Personal Injury Lawyer FAQ



Accident Do’s & Dont’s

If you’re involved in an accident:


  • Take pictures of all vehicles
  • Take names and information of anyone who claims to have seen anything
  • Take pictures of injuries
  • Take pictures of scene, including skid marks or property damage of any kind
  • Keep a diary of symptoms, time off work and doctor’s visits
  • File appropriate reports with governmental agencies
  • Report to your insurance company AS SOON AS POSSIBLE

  • Give recorded statements to the responsible driver’s insurance company
  • Argue with police or other witnesses
  • Make threats of any kind to anyone
  • Have vehicle repaired without estimate being done
  • Take time off work without a doctor’s “off work” slip unless you can’t avoid it
  • If injured, don’t discuss settlement until you are released by your doctor

We handle injuries caused by accidents every day, but we know this is not an everyday experience for you. We will guide you through every step in the process. Our Oregon accident attorneys and our professional staff will get to know you and your situation well, because the better we know you, the better we can represent you.

Call Toll-Free 800-525-2099 for a FREE CONSULTATION

Oregon Personal Injury Attorneys at the Law Offices of Black, Chapman, Petersen & Stevens represent clients throughout Oregon and Northern California, including residents of Jackson County, Josephine County, Klamath County, Coos County, Curry County, Douglas County, Lane County, Deschutes County, Lake County, Del Norte County, Siskiyou County, Modoc County, Humbolt County, Trinity County, Shasta County Lassen County.


What is a “personal injury” case?

A personal or catastrophic injury case occurs when a person has suffered some form of severe physical or psychological injury as a result of another person or company’s wrongful conduct. The wrongful conduct may be simple negligence or intentional, willful, wanton or reckless conduct.

In some instances, a party may be strictly liable for injury to another without the injured person having to show any wrongdoing by the other party.

The most common type of personal injury claims are animal attacks, automobile accidents, burn cases, boat accidents, brain injuries, construction accidents, dog bites, hazardous products, insurance bad faith cases, medical malpractice, motorcycle accidents, motor vehicle accidents, paralysis, personal injuries, premises liability, product liability, professional malpractice, railroad accidents, severe injuries, slip and falls, spinal cord injuries, truck accidents and wrongful death cases.

In most catastrophic injury cases, an injured party may be entitled to monetary compensation for bodily injury and pain and suffering from the person or company whose negligent or wrongful conduct caused the injury. Wrongful conduct by the responsible party that is intentional, willful, wanton or reckless may also allow an injured party to also receive punitive damages which are designed to punish the responsible party. Over the past two decades, we’ve handled both types of case.

The standard of proof in the United States in a catastrophic injury case is typically by a preponderance of the evidence as opposed to clear and convincing or beyond a reasonable doubt. Because proving a case beyond a preponderance of the evidence (slight tipping of scales) is usually easier than in a criminal prosecution (beyond a reasonable doubt), most catastrophic personal injury cases are handled in the civil court system.

Most states have a strict statute of limitations which means that court proceedings must be properly commenced within a certain period of time after the incident or the claimant will lose his or her right to bring a claim.


What Does it Take to Be a Good Personal Injury Attorney?

Personal injury attorneys gain experience handling personal injury cases one case at a time. It most cases, it can take many years and trials to learn how to properly and persuasively present a personal injury case to a judge or jury.

By their very nature, the available damages in a personal injury case are simply not quantifiable through formulas or expert testimony. The extent of compensation an injured personal injury victim can recover relies in significant part on the preparation and artfulness of the lawyers they hire. Convincing juries of the amount to which the injury victim is entitled to must be done skillfully through the lawyer’s capacity for persuasion and advocacy.

Over the years, we’ve been able to obtain multimillion dollar settlements for our personal injury victims. In some instances, we’ve even been able to obtain multimillion dollar judgments and verdicts after the responsible party either offered nothing to settle the personal injury case or made such a low settlement offer that trial was our client’s only option.

To maximize your chances of success, it’s important to be represented by a law firm that has the experience, resources, and reputation necessary to help make sure you get the results you’re entitled to. Proving the potentially high worth of a personal injury case requires a great deal of skill and experience.

If you have questions, we’d like to answer them for you. After more than three decades of helping personal injury victims, chances are, we can help you too!


What should I do if I am have been in accident?


What should I NOT do if injured in an accident?


If the insurance company wants me to see their doctor, do I have to see them?


Is there a statute of limitations for personal injury cases?



If you have a personal injury, workers' compensation, social security disability, elder or nursing home abuse, or sexual abuse case, please contact Black, Chapman, Petersen & Stevens by filling out the form below. The consultation is free and we only receive compensation if we obtain benefits for you.


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