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Does the perceived verdict value of your automobile injury case impact how the case proceeds in litigation?

Written by Jon Remmel on . Posted in Blog

The short answer is yes.

Every injury lawsuit filed in Clark County, Nevada is subject to the Court annexed arbitration program. Like most things in life, there are some exceptions. Specifically, a personal injury case with a perceived verdict value of more than $50,000 is exempt from the arbitration program if the attorney files a timely petition.

Suppose your case has been assigned to the arbitration program. What should you expect? Unfortunately, the arbitration program has become a “trial run” of sorts for most insurance companies. In other words, if your case is subjected to the program, expect it to be drawn out for several months by the insurance defense attorneys (who are paid on an hourly basis and thus incentivized to prolong your misery) and, if you are successful in obtaining an award at arbitration, it will likely be met with a request for trial de novo. Trial de novo means “new trial.” In short, de novo requires you to retry the case in front of a short trial judge or jury. The misuse of filing a request for trial de novo has become a rampant problem in Las Vegas.

Remmel Law Firm has been fighting back against insurance companies with a pattern and practice of abusing the arbitration program through use of trial de novo. To date, we have challenged de novo requests made by Allstate Insurance Co. and Loya Insurance Co. and prevailed. Successful challenges have also been made against Nevada General and American Access insurance companies. In some instances, which do not guarantee future outcomes, our efforts have resulted in an additional $25,000 settlement offer above and beyond our client’s arbitration award of $50,000! For the Chavez family, we negotiated a $75,000 settlement that was statutorily capped at $50,000. That’s getting results.

Remmel Law Firm goes above and beyond to fight for its injury clients regardless of whether a case is assigned to court annexed arbitration program. The proof is in the numbers. It’s also in our multiple 5 star reviews and countless industry recognition awards. Free injury consultations one on one with a certified million dollar advocate are available M-F at (702) 522-7707.

Does your lawyer put your interests first?

Written by Jon Remmel on . Posted in Blog

I once counted more than 10 visible attorney billboards while stuck in traffic on Interstate 15, near the World Famous Las Vegas strip. I have also heard that Las Vegas, Nevada is the second most competitive market for personal injury attorneys in the entire country. Consequently, holding yourself out as a personal injury attorney who specializes in car crashes, slip and falls, and wrongful death cases can be a daunting task.
I am up for the challenge.

Being a victim of a car crash is not easy. In a flash, your already busy life gets thrown on its head. Now, you have to take time to be examined by a doctor and seek treatment, get your car fixed, miss valuable time from work, deal with rental cars, and argue with the insurance company about who pays for what and when. Even if you find yourself through this labyrinth of stress and anxiety, do you know that you are being fairly compensated? Do you know what your legal or financial obligations are if you sign that boilerplate release the insurance adjuster offered you? If you go it alone, which some people chose to do, you can do greater harm to yourself than what any car crash might involve.

A few injury lawyers still get it right. They put their client’s interest (including their financial interest) first. That’s the Remmel Law Firm way.
Are you still apprehensive about calling our law office for a free injury consultation? Feel free to ask around and read over our 5 star Yelp and Google reviews. A majority of the clients are referrals from prior clients or other attorneys throughout Las Vegas. Think about that for a second. Would you trust your legal and financial future to someone because you saw them on television or noticed their flashy billboard? Or, would you rather have individual attention you deserve to ensure that everything is being handled the way that it is suppose to be handled—with your best interest in mind. Knowing, that once the case is resolved, everything has been taken care of—car fixed, compensation paid, doctor bills negotiated, etc.

Writing this blog is not easy for me. The truth is I hate marketing our legal services. Doing the right thing to me is obvious and I’d rather spend my time helping people. Unfortunately, it is not that easy when so many seem to be selling the same service. Trust me. It’s not the same and not everyone who says they do injury law knows how to do injury law and get good results.

So, if you do find yourself in a situation where you need professional advice because of a car crash, slip and fall or worse yet, a wrongful death, please feel welcome to call my office for a free consultation. It’s time you demand more than slick TV ads and fancy billboards. We are open M-F and can be reached at (702) 522-7707.

Is it even worth hiring an injury lawyer, let alone scheduling a free consultation?

Written by Jon Remmel on . Posted in Blog

I get it. You have been bombarded with TV and billboard ads from injury attorneys across the Las Vegas Valley. I see them too. Is it really worth all the hassle to pick up the phone and schedule a consultation? This, of course, comes on top of the headaches associates with your car crash, the near constant phone calls from the friendly adjusters who assure you everything will be taken care of, and the pain in your neck or back that won’t seem to go away.

The short answer is YES.

TRUTH: I have yet to come across a case where we were unable to collect more for our client than what was initially offered to them by the “friendly” adjuster before we were retained. For our car crash client Sarah K., we were able to take a $250,000 pre-litigation settlement offer and turn it into a $1.2 million dollar settlement. For another automobile collision client, Victor L., we were able to take a $68,000 pre-litigation settlement offer and turn it into a $250,000 policy limits offer. We have also taken a case for Claudia R. and her family that had no settlement offers for her husband’s wrongful death and turned it into a $1 million dollar policy limits settlement. These cases take time, sometimes years, but the results are worth every penny.

It is also true that not every case we handle is a seven figure case. So, what’s the difference? Why call? I wish that I could reveal some “secret sauce” about how to make every case a seven figure case. The truth is it primarily depends on what injuries you sustained from the crash. Do you have soft tissue injuries that are expected to heal in 6-8 weeks after conservative care (i.e., chiropractic or physical therapy)? Or, do you have bulges with annual tears to a disc in your spine requiring pain management, injections, or even surgery? Again, it all depends on what the medical evidence shows, as well as some other important factors.

In some instances, the conduct of the at-fault party can also drive the damages in the case. Were they driving under the influence (DUI) at the time of the crash and thus, liable for punitive damages? This too can drive value into the claim.

The honest truth is YOU deserve to have these issues addressed by a qualified professional who specializes in personal injury. My hope is, you will feel a connection with our office and want to call. I don’t need a fancy neon billboard and a $200 haircut to get your attention. I just want to help you the same way I have helped hundreds of other clients. I conduct weekly consultations with no cost or obligation at my office located on Jones, near Charleston. During our consultation, you will be introduced with my staff and personally meet with me to address all of your legal concerns and address whatever questions we can. Remmel Law Firm is open M-F and can be reached at (702) 522-7707.

What Attorney Advertising Says About Injury Lawyers in Las Vegas

Written by Jon Remmel on . Posted in Blog

You’ve seen the cleaver (and not so cleaver) TV ads and driven by the countless billboards. Have you ever wondered what an attorney can or cannot say in their advertisements? Are there limits to what an attorney can claim about your case?

Attorney advertisements are governed by the Nevada Rules of Professional Conduct (NRPC). NRCP 7.2 states, “lawyers may advertise services through the public media… not involving solicitation as prohibited by Rule 7.3.”

NRCP 7.2 also requires, among other things, that any actors be identified and fictionalized events or scenes disclosed. Perhaps more importantly, every advertisement indicated that the charging of a fee is contingent on the outcome or that the fee will be a percentage of the recovery, the advertisement must include a disclaimer that “you [the client] may have to pay the opposing party’s attorney fees and costs in the event of a loss.” Look closely, you’ll see this disclaimer in very fine print at the bottom of ads across the Las Vegas valley.

Indeed, there are circumstances where the court may impose the opposing party’s attorney’s fees and costs against a losing party. Don’t leave your case to chance. Hire an injury lawyer that is ethical and has a track record of winning cases in actual litigation. Not every case ends up in litigation, but you should only retain a lawyer who is willing to go the distance if that is what it takes to get you fair compensation for your injuries.

Remmel Law Firm has a proven track record of successfully litigating car crash cases that don’t settle during the claims process. Because of our efforts, thousand dollar pre-litigation settlement offers have, in some instances, become millions of dollars for our clients. This does not guarantee, warrant or predict future cases, but gives you a good idea of what our law firm is all about. Free injury consultations M-F at (702) 522-7707.

How to Avoid Cappers, Runners and Ambulance Chasing Attorneys

Written by Jon Remmel on . Posted in Blog

Who are the people who show up at crash sites and offer legal help? Are they lawyers? What if my tow truck driver recommended a lawyer, should I trust them? What is a capper or capping? Is capping ethical? What can I do if I retained my attorney through a capper?

It’s 2019. It’s time for new resolve, new goals, new success, and probably some new headaches. This year, I want to make it easier for our injury clients and potential clients to know where to turn for honest representation when they are involved in a car crash and need help with their injury claim. For some, this brutal honesty will not be taken lightly. What I am about to share attacks directly at the heart of some unethical marketing schemes used by a variety of injury law firms in Las Vegas. To be sure, I expect some level of retribution.

It may surprise most people to know that lawyers are governed by very specific rules of professional conduct. One of these rules (NRPC 7.3) strictly prohibits a lawyer from soliciting professional employment from a prospective client with whom the lawyer has no family or prior professional relationship. This means if you were involved in a car crash and were approached by an individual at the crash site who claimed to be a lawyer or a tow truck driver who solicited a firm’s legal services, they were in direct violation of this ethical rule and should be immediately reported to the State Bar. In the legal industry, this is known as “capping” and the people who respond to crashes and unethically solicit legal services are known as “cappers.”

If you are the victim of a capper, it is NOT your fault.

If you retained an injury law firm through a direct solicitation should you be worried? The short answer is no. However, some injury firms have a reputation for using cappers. Consequently, some insurance companies have labeled their clients as “frauds” and they are routinely assigned to their internal fraud unit. Injury claims assigned to a fraud unit routinely end up in costly litigation– not because your injury claim doesn’t have merit, but because the unethical conduct of your lawyer falls into question. If claims flagged as potential frauds are settled, they are generally settled for something much less than their real value because of the implications of fraud.

Hiring an unethical lawyer who uses unethical marketing schemes could lead to problems down the road. Did your lawyer promise to take less than you if you are paid compensation? Do you really trust they will keep their promise when they were retained using unethical means? Or, does your case have more value than what the insurance company has offered because your lawyer has been identified as a capper and your claim assigned to the fraud unit?

You have a right to be represented by an ethical lawyer who follows the rules and gets you fair results. You also have a right to fair compensation for your injuries. If you want an ethical, down to Earth lawyer who plays by the rules, I would be happy to meet with you. If I cannot help you, I may be able to find someone trustworthy who can. I offer free consultations M-F and can be personally reached at (702) 522-7707. If you find yourself in this situation, I can help get you out.

Employers May be Financially Liable for Employees Criminal Acts

Written by Jon Remmel on . Posted in Blog

I do not practice criminal law.  Rather, 100% of my Las Vegas law practice is devoted to personal injury and wrongful death cases.  On occasion, I have been asked to consider whether an employer may be civilly liable for the criminal acts of its employee.  In some instances, the answer is yes!  While every case requires careful, individual consideration, what follows is a brief example of a personal injury wrongful death case against a Nevada employer who was held civilly liable for the criminal acts of its employee.

In December of 2009, a process server employee illegally brandished a firearm while serving legal documents on a former police officer.  The officer fled the scene unharmed.  Concerned for his safety, as well as the safety of others, he reported the incident to Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (Metro).  During Metro’s criminal investigation, detectives contacted the suspect’s employer and notified them of their pending investigation.  They asked to interview the suspect employee about the crime.  Unfortunately, he was unavailable at the time.  Notwithstanding Metro’s direct inquiry, the employer did nothing (or very little) to follow up with their employee about the incident, or further ensure that he was fit for employment as a process server.

Weeks later, in January of 2010, the same process server employee gained access to a Las Vegas residence under the guise of his employment.  Once inside, he inflicted unforgivable criminal acts against an unsuspecting family.  He murdered a husband and father.  He robbed the family of their limited possessions.  He shot the wife in the face, leaving her to die in a linen closet.

Not only did the wife survive this horrible incident, she later testified against the employee during his criminal trial.  This was one of the most courageous acts I have EVER witnessed.  I watched as this broken woman carefully took the stand and starred down the man who tried to end her life.  She visibly shook.  She pleaded.  She cried.  She screamed.  The suspect, free of any physical restraints, remained motionless.  He offered her nothing– not even an apology.  The jury later determined the employee defendant would pay for his criminal acts with his own life.

During the criminal proceedings, the employer also took the stand.  Of interest, they described its soon-to-be convicted process server as a “star employee.”

Remmel Law Firm was retained by the surviving family members to pursue a personal injury wrongful death claim against the process server’s employer.  After years of litigation and, in light of the evidence that the employer had actual notice that its employee was unfit for employment, the matter settled for $1 Million Dollars.  While this settlement does nothing to replace a husband and father, or repair the deep emotional scars of the surviving family members, it is an important concept of justice that may be worth pursuing.

If you have suffered injuries, harms, or losses as the result of a criminal act, please contact Remmel Law Firm at (702) 522-7707 for free consultation.

 

 

Personal Injury Loans

Written by Jon Remmel on . Posted in Blog

From time to time, a client will ask whether they should apply for a personal injury loan.  My response, much to their displeasure, is often negative.  Trust me.  I can appreciate that my response may not be perceived as the best counsel someone can get after being rear-ended by a drunk driver and, consequently, falling behind in their financial responsibilities.  It is, however, my job to protect my client’s best interest.  Best interests are often found in long term solutions, not short term relief.

I have two primary concerns with personal injury loans.  My first concern is the interest rate.  “Remember, interest never sleeps or takes a holiday” (credit to Pres. Ezra T. Benson).  I have personally observed a small, $5,000 personal injury loan increase over time and become a $100,000 liability.  In that same matter, the personal injury loan company refused to reduce their balance once the case resolved.  My second concern, similar to the first, involves time.  Car accidents and other personal injury cases can, literally, take years to resolve.  It has been my observation that larger cases can take as much as 3 to 5 years before reaching a resolution.  Despite the wonderful results we have achieved over the years, the truth is, we cannot force an insurance company to settle your case before a jury renders its verdict.  If I cannot control when the case settles, I cannot control how long it will take to repay this ever growing financial obligation.  Consequently, my counsel is to avoid the additional financial burden to begin with.

Car accidents can have a very real financial impact on your life.  So, what are the alternatives?  Just like a person has to adjust to the physical limitations they might have endured from an accident, I think it is important for a client to also adjust the financial limitations they may endure until the law can seek to make them whole.  Indeed, the law provides a remedy for this loss, but it’s not speedy.  When applicable, car accident victims can seek compensation for lost wages, lost earning capacity, and lost household services.

If you have any questions about this post, or with a personal injury matter, please feel free to contact Remmel Law Firm for a free consultation at (702) 522-7707.

 

woman waiting

An Attitude of Gratitude

Written by Jon Remmel on . Posted in Blog

The question has been asked, “Have we not reason to be filled with gratitude, regardless of the circumstances in which we find ourselves?”  It is true that for the small majority, who truly find themselves drowning with life’s troubles, it can be a daunting task to place our gratitude before a hopeless, negative attitude.  Life certainly comes with its fair share of trials and from what I know, no one is exempt.  However, I have observed that those who choose to be thankful, regardless of their circumstances, have a far better chance of enjoying a full recovery once the storm clouds pass.  In some instances, this may include recovery from serious injuries, harms and losses.  In short, gratitude can be a remedy for the trials in which we face.  Think about it.  Gratitude can actually help you overcome you everyday trials.

Emma, our trusty full time paralegal, has suggested, “Don’t curse the road that got you where you are!”  There is wisdom in this.  We are all individually blessed.  If you look close enough, you will see that regardless of your present circumstances, you cannot number the blessings in your life.  I have certainly been blessed by a variety of associations throughout the years.  Specifically, I have been blessed by parents who cared about my character, friends who cared about my belonging, and associates who cared about my potential.  No one is alone.  Someone, seen or unseen, has touched your life for the better.  If you agree, please be willing to share.

Sharing your gratitude can literally take the sting out of life.  It just feels better.  I encourage everyone to try it during this busy holiday season.

All the best,

 

The Silver Lining of Jury Duty at Summer’s End

Written by Jon Remmel on . Posted in Blog

I have come to dread the end of Summer.  For a parent who, admittedly, enjoys spending unscheduled time with his kids, the last week of August serves as a stark reminder that, “[some] good things must come to an end.”  This summer has been filled with various highlights including a last minute weekend trip to Disneyland and spending valuable time with extended family.  Summer also entertained its fair share of disappointments, including endless days of Netflix movies (and similar brain draining activities), neighbor (singular) feuds, and a handful of actual bumps and bruises.  In order to get past the drama of it all, including the emotional toll daily living can impose, I try to look forward to unique opportunities that remind me, “the best is yet to [come].”

Consequently, I am committed to ending the summer of 2014 on a high note!  How?  As a juror.  Don’t laugh.  You see, I have been summoned to appear for jury duty in the Eighth Judicial District Court (Las Vegas) for the State of Nevada the last Friday before my kids go back to school.  I understand this isn’t everyone’s “cup of tea” and that jury duty imposes a palpable disruption to daily living.  Above all, the pay is crap ($18 per day!?!).  As a practicing trial lawyer, however, I cannot think of a better way to peak inside the juror’s mind than to participate in actual, meaningful jury deliberations.  It also provides me with an unique opportunity to show my gratitude, through service, for the freedoms we enjoy as citizens.

Talk about an opportunity!

Dreams aside, my chances of actually becoming a sworn juror are slim.  First off, I am an overweight, pasty kid with a law license who has an undying instinct to protect the feeble, yet determined David against the relentless wrath of any taunting Goliath.  So, if the case involves anything related to insurance bad faith, the at-fault party will not be “in good hands.”  It is also important to disclose that any bogus arguments of “degenerative conditions” and [unfounded] tales of “malingering” from the defense, will only fall upon deaf ears.  It may even result in punitive damages.  Second, provided I get paid to talk for a living, I just might chat my way off the cliff of opportunity during voir dire and find myself back in the office, behind my catalog mail order, mocha colored desk.

As we navigate life’s challenges, I hope each of us can learn to look for the good– even when it involves serious injuries caused by someone’s carelessness.  For some of you, this may involve learning to walk again, calculating simple arithmetic, or laughing in the absence of someone you love.  It’s hard and will certainly take time.  But it’s always worth it.  Life is not easy.  I suppose we learn more about life from it’s unexpected challenges than we do from riding the Matterhorn and eating overpriced Churros.  I also strongly believe that, somehow, it all ends well and each moment is worth enjoying regardless of our circumstances.  Cheers.

justice statue

Frustrated with an Insurance Company about a Car Accident You Did Not Cause?

Written by Jon Remmel on . Posted in Blog, Uncategorized

Are you frustrated with an insurance company who keeps asking [stupid] questions about a car accident that you did not cause?  I get it.  I just returned from a two plus hour deposition taken by a defense lawyer who works for a popular insurance company.  For the most part, I don’t have any issues with opposing counsel.  She is well trained, quick on her feet, polite, and perfectly capable of defending her client.  That’s not my problem.  You see, this particular case involves a rear-end auto accident that occurred on the Interstate, near Las Vegas, Nevada.  My client was at a complete stop when the defendant driver failed to observe stopped traffic and smashed into the rear of my client’s vehicle.  The force of the collision caused my client significant injuries and totaled her vehicle.

To avoid unnecessary legal costs, and based on the facts of this particular case, I suggested that the parties stipulate to liability.  In short, I was asking the defendant driver to formally accept responsibility for causing the rear end collision.  The stipulation would allow the case to continue as to damages (i.e., injuries, harms and losses) only.  Stipulations are a tool whereby the issues in a case are simplified.  This results in saved costs and time.  The problem?  Opposing counsel will not stipulate to liability until after she gets an opportunity to depose my client and quiz her to death about the details of the collision and every day since.  Despite my frustration, I agree.  If defense counsel isn’t willing to stipulate, I have no choice.

During the deposition, it becomes clear why most of us are frustrated with insurance companies.  Like most depositions, defense counsel started with the basics:  Who are you?  Where are you from?  What do you do for a living?  Then things became a little more serious–  Where were you coming from before the collision occurred?  Where were you going to?  Had you spent any time drinking alcoholic beverages before the collision?  Do you wear eyeglasses?  Was anyone else in the car?  Do you smoke? Were you listening to music?  Were you distracted by anything inside or outside your car?  Counsel even went on to ask my client to produce a copy of her license during the deposition so she could read her driver’s license number, expiration date, and driving restriction into the record.  In most instances, these tactics are appropriate and, in some instances, expected.  However, when you consider what my client was doing at the time of the collision (i.e., safely and legally stopped in traffic on the interstate), it makes it difficult to understand why the insurance company (and their lawyers) want to waste everyone’s time and money by asking irrelevant, fault finding questions.

So why do insurance companies ask these types of questions when liability is undisputed?  Because, insurance companies want to create doubt– in you, your case, and the juror’s minds.  They want to nit pick every injured plaintiff until they fold or break under the pressure.  They want fault free drivers to feel bad about listening to music in their car, or believe they did something wrong because, milliseconds before the collision, they didn’t make some heroic maneuver to check their mirrors, activate turn signals, look over shoulders, and safely merge into a nearby lane.  In most instances, driver’s injured in a rear-end collision do not bear any legal blame.  Further, there is absolutely nothing wrong with listening to music (though counsel may not appreciate your taste), or coming to safe, complete stop on the interstate when heavy traffic has slowed everyone down.  There is, however, a very real problem when a driver fails to pay attention, slams into the back of a parked car at interstate speeds and tries to shift the blame.

Even the simplest of cases can become frustrating.  Don’t let it consume your life.  Consult with a qualified trial lawyer for help.  Consultations at our office are always free and we are happy to help.  If, as a community, we allow negligent drivers to avoid accountability, we are only harming ourselves.  I believe our community expects more out of at-fault drivers and insurance companies.  I know they expect more out of jurors.  If you are frustrated and need help, or if you simply have questions, please contact my office for a free consultation at (702) 522-7707.

Contact us online or call us toll-free at (702) 522-7707 to learn more about our experienced personal injury services.
As necessary, we can visit you at home or in the hospital — we can also offer evening and weekend appointments.


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About Our Law Firm

Remmel Law Firm, our Southern Nevada Office serves clients in the Las Vegas, Green Valley, Summerlin, North Las Vegas and surrounding areas. Our Personal Injury Law Firm is dedicated to helping families thru the legal process when involved in an auto accident, an accident at work or an ATV accident.

We are happy to meet with you in the hospital or your home to accommodate your unique needs. Contact our law office today!


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