How Bankruptcy Can Help You Build a Better Financial Future

How Bankruptcy Can Help You Build a Better Financial Future in the Vancouver-Portland Metro area | OlsenDaines

Bankruptcy has long been viewed as the ultimate financial failure, and many people believe that it’s a one-way ticket to a bleak financial future. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Bankruptcy provides a fresh start, a chance to eliminate debt, and even an opportunity to rebuild your finances. 

In this blog post, we’ll share the inspiring story of Chris, a client who was able to buy a commercial property just a few years after filing for bankruptcy. We hope his story will help you understand how bankruptcy can be a stepping stone towards a brighter financial future.

Chris’s Bankruptcy Story

They were in dire straits when Chris and his wife first came into our office. They were behind on their mortgage payments and lived off credit cards. They believed that filing for bankruptcy would mean the end of their financial life, but we quickly dispelled that myth. We helped them file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, which allowed them to eliminate their second mortgage, gave them time to catch up on their first mortgage, and wiped away their general debt. This process allowed them to restructure their finances and start fresh.

The Chapter 13 bankruptcy process requires a lot of documentation, but it’s ultimately worth it. Once the process was completed, Chris could start rebuilding his finances. A few years after their bankruptcy was finalized, Chris contacted us with some exciting news: he wanted to buy a commercial building. This was a surprisingly short time frame for someone who had filed for bankruptcy, but it was a testament to how the process had given Chris a fresh start.

Bankruptcy Is a Fresh Start

Chris needed copies of all the documents from our firm to purchase the property, and that’s when he reached out to us. Now, every week when we drive past that building, we feel great satisfaction knowing that we helped Chris get his financial house in order and buy an investment property. It proves bankruptcy doesn’t have to be a one-way ticket to financial doom.

Bankruptcy can be daunting, and it’s not a decision that should be made lightly. However, if you’re struggling with debt, it’s important to remember that it can be a tool to help you rebuild your finances. Filing for bankruptcy can be the first step towards a better financial future. It allows you to eliminate your debts, restructure your finances, and start anew. Chris’s story proves bankruptcy doesn’t mean the end of your financial life – it can be the beginning of a brighter future.

Contact Experienced Bankruptcy Attorneys for Help

If you’re interested in filing for Chapter 13 Bankruptcy, contact OlsenDaines. We have offices located throughout Oregon and Washington with experienced bankruptcy attorneys ready and willing to help you relieve your debt. To schedule your free, no-obligation consultation with one of our attorneys, simply call us or fill out our online form!

Protecting Your Retirement Accounts in Bankruptcy

Protecting Your Retirement Accounts in Bankruptcy in the Vancouver-Portland Metro area | OlsenDaines

Bankruptcy is often associated with losing everything, including your hard-earned retirement savings. But contrary to popular belief, filing for bankruptcy doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to surrender all your retirement accounts. There are ways of protecting your retirement accounts from creditors during bankruptcy. In this blog post, we’ll discuss different types of retirement accounts, what counts as a qualified account, and how you can safeguard your retirement savings.

The Two Types of Retirement Accounts

When it comes to retirement accounts, there are two types: qualified and non-qualified. Non-qualified accounts are regular investment accounts that you use to save for retirement. These accounts are not protected during bankruptcy, so creditors may seize your investments if you file for bankruptcy. On the other hand, qualified accounts are tax-advantaged retirement accounts that the IRS recognizes and approves. These accounts are usually exempt from bankruptcy proceedings, meaning your creditors can’t touch them.

What You Need to Know About Qualified Accounts

The most common types of qualified accounts are 401(k)s and IRAs. A 401(k) is a retirement savings account offered by an employer, while an IRA is an individual retirement account. These accounts are tax-deferred, meaning you won’t have to pay taxes until you withdraw the money in retirement. If you file for bankruptcy, you can protect your 401(k) and IRA from creditors as long as you follow specific rules and regulations.

One of the most important things you need to do to protect your retirement accounts in bankruptcy is to provide accurate and complete information about your retirement plans. Your bankruptcy attorney will review your account statements and determine whether they qualify as protected retirement accounts. If you have a mix of qualified and non-qualified retirement accounts, your attorney may advise you to transfer your assets to your qualified accounts to shield them from creditors.

How Bankruptcy Exemptions Can Protect Your Assets

Another way of protecting your retirement savings during bankruptcy is to use exemptions. In some cases, state or federal laws may allow you to exempt certain assets from bankruptcy proceedings, including retirement accounts. However, the specific amount of exemption you can claim will depend on the type of retirement account, its balance, and the laws of your state.

It’s also worth noting that filing for bankruptcy may impact your retirement plans. For instance, if you have a 401(k) loan when you file for bankruptcy, you may be required to repay the loan in full or risk losing your 401(k) savings. Similarly, if you have already started receiving retirement benefits, such as Social Security or pension payments, you may not be able to discharge them in bankruptcy.

Your Attorney Can Help Protect Your Accounts

Recently, I had a conversation with a client who had two different types of accounts – a nonqualified account and an IRA, which is a qualified account. After filing for bankruptcy, our next step was to meet with the trustee to verify the types of accounts the client had. Unfortunately, there was some confusion, and the trustee initially believed that both accounts were non-qualified. This could’ve resulted in the client surrendering some of her accounts. Fortunately, we had the proper documentation in place, and we could demonstrate that the money in her IRA was totally protected and exempt from any creditors. For the client, it was a relief to know that her assets were protected and that we had done the work beforehand to ensure that her documentation was in order.

Filing for bankruptcy can be a stressful and daunting experience, especially when you need clarification on what will happen to your retirement savings. However, with the right legal guidance and strategies, you can protect your retirement accounts during bankruptcy and ensure that you have a secure financial future. Remember, if you’re considering filing for bankruptcy, it’s crucial to work with an experienced bankruptcy attorney who understands the intricacies of bankruptcy law and can help you make informed decisions. Don’t let bankruptcy erode your retirement plans – take steps to safeguard your future today!

Contact OlsenDaines for Bankruptcy Help Today

From our free bankruptcy consultations to our complimentary credit rebuilding program, bankruptcy attorneys at OlsenDaines are here to help you with every step of the bankruptcy process. We are the largest and most experienced consumer bankruptcy law firm in the Pacific NW. We are able to address your financial difficulties with the expertise and careful planning you are seeking. Contact us today!

How Chapter Seven Bankruptcy Can Provide Financial Relief During Medical Crisis

How Chapter Seven Bankruptcy Can Provide Financial Relief During Medical Crisis in the Vancouver-Portland Metro area | OlsenDaines

When dealing with a medical crisis, the last thing you want to worry about is the financial burden that comes with it. Unfortunately, medical bills can stack up quickly, and it is not uncommon for individuals to find themselves drowning in debt. This was the case for my client Susie. She felt overwhelmed, and her creditors were hounding her relentlessly, leading her to a dark place where she even attempted suicide. In this blog post, I will share how Susie found hope and relief through Chapter Seven bankruptcy and how it could help you, too.

What Is Chapter 7 Bankruptcy?

Chapter Seven bankruptcy is a legal process designed to help individuals and businesses eliminate unsecured debts, such as medical bills, credit card debt, and utility bills. This type of bankruptcy allows filers to discharge their debts, leaving them with a clean slate. This process may seem daunting, but an experienced bankruptcy attorney can guide you through it and ensure that your assets are protected.

For Susie, Chapter Seven bankruptcy was the answer to her prayers. She had accumulated medical bills that were putting a lot of pressure on her, and her creditors’ relentless calls only worsened her depression. As soon as we filed her case, the harassing phone calls stopped, and she felt a weight lifted off her shoulders. With her debts discharged, she could focus on her mental and physical health and rebuild her life.

Medical Debt in Bankruptcy

It is crucial to note that not all medical debt will qualify for discharge in Chapter Seven bankruptcy. However, it is still worth discussing your options with a bankruptcy attorney because alternative solutions are available, such as Chapter 13 bankruptcy or debt settlement. An experienced attorney will assess your situation and determine the best course of action based on your circumstances.

Bankruptcy Provides a Fresh Start

It is understandable if you feel hesitant or embarrassed to file for bankruptcy. The truth is that bankruptcy was designed to provide a fresh start to individuals or businesses struggling financially. It is not something to be ashamed of, and you are not alone. Many people have turned to bankruptcy to get a second chance. Susie herself admitted that she felt relieved and grateful for the help she received, and it even saved her life.

Medical crises can be overwhelming, and the financial burden that comes with them only adds to the stress. The good news is there are solutions to help you get back on track. Chapter Seven bankruptcy is just one of the options available that can eliminate your debts and give you a fresh start. If you are in a situation like Susie’s, help is available, and it doesn’t cost anything to call and discuss your options. Don’t suffer in silence. Take that first step towards finding financial freedom.

Contact Experienced Bankruptcy Attorneys for the Help You Need

The bankruptcy attorneys at OlsenDaines are here to help you with every step of the bankruptcy process. We are the largest and most experienced consumer bankruptcy law firm in the Pacific NW, with offices throughout Oregon and Washington. We can address your financial difficulties with the expertise and careful planning you are seeking. Contact us to schedule your free case evaluation today!

How Bankruptcy Can Affect Your Family Business

How Bankruptcy Can Affect Your Family Business in the Vancouver-Portland Metro area | OlsenDaines

Are you considering bankruptcy but wondering how it might affect your family business? If so, you’re not alone. Many small business owners find themselves in a position where they need to file for bankruptcy but are worried about the impact it will have on their company. In this blog post, we’ll explore how filing for bankruptcy can affect your family business and provide helpful information to ease your worries.

Membership or Shares in the Family Business

When you file for bankruptcy, the first thing that is considered is your assets. It’s important to note that your LLC or corporation must only file for bankruptcy if it’s also experiencing financial difficulties. However, the value of your membership or shares in the corporation will be considered. The bankruptcy law protects your assets, so there are limits to what can be taken or seized by creditors. This is where your membership or shares in the family business come into play.

Value of Your Membership or Shares

If the membership or shares do not have enough value to a trustee, they will not be at risk of bankruptcy. That said, it’s important to have a professional look closely at the value of your ownership interest in the LLC or Corporation, as this is what the trustee will assess. In many cases, your membership or shares may not be worth enough to be at risk of bankruptcy. In assessing the value of your ownership interest in the LLC or corporation, you should contact a professional with experience in bankruptcy law. They can help you determine whether your family business is at risk and guide you on the right path forward. They’ll discuss the valuation of your membership or shares and whether you need to take action to protect them.

Bankruptcy Often Does Not Impact Your Ownership Interest

In most cases, you can file for bankruptcy without impacting your ownership interest in the family business. For example, in a recent client’s case, we found that his portion of the family LLC wasn’t worth enough to be at risk of bankruptcy. He could file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy to eliminate his credit card, medical, and vehicle repo debts while keeping his ownership interest in the family LLC. In this way, bankruptcy could give Kyle the fresh start he needed while preserving his ownership status.

If you’re considering filing for bankruptcy and worried about how it might impact your family business, there’s no need to fret. While your membership or shares in the LLC or Corporation will be taken into account, they may not be at risk. By working with a professional experienced in bankruptcy law, you can determine the value of your interest and whether it will be impacted. In most cases, you can file for bankruptcy and keep your family business intact. So, don’t let the fear of default keep you from getting a fresh financial start. Consult with a professional and get the help you need.

Contact the Bankruptcy Attorneys at OlsenDaines Today

From our free bankruptcy consultations to our complimentary credit rebuilding program, bankruptcy attorneys at OlsenDaines are here to help you with every step of the bankruptcy process. We are the largest and most experienced consumer bankruptcy law firm in the Pacific NW, with convenient offices throughout Oregon and Washington. We can address your financial difficulties with the expertise and careful planning you are seeking. Contact us today to schedule your free bankruptcy consultation.

How to Make Bankruptcy Process Smooth for You and Your Attorney

How to Make Bankruptcy Process Smooth for You and Your Attorney by OlsenDaines in the Vancouver-Portland Metro area.

Are you one of those people who are overwhelmed by debt and are contemplating filing for bankruptcy? If so, this post is for you.

Filing for bankruptcy might seem complicated, but it doesn’t have to be. To make the process smoother and less stressful for you and your attorney, consider taking a few simple steps. In this post, we’ll discuss what great bankruptcy clients do to help their attorneys assist them effectively.

Provide Documents in an Appropriate Format

One of the most important things you can do to help your attorney is to provide all the necessary documents in an appropriate format. Typically, people use PDF documents in the business world, and most bankruptcy attorneys also accept PDF. If you provide documents in alternate formats like JPEG or TIFF format, it may take your attorney extra time to modify them before submitting them to the court. Some attorneys offer a portal where you can upload your documents, while others may prefer to receive them by email. Either way, it’s crucial to send all the documents in one email with multiple well-labeled attachments.

Organize Your Documents

Bankruptcy involves summoning a lot of paperwork, and you will need to provide financial information about your assets, debts, and income. Thus, you must ensure all your documents are well-organized before giving them to your attorney. Go through all your documents and create a checklist of required documents. Label each document using appropriate titles such as bank statements, pay stubs, tax returns, or insurance documents. It’s essential to provide all necessary documents since you need a document to ensure your bankruptcy case is completed on time.

Provide Accurate Information

To fill out the bankruptcy petition, your attorney will need accurate information from you. Therefore, it’s essential to be honest and forthright about your finances, assets, and debts. Providing inaccurate information will not only delay your case but can also result in legal consequences. Be sure to inform your attorney of any significant debt or assets you own, even if it’s not listed in your credit report or financial statement.

Answer All Questions Honestly

Your attorney will ask you many questions, some of which may seem too personal. They may ask about your income, expenses, past bankruptcies, or lifestyle. It’s vital to answer all the questions honestly since providing false or inaccurate information can have legal consequences. Your attorney may even re-phrase a question or ask it in a slightly different way to ensure they get an accurate response.

Keep in Touch With Your Attorney

You and your attorney are a team, and communication is vital to ensuring the bankruptcy process runs smoothly. If you have any questions or concerns regarding your case, contact your attorney immediately. Ensure that you respond to all their queries promptly and honestly. Keep your attorney updated on any changes to your finances or personal life, such as job loss, marriage, or relocation.

Bankruptcy can be an overwhelming experience, but with the proper support, it doesn’t have to be. By following these tips, you can make the bankruptcy process smoother and easier for you and your attorney. Remember to provide all the necessary documents in an appropriate format, be honest and accurate about your financial information, and keep in touch with your attorney throughout the process. By doing these things, you will increase the chances of a successful bankruptcy filing and move towards a new financial beginning.

Do you have questions regarding the bankruptcy process? Wondering if bankruptcy is right for you? Whatever questions you may have, we can help. Call today to schedule your free consultation with one of our experienced bankruptcy attorneys in the Vancouver-Portland metro area.

Protecting Your Assets During Bankruptcy: How We Can Help

Legal bankruptcy documents from attorney explaining to their client how to protect your assets during bankruptcy in OR | OlsenDaines

Dealing with the possibility of bankruptcy or actually going through the process can be an extremely overwhelming situation for anyone. It is not uncommon for people to feel lost, anxious, stressed, and ashamed of their financial situation. 

At OlsenDaines, we understand how important it is for our clients to not only receive relief from their overwhelming debt but also to protect their hard-earned assets. That’s why we are here to assist you in navigating the complexities of how to protect your assets during bankruptcy.

Understanding Bankruptcy and Asset Protection

Most people file for bankruptcy due to job loss, medical debt, or divorce. Whatever the reason, our team of bankruptcy attorneys can help you navigate through this process and make sure that your assets are protected. One of the most significant concerns clients have is whether or not they will lose their assets if they file for bankruptcy. The answer is no, in almost all cases. We will work with you to protect your home, cars, retirement accounts, and other personal property. We are here to ensure that you keep the assets you value the most.

How to Stop Creditor Harassment

Another frequently asked question is whether bankruptcy will stop creditors from harassing and suing them. Again, the answer is yes. Once you file for bankruptcy, creditors are immediately notified through the federal court system and must immediately stop harassment, lawsuits, and any other form of collection of debts. We understand that the constant harassment can be troubling, and protecting our clients from continued harassment is a top priority for us.

Property Listing and Exemptions

As part of the bankruptcy process, you must list all of your property, both real and personal. This includes your home, vehicles, retirement accounts, and household goods and belongings. But there’s no need to worry – there are specific exemptions under state or federal law that protect your property throughout the bankruptcy process. We understand the nuances of federal bankruptcy law and will walk you through each step so that you understand how assets are protected and how a fresh start can help rebuild your life.

How to Rebuild Credit After Bankruptcy

Another question we commonly receive is whether or not filing for bankruptcy will affect future credit. While it is true that bankruptcy does affect credit scores, there are strategies we can use to mitigate any harm that may negatively impact your credit record. We can help you rebuild your credit score after bankruptcy and get back on track to a healthy financial future.

Contact Us for Help Protecting Your Assets During Bankruptcy  

The legal process of filing for bankruptcy and protecting your assets can be confusing and overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. At OlsenDaines, our experienced bankruptcy attorneys can help. We will provide you with the guidance you need to protect your assets and navigate through the process of filing for bankruptcy. We are here to help you receive a fresh start and rebuild your financial future. We believe that everyone deserves the chance to move past their debts and have a bright financial future.

Contact us today to schedule a free consultation and get started on the path to financial freedom.

Protecting Your Assets: What to Do When You’re Behind on Mortgage and Car Payments

Image of overpass sign saying protecting your assets in OR | OlsenDaines

Knowing how to protect your assets can be difficult, but an experienced attorney can help. It’s never a great feeling when you’re falling behind on your mortgage or car payments. You start to feel like you’ll never catch up or get back on track. It can be an incredibly stressful situation, especially if you’re relying on that car to get to work or don’t want to lose your home. Luckily, you have options. Filing for bankruptcy can be a great solution for protecting your assets and giving you the breathing room you need to get back on your feet. In this post, we’ll go over what happens when you’re behind on mortgage and car payments and how you can protect yourself by filing for bankruptcy.

What To Expect When You’re Behind On Payments

The first thing you need to know is that when you’re behind on your mortgage or car payments, creditors have the legal right to take possession of the asset and sell it to recoup the money you owe. Foreclosure or repossession of assets can obviously be a nightmare scenario, especially when it comes to your home. The good news is that bankruptcy can stop this process, at least temporarily.

How Filing for Bankruptcy Can Help You Protect Your Assets

When you file for bankruptcy, creditors are required by law to halt any foreclosure or repossession proceedings. This break in collection efforts can give you the time you need to catch up on payments and get back on track.

Of course, filing for bankruptcy isn’t a magic wand that will make all your debts disappear. However, it does give you more options when it comes to paying back what you owe. When you file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, for example, you can create a payment plan to pay back debts over a period of three to five years. The payment plan can include the arrears on your mortgage or car loan, which you can pay back in smaller, more manageable installments. A plan with smaller payments can be a huge relief for those who are struggling to make the full payments all at once.

One thing to keep in mind is that bankruptcy can have an impact on your credit score. is something that will need to be weighed against the benefits of getting back on track with your payments. That being said, if you’re already behind on payments, your credit score is likely already taking a hit, and bankruptcy can actually help you start to rebuild your credit over time. It’s not a decision to be taken lightly, but it can be a very viable solution for those who are struggling to keep up with debt.

How Do You Know If You’re Eligible to File for Bankruptcy?

An important note for those who are considering bankruptcy is that there are certain requirements you’ll need to meet to be eligible. For example, to file for Chapter 13 bankruptcy, you’ll need to have a reliable source of income to make the payments on your repayment plan. You’ll also need to meet certain debt limits, which can vary depending on where you live. Working with a bankruptcy attorney can help you understand your options and whether bankruptcy is the right choice for you in protecting your assets.

How Our Attorney’s Can Help You Protect Your Assets

When facing the daunting task of being several months behind on mortgage payments due to medical debt and a medical leave of absence, clients named Steven and Gloria were fortunate enough to have federal bankruptcy laws on their side. By working with OlsenDaines Law firm, their home was saved, and they were able to pay back the amount they owed over a five-year period. This payment plan allowed them to stay in their home, raising their three minor children in a stable environment. By retaining the services of OlsenDaines, all creditors were referred to the firm, and the federal bankruptcy petition was prepared accurately and thoroughly. With the guidance of an attorney, clients can rest assured that their matters will be handled carefully and with their best interest in mind.

Contact Us for Help Protecting Your Assets

If you’re falling behind on your mortgage or car payments, it can be an incredibly stressful time. However, it’s important to know that you do have options, and one of those options is bankruptcy. By filing for bankruptcy, you can protect your assets, create a payment plan to catch up on debts, and even start to rebuild your credit over time. It’s not a decision to be made lightly, but it can be a very effective way to get back on track and give yourself a fresh start. If you’re struggling with debt, contact a bankruptcy attorney to discuss your options and see if bankruptcy is the right choice for you. Contact us today to schedule your free bankruptcy consultation.

Can I Sue for False Advertising and Hidden Fees?

Young woman looking in box frustrated by false adverrtising

Consumers rely on advertising to make purchasing decisions, which is why it’s important that a corporation’s products and services are marketed accurately. However, some corporations choose to distort their advertisements to manipulate consumers into buying their products or services. Not only does this waste the buyer’s money, but it can also lead to injuries and other serious problems.

Consumers also rely on corporations to advertise the true cost for goods and services. Unfortunately, some corporations use hidden fees to increase their profits by charging buyers more than the advertised price.

Thankfully, there are laws in place that can help protect consumers from false advertising and hidden fees. If you are the victim of deceptive marketing, you may be able to file a lawsuit and recover damages. However, in order to do so, you’ll need to know what these laws cover and how they work.

What Qualifies as False Advertising?

Today, it’s very common for corporations to carefully curate their marketing campaigns with the goal of maximizing sales, which is why it can be so tricky to determine whether something qualifies as false advertising. To help you out, here are a few examples of what false advertising can look like:

  • Inaccurate visual representation
  • Dishonest key terms or wording
  • Deceptive warranties or guarantees
  • Inaccurate pricing information

What Are the Legal Consequences of False Advertising?

Corporations who engage in false advertising could face a variety of legal consequences. Consumers can sue or build a class-action lawsuit to recover lost money and any damages incurred as a direct result of the deception. Additionally, the company could face civil penalties with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), which may result in large fees. And, if the false advertising constitutes fraud, the corporation could also face serious criminal penalties.

Since false advertising laws can differ from state to state, it’s best to work with an experienced consumer litigation attorney if you suspect you are the victim of deceptive marketing. A knowledgeable lawyer can help you navigate these laws to build a case and recover any compensation to which you are entitled.

How Do False Advertising Lawsuits Work?

False advertising lawsuits can help victims recover any money they’ve lost or damages they’ve incurred as a direct result of the deceptive marketing. In order to build a case, however, you may need to prove various things:

  • The product was misrepresented.
  • The consumer relied on the misleading information when making the purchase.
  • The consumer lost money or property due to a hidden fee or false advertisement.

Your Local Consumer Law Attorneys

If you believe you have fallen victim to false advertising or hidden fees, you can count on the experienced consumer law attorneys at OlsenDaines to help you build a claim. We have proudly served Oregon and Washington since 1978, so we are very familiar with the ins and outs of local consumer laws. Our team is also committed to providing you with candid, transparent, and affordable legal assistance. Just give us a call to schedule your free legal consultation.

What You Should Know About First Party Benefits

 

No one likes to think about car accidents. Or car insurance. But while it might not be sexy, car insurance is critical. And knowing what “First Party Benefits” are and how they can protect you and your loved ones, can be immeasurably valuable.

What Are First Party Benefits?

In Oregon, all drivers are required to carry car insurance. Drivers are required to purchase minimum insurance coverage (limits) that includes: bodily injury (“BI”), property damage, personal injury protection (“PIP”), and uninsured motorist / underinsured motorist  (“UM/UIM”) coverage.

The State of Oregon requires all drivers to carry car insurance that complies with the amount mandated by the Financial Responsibility Law. That means you must purchase liability and UM/UIM coverage of at least  $25,000/$50,000.  It also means that you must purchase “no-fault” PIP insurance of at least $15,000.00.

No-fault insurance means that, regardless of who was to blame for the accident, each driver’s insurer pays their own medical expenses, lost wages and other costs.

“First Party Benefits” is another term used to describe insurance coverages that are provided to you and your family regardless of fault in an accident. These benefits are frequently referred to either as “First Party Benefits” or “no-fault” benefits. PIP is a “no-fault” or “First Party” benefit. In the event of an accident, PIP pays for your medical expenses, regardless of fault. PIP coverage will pay for all reasonably related medical treatment required, up to one year or $15,000.00—whichever comes first. You can, of course, increase the amount of your PIP coverage by paying for more than the minimum of $15,000.00.

The minimum PIP coverage not only pays for your medical bills, but it will pay for other things like loss of income, household services (to replace things you can no longer do at home), and funeral benefits as well.

It is important that you read your policy and understand what it covers.

Oregon is Not a No-Fault State.

Even though you are required to carry no-fault insurance in Oregon, Oregon is not a no-fault state. What that means is that, unlike other states that are “no-fault” states, in Oregon, you retain your right to sue the at-fault driver to recover the cost of your medical expenses, lost income, and even pain and suffering. It’s important that you understand not only your responsibilities when it comes to car insurance, but the law and your options. That’s why, if you are in a car accident, you should hire an attorney as soon as possible. At OlsenDaines, we handle car accidents and personal injury claims. We offer free consultations, and we can help.

Washington allows drivers to elect not to purchase PIP coverage. However, if you do not have PIP coverage as part of your policy and if you do not have health insurance, you will need to pay for medical treatment up-front and you will probably need to find a doctor or medical provider who will allow you to make payments for your health care for the time it takes to resolve your personal injury case.

We Handle Car Accidents.

Insurance coverage that protects you and your family is important. Filing a personal injury lawsuit to recover for your losses after a car accident is never easy. We are here to help. If you are in Portland, Eugene, Coos Bay, Medford, or any other city in Oregon, we have an office near you. We also have offices in Washington, and we provide free initial case consultations. To schedule an appointment, give us a call or send us an email.

Plaintiff’s Duty To Mitigate

Personal injury cases can get complicated pretty quick. Not only do they involve a lot of factors that can be difficult to prove —like a defendant’s duty, breach, causation and damages—but even when those hurdles have been met, a plaintiff, has obligations of his (or her) own that must be met. Even an innocent plaintiff who has been injured by someone else’s negligence must mitigate—or reduce— as much as possible, his damages.

The Duty to Mitigate.

The “duty to mitigate” (or “mitigation”) refers to the legal concept that requires a plaintiff who has been injured to reduce the damage that has been inflicted on him.

What?

Does that mean that someone who has been injured through no fault of his own has a duty to reduce the damage the other person caused him to suffer?

Yes, it does.

Every plaintiff has the obligation to take reasonable steps to avoid further loss and to minimize the consequences of the injury. In the context of a personal injury case, that means, for example, that you (as a plaintiff) have an obligation to seek medical attention, undergo surgery if recommended, or to seek other employment or re-train if necessary, or undertake any other reasonable steps necessary to mitigate as much as possible, the damage that was caused to you.

Why?

Because if you do not, the rule of mitigation of damages allows the judge or jury to reduce your right to recover that portion of your damages which the judge or jury finds you could have reasonably avoided.

How the Duty to Mitigate Works

It may be easiest to understand the way the duty to mitigate works by looking at an example. Let’s say that you are in a car accident and you break your leg. If your doctor recommends surgery as the only way to repair the break, and says you must stay off the leg for 6 months, and you refuse to have surgery and don’t stay off the leg for 6 months, you cannot later claim damages for the conditions that resulted from your refusal to have surgery and stay off the leg. If a reasonably prudent person would have followed the doctor’s advice, your damages will be reduced by the amount your failure to follow the doctor’s advice resulted in a lack of improvement in your leg, or aggravation of the break.

We Are Personal Injury Attorneys.

If you have been injured, we can help. We are personal injury attorneys with offices throughout Oregon. We have offices in Salem, Medford, Bend, Portland, Eugene, Albany, Grants Pass, Klamath Falls, and several other cities in Oregon. We also have offices in Vancouver and Tri-Cities in Washington. You can call us toll free at: 1-800-682.9568.To set up an appointment, contact us here.