Longtime friends, Payton and Alex, were headed to enjoy Maine’s coast on a beautiful Sunday afternoon. Alex was driving his new Jeep with the top down. They planned to stop for lunch and gift shops along the way. It seemed many other people had the same idea — traffic was heavy.

As they waited to turn left, a large SUV traveling at high speed slammed into them from behind. The airbags deployed, such was the impact of the collision. Both Payton and Alex had immediate pain in the head, neck and shoulders. Glass shattered everywhere, cutting into their skin. Soon after an ambulance arrived, as well as a police officer. Payton and Alex were taken by ambulance to the hospital to be checked out. Payton was diagnosed with a broken arm that required surgery. 

It turns out the other driver was not only talking on her cell phone but she also had a suspended license and no insurance. Fortunately, both Payton and Alex had separate motor vehicle insurance policies with underinsured motorist coverage. It won’t be known for some time whether the coverage will be enough. 

Payton and Alex were driven to their homes by Alex’s parents. Neither was able to go to work the following week, as both had jobs that required they be on their feet. Alex worked as a painter in the summers and Payton was a camp counselor. While at home recuperating, the phones started ringing from car insurance companies. Both were worried about big medical bills and how they would be paid given that they each had high-deductible health insurance policies. 

Payton and Alex’s best course of action would be to contact an attorney early on. An attorney can obtain the best information by investigating the claim soon after the event. Witnesses’ memories are best before too much passage of time. It is also helpful to obtain photographs of the scene, the vehicles and the injuries, which may not be available soon thereafter. 

Most injured people, like Payton and Alex, are able to resolve their claims with the assistance of an experienced attorney who handles personal injury cases. Every claim is unique. No two injuries are the same, and even the same diagnosis will most likely impact each person differently. Spending the time to get to know each client can be critical in order to effectively convey to an insurance adjuster how the client  has been impacted. At Lipman Katz and Boston, we view every injury not as a claim, but as a person with a story to share.