Seattle Personal Injury Attorney Chris Thayer
Seattle Personal Injury Attorney Chris Thayer
Handling Personal Injury Claims in the Seattle Area and Throughout Washington Since 1995

My name is Chris Thayer and I am a personal injury attorney practicing in downtown Seattle. I handle personal injury, medical malpractice and wrongful death claims throughout the greater Seattle area, including Issaquah, Mercer Island and Kirkland.

I am here to help you.

Call for a free consultation (206) 340-2008

The Seattle Personal Injury Blog

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder Following a Car Accident

Posted Friday, February 21, 2020 by Chris Thayer

Alternative TextIf you have ever been in a serious car accident, you have likely suffered some emotional trauma following the accident. In many cases, your physical and emotional injuries will heal, and you will be free from both. However, after a catastrophic car accident, many victims face not only physical injuries but lingering psychological injuries, as well. In fact, studies have shown that up to 10% of car accident victims are affected by Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) after a serious car accident. If you were recently in a car accident and feel anxious, depressed, or worried, you may actually suffer from PTSD, and need to seek medical care for this very real condition.

*What PTSD Looks Like *PTSD is a recognized mental health condition that occurs typically after a traumatic event. While many people think of soldiers coming home after a war, or victims of rape or violent crimes, other traumatic events such as a serious car accident can also result in PTSD. Some of the symptoms may include constant or severe anxiety, fear, a feeling of helplessness, fits of anger or aggression without any known cause, continuous flashbacks of the accident, hallucinations, nightmares, feeling detached emotionally or numb, amnesia regarding the accident, or a compulsion to avoid any person or place that reminds the victim of the car accident.

PTSD is much more than being upset after a car accident, it is a condition that must be diagnosed by a medical professional. If you have exhibited any of these symptoms for over a month following a car accident, you should be seen by a medical professional.

*Preventing and Treating PTSD*In some cases, it simply is not possible to prevent PTSD. People who have an increased risk for PTSD and are predisposed to develop this condition could include those with prior mental, emotional, or psychological problems or those who lack social support. However, while that may predispose some people to this condition, it can affect anyone. If you are in a serious car accident, you should visit with family, friends, and a therapist as soon as possible to try to prevent any exacerbation of this condition. A medical professional can help provide medication and therapy to help you learn to cope with the aftermath of the trauma from a car accident. Many different types of therapies have proven exceptionally effective to combat PTSD including psychotherapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, exposure therapy, relational therapy, or group therapy.

*Contact an Experienced Car Accident Attorney Today *If you were involved in a car accident and suffered emotional trauma or PTSD, you may have the right to receive compensation for your pain and suffering. Contact our experienced personal injury and car accident attorneys at the Pivotal Law Group at 206-340-2008. We can work with you to build a strong case and help you receive compensation for your injuries. We proudly serve the Seattle, Bellevue, Kent, Renton, Burien, Mercer Island and Issaquah areas.

Seeking Medical Attention After a Car Accident

Posted Friday, February 14, 2020 by Chris Thayer

Alternative TextOf the 6 million car accidents that occur yearly in the United States, half include injuries to passengers and motorists. While car accidents are common, the results are often catastrophic, including permanent injuries or even death. If you were involved in any kind of car accident, you should seek medical attention, even if you do not feel you were severely injured.

*Car Accident Injuries *Many smaller “fender-bender” accidents will not have ambulances called to the scene of the accident. However, even in smaller accidents, serious injuries can occur. In many cases, a victim will simply not realize that they are injured badly due to the body’s release of a chemical called epinephrine (adrenaline). This chemical acts as a pain suppressor and in many cases a victim simply does not know that they are injured badly because the adrenaline is masking the pain. Making the decision to wait for this chemical to subside, instead of seeking the expertise of a medical professional immediately, can be devastating to your health and prognosis.

*Injuries That Take Time to Appear *You should never wait more than 72 hours to be evaluated by a medical professional for your personal injuries. Some of the more common injuries that take time to appear or present pain will include the following:

  • Internal bleeding
  • Fractures
  • Traumatic Brain Injuries
  • Concussion
  • Soft-tissue injuries (oftentimes “whiplash”)
  • Sprains or tears

*Building a Strong Personal Injury Case*If you were injured due to someone else’s negligence, you likely have unexpected medical bills and lost wages. Making sure to seek care from a medical professional to evaluate your physical and mental condition will also preserve any legal claim you may have regarding the car accident and your personal injury, and allow you to receive the maximum amount of compensation you are legally allowed.

*NEVER Settle Immediately After a Car Accident *You should always wait until you have had all of your medical issues resolved, and you have received a release from your medical doctor regarding your injuries. Never take the first settlement offer from an insurance company. The insurance companies will typically offer very low settlement amounts immediately to victims to attempt to close the case for less compensation than you deserve. If you take their settlement check and cash it, you will be waiving all of your rights to any future compensation to pay for any future medical issues you may have that remain from the accident.

*Contact an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney*If you were involved in a car accident due to someone else’s negligence, you have the right to receive compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, property damage, and even pain and suffering. We can negotiate on your behalf with insurance companies and attempt to get you the maximum amount of compensation for your injuries. Contact our experienced personal injury and car accident attorneys at the Pivotal Law Group at 206-340-2008. We can work with you to build a strong personal injury case. We proudly serve the Seattle, Bellevue, Kent, Renton, Burien, Mercer Island and Issaquah areas.

Establishing a Personal Injury Case

Posted Friday, February 7, 2020 by Chris Thayer

Alternative TextIf you were injured due to someone’s negligence in the state of Washington, you are likely facing substantial medical costs, loss of wages due to an inability to return to work and even pain and suffering. If someone else’s carelessness or recklessness directly led to your injuries from a car accident, dog bite, slip and fall, medical malpractice or another type of injury, you may have the right to receive compensation from the negligent party. The following is a quick guide to how a personal injury case may be established. However, if you believe you have a personal injury case, visiting with an experienced attorney can help ensure your rights and help you build a strong case to receive the compensation you deserve.

*Personal Injury Law*Personal injury law covers all different types of injuries suffered due to someone else’s negligence. For example cases such as trucking accidents, motorcycle accidents, medical malpractice, nursing home injuries, slip and fall injuries, dog bites, boating accidents, manufacturing defects and more are all covered under personal injury law. To make the determination that you have a valid legal claim in the state of Washington for a personal injury claim, the following criteria must be met:

  • Duty: A person has a duty in a specific situation not to cause injury or act negligently towards another person.
  • Breach: Someone “breaches” that duty under the law. For example, they drive a car while speeding or run a red light, a property owner fails to keep their property free from dangerous conditions, a doctor leaves a sponge in a patient after surgery, etc.
  • Causation: The breach of duty must have directly caused some form of emotional, physical, or financial harm to the victim.
  • Damages: You suffered actual physical, emotional, or financial harm that is provable in a court of law.

*Statute of Limitations *According to the state of Washington, you have three years from the date of the accident or injury to file a lawsuit for any injuries suffered. There are some exceptions to this rule, and visiting with an experienced personal injury attorney can help you determine how long you have to file a lawsuit in your specific case. While this may seem like a long time, after dealing with medical injuries and insurance companies, this time goes by quite quickly.

*Contact an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney*No matter what kind of personal injury you may have suffered due to someone else’s recklessness, carelessness, or negligence, you have a right to receive compensation for your unexpected medical bills, lost wages and even pain and suffering. In some cases, if the actions of the defendant were egregious, the courts may even award punitive damages to a victim in an attempt to punish the defendant for their actions and prevent future acts of negligence by others. Contact our compassionate attorneys at the Pivotal Law Group at 206-340-2008. You may have the right to receive compensation. We proudly serve the Seattle, Bellevue, Kent, Renton, Burien, Mercer Island and Issaquah areas.

Injuries Caused by Labor Induction

Posted Friday, January 31, 2020 by Chris Thayer

Alternative TextHaving a baby is one of the greatest joys in life. However, under certain tragic circumstances, labor induction can cause catastrophic injuries and death to either the mother or the baby.

*The Decision to Induce Labor*Most medical experts agree that a mother should be induced to start the process of labor under certain circumstances. If the fetal growth of a baby has stopped, if the mother is past two weeks of her due date, there are infections or medical complications for either the mother or baby, or the mother’s water broke but feels no contractions, these are all instances in which the decision to induce labor is medically accepted. Other instances of inducing labor include those women who have had previous complications in birth or who live very far from a hospital or medical facility.

*Medications Used to Induce Labor *The medications Pitocin, Cytotec, and Cervidil are all medications used to induce labor by increasing the frequency of contractions that speed up the labor and delivery process. Cytotec is approved for FDA use for inductions, but many doctors still use this drug and severe injuries result. Some complications related to labor induction include having too many contractions, too frequent of contractions, failed inductions, placental abruptions or hemorrhaging. These medications can lead to birth injuries or even death of either the mother or baby.

*Injuries Due to Labor Induction *Medical induction can cause severe injuries including uterine rupture, too many contractions, complications with the umbilical cord, premature births, severe bleeding, postpartum hemorrhage, increased risk of a Cesarean section, amniotic fluid embolism, Cerebral Palsy or Erb’s Palsy, traumatic brain injuries, stroke, or even death. Injuries can occur to both the mother and/or baby and can cause serious damage that may be permanent.

*Long-Term Effects *If a family suffers a birth injury to the mother or child, the effects can last months, years, or even be permanent. Some of the things a child may need if they suffer a birth injury can include continued medical treatment, surgeries, physical therapy, home modifications, therapy aids, orthotics, braces, wheelchairs, tutoring, therapy, special education, special organizations for encouragement and support, and lifelong assistance. While compensation for an injury or death will never replace the health or life of a mother or baby, the medical bills, lost wages, or potentially a lifetime of medical needs, therapy, and care, can encourage parents to seek monetary recovery for someone else’s negligence.

*Contact an Experienced Medical Malpractice Attorney *If you or your baby suffered injuries or death due to a medical practitioner’s negligence regarding labor induction, you should contact experienced medical malpractice and personal injury attorney to help you build a strong case. The statute of limitations deadline is only three years, so you must act quickly. Contact our compassionate attorneys at the Pivotal Law Group at 206-340-2008. You may have the right to receive compensation. We proudly serve the Seattle, Bellevue, Kent, Renton, Burien, Mercer Island and Issaquah areas.

Automobile Defect Accidents

Posted Friday, January 24, 2020 by Chris Thayer

Alternative TextMany car accidents occur due to driver negligence or recklessness. However, 44,000 car accidents occur yearly due to defective parts and components of vehicles on the roadways, according to the National Motor Vehicle Crash Causation Survey and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Defective design flaws or manufacturing defects oftentimes result in the recall of vehicles to fix the defect. However, even with these recalls, hundreds of injuries occur every year due to manufacturing defects in vehicles. Therefore, if you were in a car accident, make sure to consider that the crash could have been a result of a defective part or component of your vehicle or another’s as part of the car crash investigation.

*Automobile Defects*Manufacturing parts and components are regulated by the NHTSA which established the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards for vehicles in the United States. Any part of the component of a vehicle that is determined to be defective or malfunctioning in any way can be recalled by the NHTSA. Some of the common reasons that a part or component of a vehicle may be recalled include the following:

  • Accidental airbag deployment unrelated to an accident
  • Gas accelerator that is broken or sticks
  • Loss of light
  • Fires within an electrical system of the vehicle
  • Wheels that are cracked or broken unexpectedly
  • Steering wheel failures
  • Windshield wiper failures
  • Seats or seat back components that are defective
  • Any other part of a vehicle that malfunctions in any way such as falling apart, breaking or separating thus causing the inability to control or navigate the vehicle in any way

When the NHTSA discovers a part or component of a vehicle that is defective they will issue a recall notice. However, in many cases vehicles have defective parts that have gone unnoticed or unreported. If you were in a car accident, it is important to select an experienced attorney who will help you conduct an independent investigation of the car accident in order to determine all parties who may have liability, including the vehicle manufacturer.

*Liability for Automobile Defects *In cases involving manufacturing defects, the defective part or component either directly caused the accident, or was a factor that contributed to a much more serious accident. For example, if the airbags do not deploy during an accident, that defect did not directly cause the accident, however, it would cause the passengers in the vehicle to suffer more serious injuries due to the lack of safety provided by the airbags.

*Contact an Experienced Car Accident Attorney Today *Many people assume that the only cause of a car accident is the negligence or recklessness of another driver. However, there are many circumstances under which a defective automobile part could either cause or contribute to a car crash. If you were in a car accident, and suspect that a manufacturing defect either caused or contributed to your accident, contact the experienced car accident attorneys at the Pivotal Law Group at 206-340-2008. You may have the right to receive compensation. We proudly serve the Seattle, Bellevue, Kent, Renton, Burien, Mercer Island and Issaquah areas.