Experienced Legal Team Serving Injury Victims in the Federal Way Area
Federal Way, a King County community on the southeast shore of Puget Sound, is home to about 90,000 souls and is situated conveniently between Seattle and Tacoma. Like other towns in the area, started out as a logging settlement. It was incorporated only in 1990.
The area features two major botanical gardens, the exotic Pacific Bonsai Museum, and an abundance of neighborhood parks and playgrounds that are more than ample for a town its size. Outdoor activities are popular, since Federal Way enjoys a relatively warm climate (especially considering its latitude). Wild Waves and Enchanted Village remains the Seattle area’s only permanent theme park.
Like the rest of King County, residents, visitors and those just passing through Federal Way enjoy access to highway, airport, and commuter rail networks. Interstate 5 and Pacific Highway both run through the area. Unfortunately, accidents are common along the highway.
When a catastrophic accident happens, regardless of whether it involves a two-car collision or tumbling down a flight of stairs, you might not know where to turn. All of the sudden the world seems to be crashing down on you as physical pain, emotional distress, and serious financial issues hit you all at once.
The personal injury/wrongful death lawyers Brett McCandlis Brown have represented hundreds of clients under just these circumstances, and we specialize in guiding you through these difficult days until you receive every penny that you are entitled to. We will take care of financial matters for you, so that you can fully concentrate on your recovery.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Will I lose my case if I was partly at fault?
Not necessarily. Under Washington personal injury law, you are entitled to at least some compensation even if you were mostly at fault. When the evidence indicates that two or more parties were at fault for the accident, the court will apportion fault among the parties on a percentage basis, and each party will bear liability in proportion to his or her own percentage of fault.
If you were 30 percent at fault, for example, you will bear 30 percent of your own damages and the other party will bear the other 70 percent. You will also bear liability for 30 percent of the other driver’s damages if he or her files a claim against you. Depending on how the math works out, you could come out with a net loss; however, this is not inevitable.
What if the defendant lacks the financial means to pay a judgment?
Normally, if the defendant lacks the means to pay a judgment, you will look to the insurance company to pay. Even if the defendant lacks insurance, you may find that your own insurance covers your losses (if you carry uninsured motorist insurance, for example).
If no insurance policy applies, you could consider suing the other party’s employer if he or she injured you while on-duty. Another option would be to sue the manufacturer or distributor of a product that injured you. The worst-case scenario would be to sue an indigent defendant, obtain a judgment, and wait for his or her financial situation to improve so that you can collect on the judgment later.
Will I need to file a lawsuit, or can I just settle the case out of court?
The vast majority of accident disputes are settled out of court, typically through settlement negotiations with the defendant’s insurance company. That doesn’t necessarily mean that you won’t need to file a lawsuit, however – since all bargaining takes place “in the shadow of the law,” so to speak, you may need to file a lawsuit to provide the defendant with an incentive to issue a fair settlement offer.
Filing a lawsuit doesn’t necessarily put an end to settlement negotiations – you can negotiate even during a pending lawsuit. In fact, you can reach a settlement at any time before a final verdict is issued – even five minutes before.
Another reason why you may need to file a lawsuit is to meet the statute of limitations deadline for filing a lawsuit over a claim. In Washington, this deadline is three years after the date of the injury or three years after the victim’s date of death, depending on whether you are filing a personal injury lawsuit or a wrongful death lawsuit.
Don’t be concerned if you lack the funds to pay a lawyer. We work on a “no win, no pay” basis – you don’t owe us anything until you win a verdict or settlement, and if you don’t win, you don’t owe us anything. Call our Federal Way, WA Personal Injury Attorneys today at 1-800-925-1875 or complete our online contact form to schedule your free initial consultation, so that we can discuss your legal options.