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Overcoming Liability Waivers in Personal Injury Cases

If you are currently involved in a personal injury case, and you have signed a liability waiver, then you’re well-aware of just how difficult and time-consuming it can be to push your case through. With a liability waiver, there are many roadblocks you need to go through, and that makes a personal injury case far more difficult than it needs to be.

A personal injury case is already very challenging. When you have signed a liability waiver, though, then it becomes much more difficult to take your personal injury case to court.

Many people think that when you sign a liability waiver, you are waiving the right to file a personal injury lawsuit against a particular organization.

To overcome your liability waiver, it is imperative that you understand what a liability waiver is, what a liability waiver is not, as well as the specific problems that liability waivers can lead to. When you have an understanding of those main concepts, you are able to take the next steps in overcoming liability waivers in personal injury cases.

Overcoming Liability Waivers in Personal Injury Cases

What Is A Liability Waiver?

A liability waiver is a legal document that states that you acknowledge the risks of performing a certain activity. When you sign a liability waiver, you are telling that organization that you understand those risks and that they aren’t liable for any damages that take place due to that particular activity and its inherent risks.

When you sign a liability waiver, you are signing a document that shows you acknowledge the risks of whatever it is that you are doing and that the organization who’s responsible for those activities won’t be liable for any damages. Or, at least, that’s what many organizations believe.

In reality, a liability waiver can only prevent one kind of personal injury claim. If you are doing something that is inherently risky, such as paragliding, and you suffer an injury due to the inherent risks of that injury, you are unable to file a personal injury claim. You signed a liability waiver, and understood the risks of paragliding so that only qualifies as “ordinary negligence”.

If the injury occurred due to negligence on the part of the organizers, however, then you are able to file a personal injury claim. For example, if the organizers failed to give you the right equipment, or didn’t attach the harness correctly, then you can file a personal injury claim because no organization can eliminate liability for personal injuries that are caused by their own negligence. Contact an attorney to help in overcoming liability waivers in personal injury cases.

  • A liability waiver is a legal document that shows you acknowledge the risks of the activity you’re partaking in
  • When you sign a liability waiver you waive your right to file a personal injury claim
  • If the injury is caused by negligence on the part of the organization, then you can file a personal injury claim

liability waiver and personal injury

How Can Liability Waivers Be Problematic?

As mentioned earlier, liability waivers can be overcome, if the organization you are filing a personal injury claim towards was negligent. Proving this negligence can be challenging, though.

If you’ve been injured, and have signed a liability waiver, then you need to prove that gross negligence took place.  If you don’t, then you don’t have a personal injury case, and you won’t be able to receive compensation.

When it comes to health insurance, insurance companies are very fond of liability waivers. If there is a liability waiver, then they don’t have to settle a personal injury claim from you, unless you can prove that gross negligence took place.

In order to determine if gross negligence did take place, it’s important to understand that gross negligence involves an organization making a deliberate choice that puts you in danger. If a paragliding company uses old equipment that is broken or falling apart, then that would be gross negligence.

If you believe that gross negligence took place, then it’s important to have records of your injury. Medical records notes about the situation, pictures, and documents from work showing the days you missed. Make sure that you report it to the organization, and if anyone else saw the injury, notify them about your case.

  • Liability waivers make it very difficult for you to receive insurance money
  • To file a personal injury claim, you need to prove gross negligence took place
  • Before hiring a lawyer, make sure to have records of your injury – medical records, notes, pictures, documents from work
  • If anyone else saw the injury take place, notify them about your case

what to know about liability waivers

How Can A Lawyer Help?

A good Oregon Injury lawyer will be able to help you overcome your liability waiver so that you can receive the compensation you deserve. With a good lawyer, you’re able to file a personal injury claim in the proper manner, take the claim to court, and prove gross negligence. 

When you hire a lawyer, you get access to someone with an in-depth understanding of both federal law, and state law. This understanding is truly indispensable and will allow you to understand the best course of action for you to take, with regard to your personal injury case.

A lawyer will look through your case and all of your records. Along with that, they will also look at the liability waiver you signed and analyze the language that the waiver uses, and how it applies to your case. Something as simple as poor wording or vague phrasing can make or break a personal injury case.

When it comes to filing the case, your lawyer will walk you through that process step-by-step, so that you are able to proceed in the best manner possible.

Ultimately, hiring a lawyer will make the entire process of overcoming liability waivers in personal injury cases and pushing through with your personal injury case significantly easier.

  • Hiring a lawyer gives you access to someone with an in-depth understanding of the law
  • This understanding makes it easier for you to know which course of action is ideal for your case
  • Your lawyer will look through your case, records, and liability waiver before signing, making it easier for the case to go smoothly
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Driving Uninsured ORS

Driving Uninsured in Oregon

There is no reason to risk driving uninsured in this day and age. Getting insurance for your vehicle should be an utmost priority. The consequences of failing to get insurance for your car can be very costly in the long run, especially in states like Oregon.

Oregon is one of the 22 states that electronically monitors vehicles in order to verify their registration and insurance status. Each state has varied penalties for driving uninsured, but Oregon’s penalties are among the highest.

Oregon Car Insurance Law

In accordance with Oregon’s Department of Transportation, all drivers within the state are required to present proof of liability insurance when they register their vehicle. Oregon goes further than just requiring drivers to have insurance, like most states, they require vehicle owners and drivers to maintain certain types and amounts of insurance coverage. Every state insurance standard is different, but Oregon’s are among the strictest.

Oregon State’s Car Insurance Standards:

Oregon law requires these minimums in insurance coverage:

  • Bodily Injury: $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident
  • Property Damage: $20,000 per accident
  • Personal Injury Protection: $15,000 per person
  • Uninsured Motorist Coverage Bodily Injury: $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident

What Instances Require Proof of Insurance in Oregon?

License Suspension ORS

Apart from accidents such as a collision, there are many other times in which Oregon requires drivers to show proof of insurance. Any time you are stopped by police in Oregon you are required to provide your registration and proof of insurance. This would be for any police checkpoint or any other minor infraction you may be pulled for.

Types of items that prove you have insurance can change from person to person, but these are some of the things that you may show in order to prove insurance ownership:

  • A current insurance ID card
  • A current insurance binder or policy
  • A signed letter from your insurance provider or agent, on company letterhead
  • A certificate of self-insurance from the Oregon Department of Transportation

What Happens if You Fail to Provide Proof of Car Insurance?

Oregon has some severe penalties if you are unable or do not have proof of insurance. The law says failure to provide coverage is equal with a class B driving violation. These violations are the same as if someone had exceeded the speed limit over 21 to 20 mph or fails to obey a traffic signal. The penalties associated with this are hefty fines which can be up to $1000 and even can lead to a suspension in your license. Just like getting a ticket these violations can add up to even bigger fines and longer suspensions in the future.

Fines for Driving Uninsured ORS

The fine for driving uninsured ranges from a massive $1000 to a $130 slap on the wrist. Like most tickets the fine changes based on the situation in which you were caught without coverage. A minor speeding infraction would show a lower penalty than if you were caught without insures after running a red light or caused a traffic accident. These fines are always situational and can vary depending on how many time you have been pulled over as well.

Note: If you are required to go to court, the court may decide to impose heavier fines.

Oregon’s Presumptive Fine Option

Oregon insurance

In most cases, people take the presumptive fine option in order to resolve the violation. This option shows you have decided to enter a Plea of No Contest meaning you acknowledge you were at fault and will not need to go to court to plead your case. The fine when you take this option requires two things:

  1. You will send a written explanation to the court
  2. Pay a flat fee of $260

Note: In some cases, the court may that the presumptive fine option is not enough, often because of the seriousness of the accident or insurance violation, This may require you to show your presence in the court and pay a higher fine. Going up to $1000.

Suspensions for Driving Uninsured in Oregon

Fines are not the only form of punishment Oregon has for driving without insurance. Like many other states, call B driving violations can lead to suspension of your license, and Oregon is no different. The time of the suspension can vary from situation to situation. The max suspension can be up to a year and can be applied even if you didn’t directly cause the accident.

Depending on the severity of the situation you could be facing a $1000 fine, suspension of your license up to a year, and the impounding of your vehicle.

How to Reinstate Driving Privileges in Oregon After Being Suspended

Insurance Oregon Driving

After you have served your suspension time in Oregon you can start the process of applying for your license again. Before you do anything else your insurance company will need to file an SR-22 which will be proof of you having insurance and be considered evidence that you can provide financial responsibility in the future. The SR-22 has to be maintained for the 3 years without defaulting of any kind. If at any point during these 3 years it defaults your license will be suspended again and you will need to start this process all over again.

With the SR-22 that is filed with your insurance company, you will have to pay a $75 fee to Oregon. This fee is a reinstatement fee and its used to file all the proper paperwork and get you a new license.

If your car was impounded the next step would be to recover your vehicle. The first step will require notice from the police officer that ordered the impoundment of the vehicle. By law, they must send within 48 hours a release notice to both you and the impound lot. This will add additional fines such as a storage fee, for the time your car was heald, and a towing fee, of course, to pay for your car being towed. There also may be some impoundment administration fees. The grand total will be found on that notice sent by the officer.

Monthly Verification

To help prevent drivers from continuing to not having insurance in Oregon, their Department of Transportation has implemented an insurance verification program. This program is for those who have already had a suspension and have filed the SR-22. This monthly verification is part of that 3 year period which you are not allowed to have your insurance lapse. If it does your license will be suspended again.

This monthly verification works by requiring you to submit proof of compliance (a receipt that shows you are paying and maintaining coverage since recovering your car and license).

Note: if you fail to make premium payment quickly, there is a likelihood that your insurance company could end up canceling your policy and SR-22. In the end, your license will end up being re-suspended, until it’s done right.

Conclusion

Although Oregon is restricted on its insurance policies it is not the only state which views drivers insurance as a necessity. Driving uninsured in Oregon can be time-consuming and costly. With all the fines and potential of suspension, one would think it would be easier just to have insurance. It pays to have coverage, and if you follow the insurance coverage Oregon requires, and that was laid out above you can stay on the open road with peace of mind.

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Personal Injury Claim Letter

Every year, there are thousands of different personal injury claim letters written. Written by people just like you, who are dealing with a nasty personal injury that was caused by someone else’s negligence.

While there are many types of personal injuries, there are five personal injuries, in the United States, that garner the most number of claims per year. Vehicle accidents. Injuries in public spaces, due to negligence. Medical malpractice. Defective products. And, workplace injuries.

Each one of these personal injuries leads to lost wages, due to the time you are unable to spend at work, medical bills, and, in some cases, permanent physical damage. With a personal injury claim letter, you are able to receive the settlement that you deserve, in order to compensate for those losses.

Writing a personal injury claim letter can be a daunting process. It doesn’t need to be, though. Instead, there is a simple set of guidelines that, if followed, will produce a powerful and effective personal injury claim letter. This personal injury claim letter will deliver the results that you seek.

Who Is At Fault?

In the state of Oregon, if, for example, there is an automobile accident and you were injured, the person who is responsible for that is only liable to pay for any damages if they are, at the very least, 51% responsible for the accident, and the injuries that resulted from the accident.

Right before you draft your personal injury claim letter, it is vital that you consider the individual factors of the accident, when it comes to what happened and how the other party factors into that accident, and your injuries.

Personal Injury Claim LetterSometimes, it is easy to determine the fault of the other party, because, in the case of an automobile accident, they were driving-under-the-influence, and a breathalyzer proves this, or they were speeding. In these cases, the other party has a higher percentage of responsibility, and will also need to pay punitive damages, which are damages that serve as a punishment for outrageous and unlawful conduct.

In other cases, it’s a lot more difficult to determine the fault of the other party. If there is no evidence that the other party in question voided their legal duty, which is a prerequisite for all personal injury claims, or that they are at fault for the damages you received, then it becomes much more difficult to determine whether or not the other party is at least 51% responsible, and if this is unverifiable, your claim will be thrown out.

Everyone has to abide by certain legal duties that are present wherever you go. If you are on the road, then the legal duty is that of a duty of care, which means they need to be careful and respect the other drivers on the road. By hitting another automobile, they breach that legal duty. Depending on what took place, there may be a different legal duty, but they all circle back to the concept of respecting other people, and an injury is a breach of that legal duty.

Proving fault is a process that is conducted based on the evidence that is available. In automobile accidents, there are usually witnesses, as well as security camera footage. These two pieces of objective evidence are exceptionally useful and make the facts of the case much easier for the lawyers and attorneys to parse. Individual testimony is incredibly important, as well.

What Happened?

When writing a personal injury claim letter, the most important thing is to convey all of the facts of your injury, and how the injury has affected you, and how it continues to affect you.

Accident Letter Format

In order for the personal injury claim letter to be useful, you must write down the date and time of the accident, and then you must write down the injuries that took place on that date. You are also going to need to write down any personal information that is applicable, such as your date-of-birth, marital status, and other relevant details.

As you write down the injuries that took place, it’s important to explain them in specific and concise language that is simple, and clear. If you were hit by a car, and broke your leg, explain the specifics of this injury, such as what happened and how it happened. Make sure to use neutral and specific language.

Of course, you can’t just write down the injuries that took place, without providing valid evidence of the injuries themselves. You also need to provide medical documentation that proves the injuries you are describing. More importantly, however, you need to provide medical documentation – usually in the form of bills – that describe the type of treatment you needed, or need, and the costs of these treatments.

If you missed work and lost out on wages that you would normally receive, you need to write that down and provide the proper documentation for that, as well. Property damage is another form of damage that can be compensated for, in court, and you will need to provide proof of that, in the form of pictures and other forms of documentation.

In Oregon, you can also receive compensation for pain and suffering, emotional anguish, and loss of enjoyment. Pain and suffering can be proven through medical documentation that describes the symptoms of the injury that took place, and emotional anguish falls under that umbrella as well. Loss of enjoyment is harder to verify, though.

sample demand letter for car accident

Each piece of documentation helps form the claim that will then be presented in court. This claim consists of your description of what took place, the medical documentation that supports what you are describing, and then, from this, you have a specific amount of compensation that you require, based on those treatment costs, lost wages, and other relevant damages.

What’s Next?

Once you have finished drafting the personal injury claim letter, settlement negotiations will begin one-to-two-weeks later. During these negotiations, it’s best to let your attorney do much of the work, but it’s important to continue to focus on the compensation that you feel is right, based on the injuries that you sustained.