Whitehead Law Group has successfully represented clients in a variety of automobile, semi –truck injuries, propane gas explosions, and death cases. This wealth of experience includes claims against governmental agencies, negligent drivers, under and uninsured motorist claims against all major insurance companies, and long term and total disability benefits. Richard Whitehead has reconstructed accidents through the use of engineers, design experts, and human factor engineers. Mr. Whitehead negotiated the closing of US Highway 12 in order to able videotaping of the perspective of the decedent and the negligent 18 wheel truck driver early on in his practice. Long term planning for paraplegics, quadriplegics , spine injuries, total knee replacements, shoulder reconstruction, are the types of injuries which Mr. Whitehead has over 30 years of experience in evaluating, and pursuing the life time financial losses for these catastrophic losses. Mr. Whitehead has also pursued cases based upon unfair and unjust settlement practices, including the damages for bad faith insurance coverage based on a failure to timely pay benefits. Mr. Whitehead has pursued economic damages for impaired earning capacity through hiring economic and vocational expert witnesses to evaluate the financial damages throughout a person’s work life expectancy. Just and fair compensation is Mr. Whitehead’s goal on all cases that he undertakes. Mr. Whitehead’s practice is limited to contingency fee representation starting at 25% of the actual recovery. This means no fee unless a recovery is received. Mr. Whitehead is licensed in Idaho since 1982, Montana since 2001, and Washington since 1992. Mr. Whitehead has actual experience with cases involving traumatic amputations, broken bones, fractured spines, spinal disc surgeries, carpal tunnel, cubital tunnel surgery, severe burns, strains, spasms, rotator cuff repair, traumatic brain injuries, crushing injuries, dog attacks, and nursing home injuries. Mr. Whitehead participates in trials, settlements, arbitration, and Small Lawsuit Resolution matters, in Idaho including Ada, Bonneville County, Bannock County, Bonners Ferry, Benewah, Latah, Kootenai, Shoshone, Clearwater, Nez Perce, Lewiston, Idaho, Blaine, Boundary and Payette Counties. Mr. Whitehead practices injury and wrongful death cases in Washington Including: Asotin, Spokane, Garfield, Pen Oreille, Stevens and Whitman Counties. Mr. Whitehead practices personal injury and wrongful death cases Montana Including: Beaverhead, Deer Lodge, Flathead, Gallatin, Granite, Lincoln, Madison, Mineral, Missoula, and Sanders Counties.When someone dies as a result of another’s neglect, surviving family members may have a claim for damages. Lawsuits which involve death claims are commonly known as wrongful death lawsuits. Wrongful death lawsuits are governed by specific statutes, which specify who qualifies as an heir for the purpose of making a claim for damages. Idaho, Montana, and Washington heirs include the decedent’s spouse, children, stepchildren, parents, and when partly or wholly dependent on the decedent for support or services, any blood relatives and adoptive brothers and sisters. The damages recoverable in a wrongful death case differ, to some extent, from the damages recoverable in other types of personal injury cases. The damages that are recoverable include both economic damages and non-economic damages and differ from state to state. The Potential Damages Include:Economic
- Medical expenses incurred by the decedent’s estate prior to death;
- Funeral expenses;
- Loss of financial support by financially dependent family members;
- Loss of the reasonable value of household services provided by the decedent.
- Loss of the care, comfort, and society of the deceased family member.
- Pain and suffering before death in some states.
- I have personally handled cases against drunk drivers, truck drivers, hunters who have accidently killed their guide, single car rollovers, electrocution, and medical providers that supplied the wrong drugs or treatment.
If a loved one has been killed as a result of the fault of another, consult with an attorney immediately. There are important notice limitations on your claim which may be as short as 120 days.Dealing with insurance companies including your own can be a frustrating and draining experience to say the least. I have focused my practice on handling claims against insurance companies and Corporations. My 31 years of experience includes all types of insurance disputes, including claims against liability insurance carriers, personal injury claims, insurance bad faith, un-insured & under-insured motorist claims, long-term disability insurance claims, fire loss and other homeowner losses. When someone finds themselves in an insurance dispute, you need a seasoned lawyer who specializes in dealing with a corporate America with all of its adjusters, professional witnesses, and corporate attorneys. I have the experience, expertise, and knowledge to get the insurance company to pay fair and just compensation. Attorney fees can be awarded in circumstances where timely payment is not made after a proper Proof of Loss has been submitted. If you have a claim involving an insurance dispute, consult with an attorney immediately. There are important time limitations on your claim, which you cannot afford to miss.If you are injured on the job in the state of Idaho, the Idaho workers’ compensation law ideally is supposed to provide you “sure and certain relief”. It doesn’t always work that way. You may be legally entitled to receive the following benefits: Medical Benefits for up to 5 years if the claim is accepted.
- Doctor visits
- Diagnostic studies (x-ray, MRI, CT scan, lab work, pulmonary function studies, etc)
- Physical therapy
- Prescription medications (RX)
- Chiropractic care
- Epidural steroid injections (ESI)
- Sympathetic nerve blocks
- Spinal column stimulators
- T.E.N.S. units
- Psychological counseling
Income Benefits should be paid as long as your doctor believes you are in medical recovery and should be paid as follows:
- Total temporary disability which is time loss while recuperating
- Partial temporary disability during part-time work
- Permanent physical impairment which is residual effects of an injury
- Permanent disability in excess of physical impairment which is based upon your age, education, transferable skills, loss of job market, post injury physical limitations, and potential post-injury wage differential
- Permanent and total disability which means lifetime benefits
You should contact me if the insurance company is not authorizing the medical care recommended by your doctor; not paying your disability benefits in the correct amount and in a timely manner or their chosen doctor is not providing you with the medical care you deserve. The Recorded Statement – Should I give one? Workers’ compensation insurance companies often tell you that they cannot make a decision on your claim until you give a recorded statement to an insurance adjuster or investigator who will ask you loaded questions which are designed to elicit information from you about your injuries. You should know the why certain questions will be asked in your case before you give a recorded statement to an experienced claims examiner to insure acceptance of your claim. Occupational Disease Conditions (which includes repetitive use) Are Complex Occupational disease claims are very complex because the elements required in a case are difficult for doctors to understand. You must prove that you were exposed to a hazard that was “peculiar to and characteristic of” your particular job and the exposure is what caused your disease. Common examples include carpal tunnel syndrome, lateral epicondylitis (tennis elbow), exposure to chemicals, noxious fumes, toxic substances, cedar dust exposure, rotator cuff tears, and impingement syndrome. Disability Above ImpairmentIf your doctor gives you a permanent physical impairment (PPI) rating, the insurance company does not usually inform you that you may be entitled to receive disability payments over and above the PPI award. When you are approaching maximum medical improvement (release from medical care) and before the IME rating you should contact me so that I can help you evaluate the medical and non-medical factors that are relevant to your disability in excess of impairment claim to insure fair and just compensation. In many cases the disability is worth more than the impairment rating, which the insurance company is required to pay. Retraining In certain cases, you may be entitled to retraining and / or education benefits so that you can be vocationally rehabilitated and future wage earning capacity can be restored to you. This can amount up to about $40,000.00. Protect your rights with a certified worker’s compensation specialist who has 31 years of experience.Suing a governmental entity for personal injuries you have sustained can be a real challenge. In most cases, there are mandatory notice requirements you must file properly before you can even bring a lawsuit. A Tort Claims Notice has to be sent to the governmental entity involved. It is easy to run afoul of the procedural requirements involved with a Tort Claims Notice, and that is why you need an experienced lawyer to help guide you through the governmental bureaucracy.Tort Claims Notice Requirements differ in Idaho, Washington, Montana and Federal Court. If your claim involves any of the following types of entities or their employees, you will need to file a Tort Claims Notice before you can bring suit:
- Hospital or Nursing Home established by a County or City;
- State office or department;
- State agency, authority, commission or board;
- State hospital;
- State college or university;
- Municipal Corporation;
- Health District;
- School District;
- Any other State or local governmental entity
When does the Tort Claims Notice have to be filed? The Tort Claim Notice has to be filed within a certain number of days from the date of your injuries. If you do not file your Tort Claims Notice within this time frame, then you will not have the right to pursue recovery for your injuries.Where does the Tort Claims Notice have to be filed? It depends on the governmental entity involved in the incident. This can be tricky and fatal to your claim if not done right. There is no special form to fill out, but the Tort Claims Notice does have to contain certain information. The Tort Claims Notice has to specify:
- The conduct and circumstances which brought about the injury;
- The nature of the injury or damage;
- The time and place the injury or damage occurred;
- The names of all persons involved;
- The amount of damages claimed:
- The residence of the claimant at the time of filing the Tort Claims Notice;
- The residence of the claimant for a period of six months before the filing of the Tort Claims Notice
What happens after I file a Tort Claims Notice? The governmental entity involved in the incident has 90 days to respond to a Tort Claims Notice. There are three types of responses that the governmental entity may make: (1) admit the claim and offer to settle; (2) deny the claim; or (3) fail to respond within the 90-day time frame. If the governmental entity denies the claim or fails to respond within the 90-day time frame, then you have the right to sue. You can reject the offer and file suit to recover more money than offered. Is there a limit to the damages that can be recovered from a governmental entity? A person or family survivors who may have a claim against a governmental entity may not be able to recover more than $500,000 for his or her injuries. There are, however, exceptions to this rule. It is important to discuss these exceptions with your attorney. Can I recover punitive damages against a governmental entity? No. Idaho law unequivocally states that punitive damages are not allowed against a governmental entity.THERE ARE OTHER TORT CLAIMS NOTICE REQUIREMENTS FOR CLAIMS AGAINST THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT AND ITS AGENCIES AND DEPARTMENTS. If you have a claim against a government office, consult with an attorney immediately. There are very short time limitations to preserving your claim.