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One Unsafe Turn: How One Car Accident Changed Lives Forever

Written by Tom Crosley
Client Stories

Stan H. and Dale A. were heading to a high school football game in Kerr County, Texas in the fall of 2012. Although both of them were in their 50s and had jobs (Stan was a sales representative, and Dale was a home inspector and real estate agent), they devoted their spare time to officiate at high school football games in the area. Another passenger was in the back seat riding along.

On their way to the game, they were headed west on State Highway 27 when a driver heading east in a pickup truck abruptly turned left directly in front of them, which gave them no chance to stop or avoid the collision. They crashed into the pickup and then struck a guard rail, which penetrated into Stan’s rear passenger compartment. Between the force of the initial collision, the shrapnel and debris from the damaged vehicles, and the subsequent impact of the guardrail, all three people in Stan’s vehicle sustained severe injuries.

Stan sustained fractures, shoulder injuries, and a severe concussion, among other injuries; he went on to require surgery for many of his health problems over the next two years and still suffers pain, numbness, and strength limitations as a result of his injuries.

Dale had ligament injuries in both knees and suffered from a displaced cervical disc. Doctors agreed that he would likely need total knee replacement surgery in both knees within five years, and he spent many months undergoing physical therapy and receiving other medical interventions such as steroid injections as a result of his injuries.

But the collision did not just affect their bodies. Stan also suffered psychological trauma as a result of the crash, such as flashbacks, anxiety, insomnia, and post-traumatic stress disorder. Furthermore, both Stan and Dale could not referee for the rest of the season and had trouble returning to their pastime because of their injuries. Dale’s substantial knee injuries also interfered with his ability to work as a home inspector, so he lost a part of his livelihood as a result of one careless left turn.

Both Stan and Dale enlisted the help of Crosley Law Firm in their case. The crash report indicated that the other driver failed to yield the right of way while turning left and that he turned while it was unsafe; not even the insurance company denied the pickup driver’s negligence. However, the other driver only had a “minimum limits” insurance policy with a $60,000 “per accident” limit, which was distributed among the three victims in Stan’s vehicle. 

But the men’s injuries, pain, and losses were much greater than that paltry amount would cover, so the personal injury attorneys at Crosley Law Firm went to work investigating what other coverage and restitution options were available. They discovered that the car itself, a company car, had underinsured motorist coverage and that both Stan’s and Dale’s personal auto policies included underinsured motorist coverage.

Although all the underinsured coverage agencies disputed the claims, Crosley Law Firm sought, compiled, and presented compelling evidence and consulted with experts to prove their clients’ claims, and one month before trial, all the claims with all the underinsured motorist insurance carriers were settled at a mediation. Dale’s settlement, all together, totaled $197,500, and Stan’s amounted to $335,000 as a result of Crosley Law Firm’s efforts. After attorney fees of approximately 36% and reimbursable expenses of $16,065, Stan’s net recovery from the settlement was $195,517 and Dale’s was $114,418. However, the other passenger that was in the back seat of Stan’s vehicle did not hire Crosley Law Firm, and only received a total of $10,000 from the pickup driver’s original policy.

This is the difference that experienced, dedicated legal representation can have on a settlement. Studies have shown that, on average, hiring a lawyer results in settlements 3.5 times higher than those who do not seek out an attorney to represent them, and in this case, the difference was clear. Three men with similar injuries were injured in the same wreck; the two who worked with Crosley Law Firm received over $500,000 – over 50 times more than the one who accepted the initial offer of the insurance company and received only $10,000.

These men were doing nothing wrong, but the careless mistake of another driver changed their lives forever. While they will never fully recover from their injuries, and have not been able to fully participate in the things that they used to enjoy, Crosley Law Firm was able to help them receive compensation to pay for their medical treatment and ease the transition into their post-injury lives.

If you or someone you know has been injured in a car crash, you need to contact Crosley Law Firm right away. Our qualified, experienced attorneys can provide you with free, helpful guidance about what your best course of action is after a collision, and if you decide to pursue legal action, Crosley Law Firm will help you get the justice and compensation you deserve.

Don’t wait – call our firm toll-free today at (877) 535-4529 to schedule your free consultation. You can also learn more about what Crosley Law Firm has to offer by perusing our website, and you can download our free e-book – “Dos and DON’Ts in an Auto Accident: Your Rights & Responsibilities” to find out what you should do after being involved in a collision.

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