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Father and Son Get More Than a Settlement: Michael and Justin’s Story

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Michael and his son, Justin, had planned to spend a nice day together. They set out, riding their motorcycles on the scenic highways just north of San Antonio.

Unfortunately, the fun was cut short when a distracted driver caused an accident that changed their lives forever.

A Distracted Driver Forces a Head-On Collision

Before the crash, Michael was riding just ahead of Justin on the highway. They were enjoying the breezes and sights of the open road and just being together, doing what they loved.

Suddenly, a car driving in the opposite direction plowed into the back of a Ford F250 that was waiting to turn left.

The F250 was unavoidably pushed into oncoming traffic, which, at that moment, was Michael.

Michael’s motorcycle ended up beneath the bumper of the F250. He survived but sustained serious injuries to his wrist and leg. The wounds required extensive surgeries and therapies and will likely impact the rest of his life in terms of comfort, functionality, and appearance.

For Justin, the experience was less about physical injury and more about the psychological impacts of seeing his father so seriously injured.

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Justin Makes a Split-Second Decision to Protect His Father

Justin was immediately behind Michael on the road. He was not hit by the F250, but the truck and an injured Michael were directly in his path. To avoid hitting them, Justin instantly decided to risk his own safety by laying his bike on the ground. His body scraped across the road as he slid, causing a lot of pain and serious road rash.

Once his motorcycle stopped, Justin hurried to his father, not fully certain Michael was even alive. All he could do was hold on to his dad and wait. Help arrived, and both were treated for their injuries, but Justin will carry those terrifying images and the mental anguish with him forever.  

RELATED: Can I Get Compensation for Emotional Distress in Texas After a Car Accident?

Mounting Costs and an Underinsured Defendant

While Michael survived the crash, he was seriously injured. The collision had shattered his left hand, arm, leg, and knee—and he had lost substantial portions of the skin and tissues in his left leg. In the following months, Michael underwent many surgeries and procedures for his injuries. The recovery was difficult.

Michael’s tibial plateau, or the upper part of his shinbone, was fractured during the motorcycle wreck. This damaged his knee joint—and he needed emergency surgery. However, just three days after that first procedure, he was back in the operating room.

Overall, he underwent six surgeries within a month of the motorcycle wreck. They included:

  • Left knee-spanning external fixation with irrigation and debridement of open left tibial plateau fracture, stabilizing his left leg and knee
  • Surgery where they cleaned his wound and removed dead tissue used vacuum therapy to his massive wounds
  • Another round of wound cleaning, removal of dead tissue, and removal of left knee hardware
  • An operation where doctors inserted pins and hardware through his skin and into his left wrist and arm (plus more wound cleaning and debridement)
  • Reconstructive surgery on his left leg, due to massive soft tissue damage, which included harvesting veins from this right leg.
  • Yet another irrigation and debridement surgery, followed by an application of artificial soft tissues to his left leg, more vacuum-assisted therapy, and injections to encourage skin graft viability.

Michael was racking up hundreds of thousands of dollars in medical expenses and lost wages. His own health insurance covered only a fraction of these costs.

To make things more challenging, the driver who rear-ended the F250 and caused the accident was underinsured. His carriers provided settlements, but the payout fell far short of restoring Michael and Justin physically, mentally, or emotionally.

The family needed help and turned to the team at Crosley Law to go after the compensation they deserved.

RELATED: Denied Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Compensation? Here’s What You Can Do

Crosley Law Demands Fair Compensation for Michael’s Injuries and Doesn’t Stop There

Because the at-fault driver was underinsured, Michael’s total settlement was nowhere near what he needed to compensate for medical costs, past and future lost wages, and the pain and suffering of such a traumatic event.

Crosley Law went to work, demanding that Michael’s insurance pay the maximum amount of his underinsured motorist policy. We eventually secured $422,500 in total settlements from the at-fault driver, Michael’s personal injury protection (PIP) and underinsured motorist policies.

RELATED: Negotiating Medical Bills: How a Lawyer Can Help After a Crash

Going Above and Beyond the Settlement

After we helped Michael and Justin secure the maximum settlement, we wanted to be sure the family kept as much of it as possible. Michael had hundreds of thousands in unpaid medical bills that he still needed to pay. This obstacle remained, and in the name of providing complete service to our clients, Crosley Law was determined to clear it.

Injured crash victims typically use part of their settlement to pay for medical treatment and other injury-related expenses. Yet, they need to have some left over for the harder-to-define costs of their day-to-day challenges and adjustments.

Because the driver who caused the accident was underinsured, and because of laws governing employer-provided health insurance, Michael owed nearly $430,000 to third-party financial groups. We knew this was untenable since the entire settlement totaled nearly that amount. Michael and Justin deserved better.

Technically, the Crosley Law team had finished its job by negotiating a fair settlement agreement. However, our true goal is to maximize the amount our clients put in their pocket. So once again, we demanded more.

We negotiated with the companies, reducing the amount Michael owed on his bills to $103,706. With this reduction, Michael’s family could rebuild without the burden of overwhelming debt—focusing instead on their physical and emotional healing. After deducting expenses and attorney’s fees, our clients’ net recovery from the settlements was $217,357.

Our true goal is to maximize the amount our clients put in their pocket.

Crosley Law Goes Above and Beyond Expectations

It was our honor to represent Michael and Justin and help them get the compensation they deserved after being so seriously injured because of someone else’s carelessness.

Our job didn’t end just because negotiations did — continuing to fight was the only way to get Michael the most money into his pocket. You can count on the team of Crosley Law to fight aggressively to ensure you get what you deserve, what will help you be whole again.

Get in touch today with questions or to set up your free consultation. You can call 210-529-3000 or use the simple contact form on our website.

The content provided here is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject.

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