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The Importance of Visual Aids in Your Brain Injury Case

December 31st, 2020

By Omid Rejali, Esq.

Brain injuries can happen in a variety of ways. The number one way that you may get a brain injury is by a fall. Second to that is from a blow to the head. You may also get this type of injury as a result of a car wreck. The important thing to note with these types of injuries is that your head does not necessarily need to be impacted in anyway for you to get a head injury. You may get a head injury by the mere moving of your brain inside the skull as a result of a sudden stop in movement. Because these types of injuries are often "invisible," to be able to bring the injury to light, it is extremely crucial to use visual aids throughout your case. Here are a few way you can do that.

Use Diagrams

You or your attorney can use diagrams to show how your brain was impacted as a result of an injury. Lets discuss this in a typical scenario of a rear-end car collision. When you are rear-ended by a vehicle, the forces from the vehicle that hits you (the bullet vehicle) propel your body and your brain to move forward. If the forces are sufficient this can cause your brain to move forward in your skull. Assuming you did have a seat belt on, what happens next is your body moving backwards and either hitting the head rest or not. This movement, which is commonly referred to as a "coup/countercoup" (the forward and backward movement) casues your brain to move inside the skull and hit the inside parts of your skull.

Usually, this type of injury does not show up on any type of imaging. And so, it becomes extremely crucial to be able to show to a jury, or an insurance company representative how you have been injurued as a result of your collision by use of visual aids. We repeateadly use visual aids such as diagrams in our cases to prove our clients cases.

Use of Animation

Companies are now able to recreate what happened to you during your San Diego car accident by use of animation. These animation are a bit on the pricier side, but are a must if you want to be able to convince a jury or the insurance company of the mechanism of your injury (how the injury happened) and the extent of your injuries. We regularly use companies to assist our clients in showing their brain injuries.

Experts

Almost in every case where a brain injury is involved the defendants will try to use the bias that "since you can't see it it must have not happened" in their favor. Because of this it is extremely important in your brain injury case to employ experts who will be able to testify to how this injury came about.

The type of expert that you would want to hire for your case to explain how your brain injury happened, is a biomechanical and or accident reconstruction expert. These experts use their backgrounds in physics, biology and mechnanics to give their opinion based on the facts of your specific case to tell the jury or the insurance company representatives how your brain was injured in the incident.

Brain injuries are more common than you think and can have devastating, life long impacts on your health, well being and your ability to earn in the future. Do not under any circumstance take these injuries lightly and please make sure you have a reputable attorney on your side.

Thank you for reading my blog. I hope this helps you.

If you have any other questions, feel free to contact my office at 619-887-4148, send us a text message to 619-485-6313, send me an email at omid@rejalilawfirm.com or leave us a message here and we will get back to you.

Born to get you JUSTICE!

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What Should You Do if You Have Been Placed at Fault for a Car Accident in San Diego

December 25th, 2020

By Omid Rejali, Esq.

In my experience I have seen many cases where a party has been placed at fault without justification. Often at the scene of the collision, especially if there is no independent witness, the police officer goes off of what you and the other driver tells them to make a determination of fault. There are many other factors into determining who is at fault that the officers usually do not take into account. Here's what you should do immediately if you have reviewed the police report and, you believe you have been unjustifiably placed at fault.

1) File A Supplemental Explanation

If after review of the police report, you find that the police officer has made any mistake when he or she was writing down the information as you were providing it to him or her, you want to make sure that you correct any inconsistencies right away. You can do this by writing a letter to the California Highway Patrol or the agency involved and requesting that the information be attached to the police report.

2) Take Photos of The Entire Scene

This is extremely important. If you did not get a chance to take photos on the date of the collision, you want to go back and take those photos. Ideally, you want to take photos of the entire route you took that day. You want to take these photos as close as possible to the date of the collision to make sure the area is substantially same or similar as it was when the collision happened.

3) Do Not Provide Any Information to the At Fault Party's Insurance

You likely will get a phone call from the at fault party's insurance company to speak to you about how the incident took place. You do not want to speak with them. This is because any information you provide them will potentially be used against you. You have to remember, the insurance company for the at-fault party is not there to protect you, they want to protect their own insured. So, providing them any information would likely be used against you later on.

4) Get an Accident Reconstructionst Expert As Soon As Possible

Accident reconstructionist experts are usually engineers who have experience and training in recreating a collision. Having one on your side as early as possible can help you convince the third parties insurance, that even if a police officer put you at fault, based on the evidence that cannot be true.

One of the crucial pieces of information that they may be able to obtain right away from your vehicle is what they call the EDR (event data recording). This acts as the black box for your car and most vehicles these days are equipped with them. The EDR holds crucial evidence such as speed, braking, and steering wheel rotation that can assist your accident reconstruction expert in recreating the collision.

Even if you have been placed at fault for a collision, you may still be entitled to compensation for your injuries. However, you need to move quickly on these cases to make sure you preserve all of the evidence.

Thank you for reading my blog. I hope this helps you.

If you have any other questions, feel free to contact my office at 619-887-4148, send us a text message to 619-485-6313, send me an email at omid@rejalilawfirm.com or leave us a message here and we will get back to you.

Born to get you JUSTICE!

Three Key Ingredient to Winning Jury Trials

December 17th, 2020

By Omid Rejali, Esq.

1) Credibility;

2) Logic;

3) Emotion.

These three ingredients will determine whether you will win or lose your jury trial. They will also play a significant role on how much you will be awarded in damages in your San Diego car accident or personal injury case. Let's break each of them down.

Credibility

Without credibility there is no chance that you will be able to win a trial. This applies not only to you as the attorney, but also to each of your witnesses including your expert witnesses and of course the plaintiff. No jury is going to want to sit through a trial if they feel you are not being truthful and honest about all of the facts in your case.

This is specifically important when it comes to the bad facts in your case. I will leave the subject of how to deal with bad facts for a different blog, suffice it to day that if you do not discuss your bad facts at the earliest opportunity that you get with the jury (either in mini-openings or during voir dire) chances are that you have already lost the battle of credibility.

Do not under any circumstances shy away from the bad facts. Not disclosing them will only allow the defense to capitalize on it and, that strategy is one that resonates with every jury. You don't want to sit down after you have given your opening statements, only to have the defense stand up and tell the jury: "well that was a great recitation of the facts from the plaintiff, but let me tell you what he/she did not tell you..." This is a sure way to lose a trial or at least, you will be fighting an uphill battle to try to gain back your credibility from the jury.

Don't shy away from you bad facts, identify them and discuss them with the jury at the first opportunity that you get.

Logic

Logic is a key component in trials because what you are telling the jury must make sense. The logical aspect of things come in mostly from your experts. Depending on the facts and circumstances of the case, you want to make sure that your experts have all of the facts that are important to their opinion ahead of time. You also want to make sure that they are prepared to respond to the defense's expert and explain why their story does not make sense or how their logic is flawed.

Emotion

We are all emotional creatures. Some more than others, and in every case you will need to be able to create an emotional connection between your clients case and the jury.

You can do this by explaining to the jury how each character in the litigation from the defense has tried and is continuing to try to prevent your client from getting justice. This of course needs to be part of the theme of your case and needs to start in opening statements and continued through every witness and cross-examination of each of the defense witnesses.

Finally, remember what you are doing-standing up for an injured person who is unable to help themselves and has asked you to help them is an honorable thing. And what the defense attorneys and their team is doing is simply immoral, and unethical. By the time you get to trial, they have had at least 2 years to make it right, and chose not to accept responsibility and come up with excuses, distractions, and blame.

Make sure the jury understands that you and your client did absolutely everything in your power to not have to be there, but the defense left the client with no choice.

Thank you for reading my blog. I hope this helps you.

If you have any other questions, feel free to contact my office at 619-887-4148, send us a text message to 619-485-6313, send me an email at omid@rejalilawfirm.com or leave us a message here and we will get back to you.

Born to get you JUSTICE!

The Power of Patience and Resilience During Your Injury Claim

December 9th, 2020

By Omid Rejali, Esq.

Patience and resilience are two qualities that you need during your injury claim. The process of obtaining justice unfortunately is more difficult as it should be. We have a justice system that focuses on maintaining substantial fairness between both parties-the plaintiff, the party or party's filing the lawsuit and the defendant-the party or party's alleged of wrong doing.

But more often than not, in my practice I have seen that in light of insurmountable evidence against the defendant's, they still don't accept responsibility. Many times this causes clients frustration and, at times they lose hope. But I am here to tell you, that you should not fall into their trap, because they want you to get tired, frustrated and hopeless so they can get away with not accepting full responsibility and paying you as little money as possible.

So how can you do that?

Having the right attorney can make all the difference. When I say the right attorney, I am talking about an attorney who truly has your best interest at heart. As attorneys we have taken an oath to be loyal to our clients. That means, putting the clients interest ahead of our own. Which means, if the insurance company is making an offer that we don't think we would recommend to our mother or sister, then we should not recommend it to our client.

Attorney's are hired because we are one step removed from the event and, that way we are able to look at facts and circumstances more objectively. Your attorney is the one who is there to guide you from being blamed by the insurance companies and turned into a victim for making a legitimate claim, to becoming the victor.

The personal injury attorney and firm you hire is one of the most important decisions you may make in your life. You want to make sure you hire a firm and an attorney that is willing to go the distance and actually cares for you-not just the bottom of line-making money.

You also want an attorney that helps you during those tough times when you want to give up. If you are dealing with an attorney and, you feel like he or she has gotten tired and is not willing to go any further, but that you still feel like you are not being treated fairly, you have an absolute right to consult with another attorney.

Make sure your attorney is there to help you become more patient during the process and build resilience. And remember, if the attorney that you hire does not have patience or resilience themselves, chances are they are not going to be able to carry that over to you.

Thank you for reading my blog. I hope this helps you.

If you have any other questions, feel free to contact my office at 619-887-4148, send us a text message to 619-485-6313, send me an email at omid@rejalilawfirm.com or leave us a message here and we will get back to you.

Born to get you JUSTICE!

Why Your Attendance to Jury Duty In San Diego Is So Important During the Pandemic

November 12th, 2020

By Omid Rejali, Esq.

In San Diego and other parts of our state jury trials have been halted since March because of the Pandemic. Judges, attorneys, court staff and personnel are all getting used to the new normal.

Since the pandemic we have had criminal defendants not able to have their day in court. Under the law, all of us are presumed innocent until proven guilty and because of the pandemic, the courts have been unable to hold jury trials.

It has now been almost 9 months since the original stay at home orders back in March. Our courts have worked diligently to try to come up to date on cases, but they are still behind. Many of our litigants who had been waiting for years to have their day in court have had to wait longer than expected. Some of these people had already been waiting for 2 3 or 4 years. I have a case where my client has been waiting for over 5 years now.

Last month in October, the San Diego Superior Court reported that out of the approximately 900 juror summons that were sent out, only 40 people showed up.

I completely understand how difficult these times have been for all of us. Not having the ability to put your children in day care, working from home, many families losing their jobs and their health care. The uncertainty of it all has also impacted our mental health, as uncertainty breeds anxiety.

On the bright side however, we do know more and more about the virus than we did 9 months ago. And it looks like with a possible vaccine on the way, there is some light at the end of the tunnel.

I cannot express how important it is for all of us as a community to fulfill our time-honored duty to serve as a juror. We all need each other and, there are many civil litigants and criminal defendants that are suffering and anxious. They need our help to resolve their cases. We need to come together as human beings and begin the process of healing each other. The past 9 months have been awful to say the least. But our community needs us now. Criminal Defendants, and civil litigants who have chosen people like you and me to decide their fates have been waiting for a long time to have their day in court and for us to decide what is right and just.

Insurance companies have also began taking advantage of the situation and, those of us who need help the most. Prior to the pandemic, having the fear of a jury trial looming over their heads, they were acting more fairly and had an incentive to settle cases. Now, since they know that they can buy themselves more time, they have been taking advantage of the situation and, attempting to settle cases for much less than what they are worth. They also know that the clients are not in a good financial situation and, are more likely to accept a lower settlement.

This is all because they don't have the pressure of a jury trial on their backs.

Believe it or not, we have a lot of power and can make a huge difference by showing up to jury duty. Our presence, not only leads to a just outcome and result, but also, tells the big money corporation and insurance companies that we as the conscious of the community are going to decide how we want to live in our community, instead of them making those decisions.

Each one of us who attends jury duty during this time, is helping a fellow human being get closure to an injustice they have been facing for a long time. After closure, comes the healing process. And now more than ever we all need each other to heal.

Thank you for reading my blog. I hope this information is helpful.

If you have any other questions, feel free to contact my office at 619-887-4148, send us a text message to 619-485-6313, send me an email at omid@rejalilawfirm.com or leave us a message here and we will get back to you.

Born to get you justice.

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Personal Injury Pandemic Scams and How to Overcome Them

November 5th, 2020

By Omid Rejali, Esq.

As Covid-19 ravages through our country, personal injury firms that work on what I like to call "turn and burn" model have become increasingly desperate to get cases. You may have noticed a substantial increase in personal injury advertising on your social media platforms like instagram and facebook.

Personal injury law firms with the "turn and burn" model need to have cases coming in as they settle cases that are going out. For example, if they settle 5 cases in one month, they would need to sign up at least 4 or 5 cases to be able to run their business. As you can see, this model can become all about the numbers and, not so much about you, the human being who has suffered a loss through no fault of their own.

The pandemic has hit these firms the hardest and so they have resorted to aggressive advertising campaigns, including misleading information to be able to get as many cases as they can. These advertisings may include statements such as millions and millions recovered or that they settled a case for $2 million dollars. Although, those statements may be true, you want to make sure that the firm that is advertising those results actually obtained those results.

Due to the pandemic, business slowed down for these "turn and burn" firms, and competition at the same time increased because now these firms could pick up cases in any part of the state or county by advertising there since businesses were not allowed to see clients in person and were conducting everything via various video platforms. And so, they began heavy advertising and I have seen many firms with few years experience claiming that they have recovered over $300,000,000. Again, although that may be true it behooves you to conduct further investigation to make sure that the firm itself has actually obtained those results, and is not using some other firms results as their own.

This is crucial because as part of the pandemic advertising from these firms, many of these firms won't even handle your case, they are merely a marketing vehicle to get the cases and will give your case to some other firm to work on, without you knowing.

With more and more people losing jobs and potentially not having health care as a result, it is extremely important to conduct your due diligence more than ever, before hiring your personal injury lawyer in San Diego or anywhere else for that matter.

Finally, it has also come to my attention that attorneys are taking high percentages from client's as a fee. Recently, I became aware of fees being charged as high as 45% for a simple case.

The market rate currently is 33 1/3 percent if your cases settles before a lawsuit is filed and 40% thereafter. Although, that is the case it is important to know that you have an absolute right under business and professions code 6147 & 6148 to negotiate that fee with your attorney. Do that before you sign a contract.

Thank you for reading my blog. I hope this information is helpful.

If you have any other questions, feel free to contact my office at 619-887-4148, send us a text message to 619-485-6313, send me an email at omid@rejalilawfirm.com or leave us a message here and we will get back to you.

Born to get you justice.

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The No. 1 way Personal Injury Attorney Advertising can Mislead You & How to Protect Yourself From It.

October 29th, 2020

By Omid Rejali, Esq.

ATTORNEYS ADVERTISING THAT THEY HAVE RECOVERED MILLIONS WITHOUT PROVIDING ANY SPECIFIC DETAIL AS TO THE FACTS OR INJURIES OF THEIR CLIENTS; OR IF THEY ARE TALKING ABOUT A SINGLE RESULT NOT GIVING YOU FACTS ABOUT THE INJURY THEIR CLIENT HAD SUSTAINED.

With the advent of social media more than ever before you see advertising from personal injury attorneys showing the millions and millions of dollars that they have recovered for their clients, or advertising a single result that they obtained for a client.

The message of these advertisings is clear. Because we were able to obtain such a result for one client, we can get the same result for you. So, hire us! Plus you have nothing to lose because you don't pay us anything, unless we win!

The truth is, under the California ethics guidelines attorneys are not allowed to advertise any results without specifically mentioning that the result or outcome of the case is not a guarantee, warranty or prediction of any other outcome. Lately however I have not been seeing that in the recent advertising trends.

The next time you or anyone you know is in need of a personal injury attorney make sure that you do your due diligence before hiring them. Here are some suggestions.

1) Ask About the Attorney's Reputation in the Community or Look it up Online

Make sure that if you know an attorney to ask them if they know the reputation of the attorney that you will be hiring. Remember, the personal injury attorney that you hire can be extremely important to you because they can be the difference between an attorney who will settle your case early for a quick buck versus one that will fight till the end and will say NO to the insurance company until they pay you what is fair.

Another way you can look up the attorney's reputation is through avvo.com . Once there, you can see if the attorney has received any endorsements from other attorneys in the community. Although, this can be less reliable than asking around and doing your own research because the attorneys can have their friends write about them.

2) Have the Attorney You Are Hiring Explain to You Some of The Results They Boast About on Their Website

During your consultation make sure you ask the personal injury lawyer you are trying to hire about some of the results they have on their website to see if they can explain them to you. A personal injury attorney should be able to explain those results to you right away, especially if they are in the millions of dollars.

3) Ask the Attorney You Are Hiring if They have Trial Experience with Personal Injury Cases

Personal injury lawyers who have trial experience deeply care about their clients and do not back down until they get you what they believe is fair. You do not know the value of your case and that is the reason why you hire a personal injury lawyer. You want to make sure that the attorney knows you well, cares, and understands what the value of your case is and, is not looking to make a quick buck!

4) During Your Initial Consultation with the Attorney Ask About the Names of The Cases Advertised

During your initial consultation with the personal injury attorney ask about the names of the advertised results. Unless they are confidential, request that the information be provided to you. Once you have a name of the case, you can then search for that result online and verify that in fact that attorney or at least that firm was the primary firm responsible for that result.

You can search for verdicts on juryverdictalert.com. Once there, input the name of the case and you will see the names of the attorneys responsible for obtaining the result.

****It is important to make sure to make sure that the attorney you are hiring is the attorney primary responsible for the results they claim they have received. A lot of firms advertise that they are responsible for a certain verdict or result, when in fact they are not. What these firms do is they get you through the door and, afterwards funnel your case to a bigger firm to handle the case for you so that they can still collect a referral fee on your case.

It's important to go to the firm that will handle your case from start to finish, because many times these firms that funnel cases do an extremely poor job on working on your case during the litigation process, which can then have a devastating impact on the results of your case later on.

I hope this blog helps you.

If you have any other questions, feel free to contact my office at 619-887-4148, send us a text message to 619-485-6313, send me an email at omid@rejalilawfirm.com or leave us a message here and we will get back to you.

Born to get you justice.

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How to Protect Yourself from the Insurance Companies Video Recording You?

October 21st, 2020

By Omid Rejali, Esq.

Insurance companies will go to great lengths to distract juries from your injuries. Another trick that they have in their arsenal of tricks is to video record you during a variety of activities to show that you are not as hurt as you claim to be.

Although, this can be an effective way to try and distract from your injuries, there are ways to overcome it.

Be aware that during the pendency of your case, you can very well be under surveillance. Insurance companies hire their private investigators and these people will be sitting outside your home, outside of your work and also will be following you to grocery stores and the gym to show that you are able to do everything as a normally healthy person would.

Here are common places that I have found they usually do this:

  • At your house (here they are trying to video record you doing chores around the house such as gardening, washing the car. etc.)

  • At your place of work. Depending on the type of injury you are claiming they would be following you to work to see how you are using the body part that you are claiming injury to.

  • At the gym. They love this one, because it allows them to argue that there is nothing wrong with you if you are working out. (of course we know that is not the case an overwhelming majority of time, because even if we have been injured, we still need to workout).

  • During the time that you appear at your attorney's office for a deposition. Either the day before or the day of.

  • During the time that you are going to see the doctors the insurance companies have hired to minimize your claim.

The first thing is to be aware that this can happen. You also want to make sure you share any suspicious activity with your attorney so that he or she can obtain these videos in advance of your trial.

These are some of the examples I have seen where the insurance companies hired private investigators to be following you around. There is no way to stop them from doing this while you are out in the public. But it's good to be aware.

I hope this blog helps you.

If you have any other questions, feel free to contact my office at 619-887-4148, send us a text message to 619-485-6313, send me an email at omid@rejalilawfirm.com or leave us a message here and we will get back to you.

Born to get you justice.

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How the Insurance Company Uses Your Gap in Treatment As an Excuse to Minimize Your Claim

October 13th, 2020

By Omid Rejali, Esq.

Insurance companies are looking for anything to belittle your injuries and minimize the value of your claim. The gap in treatment excuse is one of their favorites. Make no mistake, they are always trying to use human biases and prejudices in their favor to further their objective and, it is your job to explain to them why your gap in treatment should not have any bearing on the gravity of your injuries.

Here's are three ways the insurance companies like to take your gap in treatment out of context

1) Since you did not see a doctor right away your injury must not be that serious

This is one of their favorites. The truth is, when you get into an accident you are usually in shock. Even if you have had a serious injury you may not feel it right away. You may also not have insurance and, would not want to take an ambulance to the hospital for the fear of the costs that it will have. I have had many of my clients with serious injuries-requiring future surgery, that did not go to the emergency room with an ambulance.

The best way to overcome such an argument is to have your doctor write a report explaining your injury and, the evolution of that injury. Many injuries do not manifest themselves right away, and others could be masked by other more serious injuries. Masking is the process of which our brain masks one injury in favor of another more significant injury. It is only when the more significant injury has stabilized when our brain begins to unmask the other injury that has been there all along.

2) That you did not complain about the injury close to the accident

Another favorite of the insurance companies is because you did not complain about a specific injury close in time to the time of the accident, then it must not be related to the accident. This goes hand in hand to the masking of injuries I was discussing. There are also many injuries that become more difficult to diagnose when your body is suffering from a more serious injury. For example, in a recent case, a client of mine had a significant injury to his spine. At the same time, he had a dip in his walk. For almost two years the doctors were treating his spine and the entire time thought that the dipping was related to his lower spine, more specifically his sciatica. It was not until the spine was stabilized and the he was still dipping that they realized, he in fact had a torn ligament in his hip.

3) Because you have not seen a doctor for years by the time of your trial, you must not need anymore future care

This cannot be farther from the truth. Only because the doctors have deemed that you have reached you maximum medical improvement (MMI), does not mean that you will not require any future care. This of course depends on the type of doctors you have been seeing. For example, you may have been seeing an orthopedic surgeon for your neck injury and, the doctor has treated you for approximately two years with different modalities. And has also suggested that you would not be a good candidate for a surgery. However, that does not mean that the pain is just going to go away and you will not require any future care for that injury. Other care, in the form of pain management treatment would certainly be something that could be helpful to you.

Don't let the insurance companies fool you with their illogical arguments.

Hope this information helps you.

If you have any further questions, feel free to call my office 24/7 at 619-887-4148 send me an email at omid@rejalilawfirm.com; send us a text message at 619-485-6313 or reach us here and we will get back to you.

Born to get you justice.

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How The Insurance Company Uses a Pre-existing Condition to Mislead You into Accepting Less Money and How to Overcome It

October 6th, 2020

By Omid Rejali, Esq.

The insurance companies have no shame. They will use any means necessary to pay you the least amount of money possible for your injury. One of the things I hear them saying over and over is: "your clients condition was pre-existing." Well, let me tell you, even if your condition is pre-existing, the law allows you to recover damages for the harm the insurance companies insured caused you if the condition become worse as a result of the accident.

The Law

The California Jury Instructions (CACI), which are the instructions that the court reads to a jury in a trial defines aggravation of a preexisting condition or disability as:

Plaintiff is not entitled to damages for any physical or emotional condition that he/she had before defendant's conduct occurred. However, if plaintiff had a physical or emotional condition that was made worse by defendant's wrongful conduct, you must award damages that will reasonably and fairly compensate him/her for the effect on that condition.

As you can see, the pre-existing condition defense is just another trick the insurance companies try to use against you to try and not pay you the value of what your damages are worth.

How to Overcome This Argument

Although this can come about in many contexts, most commonly they arise when you have had a prior neck or back problem. One way to overcome this argument is to produce evidence, by way of your prior medical records to show that your condition was stable prior to the injury producing event taking place.

Another way you can overcome this argument is by showing even if the condition was not stable, how the injury causing event made the matter worse. For example, if you were suffering from neck pain because of a disk herniation but the condition was stable and, as a result of the collision now you are required to do surgery, that would show that the injury producing event made the injury worse.

Bottom Line

Insurance companies are in the business of making money and they will go to great lengths of trying to pay you as little money as possible. Don't let them fool you by making these types of arguments. Remember the law is on your side.

I hope this information helps you. If you would like to speak to me, you can call my office at 619-887-4148; send me a text at 619-485-6313; leave us a message here or email me at omid@rejalilawfirm.com.

Born to get you justice.

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3 Reasons why you should delay settling your San Diego car accident claim

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