If you have been injured as a pedestrian or a bicyclist, like all Oregon traffic accident claims our first priority is to get your medical bills paid and start your disability payments, so that you can take as much time as you need to get better before you try to settle your case.
Under Oregon law, your medical bills and wage loss are paid depending upon the insurance that you had at the time of your accident:
If you have your own automobile insurance, then your automobile insurance company will pay your medical bills and wage loss under your personal injury protection benefits
If you do not have your own automobile insurance, but you have health insurance, then your health insurance company will pay your medical expenses and the insurance company for the driver of the car that hit you is required to pay your wage loss under the personal injury protection benefits of their policy of insurance
If you do not have your own automobile insurance and you do not have health insurance, then the insurance company for the driver who hit you is required to provide you with personal injury protection benefits
Oregon automobile insurance companies prioritize these cases and will immediately hire lawyers to begin defending these cases. The biggest mistake that a victim of a bicycle or pedestrian accident can make is to not thoroughly investigate the cause of their accident. Our experience is that many bicycle and pedestrian accidents are not only caused by bad drivers but are also caused by improper roadway design or maintenance.
The Law Offices of Clayton H. Morrison, LLC has represented a number of clients in cases involving negligence on the part of the Department of Transportation of the State of Oregon and various cities and counties in connection with roadway design and maintenance issues.
When government agencies or landowners fail to install and maintain traffic control devices, warning signs, trim trees, fill potholes or remove other obstructions that lead to poor visibility and accidents, we have recovered damages for clients injured in accidents that happen as a result. An immediate investigation into the cause of your accident is necessary to protect your rights against all potential persons or entities responsible for your accident.
As a pedestrian or bicyclist injured in a traffic accident, you may also be entitled to under-insured motorist coverage. Remember, under-insured motorist coverage is the coverage you have paid for. It is our experience that most insurance companies will not explain all of your rights under your underinsured policy. Your insurance company is not on your side and they stand in the shoes of the driver who caused your injuries.
Our first priority is to get your medical bills paid, start your disability payments and help you take care of your property damage so that you can take as much time as you need to get better before you try to settle your case. One of the most important things that we do for our clients is to figure out what problems they are going to have in the future as a result of their accident. After we are certain about your future, we can obtain fair compensation for everything you have gone through and everything that the accident will cost you in the future.
Your case will settle when the insurance company, or whoever you are making a claim against, fears that you will take them to court and force them to fairly compensate you for your injuries. A demand is simple: “Be fair with me or else I will take you to court and have a jury force you to be fair.”
Without an attorney, you pose no risk to the insurance company. Our past results in court can benefit you because insurance companies in Oregon know that if they are unfair, then The Law Office of Clayton H Morrison will take your case to court. This is why we are able to fairly settle most of our cases as quickly as possible.
Yes. The Law Office of Clayton H Morrison's very best clients are the ones who have tried to settle their own cases. These clients are truly grateful when they end up with two to three times the amount of money that they were offered in their cases without an attorney representing them. In a few moments over the phone, we can give you an estimate of what your claim is worth.
When you settle your case, you will settle for everything that you have gone through to date and for everything that you are going to suffer in the future. The biggest mistake you can make is settling your case before you are certain about how your injury is going to affect you in the future. One of the most important things that we do for our clients is to figure out what problems they are going to have in the future as a result of their accident.
In general, Oregon traffic accident cases must be filed with the court within two years of the date of the accident. There are, however, several important exceptions and you should call our office a get free legal advice on your case even if more than two years have passed since your accident.
If you were injured by a drunk driver, special time limits apply. You may have a case against the bar or social host that served the drunk driver alcohol. This is only possible in certain circumstances, but in order to maintain even the possibility of such a suit, a “Dram Shop Notice” must be sent to the bar or social host within 180 days of the accident. Note: 180 days is not 6 months! If you mail the notice just one day late, your case will not be accepted.
If you were hurt by a city employee, a State employee who was on the job, a Tri-Met bus, or any other state, county, or city worker, you will have to file a Tort Claim Notice within 180 days. Again, 180 days is not 6 months! The notice must be sent to the right person and must say the right things. Details are in ORS 30.275, which is also available online.
7-year-old BP was riding his skateboard in a downtown Portland crosswalk when he was struck by a dump truck. Initially, the insurance company for the garbage truck denied responsibility claiming that BP's parents were at fault because they failed to properly supervise BP on the sidewalk. BP suffered a broken pelvis and urethra disruption.
We obtained the services of a nurse to help the parents with his rehabilitation at home and to provide expert testimony for trial. BP healed without a disability. The case settled for $600,000 prior to trial. The settlement proceeds have been placed in an annuity and will be available to BP when he turns 18.
GB was riding her bicycle against traffic on a country highway when she was struck by a car leaving a driveway. GB suffered a shoulder rotator cuff tear requiring surgery. State Farm Insurance offered nothing in the settlement, maintaining that the collision was GB's fault because she was riding her bike on the wrong side of the road across a driveway. The case went to trial and the plaintiff was awarded $111,467 for her injury. However, the jury also found that our client was 41% at fault for her injuries and therefore the net award to our client was $65,766.00
SA was in a crosswalk at a stop sign when she was struck by a driver performing a “California stop” while attempting a left turn. Although the impact was minor, SA suffered a foot fracture. The settlement represents every penny that was available from the at-fault driver insurance company.
TL was struck while attempting to run across a busy street in Hillsboro. The driver responsible for the accident pulled from a driveway, making a right turn, and struck TL right as he was about to step onto the sidewalk. Initially, the driver's insurance company denied the claim, blaming TL for failing to use a crosswalk. TL suffered a skull fracture without a traumatic brain injury (very lucky), pneumothorax, and a clavicle fracture. All of TL's medical bills were paid for by his health insurance company.
Additionally, his wage loss was immediately paid by the driver's insurance company as no-fault PIP benefits. Eventually, the case settled before trial for the other drives liability limits of $100,000. The settlement represents every penny that was available from the at-fault driver insurance company.
Oregon DMV: Steps to take after an accident. http://www.oregon.gov/ODOT/DMV/pages/driverid/acci...
Oregon DMV: Traffic Accident Insurance Report Form PDF http://www.odot.state.or.us/forms/dmv/32.pdf
Oregon Revised Statutes https://www.oregonlegislature.gov/bills_laws/Pages/ORS.aspx
Oregon State Bar http://www.osbar.org/index.html
Oregon Insurance Division: Complaint Form http://www.oregon.gov/DCBS/insurance/gethelp/Pages...
ODOT: Traffic, Bike, Motorcycle & Pedestrian Safety Manuals http://www.odot.state.or.us/forms/dmv/32.pdf
OLCC's Digest of Violations by Bars & Restaurants http://www.oregon.gov/olcc/Pages/casedigest_finalo...
The Law Offices of Clayton H. Morrison are Oregon personal injury attorneys who represent people injured in car accidents throughout Southwest Portland and its surrounding areas, including, Beaverton Aloha, Hillsboro, Forest Grove, Tigard, Tualatin, Sherwood, Lake Oswego, Scappoose, Banks, North Plains, Vernonia, Yamhill, Gaston, Carlton, McMinnville, Sheridan, Wilsonville, Woodburn, Kaiser, Salem, Monmouth, Tillamook, Cannon Beach, and Astoria.