An 18-Wheeler Against a Car, Pickup, SUV, Motorcycle, or Minivan is Not a Fair Fight.
We know that, and you know that, but sometimes truck drivers act like they don’t. Big trucks take longer to stop, are harder to control, and cause more damage, destruction, and injury than other vehicles on the road. Sometimes truck drivers are careless, but sometimes they have been pushed too hard by their bosses to drive too long, too hard, with too little sleep.
Either way, you are the one who ends up suffering the consequences.
If you’ve been injured in a car wreck, you might be wondering who is going to pay for the medical bills you are receiving while you are waiting on your personal injury case to end. Many people in your situation don’t realize that the other driver’s insurance company isn’t going to pay your medical bills as soon as you receive them. Instead, if the other driver’s insurance pays for your medical bills at all, that will not happen until the conclusion of your injury case.
So, how do you make sure your medical bills get paid while your case is ongoing? The following list includes four ways to get your medical bills paid while your personal injury case is pending.
Be careful out there! Just because there’s ice on the roads doesn’t mean you’re off the hook if you plow into someone while you’re driving.
You might think that if you have a wreck while driving on snow or ice, you can’t be sued. After all, the wreck wasn’t your fault, it was the weather’s fault, right? Well, not exactly.
Arkansas Law requires a driver to drive at a reasonable and prudent speed “under the conditions and having regard to the actual and potential hazards then existing.” Ark. Code Ann. § 27-51-201(a)(1). Basically, what that means is that if you’re driving on snow or ice, you’d better drive slow enough that you don’t run into someone.
A recent study shows that Arkansas ranks 7th in the United States in fatalities resulting from road crashes. In 2013, Arkansas had 16.3 road deaths for every 100,000 in population. By way of comparison, Montana was the highest (22.6 per 100,000) and Utah was lowest (7.6 per 100,000). Overall, there are 32,719 fatalities in the United States resulting from road crashes.
The number of traffic-related deaths in Arkansas decreased by nearly one-third between 2004 and 2013, according to a recent article in the Arkansas Democrat Gazette.
The article referenced the Arkansas 2013 Traffic Crash Statistics report posted on the Arkansas State Police website, which contains voluminous information about traffic crashes in Arkansas. In addition to the statistic about the decrease in traffic fatalities (from 721 in 2004 to 499 in 2013), the report notes that traffic-related injuries are down from 64,331 in 2004 to 26,375 in 2013 (a 59% drop), and traffic accidents overall are down from 74,059 in 2004 to 58,449 in 2013 (a 21% drop). The Arkansas Democrat Gazette article speculates that these decreases are a result of “newer and safer vehicles with more air bags, plus a higher rate of seat-belt use.”
After you’ve been injured in a car accident (or other accident), the first thing you should do is make sure that everyone who needs medical treatment gets it. But once the dust settles, there are four things you should keep in order to make sure that when the time comes, the insurance company pays you what your case is worth.
1. Keep Your Cool
After an accident, it’s important to keep your cool. You need to focus on one thing only, and that’s getting well. But that’s going to be harder to do than you think.
I grew up watching The People’s Court as a kid. (This was the old version with Judge Wapner, Officer Rusty Burrell, and Doug Llewelyn). I watched it enough that there are three phrases from the show that I can still quote verbatim:
“What you are witnessing is real. The participants are NOT actors. They are actual litigants with a case pending in California Municipal Court. Both parties have agreed to dismiss their court cases, and have their disputes settled here, in our forum, the People’s Court!”
“What a reasonably prudent person would or would not do in the same or similar circumstances.”
“I’m Doug Llewelyn, and if somebody [whatever the defendant had done in that day’s case], certainly don’t take the law into your own hands, you take ’em to court!”
You probably haven’t heard about the fourteen-year-old kid in Waukesha, Wisconsin who kicked an eleven-year-old kid in the shin. The kick was so light that the eleven-year-old never felt it. Nevertheless, the kick caused the kid’s leg to become infected (probably because the kid had recently had an infection in his leg), and he eventually lost use of his leg permanently.