Visitor Question

Hit head-on by postal truck…

Submitted By: Robert (The Villages, FL)

My wife and I were hit head on by a US Postal delivery truck. He crossed the center line and we were both going 45-50 mph. Both my wife and I were transported by ambulance to different ER’s. My wife went to a larger trauma center and I went to the local hospital.

Our car was totaled, costing $29,800. ER bills are estimated at $15,000 for me and $25,000 for my wife. We both have multiple bruises especially from our seat belts. I have abrasions on both arms (the EMT thought they were from the air bags). Six airbags deployed. My wife has a broken rib. My injuries are soft tissue and I now have tinnitus from the exploding airbags.

This accident happened while we were on vacation in NC. We live in FL. Besides the medical expenses, we have other property damage. We paid $2,764 for a rental home that we are staying in but get no enjoyment from. This was a golfing vacation and we like to walk mountain trails, but of course there’s no golf or walking after our accident.

Can I ask for compensation for the rental home? Other losses include over $1,000 for our eye glasses, and my wife’s clothing had to be cut off her. Do I need a NC based attorney or may I use an attorney close to my home in FL? We are in our mid 60’s and retired, so we have no loss of wages. Any other tips? Thanks.

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.

Answer

Dear Robert,

From a moral standpoint, it would seem only fair you both be compensated for the $2,764 in rental home expenses. Unfortunately, that amount won’t likely be detailed separately in your personal injury settlement. The same holds for the loss of enjoyment of your golfing vacation. More likely, those amounts will be covered under the pain and suffering portion of your settlement. Your wife’s torn clothes are compensable, as is the cost of repairing or replacing her eyeglasses.

Because of the seriousness of the combined injuries and resulting medical costs, you are correct in wanting to seek legal representation.

While you can seek legal representation in the State of Florida, your interests might be better served by retaining a personal injury attorney in North Carolina. An attorney from Florida would likely not be licensed to practice law in North Carolina. This means a Florida attorney would at best only be able to refer the case to a NC attorney.

In serious injury cases it’s often necessary to file a lawsuit. Doing so enables the attorney to take depositions of drivers and witnesses, to subpoena documents, discover prior accidents, policy limits, prior arrests, and more. These are all actions you or your wife could not take on your own.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from a licensed attorney. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here , or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Published: August 19, 2016

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