I need to know if a lawyer can get me a settlement that can cover my medical bills and lost wages separate from the settlement or payout from insurance?

My family was in a car accident last year and until now the case was not filed due to mishandling of our lawyer. The other party who hit us hire a lawyer and wants to settle , however they only wants to pay what insurance company will pay. They do not want to pay for my medical bills and lost wages coz they said that the payout is only $30,000 and I will have to pay for my own medicall bills out of that settlement.

Asked on July 30, 2012 under Personal Injury, California


S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

The settlement of your personal injury case is to compensate you for the medical bills, pain and suffering, and wage loss.  Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbursement.  Compensation for pain and suffering is an amount in addition to the medical bills determined by the medical reports which document the nature and extent of your injury.  Compensation for wage loss is straight reimbursement.  There is only one settlement from the insurance company.  There isn't a settlement and then something extra to pay other expenses.  If you are dissatisfied with settlement offers from the insurance company, you can reject the settlement offers and file a lawsuit for negligence against the at-fault party.

If the case is settled with the at-fault party's insurance carrier, NO lawsuit is filed.  If the case is NOT settled with the at-fault party's insurance carrier, you will need to file your lawsuit for negligence against the at-fault party prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or  you will lose your rights forever in the matter.   CA has a two year statute of limitations in personal injury cases which means your lawsuit must be filed prior to the second anniversary of the date of the auto accident.

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