Will my case be delayed?
As far as the Courts are concerned, yes – but to what extent its simply too early to tell. But defense law firms and insurance carriers have been hurt by this crisis as much as everyone else. As a result, this may lead to faster settlements in some instances, as the carriers may be forced to let staff go. It makes sense that the fewer cases they have, the less staff they will need. Also, the longer a case drags out, the more the carrier has to pay their lawyer for defense costs, so take this crisis as a potential positive for your case.
After my accident, I was afraid to go to see a doctor for fear of catching the virus. Is this a problem?
It shouldn’t be. I’ve been hearing this from a lot of people. Your shoulder may hurt after a slip and fall, and you may need treatment. On the other hand, going to a place where you could catch a lethal virus is never a great idea. Defense lawyers will understand this. Remember, even if your doctor did an MRI and found a tear, they haven’t been doing surgeries unless they are deemed an emergency. Thousands of injured people will be in the same boat.
Will the value of my case change at all?
No, not really. Money is set aside by each insurance company at the beginning of the case. It’s called a reserve. The value of a fractured arm hasn’t changed because of a pandemic. However, in some counties, people may not have the same sympathy for the plaintiff as they did before all of this death and despair took place, so now is not the time to be greedy.
Can I switch my lawyer?
You can always change your lawyer for any reason. Recent complaints have been that since the Corona crisis started, I can’t reach my lawyer. In the past, that was also a complaint, along with my attorney doesn’t listen to me and nothing seems to be happening. If you were having surgery, you would get a 2nd opinion, so if you have concerns, call another lawyer. Our law firm takes over files every year from other lawyers and most of the time, the client’s fears about prior counsel were justified and we end up getting a far better result. If you interview another lawyer and like him better than your current lawyer, the new lawyer takes care of notifying the outgoing counsel, so it’s not awkward for you and makes arrangements to pick up the file. Read more about changing lawyers.
What if the insurance companies goes bankrupt before my case settles?
It is a mild concern, but not one I would lose sleep over. Every year a few small and mismanaged companies to file for bankruptcy. Sometimes a new carrier takes over the outgoing companies claims. Other times, the State Liquidation Bureau takes over. This organization was set up to protect people in situations like this. The payout from this organization is a maximum of $100,000 but it’s better than nothing.
I want to sue for medical malpractice – will COVID-19 effect my chances of success?
Sadly, it might. Doctors are our new heroes. A jury may say they can be fair and impartial, but if they are putting medical personnel on a pedestal, then it might affect their decision in rendering a verdict. Malpractice cases have always been tough, with lower odds of success than simple injury cases. I think that just got even tougher.