Maryland Car Accidents: How Lawyers & Insurers Deal With Soft Tissue Injuries
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Maryland lawyers and insurance companies often have a difficult time dealing with soft tissue injuries such as a sore back or neck. However, one Maryland car accident lawyer believes that injured victims can be compensated for their soft tissue injuries – as long as their attorney understands the ins and outs of dealing with insurance companies.
MD Attorney Doug Stevens
Doug Stevens, a Maryland attorney who practiced law for 30 years and whose firm focuses on personal injury and car accident matters in Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia, says that the first thing he says when he hears that a case “just” involves a soft tissue injury is that, “Soft tissue is the only tissue that hurts!”
He told us that one of the first things he wants to see when evaluating a case is the vehicle and how badly it was damaged. He explained:
Whenever we have a case with substantial car damage, we bring that up with the adjuster who tends to say, ‘The property damage has been settled; it’s not important.’ Then we say, ‘Please send me the following letter – Dear Mr. Stevens, Geico Insurance hereby agrees never to bring up the amount of property damage in another one of your injury cases. Sincerely, Geico.’ Surprisingly enough, they never supply that letter.
In other words, the car damage is not an important factor to them when there’s a lot of it. However, when there is a little of it, the first thing they do is send us 8x10 glossies showing us that they’re going to argue to the judge or jury that our client couldn’t have been injured, even though the steel in the car was designed to absorb large impact without folding or crumpling.
Experience matters in Maryland
Hiring an experienced Maryland car accident attorney can make all the difference – especially when you’re dealing with insurance companies who don’t like to pay for soft tissue injuries. Stevens says that anyone seeking an attorney should ask questions up front. He explained:
Well, if I had to have a prostate operation, I would really like to be operated on by a doctor who’s performed this type of surgery a lot. When I’ve had medical procedures done, I’ve never been bashful about asking, ‘How many times have you done this before?’ That’s why I think the first question that anybody should ask a prospective lawyer is, ‘How many jury and bench trials have you done for car accident cases?
Having practiced in this area of law for so many years, Stevens says that the average general practitioner hasn’t handled any cases like this and that can be unfortunate for the client. He knows full well that insurance companies know which lawyers prepare cases well and will take them to trial. He says that they have indices, they know who files suit, who works up a cases well and who prepares them well.
Contacting an experienced Maryland car accident attorney will be able evaluate your situation and discuss what options might be best for you.