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.

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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.

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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.

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Feb 12 2021

What if Your Car Accident Police Report is Inaccurate?

If you’re involved in a car accident, a police report can provide you with the evidence you need to prove that your injuries were caused by another motorist’s negligence.

But as we all know, anyone can make a mistake – so you could find that the report generated by the investigating officer who responded to the scene of your car accident is inaccurate. To learn how to deal with errors and get your police report amended, take a look at the following.

Do I need a copy of my accident report

How to Correct a Factual Mistake

Let’s say that the officer who wrote your car accident police report got the color, model or year of your vehicle wrong. Or that when they took down your driver’s license number, two of the numbers were transposed. Factual errors like these are often simple to fix.

To correct the information on your report, contact the local law enforcement agency involved. There may be directions on how to proceed on their website, but if not, reach out to the investigating officer. Politely explain the discrepancy between the facts and what has been reported, and ask them to amend the document.

Tips for Correcting a Disputed Error

If your police report is inaccurate in terms of how the facts surrounding the accident are presented or what it says regarding which motorist was at fault, getting the information corrected may be quite the challenge. But, that doesn’t mean you have no options.

First of all, don’t wait to let law enforcement know about the error. If you contact the investigating officer right away, they might agree to fix the mistake before the report is finalized. If not – or if it’s too late for that – you can try providing evidence that supports your argument. But don’t argue, as you’ll get a better response if act in a polite, respectful manner.

Chances are, however, the officer who wrote your police report won’t agree to make the changes you’d like. If that’s the case, you can ask for permission to write a supplemental statement and have it attached to your report.

Consult with an Experienced Car Accident Lawyer

Often, the easiest and most effective strategy for getting a police report corrected is to work with an experienced car accident lawyer.

The legal team at William R. Rawlings & Associates, serving clients in California, Idaho and Utah, can speak with law enforcement on your behalf and directly request that the officer involved address the mistakes in your police report. Our personal injury attorneys know how to achieve results, and you can count on us to fight to protect your legal rights. To discuss your case and discover how we can help, contact our office and schedule a free car accident lawyer consultation today.

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Feb 05 2021

Dealing with Financial Difficulties After an Auto Accident

An auto accident can affect you physically and emotionally, and the aftermath can have a huge impact on your financial future.

If you’ve been injured in a car crash caused by another driver’s negligence or wrongful action, you don’t have to accept the resulting financial harm. Instead, discuss your legal options with an experienced auto accident attorney. With a lawyer in your corner, you’ll have an easier time recovering every dollar you deserve – and if you work with the legal team at William R. Rawlings & Associates, your financial difficulties will soon be in the past.

Free car accident attorney consultation in Utah

Compensation for Your Losses

An experienced auto accident attorney can help you seek the maximum financial compensation available to you through a claim against the driver responsible for your injuries.

As the injured victim in a car crash, you may be entitled to compensation for the following:

  • All medical expenses, including the costs of any doctor visits, hospitalization, surgery, rehabilitation therapy, in-home care, medication and other treatments your injuries require
  • Lost income due to having to take time off work and, if you’re unable to return to the same profession or your injuries prevent you from seeking employment at all, lost earning capacity
  • Property losses, which may include reimbursement for car repair or replacement costs in addition to the fair market value of any belongings that were damaged or lost during the crash
  • Pain and suffering, emotional distress, loss of enjoyment and loss of consortium directly resulting from the injuries sustained in the auto accident

Protect Your Personal Injury Claim

An experienced auto accident attorney will help you prepare a strong personal injury claim and guide you through the legal process. In the meantime, you can do your part to ensure a successful outcome. We suggest that you:

  • Stick to the facts when speaking with insurance adjusters and never sign anything without speaking to your accident attorney first
  • Refrain from posting any information about the car crash on social media, as anything you share online could be used to devalue your personal injury claim
  • Follow the treatment advice of your doctors and attend all scheduled follow-up medical appointments

You accident attorney will likely provide more tips and targeted advice. Listen to their recommendations, and you’ll stand a stronger chance of obtaining the financial compensation you deserve.

Get the Legal Help You Need

Hiring a reputable auto accident attorney is one of the best ways to ensure you’re adequately compensated for your financial losses. And if you’re in Utah, Idaho or California, you’ll be in good hands with the legal team at William R. Rawlings & Associates.

We’ve been helping injured victims for more than 35 years, and we make every effort to maximize the amount of compensation our clients obtain. Choose our law firm, and you won’t have to pay us a dime if we don’t win or settle your claim.

For a free, no-obligation auto accident attorney consultation and expert help resolving your financial difficulties through a personal injury claim, contact William R. Rawlings & Associates today.

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Jan 15 2021

Hiring a Personal Injury Attorney for an Out-of-State Car Accident

You’ve been injured in an out-of-state car accident and want to hire a personal injury attorney to protect your rights. Where should you turn? Is it wiser to choose a local lawyer from your home state, or should you look for a law firm located in the state where the accident occurred?

To answer that question, you’ll need to consider the specific location of the car accident. If that’s relatively close to your home state, a local lawyer could provide the assistance you need. For help dealing with the aftermath of a crash further away, you may be better served by a personal injury attorney from another state. Read on for more details.

How to find the best car accident lawyer for you

When Hiring a Local Lawyer Makes Sense

Many personal injury law firms have attorneys who are licensed to practice not just in the state where they’re located, but also in the other nearby states. For example, William R. Rawlings & Associates is based in Utah, but our lawyers are also licensed in California and Idaho.

If the crash that caused your injuries occurred in a state that is close to your own, you may want to hire a local lawyer. By doing so, you’ll have an attorney who is close by, but also able to handle your out-of-state car accident claim.

When to Hire an Attorney from Another State

For legal assistance with a car accident that occurred in a far-away state, you may want to hire a personal injury lawyer from that state – especially if you believe you might be filing a lawsuit.

During the course of the lawsuit, your attorney will need to visit the courthouse multiple times. This would be easier if they didn’t have to take a flight out to every hearing. And while most personal injury law firms provide services on a contingency fee basis, any travel costs will likely come from your share of the settlement or court judgement. By hiring a lawyer from the state where the accident took place, you can keep these expenses down.

Protecting Your Rights After an Out-of-State Car Accident

Regardless of where your car accident occurred, consulting with a local personal injury attorney can be a smart first step to take. They’ll either be able to provide the legal assistance you need, or they can refer you to a reputable law firm that can.

The highly experienced lawyers at William R. Rawlings & Associates, serving injured victims in Utah, California and Idaho, have the knowledge and skill to guide you through the claims process. We’re ready to discuss your out-of-state car accident and how to obtain fair compensation for your injuries – and we offer free, no-obligation consultations. To speak with a trusted personal injury attorney with a long history of successful case results, contact us today.

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Jan 01 2021

The Importance of Monitoring Car Accident Injuries

Some common car accident injuries – like broken bones and lacerations – are immediately obvious. Others can go unnoticed at first, and in some cases, injury symptoms don’t develop until much later on.

What if that happens to you? Can you still file an accident claim against the negligent driver and obtain compensation for your losses? Here’s what you need to know to protect your legal rights.

Utah car accident lawyer

Why Car Accident Injuries May Not Appear Immediately

Being in a car accident is a traumatic experience, and the stress of the situation can cause the body to produce adrenaline and endorphins. The release of these two chemicals creates a heightened level of energy that, for many people, temporarily masks the sensation of pain.

In addition, some injuries may seem minor at first, but as time goes on, the condition worsens. This can be the case not only for physical injuries, but also for emotional issues, as victims often don’t realize how much mental strain they’re under until long after an accident.

Always Get a Medical Evaluation After a Car Accident

Even if you feel just fine right after a car crash, go see a doctor anyway. A medical professional can determine if you have any unnoticed car accident injuries and provide you with advice on warning signs to watch for in the upcoming days and weeks.

In the event you end up filing a car accident claim, documenting the fact that you pursued medical treatment within a reasonable amount of time can be crucial. Go to the doctor as soon as possible, or the insurance adjuster may argue that your injuries aren’t all that serious.

Leave Yourself Plenty of Time to File an Accident Claim

After a car crash, the negligent driver’s insurance company may offer you a settlement, but don’t sign anything right away. You’ll need to give your car accident injuries a chance to fully manifest, as once you sign a release, you won’t be able to pursue compensation for additional medical treatment.

From a strategic standpoint, holding off on accepting a settlement makes sense. By doing so, all of your legal options are still on the table – and the fact that you could file an accident claim can give you more leverage with the insurance company. But, you don’t want to wait until the last possible minute to bring a lawsuit. If you fail to meet all of the legal requirements in your accident claim and the statute of limitations expires, so does your ability to obtain compensation.

35 years of experience, we know how to maximize the value of your auto accident claim.

For a free, no-obligation consultation and expert advice on obtaining fair compensation for your car accident injuries, contact us today.

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Oct 02 2020

Calculating Lost Earning Capacity in a Car Accident Claim

If you were in a collision and suffered serious injuries that affect your ability to work, filing a car accident claim can enable you to get compensation for your financial losses. And, lost income due to needing time off work for treatment and recovery isn’t the only type of damages you can pursue – you may also be entitled to compensation for lost earning capacity. For an explanation of what that means for you and your case, read on.

Car Accident Claim

What is Lost Earning Capacity?

Loss of earning capacity is a reduction in the ability to earn an income. So, if your car accident injuries make returning to your current job position impossible – and if you’re unable to switch to a different line of work that pays just as well – you can seek compensation for the impairment of earning power and loss of future income.

How are Damages Calculated?

While the amount of lost income awarded in a car accident claim is based upon the specific wages you weren’t able to earn as a result of the collision, loss of earning capacity is based on a projection. The damages haven’t yet been suffered, and calculating the overall impact of your injuries on your financial future isn’t an exact science.

We can tell you, though, that car accident lawyers consider several factors in determining appropriate compensation. Your past work history, skills and expected years of employment may be instrumental, and your lawyer may also investigate possible promotions and future raises you might have enjoyed if you hadn’t been seriously injured.

Proving Lost Earning Capacity

Compared to lost income, loss of earning capacity is much more difficult to prove. Working with an experienced car accident lawyer is to your benefit, as proving your claim may require all of the following:

  • An extensive review of your employment record, your educational background and your work-related skills
  • A thorough calculation of your past earnings history and exactly how much your income decreased after the collision
  • A detailed analysis of today’s labor market and wage rates as well as economic projections and what the forecasts mean in terms of your future earnings
  • Expert medical witnesses to provide testimony on the extent of your injuries and their impact on your ability to earn an income in the future

William R. Rawlings & Associates, a long-standing and top-ranked law firm based in northern Utah, can help you fight for the maximum compensation in your car accident claim. We’ve collected millions of dollars in damages for clients in Utah, Idaho and California, and our highly experienced lawyers are successful in obtaining compensation in 98 percent of the cases we handle.

Work with us, and we’ll fight to get you every dollar you deserve for lost income, lost earning capacity and all of your other losses. Contact our office and schedule a free consultation or to discuss your case with a Utah car accident lawyer today.

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Sep 18 2020

Why Should You Hire an Auto Accident Attorney?

After a car crash, you might think you don’t need help from an auto accident attorney. And if the collision wasn’t all that serious, that could be true – the insurance company of the other driver may offer a fair settlement.

With a major accident involving severe injuries and vehicular damage, this isn’t the norm. In these cases, insurance companies often fight tooth and nail to provide as little compensation as possible. For that reason, if you’re a victim, you may be better off working with an auto accident lawyer. Here’s why.

How to find the best Utah auto accident attorney for your case

Get Expert Help Investigating Your Auto Accident

If you’ve been seriously injured, you may not be able to take pictures at the accident scene or interview witnesses after the collision – and trying to collect proof to support your claim later on isn’t going to be easy on your own.

Experienced auto accident attorneys understand how to build a successful case. Hire a lawyer, and you’ll have an expert gathering evidence on your behalf. You can focus on your recovery, with the peace of mind in knowing that no stone will be left unturned.

Have a Legal Professional on Your Side

Many car accident victims don’t fully understand their legal rights. Insurance companies tend to take advantage of this, making lowball settlement offers on legitimate claims.

By hiring an attorney who specializes in accident claims, you’ll be protecting your rights and interests. You won’t have to worry about meeting the deadline for filing a lawsuit in Utah. Plus, your lawyer will act as your advocate in dealing with the insurance company, handling the negotiations and, if necessary, taking your case to court.

Collect the Maximum Compensation for Your Injuries

It’s easy to underestimate the effect an auto accident can have on your life. You might see the medical bills piling up and know that your vehicle needs to be repaired or replaced, but those aren’t the only concerns. Your injuries might cause you to lose the ability to earn an income, perhaps, or you may end up needing ongoing medical attention. And, the collision could have resulted in psychological damages.

All of these situations may or may not apply in your situation, but an experienced auto accident attorney will ask the right questions and be realistic in estimating your losses. As a result, a lawyer can develop a strategy to get you every dollar you deserve.

At William R. Rawlings & Associates, our legal team understands how traumatic it is to be injured in a car crash – and we’re here to provide the help you need to get back on your feet. For a free case evaluation, contact our Draper or West Valley City office today to schedule a free case evaluation or to speak to an experienced Utah auto accident attorney now.

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Feb 21 2020

Errors to Avoid During Vehicle Accident Liability Cases, Part 2

In part one of this two-part blog series, we went over some of the primary errors often made by those attempting to file a personal injury claim based on a car, truck or other vehicle accident. Most such individuals have never filed such a claim before, and may not realize certain behaviors (or lack thereof) could be damaging their case.

At the offices of William Rawlings & Associates, our auto accident injury lawyers are here to ensure this never happens to you if you’re in such a situation. In today’s part two of our series, we’ll go over a few additional mistakes to avoid, including some that come further down the line when you’ve begun the process of negotiation a potential settlement with the opposing side of the case.

errors vehicle accident liability

Limited Evidence Provided

In part one, we went over the importance of remaining at the scene to collect proper documentation and evidence of the accident and what caused it. We’ll reinforce that here: Having things like photos of the scene, statements from witnesses, medical invoices, lost wages and any other documents associated with the incident is vital. These also include documents detailing any repairs to your vehicle.

This means not only collecting them properly at the right times, but also storing them and ensuring they’re all available when it comes time to present them. There’s nothing worse than missing out on your just compensation because you lost an important piece of evidence.

Accepting First Offer

In many auto accident cases where it’s clear another party is at fault, their representatives or insurance company will often make you an initial offer fairly quickly in the process. In nearly all cases, especially when this comes from an insurance company, this offer is intentionally far too low, and is intended to attempt to get you to agree quickly and move on. In most such situations, you’re entitled to far more and should hold out, which our attorneys will advise you of.

Signing Without Reading

Another major mistake to avoid is signing any number of documents without your attorney’s approval. These may come from your insurance company or the defendant’s, or from other sources. If any major body attempts to get you to sign anything, contact your attorney first to make sure it’s okay.

Not Hiring an Attorney

As you may have noticed, several of the mistakes we’ve outlined in this series are the sort that are easily avoided if you have the assistance of an experienced auto accident injury attorney. That’s why our final error we’ll list here is failing to obtain such representation – even if you think the facts of the case are obvious and straightforward, there may be several miscues our attorneys will help you steer clear of to obtain your just compensation.

For more on errors to avoid during the vehicle accident liability claim process, or to learn about any of our personal injury attorney services,, speak to the staff at the offices of William Rawlings & Associates today.

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