Christy Crowe Childers named to Georgia 2016 SUPER LAWYERS list

CHRISTY CROWE CHILDERS NAMED TO GEORGIA 2016 SUPER LAWYERS LISTWe are pleased to announce that Christy Crowe Childers of Childers & McCain, LLC has been selected to the 2016 Georgia Rising Stars list. This is an exclusive list, recognizing no more than 2.5 percent of the lawyers in the state.

Super Lawyers, part of Thomson Reuters, is a research-driven, peer influenced rating service of lawyers who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. Attorneys are selected from more than 70 practice areas and all firm sizes, assuring a credible and relevant annual list.

The objective of Super Lawyers is to create a credible, comprehensive and diverse listing of exceptional attorneys to be used as a resource for both attorneys and consumers seeking legal counsel.

The Super Lawyers lists are published nationwide in Super Lawyers Magazines and in leading city and regional magazines and newspapers across the country, as well as in the Georgia Super Lawyers Digital Magazine.

Please join us in congratulating Christy Crowe Childers.

David McCain Selected to 2015 Georgia Trend “Legal Elite” in the area of Personal Injury

Childers & McCain, LLC partner David McCain was selected for the 2015 edition of Georgia Trend Magazine’s “Legal Elite” recognizing some of the state’s most accomplished and respected attorneys in personal injury law, a distinction that was given to less than 50 attorneys in the state.  David McCain was also selected for this honor in the year 2013.  Georgia Trend asked attorneys throughout the state to nominate their peers from across the state for recognition as one of Georgia’s Legal Elite.   

Georgia Trend is the only statewide business publication in Georgia and is delivered monthly to more than 50,000 subscribers. The magazine is an indispensable resource in the state, relied on by business, political and economic development leaders for  30 years. Being included again in the publication’s “Legal Elite” is a tremendous honor for attorney McCain and the firm. 

From Left to Right: Attorneys David McCain, Christy Crowe Childers, and Jacob Poole

From Left to Right: Attorneys David McCain, Christy Crowe Childers, and Jacob Poole

DID YOU KNOW THAT SOME MEDICAL PROVIDERS WILL NOT TREAT INJURY VICTIMS BUT WILL TREAT THE PERSON WHO CAUSED THE WRECK?

How is that fair? The medical provider you have treated with all your life may have this policy and you may not even know it until it is too late. Ask your doctor’s office, “If I am ever in a car wreck, would you treat me?” You may be surprised by the answer. The time to find out the answer to this question is now. Imagine trying to find a new medical provider along with everything else that is on your plate after a wreck, including trying to get your car repaired or finding a new car. You may even see a sign in the waiting room that says “We do not treat people injured in car wrecks.” This is not a good sign, literally, and you should seriously consider what this would mean for you if you are ever in a car wreck.

Why would a medical provider refuse to treat an injury victim but treat the person who caused the wreck? I cannot speak for them, but I suspect fear of having to deal with and frustration over dealing with health insurance companies who refuse to pay bills for car accident victims is how it began. Over the past eleven years, out of the hundreds of people we have helped, in only a few cases have we seen an outright refusal by a health insurer to pay a medical provider due to the existence of a potential claim against the person at fault.  Further, in those few cases, the health insurer provided a second document that they wanted to be signed before they would pay for the medical care.

Even though you have paid health insurance premiums your whole life, some health insurers feel that the person who caused the wreck, not them, should ultimately be responsible for the bill.  However, it sometimes takes many months to get the car insurance company for the at fault person to pay your claim and you may need critical medical care right away.  Thus, what typically happens is health insurance pays for your treatment and seeks reimbursement (if they have a right to do so) at the end of the case. This will likely be under the “third party claims” and/or “reimbursement” section of the health insurance plan. But, no such “third party claim” exists for the person who is completely at fault for the wreck. So, some, but not all, health insurance companies pay for the person who caused the wreck while they may claim to have the option not to pay for treatment for the person who was not at fault, the innocent victim of the wreck.  NOT ALL HEALTH INSURANCE POLICIES HAVE AND/OR ENFORCE this clause or take the position of outright denying to pay for treatment. Again, over the past 11 years we have found that even where the health insurance company has this clause in the policy, in nearly all of the cases we have handled the health insurance company exercises their option to pay for medical care where the person has been injured in a car wreck and seek reimbursement from the injury settlement.  Thus, the injury victim gets the treatment, the physician gets paid their usual negotiated amount by health insurance, and we deal with the health insurer reimbursement claim at the end of the case, at which point the health insurer may negotiate down the bill or it may turn out they have no enforceable reimbursement claim at all.

Thus, due to the bad (and in my opinion unfair) acts of some health insurers, some medical providers have become frustrated and find it easier to just deny treatment to all accident victims.  The effect is they will, for example, provide physical therapy to the drunk driver who ran the stop sign and hurt his back, but they will not provide therapy to their innocent patient who the drunk driver injured. If your medical provider has this policy, please know that there are many medical providers out there who do treat injury victims each and every day. Thus, if you have the option to move your care to one of those physicians, it may be worth considering.

Dealing with Insurance Companies After a Wreck

shutterstock_151794464Do I have to talk to the insurance company after a car wreck? Do I have to give a recorded statement to the insurance company for the other driver?  These are questions I wish everyone would ask before talking to any insurance company.  First and foremost, when you are in a motor vehicle accident, you do not have to talk to the insurance company without an attorney.  If you decide to hire our firm, we handle all communications with the insurance company from that point forward and may set up a recorded statement if it is required by your insurance policy.

Dealing with the insurance company

Generally, you do not have to speak with the insurance company for the other driver who hit you and we encourage our potential clients not to give any statements without first calling our firm to discuss your case.  It can take only minutes to call us and then we can make sure that you are not left on your own to answer questions that may be purposefully set up to harm your insurance coverage or your case.  You may not even realize the legal consequences of the questions they are asking.  Often words that we use in every day speech have a specific legal meaning, such that when you answer it you are effectively answering a trick question.  They may turn the answer around on you in a way that is not what you meant at all.

The insurance adjusters assigned to insurance claims have been trained to use a phone call with you to their advantage, while you, on the other hand, have most likely never dealt with this situation.  They have been trained very well, while you, on the other hand, have most likely never dealt with this situation.  The insurance company for the other driver is not there to help you.  They are looking out for their insured and will be asking you questions in a way that is meant to help their case.  When an insurance company calls you, you can politely ask to call them back at another time.  Take this opportunity to call and discuss your claim with an attorney.  There is no charge for the initial consultation.