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Who pays my medical bills after a car accident in Utah?

Posted by on 7:01 pm in blog, Car Accidents, Personal Injury | 0 comments

If you have been in a car accident in Utah, you might be wondering who pays for your medical bills. You may have been contacted by your own insurance and told about PIP or personal injury protection benefits. Utah automobile insurance policies must give you coverage of at least $3,000 for PIP coverage. This means that when you are in a car accident, you should actually use your own PIP benefits to cover your initial medical bills up to the PIP limit. This might seem strange, especially if someone else caused the accident. Why shouldn’t the person who hit you or caused the accident pay for your medical bills, instead of your own insurance? Or at least, why shouldn’t that person’s insurance pay instead of your own insurance? The reason is because of the laws in Utah with PIP coverage. The idea is that the Utah legislature wanted those who are hurt in car accidents to have immediate access to medical coverage so they can get the treatment they need. This is especially true if you don’t have health insurance and need to go to the ER or emergency room. With your PIP coverage, you hopefully will have your hospital bill and the ambulance bill covered or at least a good part of those bills covered. Now don’t feel too bad for your own insurance company yet in this scenario. They typically will get reimbursed from the at-fault party’s insurance company eventually for what they paid to you under the PIP coverage. Also, once you have used up the $3,000 in PIP coverage, you can qualify for a settlement for pain and suffering, in addition to any additional medical expenses through the insurance of the person who hit you. This is where we typically step in and help our clients out. We help them get a settlement for pain and suffering, along with helping them get the medical bills over PIP covered and any lost wages covered. Call us today to help you out as well-...

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Getting your car repaired after an accident?

Posted by on 8:00 pm in blog, Car Accidents, Personal Injury | 0 comments

Getting your car repaired after an accident? Many people have questions about getting their car or truck fixed after they have been in a car accident. This post will attempt to answer some questions about the property damage claim you might have after a car crash. Will my car be fixed or replaced? That depends on how much damage has been done to your vehicle. Most insurance companies have a general formula to determine if they will fix a car or deem it a total loss. For example, one insurance company might decide that a vehicle will not be repaired if the value of the repairs exceed 80% of the value of the vehicle. Typically, the value of the vehicle is determined by comparable sales of similar vehicles. This includes options and the mileage on the vehicle. Under Utah law, the insurance company has the choice of whether to ‘total’ a vehicle or to repair it. Sometimes, you can influence this decision. I’ve been involved in some cases where we have influenced the insurance company to either total or repair a vehicle, depending on my client’s wishes. Should my insurance company or the insurance company of the other driver fix my car? The answer is that it depends on the circumstances. If the other driver caused the car accident and is at-fault, you do have the option to have the other insurance company fix your vehicle. If you have ‘full coverage’ or property damage coverage under your own policy, you do have the option to have your own insurance company fix your car. When deciding between the two insurance companies, you should consider factors such as your deductible and the reputation of the insurance company. Typically you will have to cover or pay for the deductible if you fix your car through your own insurance. If the other party is at-fault, you will usually get this deductible money back, but sometimes it can weeks or months. In fact, I’ve had to fight with insurance companies many times to return my client’s deductibles. The deductible amount is set by your insurance contract, but it is usually something like $250, $500, or $1000. The other factor is will you be satisfied with the repairs and the process. Usually, your own insurance company will be more ‘customer-service’ friendly, since you are their client, but not always. Having dealt with over a couple thousand cases, I can tell you which insurance companies offer better customer service. Please contact me about your particular...

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Back and neck injury after a car accident?

Posted by on 2:22 pm in blog, Car Accidents, Personal Injury | 0 comments

It is very common to sustain back and neck injuries in a car accident. The reason for this is because of the forces involved in the accident itself.  For example, when you vehicle is hit from behind, you might be thrust backwards violently. Sometimes your head will snap back and strike the headrest of the car, resulting in a neck injury. Even worse, sometimes your car or truck will be pushed into another vehicle in front of you. This may then cause you to violently be thrown forward. In fact, you could be thrown backwards and forwards multiple times, as vehicles are known to ‘pin-ball’ back in forth between two vehicles at times. Your neck and back were not designed for such violent acceleration and deceleration changes. For this reason, your neck and back can be injured in the accident. The mildest form of neck and back injury would be a strain or sprain. This is what insurance companies refer to as a ‘whiplash’ injury. On the other end of the spectrum are the more serious neck and back injuries. You can suffer broken bones in your spinal column. You could also suffer a herniated or bulging disc in your spine. Some of these injuries require surgical intervention. While spinal x-rays will typically show whether or not you have  broken bone in you spine, they will usually not show if you have a herniated or bulging disc. For that you usually will need to have an MRI done or a CT scan. Although I am a lawyer and not a doctor, I have seen thousands of injury cases and I have a pretty good idea of what type of imaging you might need to investigate your injuries to the fullest. Of course, I always recommend that you follow the advice of your medical professional. However, I have worked with many different types of medical specialists over the years that I can refer you to so that you can get the proper medical treatment. I work with medical professionals in all areas of Salt Lake County, including Salt Lake City, West Jordan and West Valley City.  I even work with some medical professionals that will see you if you do not have health insurance or if your PIP (personal injury protection) benefits have been used up from your automobile insurance. Contact me to today and let me see what I can do to assist...

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Does having surgery increase the value of my case?

Posted by on 5:04 pm in blog, Car Accidents, Personal Injury | 0 comments

Does having surgery increase the value of my personal injury or car accident case? There are several reasons why having surgery increases the value of your personal injury case. First, insurance companies receive numerous claims from potential claimants each day. They have to determine which claims are more serious and will require higher settlements. One of the factors that they look at is what type of medical treatment is received and how invasive such treatment is on the life of the claimant. Since surgery usually involves high medical bills, a long recovery, and a high amount of risk to the patient, surgical claimants are deemed to have more serious injuries. Therefore, the insurance companies set aside more money for such claimants. Secondly, insurance companies are also trying to determine which claims have merit. Unfortunately, insurance companies believe that some claims are not made in good faith by claimants. Once such factor that helps them determine whether or not a claim has merit is what the claimant was willing to undergo to seek relief from their injury. Typically, most insurance adjusters believe that a claimant will not risk their health, time, and body to have an unnecessary surgery. Thirdly, surgical claimants usually have a demonstrable injury, rather than a subjective injury. For example, if back surgery is required on a herniated disc, such injury can typically be see on an MRI. Conversely, a claimant claiming whip-lash injuries sometimes will not be able to demonstrate their injury on any type of diagnostic test. This proof or ability to show the injury becomes especially important if the claimants injury requires filling in court. If an insurance adjuster feels a claimant will not do well in court, such adjuster may offer less on the claim, as there is less exposure for the insurance company should the claim not settle and be required to go to court. In addition the above, there are other reasons why surgery increases the value of your case. Please call me to discuss your case or potential surgery....

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What Exactly is Whiplash in Medical and Legal Terms?

Posted by on 3:33 pm in blog | 0 comments

Most everyone who has ever been involved in a real-world, rear-end car crash as well as those who have witnessed one on television believe that whiplash is an inevitable result of this type of accident. The actual truth is a little more complicated. Here is a quick rundown on what doctors will diagnose as whiplash, as well as its repercussions in the legal and insurance worlds: Medical diagnosis – As the name implies, whiplash is a serious injury to the neck caused by a rapid back-and-forth movement like the cracking of a whip. Symptoms include pain, stiffness and headaches. Treatment includes medication, massage, and exercise. It is usually curable with regular therapy but in some people the pain will become chronic. Insurance aspect – The problem for insurance companies is that many people do not recognize the symptoms of whiplash until several days after the accident. This means that doctors cannot say for sure whether or not the car crash caused the problem. It is essential for a victim to get immediate medical care after a crash, whether they think they are hurt or not. Legal ramifications – As mentioned above, the first step in being compensated for any whiplash related problems is to see a doctor. Document all the fees associated with the initial office visit and follow-up treatments. In addition, you may be well compensated for pain and suffering caused by the condition if the other driver was negligent or otherwise at fault. If you have been injured in a car wreck in the Salt Lake City area and experience whiplash, you may want to discuss your legal options with an experienced car accident lawyer. If so, please contact us at the Symkoviak Law Firm. We can be found online at or reached directly at...

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Four Things You Must Do if Involved in a Road Accident

Posted by on 4:04 pm in blog | 0 comments

No one ever wants to be involved in a road accident but they can happen at the most unexpected time. It is only prudent to deal with it in a timely and completely legal manner. Here are four things a driver must do in the event of a road accident to ensure that they have as little difficulty as possible: Comply with law enforcement – As with the medical profession, the first step is to do no more harm to your case than necessary. Try to aid anyone hurt in the accident and give accurate information to any law enforcement personnel who arrives afterward. It serves no purpose to conceal any evidence as it will usually be revealed by forensic analysis. Trade contact information with the other party – If there are no more pressing concerns to be dealt with, trade contact information with the other party. However, do not just take their word for it. Instead, confirm as best you can by dialing the phone number or ask the police officer who takes your report to also confirm the information. Document everything – Be sure to use your cell phone to document the scene and damages to your vehicle, if possible. Otherwise, the two insurance companies involved will end up with a “he said, she said” situation. In the end, even if you are not at fault, you will end footing the bill for the damage to your car. Notify your insurance company – Do not overlook this seemingly trivial factor. Even if you have a police report from the actual accident, insurance companies will try to avoid culpability by claiming you did not inform them in a timely manner. It is unfortunate but it is a fairly standard practice in the industry so make them your first call the morning after the accident. For more information on what to do if you are involved in a road accident of any kind, please contact the Symkoviak Law Firm. We can be found online at or reached directly at...

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3 Reasons Not to Assume You Know What Your Car Accident Lawyer Will Say

Posted by on 3:55 pm in blog | 0 comments

Are you one of the rare individuals who is able to keep ahead of life? You keep your paperwork in order, always early arrive, plan ahead, and you’re on target with your goals. Or, perhaps you’re more like typical adults. You feel successful if you manage to pay the minimum on all your bills each month, maintain a small savings account, you cover most meetings and your kids’ special events. No matter which of these categories you fit into, you know that the aftermath of a car accident can make even the most organized person’s life turn into disarray.  Your Car Accident Lawyer Can Help An experienced car accident lawyer knows that no matter how organized your life is, once an accident happens it knocks you off balance. The anxiety everyone feels when an accident happens adds responsibilities that can easily topple the order of your life. Despite the painful results of personal injuries, disabled vehicles, and stress over unreliable transportation, all the legal questions and documentation just will not wait while you and your loved ones emotionally adjust to challenges from the after effects of an accident. You don’t have to struggle with these disruptions in your life alone. Of course you do not want to be that person who knew, somewhere in the back of your mind, that you should get added protection but never found the right time to call. It’s a good bet that the right time is right now. It could pay off some day if you contact a car accident lawyer in your Salt Lake City area and get general or specific answers now. This will help you decide on what kinds of benefits you need included in your insurance policy. Why do People Put Off This Simple Phone Call? Upwards of 92 percent of people who have suffered through tragedies such as a car accident admit they never accomplished their goal of finding out what to expect. In fact, many of these people assumed they already knew what their car accident lawyer was going to tell them. (1) Many people living in Utah believe that people who drive sports cars get the most speeding tickets, have to pay higher insurance premiums, and will be more suspect in a legal accident dispute. Ask the right questions and you will find that vehicles with the most violations are SUVs, coupes, and sedans. There are two exceptions in this data: Drivers who choose the Mercedes-Benz SL-Class Convertible or sporty model Scions did show up on the top 10 list. Your car accident lawyer can confirm that your own personal driver’s record carries more weight in calculating your premium. (2) If you think your insurance will pay for a rental car if your car is   stolen or severely damaged in a vehicle accident you need to check your facts. The insured must specifically pay extra for car rental coverage. It is a minimal cost, just a few dollars, but it sometimes doesn’t cover the entire time your vehicle is disabled. Even with car rental insurance on your policy, there’s a cap of how much your insurance company will cover. It might not last until a damaged or stolen car is returned. (3) If it is determined that your car was totaled and it was another driver’s fault, do you think your insurance will pay off what you owed on your car loan or lease? Many people have...

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Involved in a Car Wreck? – Why You Need an Experienced Car Accident Lawyer

Posted by on 3:44 pm in blog | 0 comments

Every accidental car wreck needs to be taken seriously – even if there is no apparent immediate harm.  A serious bodily injury may be sustained but not manifest itself until days later.  This is why it’s prudent to engage the services of an experienced car accident lawyer to protect your interests. Serious injuries are not always immediately apparent – It is always for the best to take the recommended trip to the hospital after any car accident. Even then, the doctors in the emergency room may miss injuries that are not readily apparent. It is imperative to retain an attorney if subsequent injuries do develop so you can be compensated for your medical bills and pain. Long-term disability is a distinct possibility – Even a moderately powerful car crash can produce  long-lasting effects on the body of any person in the car. Most notably, the collision can cause a long term disability by producing a debilitating pain that is not localized nor easily diagnosed and treated. This can result in the loss of workdays – plus the associated income.  Compensation  for this loss should be made by the negligent driver. Disputes over liability are always possible – When a car accident occurs, the police who arrive on the scene try to establish the party at fault. Unfortunately, witness statements can conflict, sometimes making it difficult to determine who carries full responsibility for the accident. For this reason, insurance companies will often decline to accept responsibility for the party that they represent. In fact, they may deny all culpability or try to pay a fraction of the compensation. It can take an attorney to convince them otherwise. The other driver may be unable to pay – While every state requires motorists to carry a certain minimum level of accident coverage, there are many drivers who ignore this law. If you are involved in an accident with a negligent driver who has no coverage, you will need an attorney to sue the other party and collect your just damages. If you have been injured in a car wreck in the Salt Lake area and would like to discuss your legal options with an experienced car accident lawyer,  contact us at the Symkoviak Law Firm. Find us online at or reach us directly at...

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What to Do After the Wrongful Death of your Kin

Posted by on 4:14 pm in Wrongful Death | 0 comments

The term wrongful death refers to a situation where death occurs due to the negligence of a person. If this happens to someone in your family, the insurance should compensate you for the lost life. The insurance money goes to the family left behind to take care of the loss of income that the deceased was providing. Some of the cases that are termed as wrongful death result from: A fatal injury sustained from a defective machine, hazardous chemicals or toxic working environment. A fall as a result of negligent faults in the property such as slippery floors, bumpy carpet or faulty stairs. An incorrect prescription, erroneous medical procedure, wrong/late diagnosis or medical negligence. A motor vehicle crash caused by reckless or drunk driving. The first step to take after the death is contact an attorney. Time is of essence here. Remember the death has already taken away the main witness. If you’re not attentive, the case might slip through your fingers after being unable to prove that the death was caused by the action or inaction of another. The attorney knows exactly what to look out for and where to look. He will quickly get to work and collect details, get eye witness reports, preserve the evidence, engage the police and keep in contact with the insurance company. How much Compensation should you expect? The amount of money an insurance company pays after a wrongful death is mostly defined by the income of the deceased. The compensation will be higher for a high income earner. This is meant to guarantee the family of the deceased that they can continue with the same standard of life they are used to. The insurance should also factor in funeral costs, possible medical bills, plus any physical and emotional anguish that may have been suffered before death. Hiring a legal expert increases your chances of getting your rightful dues. Remember the insurance companies sometimes act in bad faith, while looking for the slightest loophole to avoid payment or at least reduce it to a minimum. An experienced attorney knows how to present a water-tight case that the insurers cannot escape. Symkoviak Law Firm has the right professionals to help you and ensure that you receive your rightful compensation for your...

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How an Auto Accident Insurance Claim Works

Posted by on 5:29 pm in blog | 0 comments

If you or someone you know has been injured or possibly died as a result of a car accident, slip and fall accident or any event which was the result of someone else’s negligence, you need to contact a personal injury attorney. They understand how difficult this time is for you. There are endless things to worry about: Doctor visits Living expenses Hospital bills Lost wages Insurance company These are things a personal injury lawyer will take care of while you and your family focus on getting over your injuries. How to Handle the Accident Insurance Company after an Accident Your accident insurance company will need to be contacted as soon as possible after an accident. You will need to let them know exactly what has happened and provide as many specifics about the accident as you can remember. Photos of the accident are a great way to show the details and you should write down as much as you can as soon as can: License number of vehicle involved Name of the party driving the other vehicle Time of accident Date of the accident Make and model of the other car involved Registration information Name of the involved parties insurance company This is all vital information you will need to provide your personal injury attorney when they look into filing for compensation for you. What to Expect from Your Accident Insurance After you have filed your incident with your accident insurance company, they will assign an agent to handle your claim. They will look into the specifics of the accident and the damages sustained. They may want to speak to any witnesses and even look at the scene of the accident. Handling accident claims is the business of the insurance company and the better prepared and organized you are, the easier it will be for you. There are many factors that go into processing a claim with your accident insurance such as: Assessing fault Allocation of fault Which insurance company is responsible for coverage? Having a personal injury attorney there to help you understand these factors will take the stress of this claim off your shoulders. They can handle the phone calls and paper work dealing with the insurance coverage while you focus on...

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