Our Personal Injury Experience
Accidents might be unintentional, but that doesn’t mean someone isn’t ultimately responsible. Under Oregon personal injury law, people must act with reasonable care under the circumstances. When they don’t, and they end up harming someone, then they are negligent. We see negligence contribute to many accidents, including:
- Car and motor vehicle wrecks. Anyone on the road can be struck by a car, truck, or other motor vehicle.
- Premises liability accidents. Dangerous conditions on private or public property can injure a person, like a hole in the ground or a staircase that collapses.
- Slip and falls. Many hazards underfoot can cause a person to fall, including ice, spilled liquids, snow, trash, or loose tiles.
- Product liability. Dangerous products can cause serious injuries due to a defect with design, manufacture, or inadequate safety instructions.
- Medical malpractice. A medical professional must follow the applicable standards of care so that patients are not harmed. Medical errors lead to all sorts of mistakes, such as delayed diagnosis or childbirth injuries.
- Wrongful death. Many accidents are fatal. Oregon law allows some family members to receive compensation in a wrongful death case.
Personal Injury FAQs
Accident victims often don’t know where to turn or who they can trust. Helpfully, we answer some of the more common questions below.
What is negligence?⌄
Negligence is the failure to act as a reasonably prudent person would when you have a duty to do so. There are some obvious duties, such as a duty to follow traffic safety rules, or to warn someone of a hazard which they can’t see when they come on your property.
How much time do I have to sue?⌄
Oregon has laws that lay out the maximum amount of time. Generally, someone with personal injuries gets two years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit. If someone died, then you have three years from the accident which caused death to file. You certainly don’t want to go over the deadline. If you do, you cannot receive any compensation.
What is comparative fault?⌄
Not all accidents are black and white. Sometimes, both sides were negligent. For example, you might have slipped on a snowy sidewalk because a store didn’t shovel it after a storm. At the same time, you were scrolling through messages on your phone and didn’t check where you were walking. In this example, both sides are partially at fault for the accident. Under Oregon law, you can still sue for injuries if you were 50% or less at fault.
Will I need to hire a lawyer to negotiate a settlement?⌄
There are definite advantages. A lawyer can quickly identify what evidence you need. This is very complicated, especially in medical malpractice or truck accident cases. The evidence might be hard for a lay person to find. An experienced attorney, however, can have the defendant preserve relevant evidence for review later.
A lawyer is also an excellent negotiator. Without a lawyer, your odds of receiving a fair settlement go way down. Some insurers love nothing more than to see a badly injured claimant without a lawyer.
An experienced attorney is also a must if your case goes to trial. Trying to learn civil procedure or the rules of evidence is an exhausting process. Let an attorney present your case.
Negotiating For Our Clients
Any accident victim without a lawyer might find themselves instantly over their heads. Few insurance companies will offer fair compensation to someone without legal representation. Instead, you might feel as if you are walking in a maze.
Johnston Law Firm in Hood River is committed to our client’s best interests. We can help you whether you are just leaving the hospital or have already had your claim denied by an insurer. We begin negotiation by properly valuing a claim and then negotiating an aggressive settlement. Insurers in Oregon are aware of the passionate commitment we bring on behalf of clients. They know that their familiar tricks will not work with us.
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