Steps to Take If You Get Bit By a Dog

If you are bitten by a dog, contact the personal injury attorneys at OlsenDaines in Salem OR

Dogs may be loyal companions, but even the most friendliest and well-trained dog can snap. In fact, around 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs each year. This is why pet owners are obligated to maintain control of their dogs whenever they’re out in public or have visitors at their homes. 

If you’re bitten by a dog, you may be entitled to compensation for lost wages, medical expenses, and other associated damages. Follow these steps to keep yourself protected after a dog bite incident. 

Seek Medical Care

Your priority after being bitten by a dog should be your health. So if your dog bite was severe, get examined first to avoid infection. There’s also the risk of rabies, especially if the dog was a stray. 

Get the Dog Owner’s Information

Identify the dog’s owner and take down their name, address, and phone number. Request the dog’s information as well such as proof of vaccines. If someone else was taking care of the dog at the time, such as a pet sitter, you’ll want to get their contact information as well. If the dog was a stray, contact animal control so they can attempt to capture it. 

Gather Documentation

The more documentation you have about your dog bite incident, the better chances you have to collect damages. Take photos of your injuries, gather witness statements, and keep track of all your expenses involving the incident. If there are nearby security cameras, request a copy of the videos. If the dog escaped a yard because of a faulty gate latch or broken fence, take photos of those as well. 

Report the Dog Bite Incident

Filing a police report is essential if you want to win a dog bite lawsuit. So after you’ve sought medical care, contact law enforcement to come to the scene and file a police report. 

Contact a Personal Injury Attorney

If you think you have grounds for a dog bite lawsuit, contact a personal injury attorney. They’ll evaluate the circumstances and explain your legal options. If the dog owner has insurance, filing a liability claim with the insurance provider may be recommended. Otherwise, filing a civil court case may be better. 

Dog Bite Attorneys in Oregon

If you’ve suffered a dog bite and want to know your legal options, contact OlsenDaines. We have offices in Oregon and Washington with personal injury attorneys ready to help you navigate every stage of the proceedings and negotiate with the opposing party. Contact us today to schedule your free consultation!

How do I know if I have a consumer litigation case?

Do I have a consumer litigation case

Consumer protection laws exist to ensure that businesses are held accountable for deceptive practices and fraud. For example, “bait and switch” tactics, warranty misrepresentation, and identity theft. Consumer rights law also protects individuals who are harassed and threatened with collection calls. If you’ve been taken advantage of, exploited, misled, deceived by a product, corporation, or service provider, you may have a consumer litigation case. Keep reading to learn more about consumer rights and how you’re protected.

Common Types of Consumer Fraud

Breaches of consumer trust can include various scenarios and behaviors including:

  • Credit card fraud
  • Identity theft
  • Insurance fraud
  • Violations of internet privacy
  • Investor fraud
  • Mortgage foreclosure scams
  • Contractor fraud
  • Failure to honor warranties and returns

By no means is this a complete list. It also doesn’t reflect the range of consequences that can result from unfair business practices.

Who can start a consumer fraud act claim?

Consumers who believe they’ve been defrauded or purposefully deceived can file a lawsuit against the merchant responsible.

Consumer Protection Lawyer in Oregon

People who’ve been a victim of consumer fraud can lose hundreds, thousands, or even their entire life savings. If you believe you were victimized by a dishonest company but can’t quite put your finger on how they violated the law, contact OlsenDaines or call 503-222-2000 to talk with a consumer law attorney in Oregon and Washington. We handle all types of consumer fraud. We’ll explain your legal options clearly and honestly at your free consultation.

Should I Stop Paying Creditors If I’m Going to File for Bankruptcy?

Woman looking through bills. OlsenDaines, serving Oregon and Washington explains if you should stop paying creditors if you're going to file for bankruptcy.

If you’re choosing to file for bankruptcy, and you’re current on your debts, you may be asking yourself if you should stop paying creditors now.

Automatic Stay

The short answer is, no you shouldn’t stop paying creditors until you’ve officially filed. When you file for bankruptcy, the court will order an automatic stay which will prohibit lenders from making harassing collection calls, sending threatening letters, and trying to file lawsuits against you. But until then, they can continue to harass you so don’t be surprised if you suddenly stop making payments.

In most cases, the automatic stay remains in effect until your bankruptcy case is concluded. Keep in mind, it won’t stop every debt collector. Automatic stay orders will not halt child support, loans against your pension, or back taxes. And if you filed for bankruptcy in the previous year, the order will expire after 30 days.

  • Auto Loans: if you stop making payment on your auto loan, at some point the creditor will attempt to repossess your vehicle. If you want to keep the vehicle, you may want to continue making payments so you don’t run the risk of getting it repossessed.
  • Credit Cards: in most cases, people are fine not making their credit card payments, but you will likely be subjected to collection calls until you file for bankruptcy. If you just used a card before you realized you were going to file, you may want to continue to make payments. We recommend consulting with a bankruptcy attorney.
  • Home Loans: as with auto loans, if you stop making your mortgage payments, at some point the creditor will attempt to foreclose the home. If you want to keep it, you may want to continue making your monthly payments. Every case is different.

Bank Setoffs

If you’ve taken out loans through your bank or credit union and you’ve stopped making payments, they can institute a setoff. This allows them to withdraw money from one of your accounts to another to cover the loan payment. You may want to move your money around before missing a debt payment.

Experienced Bankruptcy Attorneys

Filing for bankruptcy can help you “start fresh” if you’re facing mounting debt and pressure from creditors. However, there are many missteps you should avoid in the months and weeks leading up to filing.

To ensure you reach your financial goals, it’s best to work with an experienced bankruptcy attorney. OlsenDaines has vast experience with bankruptcy. In fact, we’re the top bankruptcy filer in Oregon. We’ll help you navigate the process and get your life back on track. To schedule your free initial consultation, contact us today!

Benefits of Hiring a Personal Injury Lawyer

Car and bike crash. OlsenDaines, serving Oregon and Washington talks about the benefits of hiring a personal injury lawyer.

Whether you were seriously injured in an auto accident or a slip and fall accident at a store, you may be entitled to damages if it was due to someone else’s negligence. However, it isn’t always easy or straightforward to get a fair settlement. This is why it’s important to hire a personal injury lawyer.

Here are some main benefits of hiring a personal injury lawyer.

Peace of Mind

An experienced personal injury lawyer will dedicate themselves to represent you so you can focus on recovering. Serious injuries are not just physical. They can also cause stress and trauma. A great personal injury lawyer will give you the peace of mind you need to get made whole again.

Faster Compensation

When you hire a personal injury lawyer as soon as you’ve suffered an accident, they’ll file a personal injury claim for you while you’re still recovering so you’ll receive your compensation that much sooner than trying to do it yourself.

Legal Coverage

Quite often, the offending party will contest the personal injury claim against them, hiring a lawyer and taking you to court. If you don’t have a lawyer on your side, the odds are against you. Hiring a personal injury lawyer to represent you will level the playing field. They’ll gather evidence and develop the right strategy for your case, pursuing it vigorously for you.

Negotiation

Insurance companies spend millions of dollars on attorneys to ensure they pay as little as possible on personal injury claims. They also have techniques to persuade people to accept unfair settlement offers, even without an attorney. They’re not after your best interest. When you hire a seasoned personal injury lawyer who’s experienced in negotiating with insurance companies, you can expect higher compensation.

Do You Need a Personal Injury Lawyer?

If you or someone you know was hurt in an accident caused by someone else, you need to hire a personal injury lawyer to help recover the compensation you deserve. At OlsenDaines, we know how overwhelming and traumatic a personal injury can be. We’ll take the pain out of personal injury recovery. We offer free consultations, reasonable fees, and are committed to getting our clients the relief they need. To schedule an appointment contact us today. We have offices all throughout Washington and Oregon with personal injury lawyers ready to fight for you.

Life After Bankruptcy

Woman sitting on her sofa in relief, relaxing. OlsenDaines in Oregon and Washington talks about life after bankruptcy.

Filing for bankruptcy can provide you with relief if you’ve struggled with unmanageable debt but it also comes with some new challenges, such as dealing with a low credit score. The bankruptcy attorneys at OlsenDaines want you to start off strong after filing for bankruptcy, so follow these tips as you prepare for life after bankruptcy.

Think Positive

First of all, don’t be ashamed after filing for bankruptcy. We understand there’s a stigma involved with bankruptcy, which is mostly just misconceptions. Think positive, get back up, and try again. Many people and businesses have overcome bankruptcy and you will too.

Start Saving

Sit down and calculate your income and expenses. This will help you determine how much disposable income you have. After you’ve determined that figure, make it a point not to spend more than that every month.

Cut Down on Expenses

If you filed for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you’ll repay secured debts through a court-managed payment plan. This means you’ll have to change your lifestyle a bit and you cannot take on a new car loan or credit card without the court’s permission first.

Rebuild Your Credit

Now that you’re starting off with a clean slate, you’ll want to rebuild your credit. Keep in mind, this is especially hard the first year following a bankruptcy filing. Apply for a secured credit card. Unlike a typical credit card, secure credit cards require a cash deposit. Pay off the balance each month and over time you’ll improve your credit score. OlsenDaines will set you up on a credit rebuilding program after filing bankruptcy.

Bankruptcy Experts

Any bankruptcy is difficult. Whether you’ve just finished discharging your debts or are thinking about declaring bankruptcy, OlsenDaines can help. We’ve been helping people throughout Oregon and Washington for over 40 years. Visit our website for more about bankruptcy and schedule your free bankruptcy consultation today!

What to do if You are a Passenger in a Motorcycle Accident

Helmet and motorcycle next to broken peaces of a car on the street after car crash. OlsenDaines serving Oregon and Washington talk about what to do if you're a passenger in a motorcycle accident.

While cruising on a motorcycle is fun and exciting, it’s also more dangerous than riding in a car. In fact, motorcycles are more likely to be involved in crashes than cars, according to the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

After a motorcycle accident, you may be curious about what to do next. OlsenDaines explains what steps to take.

Get to a Safe Place

If possible, move the bike out of the road and get yourself and the other rider to safety. Staying in the flow of traffic could cause further injury or additional crashes.

Check for Injuries

Check yourself for injuries. If you feel all right, make sure anyone else who was involved in the crash is all right and out of harm’s way as well.

Call for Help

After checking for injuries, call 9-1-1 so medical responders and law enforcement can arrive. Medical responders will evaluate you and be able to offer a thorough diagnosis. Oftentimes, adrenaline makes injured people not realize they’re actually hurt. Medical responders can also provide you with documentation that can be used as a form of evidence in the event you want to pursue legal compensation. Meanwhile, law enforcement will make a report of the crash.

Document Everything

Take photos of the crash site from varying angles. Pictures may be used as evidence. Also, get the names and contact information of everyone involved in the crash. If there were witnesses present, get their name and contact information as well.

Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer

Once you’re physically and emotionally stable, contact a personal injury attorney. Consulting with a lawyer soon after a crash can have a profound impact on whether or not you may be eligible to pursue compensation.

Personal Injury Law

Any vehicle crash can be devastating, but motorcyclists are particularly vulnerable to suffering severe injuries. If you were involved in a motorcycle crash, consult the personal injury lawyers at OlsenDaines. We’ve served clients throughout Oregon and Washington for more than 40 years. Visit our website now to learn more about our practice and to schedule an appointment.

 

Signs You Should File Bankruptcy

Woman looking stressed about debt. OlsenDaines serving Oregon & Washington talks about the signs you should file for bankruptcy.

Bankruptcy is typically a taboo subject, but filing for bankruptcy has helped thousands of people get the financial freedom they need. It will help repair your credit score, allow you to be stress-free, and most importantly, it will allow you to get on with the rest of your life.

Let’s take a look at some signs you should file bankruptcy.

You’ve Tried Negotiating Already

If you’ve already tried negotiating with creditors and they haven’t budged and you don’t have the funds to make your payments, it may be best to file for bankruptcy.

You’re Facing Foreclosure

If you’re behind on your mortgage payments and your lender is now threatening to foreclose on your home, filing for bankruptcy can help. It will allow you to keep your home and catch up on your mortgage payments.

Your Liabilities Exceed Your Income

If your debt amount is more than the monthly amount you have coming in, you may want to consider filing for bankruptcy. Underemployment and unemployment are major reasons why many individuals file for bankruptcy.

You’re Being Sued

If your unpaid debts have led to creditors filing a lawsuit against you, it’s a good idea to file for bankruptcy. Creditor lawsuits are often the start of aggressive tactics to seize your assets.

You Don’t Have Any Savings or Retirement Funds

If you’ve already used all of your savings and retirement funds to repay your debts, filing for bankruptcy may be a good idea because it will free up some of your income so you can better prepare for your future. You should talk with us before using up all of your retirement as those accounts can be protected from your creditors.

Experienced Bankruptcy Attorneys

If you have more debt than you can repay and are weighing your options, filing for bankruptcy may be your best option but it shouldn’t be taken lightly. Before making a decision, you should consult with a reputable credit counselor like OlsenDaines. We have knowledgeable and experienced bankruptcy attorneys all throughout Oregon and Washington ready to help. We’ll give you candid, honest, and caring advice. So contact us today for your free debt relief consultation.

Can A Debt Collector Message Me on Facebook?

Young couple stressed over bills and debt. OlsenDaines serving Oregon and Washington talks about if debt collectors can contact you through Facebook.

Debt collectors do everything they possibly can to try to collect a debt. A Federal Law called the Fair Debt Collection Practices ACT (FDCPA) details what a debt collector can and cannot do. Changes are made to the FDCPA from time to time as a result of changes in the way people communicate. Unfortunately, the rights of consumers to not be harassed are not a part of the updated laws. In fact, it appears that the new rules make it easier for creditor harassment.

In 2021, changes will be made specifically allowing debt collectors to try to collect from a person by sending unwanted texts and communicating via a private message on Facebook, Instagram, or other social media. This means that you can be viewing photos of your friend’s vacation and at the same time get a message demanding payment on a past-due debt. Viewing your social media pages should not be a time to see harassing collection efforts, but our government disagrees. The new rules pretend to give consumers the right to stop the harassment, but in doing so the government is extending the type of communication that can happen unless a consumer follows a specific method to request the communication stop. It gets even worse – the new rules limit phone calls to one call per day, but no limits are put on the number of texts and messages that can be sent. This may open the door for a depth of harassment that we have never seen before.

You can read the full notice here: https://www.consumerfinance.gov/about-us/newsroom/consumer-financial-protection-bureau-issues-final-rule-implement-fair-debt-collection-practices-act/. If you are being harassed by debt collectors, call our office at 1-855-GET-HELP (855-438-4957) to set a free consultation with an experienced attorney.

When the Mortgage & Rent Moratorium Ends

ManUpset frustrated young man holding reading postal mail letter. OlsenDaines serving Oregon and Washington talks about when the mortgage & rent moratorium ends.

Both State and Federal governments have put moratoriums on the payment of rent and mortgage payments due to COVID. While these moratoriums delay payments, they do not excuse payments. Most mortgage companies will offer some reasonable assistance such as putting the missed payments on the end of the loan or increasing payments slightly to make up the payments over a long period of time. Most landlords might not be able to offer long payback terms. Most landlords have a mortgage to pay and need the ongoing rents to make those payments. If a person is struggling financially, it will be wise to consult with a bankruptcy attorney before the end of the moratorium so that a plan can be made in the event the bank or landlord are not willing to make affordable repayment arrangements. There are timing issues that should be considered before a person gets a foreclosure notice or eviction notice. There are different types of bankruptcy. In a chapter 13, for example, a person is given time to make up missed payments and prohibits foreclosures and evictions. Some people might be better served by moving to a new residence and then filing a chapter 7 to eliminate the unpaid debt. When a person waits too long to get experienced legal advice, it might be too late for some good options.

At OlsenDaines, we understand how stressful it can be when you cannot meet all of your financial obligations. If you’re struggling financially, we want you to know you have options and we’re there for you.

With over 40 years of experience and various office locations throughout Oregon and Washington, our attorneys will address your financial difficulties and provide you with the expertise and careful planning you need. OlsenDaines offers emergency 1-day filings, payment plans, and evening and Saturday appointments for your convenience. Contact us today to schedule your free consultation.

When to Hire a Personal Injury Lawyer

Young female bicyclist fallen down on street with serious injuries after traffic accident with the 4x4 car of a young man. OlsenDaines serving Oregon & Washington talks about when to hire a personal injury lawyer.

Personal injury claims are civil, non-criminal cases that cover a wide variety of possible situations. If you’ve been bitten by a dog, hit by a driver, or fell at the store, you can file a personal injury claim.

Although there are some situations when you can handle a claim through Small Claims Court or through the other party’s insurance, in most situations you’ll want the expertise of someone who understands the legal system, especially if you’ve been seriously injured.

With that being said, here are some scenarios to help you determine if you need a personal injury lawyer.

You’ve Suffered a Serious Injury

If you were seriously injured in an accident, need long-term care, now have a permanent disability or illness, you definitely need a lawyer. Having a personal injury lawyer on your side could help relieve a lifetime of financial stress and suffering that you would otherwise experience.

Insurance is Denying your Claim

Not only is dealing with insurance companies very demanding and exhausting, but there are also many instances when an insurance company can simply deny your claim. Insurance companies also delay their claims or make the process overly complicated as a tactic hoping the claimant will give up or ask for less. If insurance has denied your claim, you’ll want to contact a personal injury lawyer.

Level the Playing Field

The other party will definitely have their insurance company along with their team of experts on their side, why shouldn’t you? Insurance companies have a lot of money and legal resources, so to help level the playing field, you’ll also want to have your own team of experts.

Medical Malpractice

If you believe you’re a victim of medical malpractice and want to file a claim, you should know time is of the essence. These claims take time and require a lot of legal work. Depending on where you live, there are also some statutes in place that require you to file the claim within a certain time.

Personal Injury Law Firm

Many people are often reluctant to contact an attorney because they’re afraid of expensive legal fees. But this shouldn’t be a concern. Most personal injury lawyers charge their clients on a contingency fee basis. This means they will accept a fixed percentage of the amount recovered. Simply put, they don’t get paid unless you do.

If you or someone close to you has suffered a personal injury and you need help determining your next course of action, contact our office. We understand how helpless and stressed you may be feeling, and we want to help you get the compensation you deserve. We have an entire team of experienced personal injury lawyers ready to dedicate their time and resources to your claim.