Personal Injury FAQs for Client Portal Mobile App
- What is our process like?
- How are we different?
- How much is my case worth?
- How much do we charge?
- Why does Morgan & Morgan work on a contingency-fee basis?
- What is the difference between a verdict and a settlement?
- What does it mean to “file suit,” and why do we do it?
- What are compensatory damages?
- What are punitive damages?
- What is negligence?
- Can I still pursue compensation if I was partially at fault for my injuries?
- What is a letter of protection used for?
- What questions can I expect to be asked during a deposition?
What is our process like?
Your lawyer and case staff will receive your file and start working on your case: Time is of the essence and your case will be assigned to a legal team immediately. Your lawyer and case staff will be by your side through the entire process.
You will receive a call from your designated case staff and legal team: Your legal team will call you shortly to introduce themselves and answer any questions you have. If for some reason your lawyer was not able to reach you within two business days, please contact our dedicated client success team at (877) 293-0285.
You should collect your records: Please gather any documentation that could be relevant to your case such as your medical records, insurance policy information, medical bills, and anything else you think may be important to your case.
Investigation: Once your file is opened, your legal team will continue gathering evidence such as police reports, any hospital or medical information, video footage and witness reports. Your lawyer will also notify the other side that Morgan & Morgan is now representing you.
You should not speak to anyone besides your lawyer or case staff about your case: This includes posting about your injury or accident on social media. The defense could use this information against you.
How are we different?
At Morgan & Morgan, we have been fighting for over 30 years for our clients who are victims of car accidents to get them the compensation and justice they are owed. After all, insurance companies tend to seek to minimize compensation. What can seem like a fair sum might fail to cover long-term medical costs, lost wages from missed work due to an accident, or delayed injuries or damages that weren’t accounted for in the original settlement amount, we’re experts at navigating the often confusing legal and insurance process.
How much is my case worth?
Determining the worth of your claim will depend on the type and details of the case, the severity of your injuries, and insurance limits, among many other factors. Specifically, when determining how much your case is worth, at least five things are likely to be taken into consideration, assuming that liability is clear. These considerations include:
- Past medical bills;
- Future medical bills;
- Lost wages;
- Loss of earning capacity; and
- Pain and suffering.
There is no blueprint for determining a case’s value. However, based on our experience with past cases, we may be able to estimate a ballpark value of your case once we have gathered all medical records and statements and have an idea as to whether the client’s physical and mental state has improved or worsened from the date of injury, among other things.
How much do we charge?
Morgan & Morgan operate on a contingency fee basis, which means you only pay us if and when we win your case. Our fee would come in the form of a percentage of the settlement or verdict amount we obtain.
Why does Morgan & Morgan work on a contingency-fee basis?
At Morgan & Morgan, we believe everyone is entitled to quality legal representation regardless of how much money they make. Our attorneys work on a contingency-fee basis — we don’t get paid unless you win — so that you can afford to hire an excellent attorney to protect your interests.
Aside from eliminating any up-front costs for clients, working on a contingency fee also incentivizes your attorney to recover the most compensation possible on your behalf. Their pay is a reasonable percentage of the compensation they recover on your behalf, so you never have to worry about your attorney advising you to take a inadequate settlement offer just so they can move on to the next case.
What is the difference between a verdict and a settlement?
A settlement is is an out-of-court agreement reached between the plaintiff and the defendant before going through with legal proceedings. Essentially, it’s a deal. A verdict is a decision made by the judge or jury at the end of court proceedings.
The most civil cases reach a settlement out of court, often to avoid the time and money of continuing through the often grueling legal process. It’s up to you whether to settle or pursue a verdict. Your decision will depend on a number of factors, including both parties‘ willingness to reach a fair agreement, and whether it’s worth it to you to seek maximum compensation, even if it means going all the way to court.
What does it mean to “file suit,” and why do we do it?
The act of filing legal papers at the courthouse is called "filing suit." The client gives the authorization to file suit after all other options have been exhausted during the pre-suit period. When a case is filed with the court, it does not necessarily mean you will be accompanying your lawyer to court.
What are compensatory damages?
When you win a lawsuit, a judge or jury often issues a monetary award in the form of compensatory damages. These damages are intended to replace what was lost and nothing more. In order to receive compensatory damages, you must prove that you have suffered a loss that can be monetarily assessed and measured by a judge or jury.
But your loss doesn’t have to be monetary in order to receive repayment. Nearly any kind of cost can be repaid through compensatory damages. Compensatory damages are often awarded in cases of physical injury, in which medical bills and missed time at work can be repaid. But courts will often weigh many kinds of injury that aren’t as straightforward, such as emotional distress.
What are punitive damages?
Punitive damages are money awarded on top of compensatory damages, and they surpass the determined monetary value of your loss. These kinds of damages are rarely awarded, and their purpose is to deter the defendant from similar actions in the future. What counts as an act deserving of punitive damages is often vague and arbitrary, but fraud, bad faith, and an intent to harm usually make the list. For example, a car company that knowingly neglected safety issues in its car’s steering wheel could be ordered to pay punitive damages to the family whose son died in a car crash as a result of the faulty wheel.
What is negligence?
To have a viable personal injury claim, the victim must have been injured from the negligence of another individual or entity. Negligence occurs when an individual fails to exercise a reasonable standard of care for the safety of others. If a person fails to act as a reasonable person would, he or she may be liable for any resulting damages.
Can I still pursue compensation if I was partially at fault for my injuries?
It depends on your jurisdiction. In a few areas, individuals cannot recover compensation if their negligence partially contributed to their injuries. However, most jurisdictions maintain that victims can still receive compensation if they were partially at fault for their injuries. In these cases, the amount of compensation awarded to the victim may be decreased in accordance with the victim’s degree of negligence.
What is a letter of protection used for?
Sometimes, people are lacking insurance coverage, or their PIP benefits have been depleted. When this happens, medical facilities and doctors will sometimes accept a “letter of protection,” which is a document allowing the patient to continue treatment without having to pay for it until a later date. Normally, there is no reimbursement made until the patient reaches a full recovery. It is essential that the client understands that if the case is not resolved in their favor, a letter of protection on file does not warrant them exemption from paying off their medical bills.
What questions can I expect to be asked during a deposition?
Some questions that may be asked during a deposition may include the following:
- What types of illnesses and injuries have you suffered from during the course of your life?
- Have you previously been involved in any other lawsuits or legal claims (i.e. workers' compensation)?
- Were there any witnesses to the accident?
- Did you file an insurance claim?
- What is the nature of your injury?
- What is your job history?
- How has your injury affected your life?
- When was your last treatment?
An attorney can prepare you for a deposition by reviewing documents, such as police reports or medical records, which are related to your personal injury claim. He or she will also prepare you for questions that may be asked during the deposition, and will be there during the questioning to assist you.