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

Five Tips for Dealing with Difficult Insurance Companies

Posted Wednesday, May 21, 2014 by Chris Thayer

Five Tips for Dealing with Difficult Insurance CompaniesAn experienced Seattle personal injury lawyer will have dealt with insurance companies ranging from small regional ones willing to negotiate to large, national carriers who are very conservative about settlements. Here are some tips that might help you understand how they work.alt text

-Your Seattle personal injury attorney should know not only about how the insurance companies operate, but also about the law firms that they usually hire to defend them in lawsuits. More reasonable insurance carriers tend to hire retain law firms that are similarly reasonable. Large conservative carriers tend to hire top-dollar firms who are aggressive in their tactics and are likely to be difficult to negotiate with.

-The majority of the insurance adjuster workforce in the country is women. They are experienced in the negotiation process and do not react well to threats and offensive behavior, especially if that behavior comes with the veneer of sexism. An experienced Seattle personal injury attorney will understand and know not to condescend to them or to wish for the “good old boy days.”

-If you are dealing with a more reasonable carrier, your attorney will make efforts to establish a good working relationship built on trust and honesty with them. This will make negotiations more fluid and save time and trouble.

-Keep in mind that adjusters have a job to do and they are doing it under the supervision of a manager. If you disagree with something they are doing, do not get angry or take it out on the adjuster. That will just make it more difficult to reach a settlement.

-Negotiation is much like sales: People respond well to people they like and have things in common with. Your attorney might try to keep track of the hobbies or past-times of various adjusters to have something to converse about during negotiations and keep a friendly relationship going. The more your Seattle personal injury lawyer is interested in them or something that they are talking about, the more agreeable they will be.

These are only some things your attorney might keep in mind during negotiations. For more help with your personal injury claim, contact Seattle personal injury lawyer Chris Thayer at (206) 340-2008.

What to Do When Presented with an Extremely Low Settlement Counteroffer

Posted Thursday, May 15, 2014 by Chris Thayer

One of the figures that a Seattle personal injury law firm might interact with most often alt textthroughout a client’s personal injury case is an insurance adjuster. Adjusters are in charge of negotiating settlement offers with a plaintiff’s personal injury attorney and are sometimes known for presenting ludicrously minimal settlement offers.

An Example of a Low Offer

Settlement negotiations involve two parties—an insurance adjuster and a qualified Seattle personal injury lawyer. After a personal injury attorney presents a settlement figure, the insurance adjuster can either accept the figure or present a counteroffer. Typically, adjusters try to negotiate the settlement amount down.

For instance, if a Seattle personal injury law firm examines a client’s case and believes the value to fall somewhere between $20,000 and $25,000, the personal injury attorney might demand $38,000. An adjuster can respond in several ways including:

• Agree to pay the $38,000 settlement amount• Offer a reasonable counteroffer such as $20,000• Present an extremely low counteroffer such as $5,000

Possible Explanations for an Unexpectedly Small Counteroffer

Although it can be impossible to know exactly why an insurance adjuster presents a low counteroffer, in general, there are a few possible explanations.

  1. The insurance adjuster would prefer that the case go to trial.
  2. The plaintiff and attorneys’ expectations are unreasonable.
  3. The adjuster’s supervisors are pushing for a small settlement figure.

How a Seattle Personal Injury Lawyer Might Respond to an Absurd Counteroffer

If an insurance adjuster responds to a personal injury lawyer’s initial demand for settlement with an obviously absurd counteroffer, the plaintiff’s personal injury lawyer could pursue any of the following actions.

• Extend a second offer that is smaller than the original demand• Ask to speak with the insurance adjuster’s manager• Work with the insurance adjuster to alter the counteroffer to a more reasonable figure• Choose to pursue a trial

An Experienced Attorney Knows When to Fight a Counteroffer

A knowledgeable Seattle personal injury law firm knows how to respond to absurdly low counteroffers and when it’s best to go to trial. If you’re wondering about the potential value of your personal injury case, don’t wait to call attorney Chris Thayer at (206) 340-2008.

Pros and Cons of Arbitration

Posted Thursday, May 8, 2014 by Chris Thayer

Although it sounds like a quick fix, arbitration is not for everyone. There are many reasons why your Seattle accident attorney would recommend moving forward with a trial to settle your claim. On the other hand, with a less complicated claim you might find that arbitration could be a huge benefit. Discuss with your lawyer all the pros and cons before making a final decision.

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5 Essential Items To Keep In Your File

Posted Thursday, May 1, 2014 by Chris Thayer

When you keep detailed records about your personal injury case, it is easier to recall certain facts. The records can also provide your Personal Injury Attorney in Seattle with important information that will help to substantiate your claim. This is a list of the crucial items that you should document while your case is pending.

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Three Tips for Keeping Track of Your Medical Records

Posted Wednesday, April 23, 2014 by Chris Thayer

The strength of your personal injury claim rests almost entirely on one set of documents: the documentation of your medical expenses. Without all of the relevant medical expense alt textdocumentation, you and your Seattle personal injury attorney will have a monumentally more difficult time convincing the insurance company of your claim. If you do not have the documentation, the value of your case will be compromised, and your final settlement might not include payment for a substantial medical bill that you were counting on being paid.

When you are compiling your medical expense documentation, this checklist for you and your Seattle personal injury attorney might help you maximize the potential damages you can claim.

Obtain Copies of Your BillsThe process may be easier if you try to get copies yourself of your medical bills to pass on to your Seattle personal injury lawyer. This may require you to go to their offices in person to request copies. Your lawyer will want you to crosscheck all the bills you have with your own expense statements so that you can make sure everything was included.

Keep Your Own Expense RecordsYour Seattle personal injury attorney might give you an expense sheet to help you keep track of all your medical expenses, doctor’s visits and prescriptions filled. Be sure to fill out this sheet thoroughly and accurately with any expense you incur. Anything that you have to pay for related to your injury should be recorded in your records and included in your settlement request so that you can receive proper compensation for it. This record of your medical expenses will have a direct impact on the size of your final settlement.

Have Your Attorney Request Copies of Your BillsYour attorney might also take the step of writing to your medical providers and asking for copies of your medical records as well as your bills. Rather than write directly to your doctors, your attorney might instead write to the account manager or records department of the hospital or physical therapy department. Working with the medical records section will often be easier than going through your doctor.

For more information on what you should be doing to strengthen your personal injury case, get help from a Seattle personal injury lawyer. Call Chris Thayer at (206) 340-2008.