Uninsured Motorist Claim, Workers Compensation, PTD, Social Security Disability

by Dean Pavick on September 6, 2013

Our client was a 43 year old woman who stopped by a customer’s office to drop off several ordered items on her way into work. Although our client had a business office, she also would occasionally make visits to customers’ homes or business establishments. After our client left the customer’s office, her automobile was rear-ended by another vehicle on a public highway which forced her vehicle off the road causing her auto to roll over down an embankment. The client was knocked unconscious and was transported by ambulance to the emergency room and hospitalized for a fractured leg, fractured ankle,concussion, and multiple soft tissue injuries. The other driver failed to stop after the accident and our client was unable to identify the other driver or the exact vehicle which struck her car other than shortly prior to the accident she saw some type of dark pickup truck or SUV coming up behind her at a fast rate of speed. A police officer noted on the accident report that the cause of accident was due to a hit and run. Our client filed a workers compensation claim which was initially disallowed for reasons that the accident did not occur in the course of employment. On appeal, the claim was allowed by the Industrial Commission based upon evidence and testimony that our client was performing duties incidental to her employment and which duties benefited the employer. Medical/hospital bills as well as temporary total compensation were paid by the BWC. Within four months, our client was able to return to work for a while. Eventually,we gathered evidence to establish additional allowance of the claim for traumatic arthritis of the ankle, ongoing aggravation of lumbar degenerative joint disease secondary to a shortened leg and altered gait pattern,post concussion syndrome, and post traumatic stress disorder. Subsequently, we filed evidence and a motion which was granted by the Industrial Commission for permanent total disability.

Shortly after the motor vehicle accident,we also opened up an uninsured motorist(UM) claim with our client’s automobile insurance company. The liability insurance carrier denied the claim as there was no independent corroborative evidence that the auto accident was proximately caused by the negligence of another driver.After an extensive investigation, we were able to locate a witness who saw the accident occur while driving to the airport to catch a flight,and,who called 911. We took an affidavit from the witness who was also later interviewed by the insurance adjuster.After developing proof of damages, we later settled the UM claim for the $100,000 policy limit.

Finally, after our client’s Social Security Disability claim was denied twice by SSA, we were able to obtain the granting of Social Security disability benefits for our client at a hearing before an administrative law judge.

 

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