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Policy Limits for "Property Damage Only Claim"

Policy Limits for "Property Damage Only Claim"

Posted By The Dunnion Law Firm || 16-Aug-2012

A 48 year old mother of two teenage sons on the way to work in early December to 2007 was suddenly struck from behind by an inattentive driver. She was frightened and did not realize that she was hurt and called for her husband to come to the scene and take her home. The police were on the scene when her husband arrived and ask the woman if she was OK. She said she was and the police reported the matter as a "property damage only" collision. The next day she was feeling pain in her back and headaches. She had long suffered with disabling migraine headaches and thought that was all that was wrong; her back did hurt. Finally she went to the hospital emergency room where she was diagnosed with the suspected migraine and soft tissue muscle stain.. She contacted the adverse driver’s insurance company and was told they would pay for her car but nothing for her medical as the matter was a "property damage only" collision. It was at that time that she felt she was not going to be compensated for her hospital visit and contacted The Dunnion Law Firm. She told her attorney about the headaches and that she had pain in mid back that was not going away. The Dunnion Law Firm arranged for her to be examined by an orthopedist. The orthopedic specialist advised that he suspected a compressing fracture in the thoracic spine and ordered a bone scan. The scan disclosed pre existing osteoporosis and the suspected T-11 compression injury. Slowly with physical therapy she improved. A demand for the defendants $100,000.00 public liability policy limit from the adverse driver’s insurance company was made by the Dunnion Law Firm attorney. The demand was met with a "low ball" offer of $10,000.00 because the woman was not hurt at the scene and she had a pre existing degenerative condition of her spine. All typical arguments to insurance carriers who pre judge the value of a claims. The Dunnion Law firm filed suit and took the deposition of the adverse driver. The insurance company took the woman’s statement as well. She described her pain and how she had to work to support her son’s. She stated that she tried to hide her pain from her employer because she could not afford to lose her job. Her story was compelling and the Dunnion Attorney made a firm $100,000.00 statutory demand. Given 30 days to respond or risk additional cost claims the insurance company agreed and increased the $10,000.00 offer to the full policy limit of $100,000.00. The injured woman was grateful for the belief in her claims and all the effort put forth by the Dunnion Law Firm .