Free Initial Consultation and NO Fees or Costs Unless We Win
Baltimore auto accident attorney Marc Atas handles car accidents that occur in the Baltimore-Washington area including Baltimore City, Baltimore County, Anne Arundel County, Western Maryland, The eastern shore, Frederick county, Carroll County and Prince Georges County. Our firm has won hundreds of auto accident trials in Maryland and settled thousands of cases where clients were injured in car accidents. Baltimore Attorney Marc Atas is a highly-skilled attorney based in Baltimore, Maryland who represents individuals throughout Maryland who have been involved in a Car Accident.
Baltimore auto accident attorney Marc Atas has represented innocent victims in personal injury claims, car accidents, death claims, survival actions, property damage claims, rental car claims, diminished value claims, loss of consortium claims, slip and falls, permanent injury claims, claims were the victim can never return to work, and dependency claims.
Baltimore auto accident attorney Marc Atas has had several multi- million dollar verdicts.
Damages typically claimed in an auto accident include:
Compensatory Damages for Bodily Injury
In an action for damages in a personal injury case, you shall consider the following:
(1) The personal injuries sustained and their extent and duration;
(2) The effect such injuries have on the overall physical and mental health and well‑being of the plaintiff;
(3) The physical pain and mental anguish suffered in the past and which with reasonable probability may be expected to be experienced in the future;
(4) The disfigurement and humiliation or embarrassment associated with such disfigurement;
(5) The medical and other expenses reasonably and necessarily incurred in the past and which with reasonable probability may be expected in the future;
(6) The loss of earnings in the past and such earnings or reduction in earning capacity which with reasonable probability may be expected in the future.
In awarding damages in this case you must itemize your verdict or award to show the amount intended for:
(1) The medical expenses incurred in the past;
(2) The medical expenses reasonably probable to be incurred in the future;
(3) The loss of earnings and/or earning capacity incurred in the past;
(4) The loss of earnings and/or earning capacity reasonably probable to be expected in the future;
(5) The “Noneconomic Damages” sustained in the past and reasonably probable to be sustained in the future. All damages which you find for pain, suffering, pre-impact fright, inconvenience, physical impairment, disfigurement, loss of consortium, or other nonpecuniary injury are “Noneconomic Damages”;
(6) Other damages.
Auto Accidents from A to Z
Many questions may be running through your mind if you have been involved in an accident while driving. An attorney can restore the quiet and provide answers to help you understand how to handle your case, every step of the way.
What should I do when involved in an auto accident?
- Stay calm and do not admit fault to anyone.
- Call the police.
- Exchange information with the other driver.
- If injured, try to go to the hospital the same day.
- Make sure you write down the tag number, name of driver, name of other car’s owner, insurance information and the police report number, even if the police officer tells you that he has gotten all the information and will give you a police report.
- Contact your attorney to discuss the options in your case.
- Contact your insurance company to report the accident.
- If you don’t intend to use a lawyer, contact the other driver’s insurance company.
Below is some important information to consider when involved in an auto accident:
- Can I Use My Baltimore Accident Lawyer to represent me for my out of state car accident?
Can I use a Baltimore Accident lawyer for an accident that happened out of state?
Yes. If you live in Maryland but were in an accident while you were in another state such as Georgia, Washington DC, New Jersey, Delaware,New York, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Virginia, Pennsylvania,West Virginia, The Law Office of Marc Atas and Associates will represent you for your personal injury, car accident, truck accident, automobile accident, and property damage claims. While we are only licensed to practice law in the State of Maryland, we can do the following legal activities on your behalf. The Law Office of Marc Atas and Associates can resolve your car damage claim, diminished value of car claim, make sure you receive timely medical treatment, aid the insurance company in accepting liability, take statements from witnesses, obtain police reports and finally attempt to settle your claim. If we are unable to settle your claim, we will locate counsel in the appropriate state to file suit and go to court on your behalf. The attorney fee arrangement will remain the same even if additional counsel is necessary and will not result in any additional fee. The personal injury, car accident, truck accident, and automobile accident laws in Delaware,New York, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Virginia, Pennsylvania,West Virginia, Georgia, Washington DC and New Jersey are complicated. Each state has it’s own laws with regard to tort claim/no-fault, minimum policy limits, contributory negligence/comparative negligence,caps on pain and suffering, statute of limitations, punitive damages,and recovery of attorney fees. There are time limitations which must be strictly followed with regard to statute of limitations, putting local governments on notice, and filing paperwork with the insurance company within the required time limits. I have outlined the basic laws that apply when involved in personal injury, car accident, truck accident, or automobile accident in Delaware,New York, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia , Georgia, Washington DC and New Jersey in a linked article .
- How can a lawyer help me if I have been in an automobile accident?
How can a lawyer help me if I have been in an automobile accident?
Contact an attorney immediately-even before you contact an insurance company– if you are injured in an automobile accident and feel you are not at fault. See attached article on how to choose an attorney.Once you contact the attorney, he/she will interview you to determine the full extent of your injury and to assess who is at fault in the accident. Attorneys often do not charge a fee for the telephone consultation that analyzes these two issues and once it is determined you were involved and injured in an accident that was most likely not your fault, they recommend meeting to review your case in greater detail.
1) Collect all of the necessary data
2) Find a qualified doctor
3) Help Collect PIP benefits
4) What is a PIP waiver?
5) Fix your car and obtain a rental car quickly
6) Prevent your insurance company from raising your rates or canceling your policy
7) Help resolve disputes quickly
8) Obtain medical records promptly
9) Get the insurance company to rule in your favor
10) Help with recorded statements and filtering information to the insurance companies
11) Submit a convincing and complete demand package
12) Determine what a case is worth.
13) Recover money even if the person who causes the accident does not have insurance
14) Recover benefits from several sources in a motor vehicle accident
15) Settle your claim promptly
As you read along in the A-Z Auto Accidents, each one of these areas is fully explained.Each one of these steps must be carefully completed in order to ensure that your accident claim is handled in a professional and timely manner. If any of these steps are skipped, then it is more likely than not that either the insurance company will refuse to settle your claim or in the alternative, make you a settlement offer that you will be unhappy with.In addition failure to follow these steps will result in delay in payment of the damage to your car , reimbursement of lost wages, payment of medical bills and the settlement of your personal injury claim.
- An Attorney Can…Find Medical Care
If you have been injured and have not received medical treatment, an attorney can help you find the appropriate medical care. Specialists like orthopedic surgeons or neurologists have especially long waiting lists that cause patients to wait months before receiving care. Attorneys can help greatly with this lag time, as they can get specialist appointments for their clients in a relatively short period of time, allowing for adequate medical treatment in a much timelier manner.Documentation by the doctor is extremely important. One of the best way to prove your injuries is thru the documentation that your doctor keeps.Insurance companies often take the position, if it is not in the medical report , than it never happened.If you take time off from work, you will likely not be reimbursed unless you have an off work slip. If you testify you were in constant pain and you keep all of your doctor and therapy appointments, a trier of fact is more likely to believe your complaints then if you missed half of your doctor appointments.Doctors notes regard your complaints at each visit, will support your testimony regarding your complaints at the time of the accident.
Doctors testimony is also important to support your contention that the injuries you are complaining about are related to the accident.Most doctors do not like to get involved in litigation.Often doctors will assert they can not testify that an injury is related to an accident since they were not there when you were injured.As ridiculous as this may sound, this is the doctors way of saying that they do not want to get involved. Lawyers work with Doctors who are willing to support their patient including testifying in court as part of their accident claim.
Lawyers can usually find doctors who are willing to wait until insurance pays their bill or until their case is settled. Most regular physicians will not let you even make an appointment until you pay them up front or unless you have medical insurance. even with medical insurance, they want any deductibles paid up front. Often accident victims, do not have the funds to pay the up front deductible.
- An Attorney Can…Enlist Supportive Physicians
To prove to an insurance company and/or jury that you were in fact injured, a doctor must provide detailed reports connecting your injuries to the accident. You will likely find that doctors try to avoid litigation because they do not like going to court and that many physicians refuse to dictate the lengthy reports demanded by the insurance companies. It is important, then, to select a doctor who is at least willing to complete a report after each visit. Each document provided by the medical facility is extremely important in your automobile accident case, as insurance companies base the amount of money that they are willing to offer you off of the documentation available. Visiting a family physician who is unwilling to write a dictated medical report or who scribbles an illegible note on his office chart may result in a smaller settlement than would come from consulting a doctor who is willing to write a fully dictated report clearly outlining the injuries and necessary treatment. Keep in mind when selecting a doctor that how well the doctor documents your injuries translates directly to how much money you may get from the settlement.
Doctors seem reluctant to order physical therapy, MRI’s, x-rays, medical devices or to see the patient frequently because they are concerned about how they will get paid for their services. In addition some doctors are less sympathetic to the complaints of people involved in an accident. Doctors can also be influenced by the insurance companies including health insurance carriers who are only interested in the bottom line and seem less interested in patient care.Lawyers usually have a list of Doctors who deal with accident patients all the time and are more likely to give the patient the attention they deserve.Every doctor has a specialty and that includes doctors who specialize in treating patients who have been injured in an auto accident.
- An Attorney Can…Gain Insurer’s Support
Sometimes insurance adjusters are lazy and unsupportive of their own insured. An attorney can also be helpful in getting your insurance company to help you investigate your claim and can help you stay on top of your own insurance company by feeding them useful information to get them to back you up in a claim. You do not want your insurance company to pay the claim of the other party if you are not at fault because that can affect your insurance rates and ultimately result in a cancellation of your policy. An attorney can be helpful in convincing an insurance company that your position is the correct position and that you are in the right. An attorney may also be helpful in getting your insurance company to spend the necessary time and money to hire experts in order to prove your version of the case.
- An Attorney Can…Prove Your Innocence To Other Insurance Company
Your attorney will also report your claim to the individual at fault’s insurance company. If the faulty party admits fault from the very beginning, your attorney can make arrangements for the other insurance company to look at your car and provide a rental vehicle. If the other party disputes the liability in the case, your attorney must then provide the necessary information to convince the insurance company that their insured was at fault and that you were negligence-free. Often insurance companies will offer to pay directly for a rental car so that the injured party does not have to lay out any out of pocket money for a rental. Your attorney can be instrumental in minimizing inconvenience to you by getting the insurance company to act in a timely manner to get you a rental car and/or car repairs as quickly as possible. Attorneys are also familiar with reputable body shops that can repair your car with competence and care.
Attorneys know the traffic laws. attorneys are also familiar with the case law that interprets all types of traffic accident situations. Insurance adjusters are not usually attorneys and while they have some knowledge of the law, they do not have the same training as an attorney. Often mistaken beliefs of the adjuster can be corrected by the attorney sending a copy of a recent appellate case, with a set of facts similar to the facts in our case.
A good attorney will also be very familiar with the area. Even if the attorney is unfamiliar with the area, he can quickly familiarize himself with the area by either going to the scene and taking pictures for the benefit of the insurance company or locating the scene of the accident on google maps. Often, an attorney after guiding an adjuster thru a review of pictures or a look at google maps can convince an insurance adjuster that despite what his insured said, the accident could not have actually happened that way.In the old days this time of evidence would not come out until trial.
- An Attorney Can…Locate And Interview Witnesses
If there is a liability dispute, your attorney contacts and makes arrangements to get recorded statements from your witnesses and then provides that information to both insurance companies. Your attorney may also be able to locate other witnesses and obtain the police report to contact the police officer for additional helpful information.When there is a dispute as to who is at fault, contacting the witnesses early is very important. Often witnesses leave only a name and phone number at the scene. Sometimes the witnesses leave no information and only talk to the parties at the scene and then leave.Once the client reports the accident to the lawyer, the lawyer should immediately attempt to contact the witness. Upon speaking to the witness the lawyer should get enough information from the witness so that if the case does go to trial several years later the witness can be located. Lawyers will usually get the name , address and telephone number of the witness. I always try to get emergency contacts for the witness like parents or place of employment. If the witness will provide it I will get their date of birth. All of the above information will make it easier to locate the witness in the future.I will then try to interview the witness immediately. I will go over the story with the witness and make sure they know as many details as possible. The insurance companies will only talk to the witness one time, so when they do give a statement , I want them to have the story straight with no confusion. By the time the witness gives a statement to the insurance company his testimony should be as polished as if he were ready to testify in court.
In addition talking to the witness will also expose weaknesses in our case that either need to be strengthened or perhaps lead to the conclusion that the case should be dropped.
- An Attorney Can…Gather Proper Medical Documentation
It is extremely important to acquire all medical records and all medical bills related to your claim. Medical record can be difficult to obtain. Your attorney will know where to write in order to receive the records you need. In order to obtain most medical records a fee must be paid for preparation of the records and for photocopying. Your attorney can advance those costs and be re-imbursed when your case is settled. Medical bills are always a time consuming effort. When you are seen at a hospital there will likely be at least three bills. The three bills include the hospital bill, the doctor who treated you at the hospital and finally if you had x-rays there will be a bill from the radiologist. If you were taken by ambulance to the hospital, there will also be an ambulance bill.When you see the doctor he will generate bills and if he sends you for x-rays or physical therapy there will be additional bills.When your treatment has been completed and the doctor has discharged you, your attorney will determine the costs necessary for any treatment to be rendered in the future.After obtaining all of this documentation, your attorney will begin to evaluate your claim and will send your materials to the insurance company for further evaluation. As the insurance company handles millions of claims, it will evaluate your case solely on the quality of your medical documentation. Ensure that your case is given the care it deserves by providing your insurer with comprehensive medical documentation to back up your injuries. The more documentation you provide the insurance company, the more likely it is that you will get a larger settlement. Good documentation will result in good settlements; little or no documentation will result in little or no settlement. An attorney will make sure that you receive the proper documentation from your medical provider by sending the appropriate questions to the doctor. The attorney can also help you by contacting your employer for information regarding any lost wages you have suffered.
- An Attorney Can…Persuade The Adjuster
Sometimes your own insurance company wrongly decides to pay the claim for the other driver, believing you are at fault.Sometimes insurance adjusters are lazy and un-supportive of their own insured. Attorneys can challenge this attitude by feeding the adjusters useful information that will gain their support and help in investigating your claim. At times, the adjusters themselves will even hire experts to prove your version of the case. An attorney can help convince an insurance company that your position is the correct position and that you are in the right.
You do not want your insurance company to pay the claim of the other party, for example, if you are not at fault. With the counsel of an attorney, you can avoid the wrongful premium raises or unfair cancellations that would result from this lack of support from your insurer.While adjusters normally go out of their way their way to accept their Insureds version of the accident that will result in them not having to party the claim, there are times, especially with inexperienced or overworked adjusters where they make the wrong decision. Your lawyer can then step in to advocate on your behalf why the claim should not be paid. Usually, even if the adjuster thinks his client is a fault, he will talk to his insured attorney, to see why he took the case , before he ultimately pays the claim. This gives counsel another chance to explain the insured version of the facts.The attorney can then present again all of the evidence he has to prove that the insured was not in the wrong. law regarding fault in a roundabout case
The attorney can get the witnesses on the phone with the adjuster, get the policeman on the phone to explain what he saw but did not put on his report. Sometimes it can be as easy as providing pictures of the damage to the cars and explaining why the accident could not have happened the way the other side is asserting.
- An Attorney Can…Speak On Your Behalf
Attorneys are also experienced in dealing with the other insurance company involved. The insurer may ask you to give a recorded statement, for example. An attorney knows to advise you that any statement you give an insurance company can be later used against you in court. Without this caveat from an attorney, you may not be aware how negatively a statement could affect your case.
An attorney knows how difficult it can be to attest to the same event in exactly the same way each time you are called to discuss it. Your legal counsel also knows that each time you give a recorded statement it will likely vary from other statement you’ve given in the past, providing the jury with the impression that you have changed your story. This can result in an adverse-and unnecessary-verdict in court. While it is always a bad idea for you to give a recorded statement or speak directly to the other insurance company, an attorney can speak to the insurance company knowing that what he/she says cannot be used against you as it is not admissible in court.
In addition, an attorney knows what information should and should not be given to an insurance company. People unfamiliar with the process sometimes give too much information when talking to an insurance company, resulting in an adverse decision by the insurance company. Attorneys are trained to know what is the best way to present your case in a light most favorable to your claim.
Insurance adjusters are trained to take advantage of people who are unrepresented. An insurance adjuster will never tell you about benefits you are entitled to but did not know to ask for.
Adjusters know that if they say no to an attorney, the attorney knows how to take the case to court. The Insurance adjuster also knows that if he tells a person who does not have an attorney, no, that that person is unfamiliar with the steps to filing suit and going to court.
Insurance adjusters are famous for not taking phone calls or not doing what they promised. Attorneys are trained to follow up with supervisors and to send letters confirming conversations with the adjuster.
- An Attorney Can…Determine What A Case Is Worth
In evaluating the value of a claim, the attorney looks at many factors and considers many elements and questions surrounding the accident. Included in those factors is the type of injuries, such as whether fractures or any other physical signs of injury exist versus complaints with no visible signs of injury.
- Is there a permanent injury?
- Who is the client and what kind of witness will the client make?
- Where did the accident happen is important since some counties are known to give more generous verdicts than others.
- Whether there was significant damage to the vehicles involved since judges and juries are more likely to believe injuries in serious looking accidents than they are in minor property damage cases.
- Who is the attorney?
- What judge do you have?
- How long did the treatment last, which doctors performed the treatment, and were there any objective findings in the x-rays or MRI’s that would point to proof of injuries?
- Is there is any scarring and/or bruising?
- What is the age and sex of the client?
- Whether the client has had any other accidents, as the courts look very closely at cases where a client has filed more than one claim and tend to give less credence to people who have filed many claims.
- Is the fault clear or disputed?
Lawyers who have been practicing for a long period of time and have tried many cases know how to weigh each one of these factors. As each case is different and multi-faceted, there is no way a lawyer can realistically appraise your case on the first day of your accident. The lawyer’s opinion of the value of the case can change drastically as more information accrues over time. Any lawyer who promises that he knows the value of your case based on your initial interview will most likely fail to deliver on the promise he/she has made.
- An Attorney Can…Submit Demand Package
After all of your medical treatment has been completed, an attorney can then submit a demand package to the insurance company. This demand package includes a favorable description of the client, summaries of the accident, a detail of medical treatments, and a description of the liability issues, injuries and total medical expenses or loss involved. A claim evaluation and demand for monetary compensation are also included in the demand package submitted to the insurance company. Serving as well-seasoned claim-evaluators, attorneys again are helpful in that they can set a demand value for their clients who would otherwise have no idea what their cases are worth.
Sample demand letter
P.O. Box 9505
Fredericksburg, VA 22304
ATTN: NATHANIEL PATTON
RE: Client: Sherry Jones
Claim No.: 040862917
Enclosed please find the final medicals for the above named client. Medicals include the following:
MEDICAL BILLS TO DATE
Advanced Radiology 2/19/15 $77.00
Franklin Square Hospital $479.19
Med, LLC $517.50
Comprehensive Sports and Spine $8990.00
Quest Diagnostic $124.78
Harford ambulatory service $7855.00
Total Medical expenses $41355.12
Lost Wages 2/16/15 to 1/8/16
Joes Nightclub $
Property damage $2,539.14
2/16/15 Franklin Square Hospital, was in a motor vehicle accident complaining about right shoulder pain.
2/19/15 Multi-Specialty with Dr. Kara a chiropractor, complaining about neck, upper back, right elbow and right shoulder from the auto accident, says she was struck from behind and subsequently pushed into the vehicle in front of her. She saw the impact in the rear view mirror and was bracing for impact and struck her right arm outstretched against the windshield and actually broke the windshield and she went to Franklin Square Hospital and no x-rays were ordered. She also in addition to the complaints mentioned above she was having some right wrist pain and numbness and tingling of her digits on the fourth and fifth finger of her right hand. Examination of the neck showed tenderness more on the right side than left and had full range of motion. Examination of the right elbow showed tenderness as well as a positive tinels test, there was some puffiness noted at her elbow and she had limited range of motion. Examination of her right shoulder revealed tenderness, range of motion was decreased. She was referred to Advanced Radiology to rule out a fracture of her right elbow and also had x-rays of her shoulder and neck. She was diagnosed with a neck strain, right elbow sprain/strain of the right shoulder which was related to the accident. She was started on a course of physical therapy and she was placed off work.
2/19/15 She had a x-ray done of her right shoulder which was normal.
3/3/15 She had a MRI done of her right elbow which showed small elbow joint effusion and tunnel derangement
3/11/15 Followed up at Multi-Specialty by Dr. Baba still complaining about neck, right shoulder, right elbow, as well as right upper arm numbness. X-rays of the neck slowed a slight right lean, as well as reverse of the normal lordosis consisted with significant muscle spasm. Right shoulder x-rays showed narrowing of the AC joint with sub-acrominal soft tissue edema and she remains off work and continues in therapy, has been using her medications but having trouble sleeping. She is also noting now a headache. Examination of the neck, right shoulder and right elbow show limited range of motion and tenderness, right shoulder examination showed mild to moderate impingement, right elbow showed improved range of motion with some limitation, right hand strength was normal and the bruising to her right index finger was resolved. Diagnosis was continued neck, upper back, right elbow pain and dysfunction from her car accident. MRI of the neck and right shoulder were ordered, nerve conduction studies were also ordered of the right extremity, she remained off work, given a prescription for Valium to help her sleep, as well as for anxiety.
3/16/15 Dr. Reisch EMG Nerve Conduction Studies which were normal.
3/16/15 MRI of right shoulder says abnormal high signal of the posterior superior, and anterosuperior glenoid labrum from 10:00 to 3:00 position suspicious of slap tear. MR arthrogram correlation is suggested, mild tendinopathy in the tendon and mesculotendinous junction of the supraspinatus, mild tendinopathy of the middle fibers of the supscapularis, no rotator cuff tear, mild degenerative changes in the cromioclavicular joint, undersurface of the joint indents with superior surface of the supraspinatus mesculotendinous junction, mild subacrominal – subdeltoid bursitis, mild narrow contusion in the anterior facet of the greater tuberosipy.
3/16/15 MRI of the neck showed mild loss of reverse of cervical lordosis C2-3, mild desiccation at C2-3, C3-4, C4-5, diffuse asymmetrical, right sided broad based posterior disk budge at C3-4 causing mild right neuroforaminal .Stenosis
3/25/15 Multi-Specialty by Dr. Baba still having some pain in right shoulder, neck and right elbow, although neck and right elbow are somewhat improved, she continues to have radiation of pain from her neck to her right elbow. EMG done by Dr. Reisch shows no evidence of cervical radiculopathy with brachial plexus lesion with thoracic outlet syndrome, no peripheral nerve injury. MRI of the neck showed significant reversal of normal lordosis consistent with deep myofascial injury. MRI of the right shoulder showed normal high signal in the posteriosuperior and anteriosuperior glenoid labrum suspicious of a slap tear and suggested a MR arthrogram. The doctor diagnosis her with a slap tear to the labrum with rotator cuff strain and post traumatic subacrominal impingement all consistent with the mechanism of injury when she struck the windshield with her hand as it slipped off the steering wheel and jammed her shoulder and elbow. She was referred for orthopedic consultation, as well as aggressive pain management including a cortisone injection in the right shoulder and right elbow. Examination of the neck and right shoulder and right elbow was tender with full ranges of motion. Diagnosis significant injury to right shoulder, continue physical therapy, orthopedic consultation for the right shoulder. Patient doesn’t want to have injections to her neck at this time, given some medications including Hydrocodone and Valium, told to remain off work.
3/20/15 MRI of low back lumbar spondylosis and small left forminal disk protrusion of the L4-5, produced mild to moderate
4/10/15 Dr. Jonathan Dunner patient gives the same history having difficulty rotating her right arm, complaining about pain in her shoulder and neck, physical therapy was stopped. MRI is suspicious for slap tear. Examination of left shoulder showed tenderness with limited range of motion. Diagnosis right shoulder rotator cuff strain and he gave her an injection into the right shoulder and prescribed a Medrol-Dosepak and referred her back for physical therapy and strengthening to her rotator cuff, put her off work.
4/15/15 Follow up with Dr. Baba and Dan Schech still having pain in the neck and right shoulder area, chiropractic physical therapy is helping and range of motion is still limited in the right shoulder, renewed her Hydrocodone, told her to continue physical therapy, continue out of work.
5/6/15 Dr. Singh and Dr. Baba still complaining about right shoulder and right elbow, as well as numbness and tingling in the right third and fifth fingers. Examination of the right shoulder showed tenderness, as well as slow range of motion, as did her right elbow, neck, continue taking medicine, stay out of work, follow up with the orthopedic surgeon, she prescribed Flexeril and Hydrocodone.
5/19/15 Started aquatic therapy at Comprehensive Spine and Sport, Dr. Neil Cohen chiropractor, gave the same history, still having a lot of tightness in the neck, difficulty with her right shoulder including loss of range of motion, numbness, tingling and weakness in her little fingers. Medrol-Dosepak has helped and the steroid injection gave some improved range of motion, having problems picking up things, driving or cleaning, she reports pain radiating in the right shoulder area to cough or sneeze, she is still not working, has significant tenderness, her biceps tendon as well her supraspinatus area, has a positive tinel sign at the elbow right side but is absent at the wrist, she has limited range of motion and his diagnosis is likely slap tear at right shoulder, cervical radiculopathy secondary to motor vehicle accident, he started her on aquatic therapy.
5/27/15 Dr. Babaturk still having radiating pain in the neck, upper back, right shoulder, right elbow. Injection done by Dr. Dunn helped moderately with the pain in the right shoulder. Recent MRI showed a probably slap tear, as well as acromioclavicular degenerative joint disease, as well as extensive bursitis in that same shoulder, continues to take Flexeril and Hydrocodone. She has had one week of aquatic therapy which has been helping. Examination showed tenderness and spasm in the right shoulder, as well pain and limited motion of 100 degrees or more, right elbow showed normal pigmented swelling, has tenderness at the lateral epicondyle, she had a full range of motion however it was slow. Diagnosis neck, mid back, right shoulder, right elbow pain, continue taking medication, continue aquatic therapy, stay out of work.
6/5/15 Dr. Dunb still having numbness in the second and third fingers on the right hand which is aggravated by right shoulder movement, feels she may need a second injection by Dr. Dunn, she is continuing aquatic therapy. Diagnosis right shoulder problem and renewed her Fiorinal, no work, continue with aquatic therapy and follow up with Dr. Dunn regarding injection.
6/8/15 Dr. Reish EMG/nerve conduction studies were normal.
6/11/15 Dr. Cohen at aquatic therapy pain today is 3 out of 10. Diagnosis right shoulder tendinopathy, as well as slap lesion and cervical radiculitis secondary to motor vehicle accident, continue aquatic therapy.
6/19/15 Dr. Stern patient is still having neck, upper back, right shoulder and right elbow pain, patient continues physical therapy, continues to be off work. Examination showed full range of motion in the neck, tenderness in the thoracic spine, limited range of motion in the right shoulder, tenderness in the right elbow. Diagnosis neck, trapezius, right shoulder, right elbow strain/sprain and post traumatic headaches improved. Continue off work, physical therapy to be placed on hold due to the fact that the client recently had plastic surgery.
7/2/15 Dr. Dunn continued pain in the right shoulder, says she now has mild adhesive capulitis of the right shoulder, says she should do home exercises at this point, as well as stretching and if she doesn’t improve in the next couple of weeks she may need another injection and she can return back to work.
7/17/15 Dr. Dunn still complaining about her right shoulder and clicking, she in aquatic therapy, given an injection in the right shoulder which resulted in her being able to do full range of motion, although there was some clicking on forward flexion. Continue aquatic therapy, continue medications, follow up in three weeks.
7/22/15 Dr. Cohen at aquatic therapy pain today is 4 out of 10, has tinel sign present at the elbow, continue therapy.
7/22/15 Comprehensive Spine & Sports diagnosed her with a slap lesion of the right shoulder as well as cervical radiculitits and then she started aquatic therapy and regular therapy.
8/13/15 Dr. Dunn still having pain in her right shoulder, discuss surgery, she had been offered an injection that was declined and she continued chiropractic physical therapy, as well as a compound of transdermal prescription for her inflammation in her right shoulder and follow up in two weeks.
9/3/15 Multi-Specialty with Dr. Dunn she has failed conservative treatment, pain radiates upward to her neck, she has numbness and tingling in her index and middle finger, she has difficulty sleeping which is worse when she rolls onto the right side at night and any overhead activity, she has been in therapy for six months and feels that she has plateaued, she is currently not working. Dr. Dunn recommended surgery at this point, including a right shoulder examination under anesthesia as well as an arthroscopic subacromial decompression with possible slap repair.
9/22/15 Right shoulder surgery including a right shoulder examination under anesthesia, arthroscopic superior labial debridement and arthroscopic subacromial decompression.
10/9/15 Dr. Dunn follow up after surgery still having pain 6 out of 10, still not working, recommending restarting physical therapy, do not lift anything heavy, gave her a new prescription for a new sling.
10/14/15 Restarted physical therapy at Comprehensive Spine and Sport.
11/6/15 Dr. Jonathan Dunn chief complaint of achy pain in the right shoulder 5 out of 10 six weeks post surgery, she is continue with her rehab with Dr. Cohen for physical therapy, continue aquatic therapy and land exercises, prescribed Meloxicam, cannot resume her regular work activities at this time and remain off work and follow up in four weeks.
11/12/15 Dr. Cohen, physical therapist said to continue aquatic therapy, range of motion is still limited.
12/11/15 Dr. Jonathan Dunn physical therapy is helping but she is still has a lot of pain on range of motion of the shoulder, having some numbness in the second and third fingers. Dr. Dunn added Methocarbamol which can be used as a sleep aid, physical therapy is being transferred to the Dundalk office of Multi-Specialty and she was told to remain off work through 1/8/16.
1/8/16 Dr. Jonathan Dunn, physical therapy has been completed at both Comprehensive Sports, as well as Multi-Specialty and seems to have no pain today although she does get a burning pain over the lateral aspect of the shoulder when she works out, she is not taking any pain medications, can return back to work full duty at this point. She is presently doing bands with three pound weights, physical therapy is discontinued.
4/19/16 Dr. Jonathan Dunn rating pain at this point is anywhere between 0 and 8 which is no pain at rest, she develops pain and difficulty when attempting overhead lifting and also has an occasional shoulder click, has difficulty with sleeping at times, also has difficulty when working and has to take frequent breaks at work, she also cuts hair and has to stop about every thirty minutes to rest, being in traffic increases her pain, when she does work at home it seems to get worse, she uses a lot of ice during the day, she is not taking any pain medications and has new injuries. She has gone back to the gym like she did before the accident but she is only able to lift three to five pounds instead of the fifteen to twenty pounds she was lifting. She can no longer walk her dog secondary to them pulling her. She uses her other hand now for many tasks including gardening, pulling weeks, showering and shampooing her hair, she is back to her regular job working as a part time barber. Examination showed mild crepitus and shoulder motion. The doctor offered her a biceps tendon injection which she did not want to have at this point. Dr. Cohen feels she has a permanent impairment caused by the accident and subsequent surgery and she is at maximum medical improvement, she will not need any other treatment in the future.
Please be advised that a settlement in the amount of $200,000.00 would be fair and reasonable.
MARC J. ATAS
- An Attorney Can…Negotiate Settlement Offers
After the demand package has been submitted to the insurance company, the attorney and the insurance carrier will begin to negotiate. Clients should never try to settle the case on their own.Attorneys who have settled thousands of cases and who have tried hundreds of cases obtain a good feel for what a case is worth. Evaluating a case for settlement is not a science, but is more of an art. there is no exact answer as to what a case is worth. Every case, no matter how similar it may seem to other cases the lawyers have tried, has some little nuance that will affect the value of the case. While the lawyer is only making an educated guess as to the value of the case, more often then not, a lawyer with years of experience, evaluation, is going to be close to what you are likely to obtain in court. Insurance adjusters can also be experienced. Some have settled thousands of claims. Even if the specific adjuster has not he will have coworkers with vast experience. If the adjuster and the layer know each other well enough then the adjuster will know that he cannot fool the lawyer.Through negotiations, both parties will reach a settlement offer that can be passed on to the client. The client is not bound by the insurance company’s settlement offer, as the settlement decision is left up to the client, not the insurance company and/or lawyer.
It is important the client listens to his/her lawyer with regard to any advice concerning a settlement offer, whether favorable or not. Sometimes the insurance company makes offers that seem unacceptable to the attorney, however, the attorney is obliged to at least present that offer to the client. The attorney will then present the pros and cons of all offers to the client and will give his opinion whether the client should accept or reject the offer.
After the attorney’s presentation, the client has the choice as to whether the offer is acceptable or not. Despite having this power of the final say, clients need to remember why they hire an attorney in the first place. Because attorneys have substantial experience in handling these claims, clients should give substantial weight to their attorney’s recommendations. Article on whether client can change mind after case is settled
When we now settle a personal injury claim we must consider and protect medicare’s interests