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What is my totaled car worth?

Posted by on 2:25 pm in blog, Car Accidents, Personal Injury | 0 comments

One of the first questions I get from clients is, “What is my totaled car worth or my total loss car worth?” Or “How much money should I get for my damaged car?”  A totaled car is a vehicle that has been declared a total loss by the insurance company or cannot be repaired by the insurance company. What is my totaled car worth is a very good question and important question if you have been in a car accident, especially if you still owe money on your car. You want to know if you are going to get money back for your totaled car or if you are going to be left owing money on your damaged car.  In Utah, we look at the comparable sales for getting the car value. What that means, is that we look at what other similar cars are selling for in the same geographic area. The other cars should be the exact same make and model. The mileage, options, and trim level should also be the same or similar. To do this, we frequently we will look at Cars.com, KSL.com, or Autotrader.com to see what other similar cars similar to the totaled or damaged cars are selling for. When looking at what my totaled car is worth, one of the issues that comes up, is whether or not Kelley Blue Book or NADA can give a comparable value for a totaled car. Unfortunately, Kelley Blue Book or NADA can be close to the comparable sales value, but they are not used to determine the comparable sales value. The only proper way to value your car in Utah is the comparable sales value and the insurance companies will not accept Kelly Blue Book or NADA values, absent some unusual circumstances, some of which are discussed below. Older cars often cause difficulties for my clients when looking at what is my totaled car worth. This is there may not be any comparable sales. In those situations, we first start by looking at more car sales from further distances. We will look at the sales of the same make and model within 500 miles instead of 50 miles. If that still doesn’t yield any results, we may do a nationwide search to see what other similar cars are selling for.  Of course, as you expand the search parameters, the insurance companies may try to push back or fight you on your proposed car value.  If this option doesn’t work, you can also try expanding the year of the comparable car. Search by looking at car models that are a year or two older or newer of your totaled car. Most of the time this is only for rare or older cars. Another issue that comes up when looking at what is my totaled car worth, especially with older cars that are well maintained by their owners for years, is that the comparable car sales approach may not result in a fair amount to you. In other words, you may have an older car that you know works and runs great because you continually do maintenance on the car, but the value of that car is going to be less than what you could buy another reliable car for. Unfortunately, that is the way the law...

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How long is too long to wait after a car accident to see a doctor?

Posted by on 4:19 pm in blog, Car Accidents, Personal Injury | 0 comments

How long is too long to wait after a car accident to see a doctor or chiropractor? This is a question that frequently comes up with potential new clients that I talk to. People will often wait to see a doctor after a car accident. When they finally decide to see a doctor or chiropractor and realize they are really hurt, potential clients always want to know if they can still make a claim with the insurance company for their injuries? First, let’s be clear that we are not talking here about the statute of limitations in Utah, which is four years. Technically, you could wait three and half years before seeing a doctor and still be within the required statute of limitations, however, your chances of prevailing on such a claim with the insurance company or in court would be minimal. This is because most people, including jury members, insurance adjusters, or judges, would find it unreasonable to believe someone had been hurt in a car accident and waited that amount of time to get treatment for their injuries. Secondly, we are discussing making a claim for a settlement with the insurance company of the driver that was responsible or at-fault for the car accident, rather than a claim with your own insurance company for no-fault benefits, which has a different statute of limitation and a slightly different analysis. So let’s go back to the original question, “How long is too long to wait after a car accident to see a doctor or a chiropractor?” That depends on why the person waited to see a doctor or chiropractor. Here are the most common response I get from potential clients, along with an analysis of each response. How long is too long to wait after a car accident to see a doctor or a chiropractor because I thought I would get better on my own? The most common response is I get to this question is that the injured person waited to see a doctor or chiropractor because they thought their pain would go away on it’s own. Usually after waiting a couple week or even a couple months, the injured person realizes that the injury will not heal on its own and seeks a doctor or medical treatment. I believe this rationale for waiting to see a doctor or chiropractor is completely valid. Furthermore, I have a high success rate for clients who have waited up to a couple months to see doctor or seek medical treatment. I believe insurance companies realize that many jurors probably have done the same thing in waiting to see a doctor when ill or injured, and that should litigation be required, a jury or judge would find in the injured party’s favor. Now if the injured party waits three to four months to seek medical treatment for the same reason above, the claim becomes a bit more difficult. Once again, I have had good success on representing client who have waited three to four months to see a doctor or chiropractor, but I typically will receive some push-back from the insurance adjusters. Furthermore, insurance companies will often offer lower amounts for settlements in this scenario. This probably reflects their belief that due to the additional time the injured person waited, a jury...

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Salt Lake County car accidents

Posted by on 4:52 pm in blog, Car Accidents, Personal Injury | 0 comments

Salt Lake County car accidents- There were numerous car accidents throughout Salt Lake County because of the recent snow storms. News media reported that there was at least 75 crashes on Wednesday alone with more snow expected on Thursday, December 27th. A couple of the accident involved vehicles hitting police vehicles. The major factor for many of these crashes was driving too fast for conditions. People need to drive slower when there is snow and icy conditions. It is better to get somewhere safe then not to arrive at all. If we all drive a little bit slower , we can avoid these Salt Lake County car accidents. That will make the holiday season more enjoyable for all of us. Even if you are not injured in one of these Salt Lake County car accidents, you still have to deal with the inconvenience of having your car fixed. Is it more important to be a few minutes late to wherever you are going, or better yet to try and leave 15 minutes early, so you don’t have to drive fast in treacherous conditions. One of the biggest Salt Lake County car accidents involved a semi-truck that blocked several lanes of traffic in Draper, Utah on I-15. Apparently another vehicle lost control, as they were driving too fast for conditions, which caused that vehicle to strike the semi-truck. The semi-truck then tipped over And blocked several lanes of traffic.  Only the HOV lane was open initially, but after a couple hours 2 additional lanes of traffic were opened. All of the lanes of traffic were not open until later that day for news reports. Once again, please slow down on these snowy days so we can avoid all of these Salt Lake County car accidents. If you are involved in an accident due to the negligence of another driver on a snowy or icy road, please call me for assistance. Car Accidents- KSL...

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West Jordan Car Accident

Posted by on 1:14 pm in blog, Car Accidents, Personal Injury | 0 comments

As reported by Fox 13 news, an older man tragically passed away several weeks ago in a West Jordan car accident. The man was driving the wrong way on Bangerter Highway causing the West Jordan accident. He actually struck numerous vehicles per news reports. Sadly, the man passed away.  The man may have been having medical issues. The interchanges at Bangerter Highway can be confusing for motorists who do not frequently drive in the area. In fact, those type of intersections are quite unusual. While news reports do not indicate this was a factor in the crash, it is noteworthy to point out that the crash did happen on Bangerter Highway. For this reason, we should look at what we can do to avoid crashes in general and this West Jordan car accident. When approaching a new type of intersection, always slow down and use caution. This would seem self-explanatory, but this simple advice is often not heeded. There are some unusual intersection in several places in Utah, including on 123 South in Draper near I-15. The Bangerter Highway interchanges are meant to be more efficient, but it can be a weird experience for a driver to cross over and essentially drive on the other side of the road with left-hand turns. As mentioned before, I’m not saying this led to the West Jordan car accident, but all factors should be looked at. Another time to exercise caution is in construction zones. Drive slow- simple advice, yet many drivers fly through construction zones. Besides construction workers being present, lane changes and traffic patterns often change, which can lead to a mistake and a car accident. I hope we don’t have more car accidents like this West Jordan car accident during the holiday season. Please drive safe. Fox 13 news Car...

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West Valley City Car Accident

Posted by on 6:34 pm in blog, Car Accidents, Personal Injury, Wrongful Death | 0 comments

West Valley City Car Accident: As reported by various news outlets, a 19-year old woman tragically passed away in a West Valley City car accident on December 1st. As reported by fox13now.com, “Police said 19-year-old Holly Nickle was traveling southbound in a passenger car on SR-111 when she ran a red light near 5400 South. The passenger car Nickle was driving collided with a pickup truck, leading them to drive off the roadway. When police and the West Valley City Fire Department arrived to the scene Nickle was trapped inside the vehicle. LifeFlight also arrived to the scene, but by the time it landed police say Nickle had died from fatal injuries.” West Valley City Car Accident: 19-year-old woman dies in automobile crash in West Valley City It is always difficult to hear news about fatal car accidents. Condolences to Holly’s family. Although not related to the above West Valley City car accident, this is a good time to remind everyone driving out there to be careful, especially now that winter is here. Texting and driving should never been done. It takes just a few seconds more to pull over into a parking lot and off the road if a text message is urgent. No text message is worth risking your life. I have seen many car accidents in West Valley City, Magna, West Jordan, and Salt Lake City caused by distracted driving or texting. Just don’t do it. Also, slow down in snowy conditions. It is better to arrive a few minutes later than not at all. Do not drive up to the limit of control on snowy roads. You should be able to stop your vehicle, if necessary. If no cars are around you and it can be safely done, check your brakes on a snowy road to see how much stopping time you need. Let’s all drive safer this holiday season. I hope there isn’t even one West Valley City car accident or an accident in Magna, West Jordan, and Salt Lake City....

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Most common type of car accidents

Posted by on 1:08 pm in blog, Car Accidents, Personal Injury | 0 comments

As a focus on driving and safety, I’m going to discuss the most common type of car accidents. This article is solely based on my opinion and is not a specific study. That said, I have handled around a couple thousand car accident cases. If we can focus on why car accidents occur more frequently, perhaps we can avoid them. The car accident type I see the most frequently are rear-end accidents. Most people would probably guess this as well. This occurs when two cars occupy the same lane and the car ahead is either stopped or slowing down. The vehicle behind the front vehicle fails to either stop or slow down in time and rear- ends the vehicle in front. These car accidents are caused by a couple main reasons- following too closely or distracted driving. Giving yourself more space between you and the car ahead of you will go a long ways to help avoid these collisions. As far as distractions, the cell phone is obviously the biggest concern. However, drivers can be distracted by the radio, things they see outside the vehicle, food, and other things in their car. The second most common type of accident resulting in injury is where one car is turning left at an intersection and the other vehicle is going straight in the opposite direction. Frequently, the car turning left assumes that the car going straight will stop on a yellow light. Unfortunately, that does not always happen, resulting in a collision. The best way to avoid this collision is to wait until the vehicle going straight stops, if you are making a left-hand turn. Also, make sure all straight travel lanes are stopped, as there can be several lanes of travel. If you are going straight, keep an eye on the vehicle waiting to make a left-hand turn. Even though most of us want to run a yellow light to avoid stopping, if there is a vehicle waiting to turn left, it is safer to stop. If you don’t stop, you should slow down and be prepared to take evasive action. These two scenarios are the most common type of car accidents that I have seen resulting in injuries. If we can just eliminate these two scenarios, we can reduce all car accidents greatly. Please drive safe to avoid car accidents. If you are hurt in a car accident, please give me a call at 801-738-9999....

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Car Crash in Sugarhouse

Posted by on 3:23 pm in blog, Car Accidents, Personal Injury | 0 comments

One of my clients was injured in a car crash near Sugarhouse and Millcreek, Utah. The car accident involved several vehicles and my client was injured. It seems that the driver of the car who caused the crash was distracted. Unfortunately, that seems to be occurring more and more frequently, despite the efforts of the government to stop distracted driving. We have all seen the billboards and messages on the freeway system in Utah and through Salt Lake County warning drivers of distracted driving with clever messages, however, apparently that is not enough, as this car crash in Sugarhouse would not have happened. In fact, just yesterday I was working on a separate case where the driver was distracted and hit my client’s car from behind with his truck in a violent crash. That driver claimed he was actually looking at a third driver who was texting, so even though he wasn’t texting himself, he was driving distracted. We all need to remember to put down or away any distractions, especially cell phones. If you need to call someone or text someone, pull over. It will only take a minute to stop and then you can communicate safely. Otherwise, you can cause a car crash, like the one in Sugarhouse and seriously injury someone or even yourself. Is it really worth the extra minute to risk your life or someone else’s life? No, it is not! Let’s make this car crash in Sugarhouse the last one of it’s...

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Car crash near West Valley City

Posted by on 1:28 pm in blog, Car Accidents, Personal Injury | 0 comments

About a year ago, one of my client’s was hurt in a car crash near West Valley City, Utah. My client was driving her car near West Valley City when she was struck from behind by another car. Although the damage to her car wasn’t substantial, she did suffer a concussion. My client was taken to the hospital from this car crash. After the hospital, she saw a concussion specialist and also saw a physical therapist. I became involved in her case a short time later. Once I got involved in her case, it became apparent that there were several hospital liens filed. In Utah, a hospital can file a lien on a settlement for injuries that were caused by a third-party under certain circumstances. What that means is the hospital files documentation in court that they are entitled to a certain amount of the eventual settlement or jury verdict. There are limitations on when and how hospitals can file liens and for that reason it is typically best to consult with an attorney on the liens. Depending on the circumstances, a lawyer can often negotiate a satisfactory resolution to these liens. “How are these liens fair?” You might ask. After all, my client was simply minding her own business while in West Valley City when she was crashed into by another car. I believe the reasoning of the legislature in Utah in having these liens is that the hospitals need to provide emergency care in all situations when an injured person arrives from a car crash. If the person doesn’t have health insurance, the hospital should be entitled to some form of payment. That said, the liens may not be fair, depending on the ultimate outcome of the case. If you have been hurt in a car crash in West Valley City or West Jordan, please give me a call. I’d love to chat with you and see what I can do to help you with your car...

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Injury Lawyer in West Valley City

Posted by on 1:25 pm in blog, Car Accidents, Personal Injury | 0 comments

Here at Symkoviak Law Firm, we assist many clients that were injured in West Valley City. Recently, we assisted a client that had a bad injury in a car accident in West Valley City. The client was proceeding through an intersection in West Valley City when another vehicle turned in front of her, causing the cars to collide and resulting in her injury. My client initially hired a injury lawyer that she saw on a TV commercial. She continued with that injury lawyer for several months, but eventually became extremely frustrated with her injury lawyer. She reported that the lawyer would not call her back and that only a paralegal would contact her infrequently. She was also given incomplete information and was very unsure of her case. She decided to contact me upon the advice of a friend. One our law office became involved in the case, we could understand why the client was frustrated. She had actually been given some incorrect information on her case by her former injury lawyer. She also had some extenuating circumstances that necessitated a quicker resolution to her case, and her former injury lawyer was not working to make sure this happened.  We began working immediately and diligently on her case in order to make sure she would reach the resolution to her injury case that she needed. It was not an easy case and many circumstances arose that made resolving her injury case difficult, but we were able to navigate through these difficulties for her and resolve her case in a timely manner. The client was very happy and wondered why she had not contacted me earlier as her injury lawyer. Unfortunately, car crashes do happen frequently. I have many clients from West Valley City, West Jordan, and the greater Salt Lake City area who were looking for a good injury lawyer. I always try to meet and exceed their expectations. Call me...

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Car Crash in West Jordan

Posted by on 2:45 pm in blog, Car Accidents, Personal Injury | 0 comments

I recently represented a client who was hurt in a car crash in West Jordan, Utah. My client was stopped waiting at a red light when he was violently struck from behind by another vehicle. The accident happened near Jordan Landing in West Jordan. The other driver claimed not to be at-fault for the crash, despite hitting my client from behind there in West Jordan. The client then retained my services. One of the big issues for my client was the fact that he worked a job that required a lot of physical labor. Due to his injuries from the car crash in West Jordan, he was not able to work. However, my client was self-employed and providing documentation about his wages was difficult. I worked with the client to provide alternative forms of evidence to prove his wages. While he continued to receive medical treatment, he received lost wages from his own insurance under the PIP coverage for this crash in West Jordan. Oftentimes I would have my client submit a calendar of the hours he missed from work, which he prepared himself. After  my client was done treating, we submitted a demand package to the insurance company of the person who caused the crash in West Jordan, Utah. At first, the insurance company refused to pay their insurance policy limit for this crash, however, we were eventually able to demonstrate that my clients injuries were severe and he was justified in receiving the policy limit for his injuries and ongoing injury. We then pursued an underinsured motorist claim with his own insurance company for this crash in West Jordan, Utah, which we were able to successfully resolve. If you have been hurt in a crash, whether in West Jordan, West Valley City, or Sugarhouse, please give us a call. We are happy to assist you with your injury claim....

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