Jul 09 2021

When Should You Consider Hiring a Bicycle Accident Attorney?

If you were involved in a crash while riding a bike, you may need to seek out help from an experienced Utah personal injury attorney.

As the victim of a cycling accident, you have the right to pursue financial compensation for the costs you’ve incurred as a result of the collision. Recovery should be your primary concern, and while hiring a bicycle accident attorney isn’t required, representing yourself may not be in your best interests. Below, we share a few reasons to consider leaving your case in the hands of a lawyer.

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Serious Injuries

Because bicycles offer little protection, many cyclists who are involved in accidents sustain major injuries. Crashes can result in spinal cord injuries, concussions, bone fractures, traumatic brain injuries and other serious impairments – and in any case, the pile of medical bills can become quite high.

With a good bicycle accident attorney on your side, you won’t have to worry about the expense. You can focus on healing, knowing that your lawyer will work to make sure that you aren’t the one who has to pay for your medical treatment.

Liability Concerns

The success of your bicycle accident claim will hinge upon proof that another party was responsible for the incident. And while the way the event unfolded may seem completely obvious to you, you’ll need evidence – and getting it may not be that easy on your own.

Hire an experienced bicycle accident attorney, and they’ll thoroughly investigate the accident, ascertaining what the traffic and the weather was like at the time, details about the vehicle and driver involved and any other pertinent information. With that in hand, a lawyer can build a strong case for full compensation.

Unfair Tactics

Insurance adjusters may act friendly and sympathetic to your needs, but don’t expect that to translate into a fair settlement offer. Insurance companies are out to make a profit, and they’ll be looking for grounds to devalue your or deny your bicycle accident claim.

Fighting the strong-arm tactics insurance companies use and coming out on top is a challenge without expert legal help. A skilled accident attorney can provide that, keeping the insurance company from taking advantage of you or convincing you to accept less money than you deserve.

Get the Legal Help You Need After a Bicycle Accident

At William R. Rawlings & Associates, our legal team has been advocating for the rights of injured cyclists in Utah, California and Idaho for more than 35 years. We not only understand the laws that protect bike riders, but many of our attorneys also enjoy the sport of cycling themselves – and that, along with our history as former insurance adjusters and lawyers for insurance companies, gives us a unique and valuable perspective.

You can count on William R. Rawlings & Associates to see your case through, making every effort to recover the maximum in monetary compensation. For a free, no-obligation consultation with a highly skilled bicycle accident personal injury attorney in Utah, contact us today.

Jul 02 2021

What If a Car Accident Leaves You Unable to Work?

Millions of people sustain injuries in car accidents every year, and many who are seriously injured are forced to stop working as a result. The situation is incredibly stressful, as not earning a paycheck can wreak havoc on anyone’s budget.

If you were in a car crash in or near Salt Lake City, and your injuries prevent you from returning to work, an experienced auto accident attorney can work to hold the at-fault driver responsible for all of your financial losses. Below are the types of damages you may be entitled to if a motor vehicle collision impedes your ability to work.

auto accident attorney Salt Lake City

Lost Income

In a car accident case, lost income refers to the wages you would have earned had you not suffered serious injuries. For instance, if a broken hip keeps you from being able to go back to work for four months, you can seek compensation for four months’ worth of income.

Lost Earning Capacity

After a car accident, injuries can impact your future income, making it impossible to bring home as much money as you did prior to the collision. If you can only return to work if you accept a lower wage, you can pursue compensation for your loss in earning capacity.

Lost Work Opportunities

Serious injuries sustained in a car crash can also cost you by keeping you from additional sources of income. If an accident causes you to miss out on bonuses, commissions or other prospects for payment, you may be able to get reimbursed for the potential earnings.

Let a Car Accident Lawyer Help With Your Case

Being unable to work because of injuries incurred in a car crash can put you in financial hot water – but an experienced car accident lawyer will know what to do to ease your concerns about your money.

Here at William R. Rawlings & Associates, serving Utah, Idaho and California, our attorneys will work hard to help you recover compensation for all of your losses. When we consider the impact of a car crash on your finances, we not only look at lost income, lost earning capacity and lost work opportunities – we also consider property damage, medical expenses, pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment and more.

Our highly experienced team understands how to maximize the compensation in accident claims, and as many of our lawyers formerly worked as insurance company representatives, we have the skills to negotiate a favorable settlement. But we’re also prepared to defend you in court if a settlement cannot be reached. If you were hurt in a car crash and your injuries are keeping you from earning money, William R. Rawlings & Associates can help. Contact us to schedule a free, no-obligation Salt Lake City auto accident attorney consultation today.

Jun 18 2021

Will Not Wearing a Helmet Affect Your Motorcycle Accident Claim?

If you’re a Utah motorcyclist who has been injured in a crash, you can file a motorcycle accident claim to seek out financial compensation for your losses. Your decision to ride without a helmet doesn’t take away that right.

Given the circumstances, however, recovering the amount of money to which you are legally entitled may be a challenge on your own. To understand why, take a look at the following.

Motorcycle injury lawyer Utah

Utah’s Motorcycle Helmet Laws

Riding without a helmet is permitted for some motorcyclists in Utah. Helmet use is only mandated for those under the age of 21.

In addition, the Utah motorcycle helmet statute maintains that the choice to not wear protective headgear isn’t considered to be contributory or comparative negligence on the part of a motorcyclist seeking damages. The law also asserts that the failure to wear a helmet isn’t valid evidence in a civil case.

All of the above seems to suggest that helmet use won’t be a factor in a Utah motorcycle accident claim. However, the situation isn’t really that simple.

Why Injured Motorcyclists May Need a Motorcycle Accident Attorney

Insurance adjusters know that only motorcyclists under the age of 21 are required to wear a helmet in Utah. They are also well aware that they aren’t legally allowed to use failure to wear protective headgear against a rider in an accident claim. Despite this, injured motorcyclists typically receive low settlement offers.

Why is this? Motorcyclists are less likely to win large verdicts in court, as many people have the false impression that riders are less careful than drivers of passenger cars and other vehicles. Most motorcycle accident claims don’t end up going to court, but insurance adjusters know about the stigma against motorcyclists and are therefore comfortable in offering smaller settlements.

A skilled motorcycle accident attorney can negotiate a fair settlement or, if necessary, bring the case to court. And since most Utah lawyers who specialize in this area of the law work on a contingency fee basis – providing legal representation at no upfront cost – accident attorneys fight hard to get their clients the maximum in financial compensation.

Turn to the Legal Team at William R. Rawlings & Associates

At William R. Rawlings & Associates, we offer full-service legal counsel to injured motorcyclists in Utah, Idaho and California. Our clients benefit from our 35 years of experience, and we’re proud to have a long history of successful case results.

As former insurance adjusters and insurance lawyers, we understand the tactics they use in cases involving riders not wearing helmets – and we’re ready to make the most of your motorcycle accident claim. To learn more about our law firm, or to schedule a free consultation with an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer in Utah, contact us today.

Jun 11 2021

How to Choose a Wrongful Death Attorney

If you recently lost a loved one due to someone’s negligent or careless actions, turn to an experienced wrongful death attorney. While nothing will fill the void left in your life, holding the responsible party accountable may provide you with some relief.

When the cause of your grief is an accidental or wrongful death, getting legal representation can help ensure that you get justice for your loved one. Furthermore, a skilled lawyer can aggressively pursue financial compensation to provide you with the support you need to move forward.

The process of choosing a wrongful death attorney can be challenging, as countless law firms represent clients in accidental death claims. To narrow down your options and find the right lawyer for your case, try these strategies.

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Find Local Lawyers

A simple internet search can provide you with names of local wrongful death lawyers, but keep in mind that a high ranking doesn’t mean an attorney is more qualified for the job. You can also find a legal professional with the skills to take on your case by:

  • Asking friends, family members and colleagues if they have a recommendation
  • Checking with an attorney who has helped you with another legal matter
  • Contacting your local bar association for a list of lawyers who specialize in accidental death claims.

Look for Relevant Experience

Legal expertise matters a great deal, and you’ll want to choose an attorney who has ample experience with the areas of law relevant to your case. To figure out if a lawyer might be qualified to handle your accidental death claim:

  • Browse their website to see which types of cases they routinely take on
  • Look at the bar association website to make sure the lawyer is in good standing
  • Read online reviews and search for news stories that feature the attorney

Schedule Consultations

Once you have taken the steps listed above, you should have a few wrongful death attorneys at the top of your list. Now, it’s time to schedule a meeting with each of those lawyers.

Most legal professionals offer free initial consultations, which allow you the opportunity to interview the lawyer. When you meet with a wrongful death attorney, ask questions about your case and how they would proceed. After you have consulted with all the law firms you’re considering, think about how the appointments went and trust your gut in making your choice on who to hire.

Trust William R. Rawlings & Associates

The legal team at William R. Rawlings & Associates has over 35 years of experience helping clients in Utah, Idaho and California with wrongful death claims. We have a history of proven results and a strong reputation within the legal community – and you can count on us to protect your rights and fight for the maximum in financial compensation.

For more information on our legal qualifications, or to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with a highly skilled Utah personal injury attorney, contact William R. Rawlings & Associates today.

Jun 04 2021

Should You Take an Ambulance After a Car Accident?

If a car accident leaves you with severe injuries, you likely won’t be given the choice of whether or not to take an ambulance to the hospital. But if you’re still conscious, the paramedics might ask you if you require emergency transportation.

Car Accident Injury Attorney Salt Lake City

How should you respond?

The decision isn’t one you should make lightly, as it could affect both your health and your personal injury claim. Don’t let concerns over the cost prevent you from taking an ambulance ride — here’s what experienced car accident attorneys recommend considering as you weigh your options.

When to Take an Ambulance to the Hospital

After a car accident, your injuries may not appear to be all that serious. That could change, however – some victims feel fairly good at first, then experience a seizure or become unconscious moments later.

Taking an ambulance ride from the crash scene may be in your best interests, as you’ll have medical professionals there to help if your situation worsens on the way to the hospital. And if you’re experiencing any of the following symptoms, car accident attorneys strongly suggest accepting emergency transportation:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Dizziness or blurred vision
  • Pounding headache
  • Chest or abdominal pain
  • Bleeding from any wounds
  • Suspected broken bones

Why You Shouldn’t Worry About the Cost

All too often, accident victims refuse to take an ambulance because of the cost – and yes, emergency transportation can be rather expensive.

This shouldn’t scare you into driving yourself to the hospital. If you didn’t cause the crash, you won’t be liable for the ambulance bill. That expense, like all of your other medical treatment, can be included in your personal injury claim.

What if you get billed for the ambulance ride anyway? Contact the company that issued the bill to let them know you’re working with a car accident attorney to settle a claim, and that should buy you enough time to avoid being sent to collections.

Have a Salt Lake City Car Accident Injury Attorney on Your Side

Insurance adjusters have been known to deny personal injury claims when they believe that emergency transportation wasn’t required. A highly skilled accident attorney can turn that around and use the fact that you took an ambulance ride as proof of the severity of your injuries.

While you can represent yourself in a personal injury claim, you may need expert assistance to hold the liable party responsible for your losses. Turn to William R. Rawlings & Associates, and our legal team will fight to make sure you get the compensation you deserve.

Accident victims in Utah, California and Idaho have relied on William R. Rawlings & Associates for over 35 years, and you can, too. For more information about our law firm, or to discuss how our Salt Lake City car accident injury attorneys can help with your personal injury claim, contact us today.

May 21 2021

Crucial Evidence for a Truck Accident Claim

If a collision involving a semi-truck, tractor-trailer, 18-wheeler or other big rig has left you with serious injuries, you can file a truck accident claim. Doing so may provide you with compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, emotional distress and other losses resulting from the crash.

In a truck accident case, the likelihood of a successful outcome is directly related to the quality of the evidence. Working with an experienced truck accident lawyer in Salt Lake City can provide the advantage you need to maximize your award.

Read on to learn about the types of evidence that can be crucial to receiving the financial compensation you deserve.

Truck Accident Lawyer Salt Lake City

Accident Reports

The investigating police officer who responds to the scene of a collision will create an official report. A certified truck inspector may also come out to examine the big rig before it’s towed away. The information in both reports can be used as evidence in a truck accident claim.

At-the-Scene Evidence

If able, victims injured in a truck collision should take photos of the accident scene, including shots of the road and all of the vehicles involved from various angles. Getting the names and contact information for any eyewitnesses is also beneficial, as their testimony can lend credibility to the victim’s version of events.

Electronic Logs

Federal law requires commercial truck drivers to follow specific regulations, and big rigs are outfitted with Electronic Logging Devices (ELDs) to track their hours of service. If a truck collision occurs due to a violation, such as too much time driving without a break, this log can provide the necessary evidence for an acciden-t claim.

Recorded In-Cab Data

Some commercial trucks have in-cab cameras that face both the driver and the road. In the event of an accident, the footage captured can provide clear evidence of exactly what the driver was doing and how the vehicle’s mechanical systems were operating at the time of the collision.

Drug & Alcohol Testing

When someone is seriously injured in a truck accident, federal regulations often require that the driver of the big rig undergo a drug and alcohol test. Driving while impaired is known to reduce concentration and reaction time, and if the use of some sort of substance contributed to the collision, the test results can be valuable evidence.

Why You Need an Experienced Truck Accident Lawyer

While you may be able to obtain some of the items we listed above on your own, getting your hands on other crucial evidence – namely the ELD data, in-cab videos and driver drug and alcohol testing — may require the assistance of an experienced truck accident lawyer.

In addition, an attorney can send out a document called a spoliation letter, requesting that all evidence related to the collision be preserved. If negligence or wrongful action on the part of the truck driver caused your accident, the trucking company won’t be able to legally destroy the evidence.

At William R. Rawlings & Associates, we know what it takes to achieve a successful outcome in a truck accident claim. If you’ve been injured in a big rig collision in Salt Lake City or anywhere in Utah, contact us and schedule a free consultation with an experienced truck accident lawyer today.

May 14 2021

Answers to Common Questions About Auto Accident Claims

Were you recently injured in a car crash? The auto accident claims process can be confusing, and virtually every victim has questions.

While consulting with a personal injury attorney is the best way to get answers, you may want to know certain information right away. Below, the legal team at William R. Rawlings & Associates addresses several of the most pressing questions you may have regarding auto accident claims.

Car accident lawyer Utah

Do You Need to Hire an Attorney?

Having legal representation isn’t a requirement, but working with an experienced personal injury attorney may be to your benefit. Many car crash victims have difficulty obtaining the compensation they deserve on their own, and you can count on a lawyer to fight hard on your behalf.

How Much Will Your Claim Be Worth?

The value of an auto accident claim depends upon multiple elements – the severity of your injuries and damages, the available sources of compensation and insurance policy limitations are just a few of the factors that must be considered. For an estimate of how much your case may be worth, you’ll need to speak with an experienced attorney.

Will Your Car Be Totaled?

If you were involved in a serious auto accident, an insurance adjuster will determine if your car is a total loss. Generally speaking, if the cost to repair your car exceeds its worth, you can expect it to be totaled. In that case, you’ll be reimbursed for the actual cash value of the vehicle, up to the insurance policy limits.

Do You Have to Get Your Car Repaired?

Let’s say your car isn’t totaled, that the damage caused during the auto accident can be safely repaired. If you own the vehicle outright, the decision on whether or not to put the cash you receive toward repair is yours. If, however, you have a loan on the vehicle or want to maintain full coverage, you’ll need to get the car repaired.

Will the Accident Affect Your Insurance Rates?

If the car crash wasn’t your fault, you shouldn’t have to worry about it affecting your premiums. With that being said, some insurance carriers view any auto accident as a reason to consider a rate increase. To find out if your premium is going to rise and, if so, by how much, you’ll need to contact your insurer.

How Long Will it Take to Resolve Your Claim?

When it comes to auto accident claims, the more complicated the case, the longer it typically takes to reach a resolution. Some victims are able to obtain a fair settlement in a matter of weeks, but if your injuries are severe or the insurance company refuses to make a reasonable offer, resolving your claim could take a few months or even a few years.

We know you likely have more questions, and we’d be more than happy to provide expert answers. Contact William R. Rawlings & Associates and schedule a free, no-obligation consultation to discuss your auto accident claim with an experienced Utah car accident lawyer today.

May 07 2021

Should You Consult with a Personal Injury Attorney?

Personal injury attorneys help accident victims obtain financial compensation for their losses. Despite knowing this – and despite the fact that lawyers typically offer free consultations — many injured individuals have doubts about whether or not to schedule an appointment.

In our opinion, no accident victim should pass on the opportunity to meet with a lawyer. If you’ve been injured in an accident involving a car, truck, motorcycle, bus or bicycle – whether as a driver, passenger or pedestrian – contacting an experienced local law firm like William R. Rawlings & Associates is to your benefit.

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Why Meeting with a Personal Injury Attorney is a Good Idea

You might hesitate to reach out to an attorney because you don’t think that the injuries you suffered are severe enough. Or, your reluctance may stem from worries about paying for legal help.

To address the first point, attorneys who specialize in personal injury law are good judges of whether or not a case warrants legal representation. When you meet with a lawyer, they’ll let you know if they can help with your claim – and you’ll get that expert opinion at no cost.

As for the second reason for not reaching out to an attorney, understanding the payment arrangement may ease your mind. Many personal injury lawyers work on a contingency fee basis, covering the costs of any upfront expenses and getting paid out of the settlement or jury award.

Determining if You Have a Valid Personal Injury Claim

When you meet with an attorney, they’ll review your situation to determine if you have a valid claim for compensation. Regardless of the severity of the injuries you sustained, your case needs certain elements. Your lawyer will be looking to see if they may be able to prove all of the following:

  • That you were owed a duty of care
  • That duty of care was breached
  • The breach was the cause of your injuries
  • Your injuries resulted in verifiable damages

If your attorney determines that you have a valid injury claim, they’ll offer to provide the legal help you need. But no matter what, they’ll explain what to do next.

Schedule a Free Personal Injury Attorney Consultation Today

Since you can meet with a lawyer for free – and without being obligated to their law firm – there’s really no reason not to schedule a consultation. If you’ve been injured due to another party’s negligence or wrongful action, don’t hesitate to contact an experienced local injury lawyer.

In Utah, Idaho and California, William R. Rawlings is the law firm you want on your side. We’ve been helping accident victims for over 35 years, and we fight hard to ensure that our clients receive every dollar they deserve for their damages. To schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with a highly skilled personal injury attorney, contact us today.

Apr 16 2021

What to Do When a Personal Injury Settlement Offer is Too Low

You’re ready to negotiate a personal injury settlement, and you’ve already sent the insurance company a formal demand letter that explains your side of the case and how much in compensation you expect to receive. You’re waiting on a response – and when it comes, you see an absurdly low settlement offer.

What should you do?

Personal injury settlements

Don’t Accept a Low Settlement Offer

Insurance adjusters often propose personal injury settlement amounts that are quite unreasonable. This is to be expected, as their job is to preserve the company’s bottom line.

If you believe the initial amount offered is too low, don’t worry – you’re under no obligation to accept this or any other settlement offer from the insurance company. Instead, consider the offer to be the starting point for negotiations.

How to Handle the Situation

You deserve to receive fair compensation for your injuries. When faced with a low settlement offer, take the following steps:

Contact a Personal Injury Attorney

You may have been handling your own claim up until this point, but now’s the time to get an experienced personal injury attorney involved. A legal professional who specializes in this area of the law can provide you with the personalized advice and guidance you need to negotiate a good settlement.

Analyze the Settlement Offer

Before drafting a formal response to the insurance company, your attorney will help you thoroughly examine the initial offer. Doing so could shed light on the basis for the low settlement amount, which may stem from insufficient information regarding your injuries or losses. And by analyzing the offer, you’ll be better able to develop a solid response.

Formulate a Counteroffer

Your attorney will calculate all of your economic and non-economic damages. Using this information and considering other factors – such as the insurance policy limits and, if necessary, the personal assets of the at-fault party – they’ll help you decide on a fair counteroffer. Your attorney will also respond to the insurer on your behalf.

What if Settlement Negotiations Fail?

Negotiations are a standard part of the personal injury settlement process, and you may end up receiving and rejecting multiple offers as your case progresses. Your attorney will offer advice on whether or not to accept a settlement, but at the end of the day, the decision is yours.

If the insurance company ultimately refuses to put a reasonable offer on the table, your attorney may recommend that you file a lawsuit. And while there’s no guarantee that you’ll win in court, you can expect your attorney to fight to get you every dollar you deserve.

Dealing with an insurance company and negotiating a settlement is never easy on your own. Turn to William R. Rawlings & Associates, and you’ll have the expert legal representation you need to get fair financial compensation for your injuries and losses.

In Utah, Idaho and California, our personal injury attorneys have been helping injured victims for over 35 years, and we’d love to put our experience to work for you. For a free consultation to discuss personal injury settlement negotiations, contact us today.

Apr 09 2021

Car Accident Attorney Tips on How to Talk to an Insurance Adjuster

Hiring a car accident attorney after suffering injuries in a crash can be a smart move, but with everything going on, you might not get a chance to contact a law firm right away. Insurance adjusters tend to act quickly, however, so you may get a phone call quite soon.

If that happens, how should you handle the conversation?

First off, remember that the adjuster works for the insurance company – which means they don’t have your best interests in mind. Anything you say could affect the value of your personal injury claim, so you’ll need to be careful. Here, the experienced car accident attorneys at William R. Rawlings & Associates share their top tips for dealing with insurance adjusters.

Do you need a lawyer for a car accident claim

Be Polite and Professional

You may upset about the car accident and the injuries you’ve suffered, but lashing out at the insurance company’s representative won’t benefit your personal injury claim in any way. Better to remain calm and courteous, as keeping your cool can help you maintain control of the conversation.

Provide Limited Information

The insurance adjuster you speak with will likely try to get you to give a statement about the accident. Politely refuse to discuss anything about the car crash, other than basic facts regarding where and when it occurred and the identities of any witnesses. If the representative pushes you to answer, simply say that your investigation is ongoing and that you’ll share more details at the appropriate time.

Don’t Discuss Your Injuries

You can expect the insurance adjuster to inquire about the nature and severity of the injuries you sustained in the accident, but refrain from revealing any information about your medical condition. It may be days or even weeks before you know the full extent of your injuries, and a premature statement that isn’t accurate could reduce the value of your personal injury claim.

Take Notes While You Talk

Your car accident attorney will want to know about your phone call from the insurance adjuster. Jot down the information you provide and any you receive during the course of the conversation, and take note of any requests made. Before the call ends, make sure to get the name and telephone number of the person you’re speaking with and the insurance company they represent.

At William R. Rawlings & Associates, we provide legal representation to car accident victims in Utah, Idaho and California. And since we’re former insurance adjusters and insurance company attorneys, we know their tactics – and how to gain the advantage in negotiations.

Turn your personal injury claim over to our law firm, and we’ll make every effort to help you get the maximum in financial compensation. To schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with an experienced car accident attorney, contact William R. Rawlings & Associates today.