred Arnold: Just a couple of last things. Um –
Robert Mansour: Mm hmm.
Fred Arnold: ‑ recorded statements to the insurance company.
Robert Mansour: Never a good idea. I, in my 20 years of practice I've never seen somebody giving an insurance, an insurance company a statement to be in their favor. Uh, they'll call you. They'll call you really usually within 24 hours/48 hours. Hey, we want to take your recorded statement. Would that be okay with you? Because many of them know that you may not realize the extent of your injuries yet. They want to box you into a story and they'll, they'll use things against you. Like, you'll say "Well, I'm fine. How are you?" They'll say wait a minute. You said you were fine when we spoke to you on such and such a day.
Fred Arnold: Right.
Robert Mansour: And now you're saying that you're injured?
Fred Arnold: Mm hmm.
Robert Mansour: I always tell clients there is no legal obligation to give a statement and there is no pressing emergency to give a statement.
Fred Arnold: Let me clarify that, your insurance versus their insurance?
Robert Mansour: Yeah. Your insurance company when you're dealing with them to help fix your car and everything like that, that's fine. Talk to them. But even then be very careful about what you reveal about your injuries, because you may not know the extent of your injuries.
Fred Arnold: Mm hmm.
Robert Mansour: And, if the other party doesn't have insurance, you may need to turn to your own company for coverage. And if you've told them, "I'm fine. I'm okay. I think I don't have any injuries," it's gonna be very hard to claim that later on. So talk, but be very careful about what you say.
Fred Arnold: Should you discuss your case with an attorney?
Robert Mansour: I think that you can't get hurt by that, because most lawyers will provide you with a free consultation. Go to somebody who's been doing this a long time. And if, if they tell you, if they tell you that you don't have a case or that they have concerns about your case, that's a good lawyer. Because a good lawyer should anticipate the problems in your case and not just tell you what you wanna hear. And most of these free consultations you have no obligation to continue with the lawyer.
Fred Arnold: Mm hmm.
Robert Mansour: So what do you have to lose? Go spend 30 minutes and talk to somebody who's been down the river and can tell you what's, what's gonna happen.
Fred Arnold: Yeah, get professional advice.
Robert Mansour: Yeah.
Fred Arnold: Because those you're going up against are professionals.
Robert Mansour: Oh yeah, they've been doing this for years. They're trained.
Fred Arnold: They're trained professionals.
Robert Mansour: Mm hmm.
Fred Arnold: One last thing and, and uh, um, we're going to jump to a quick break but –
Robert Mansour: Yes.
Fred Arnold: ‑ who should fix your car?
Robert Mansour: I like to go to your own insurance company to fix your car and here's why. They'll generally act much more quickly, especially if you have the, all the comprehensive coverage under your insurance policy. And also, even though you incur a deductible, they have an obligation to you. They're your, you're employing them. You pay their, you pay the premiums. They have a, a loyalty to you and they have to do it right.
Fred Arnold: Almost a fiduciary.
Robert Mansour: A fiduciary duty.
Fred Arnold: Yeah.
Robert Mansour: Whereas, the insurance company for the other party they don't have any contract with you.
Fred Arnold: Right.
Robert Mansour: They can take their sweet time. They can say, well, we need to investigate, and by that time you're sitting there without a car. Your car is still sitting on your driveway all busted up.
Fred Arnold: Yeah, and it affects you. Uh, those that wanna reach you, reach out to you, how can they reach you?
Robert Mansour: Yes, they can reach me. I'm, I'm a local attorney here in Santa Clarita. They can reach me at www.valencialawyer.com, or they can just call my office which is 661-414-7100.
Fred Arnold: Perfect. Oh, we're gonna jump to a break, uh, but do you mind sticking around? I want to talk about one more issue.
Robert Mansour: I would love that, Fred, thank you.
Fred Arnold: We'll be right back.
It happened again today. I met with a potential new client who told me the adjuster kept calling and offering her a settlement of $500. The adjuster explained that in his experience, her kind of injury will probably fade over time and a couple of visits to the doctor "should do it." Really? This adjuster who probably has no medical degree has diagnosed my client over the phone and told her she will be getting better soon. Then he offers her $500 to cover a "couple of visits to the doctor" and a little bit for "your pain and suffering." He asks her to sign a general release in exchange for the money. He promises her this outcome is fair and routine in his experience. Not knowing much better, victims of accidents are often taken to the cleaners by overzealous claims adjusters who have forgotten their purported mission is to help others...not save nickels for an insurance company.
The sad thing is that many insurance adjusters handling first party claims (i.e., claims for their own clients/insureds) are treating their own insureds just as poorly - with disdain and suspicion. Claims are denied or marginalized simply because they can be. The playing field is hardly level, and the insurance companies are keenly aware of that simple fact.
The focus is on saving money for the insurance company and "closing" their file. Unfortunately, and I can say this after years in the business working both sides of the fence, too many adjusters have lost sight of the forest. Many are so jaded after years of dealing with crooks and others trying to game the system. They have forgotten that every so often, a legitimate claims comes through.
If you are offered $500 as a quick settlement a few days after an accident, you should likely run the offer by an experienced personal injury attorney who won't simply tell you what you want to hear. If you need help with your Santa Clarita, CA accident case, call attorney Robert Mansour at (661) 414-7100 for a free consultation.
by Robert Mansour
Robert Mansour is a personal injury lawyer serving Santa Clarita, Valencia, Saugus, Canyon Country, Newhall, Stevenson Ranch, Castaic and surrounding communities.