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Protecting Your Family

by Trish Utter

Over a year ago I was getting off the highway, and came to a stop at the traffic light when I was hit from behind. It didn’t seem like a hard hit but it was enough to throw me forward. I sat there a bit dazed. My neck hurt but I didn’t want to make a big deal out of it. The police came to make a report. The officer asked if I needed medical attention but I told him I would get it checked out later. I got out of the car to take a look at the damage. The bumper had a small dent and that was about it. I took a few photos and a short video to document what happened.

I was now late for a meeting, but I did manage to make an appointment with my doctor. Like most of us, I have a busy life and this accident had put me behind. Really the last thing I wanted to do was waste time seeing a doctor for a minor pain in my neck but something told me I should have it looked at and now I am glad that I did. I also called the office of Robert A. Rush P.A. to get advice on medical bills. This turned out to be a great decision.

As weeks and months went by the pain in my neck became unbearable. The doctor told me I had several herniated discs in my neck. I was shocked that a minor accident could cause such severe injuries but, just that tap on my bumper had caused my neck to snap back and forth. I am so glad I had the counsel of Robert Rush to give me advice and help me sort everything out. If I had waited longer to see how I was I would have ended up with major unpaid medical bills. I am telling you this so you will not be wishing you had sought legal advice after the two week grace period goes by. Through all of this, I’ve learned that many soft tissue injuries do not surface for months after an accident.

If you are in an Auto Accident

  1. Move off the road to a safe area. You don’t want to be hit again or block traffic.
  2. Call the police so that there is a police report. Reporting the crash is required by law and if anyone is hurt they will also send an ambulance.
  3. Have your driver’s license, registration, and insurance card ready. Law enforcement will need those to complete their report.
  4. Take photos and video of the damage to all vehicles and surrounding property that was involved and include any personal items inside your vehicle that were broken. Also, take photos of where the crash happened and other things like skid marks. This is the very best way to determine who is at fault and give clear evidence of what happened. Your attorney may want to take additional photos of your vehicle or the crash location.
  5. Do not admit to being at fault. The law may say the other person was at fault so just collect information and let the police handle the rest. Also, remember that there is no need to talk to the other person’s insurance company.
  6. Call your insurance company to let them know you were in a crash. This allows them to open a file and start providing coverage for your medical bills. Medical providers may ask for the claim number for the crash and this is where you will get that.
  7. Make an appointment with your doctor to be checked out as soon as possible even if you feel okay. It’s always better to be safe than sorry. It can take months for some soft tissue injuries to show up. The cost should be covered by your car personal injury protection (PIP) insurance.
  • Sometimes the crash report is wrong. Assist the officer completing the crash report by giving them information, but do not argue with them. Just because they say you’re at fault or give you a ticket does not mean that you’re at fault.
  • Going to your doctor is not only important to the healing process, and it documents your injury so it can be proven in court.
  • Car insurance is split into Property Damage and Bodily Injury. The first part covers your damaged car and whatever was broken inside the car. The law allows you to be compen-sated for things which are damaged as a result of the crash such as eyeglasses, cellular phones, golf clubs, and child car seats. Remember that child car seats should be replaced after any crash.
  • Uninsured Motorist (UM) coverage is an inexpensive addition to your car insurance that covers you if you are hit by someone who doesn’t have insurance. Add it to your policy. This can be a lifesaver for you because if you are injured and the person who did it has no insurance, this is the only insurance that will cover you. Without it, you can be stuck with all the bills from a crash you didn’t cause.

VERY IMPORTANT- In order to receive full healthcare benefits from PIP Insurance you MUST seek medical attention within two weeks of the accident. This is something your at-torney can help you with.

It can be overwhelming when something traumatic happens in your life and you need legal advice. Who can you trust? Who has your best interest at heart and who will really fight for your rights? You want an attorney that the insurance company knows will go to court. I was surprised to find out how many attorneys there are on billboards and TV commercials that talk a lot but in reality, they’ve never even taken a case to trial! It is far less work for an attorney to run their business this way but it’s not in the best interest of YOU the client. Robert A. Rush P.A. has a long history of going to court and winning high profile cases for the justice of his clients. Robert Rush is double Board Certified, in both Criminal and Civil Trial law. The other guys aren’t and many of them aren’t even in this county!

“Certification is the highest level of evaluation by The Florida Bar of competency and experience within an area of law, and professionalism and ethics in practice. More than 4,400 Florida lawyers are recognized as specialists in one or more of 24 certification areas. Board certification recognizes attorneys’ special knowledge, skills and proficiency in various areas of law and professionalism and ethics in practice.” Personal Injury is a category of law that is so heavily advertised that the term tops Google Adwords in pricing at over $300 per click. Choose the smartest lawyer, not the loudest advertiser.

The Florida Bar currently has more than 100,000 lawyers licensed to practice law in Florida. Only 4 of those lawyers are Board Certified in both Criminal Trial Law and Civil Trial Law. Robert Rush, here in Gainesville, FL, is one of those four certified by the Florida Bar as an “Expert” in Civil and Criminal Trial Law. I met with Robert for his expertise in personal injury and became a client. You have much to lose by not making an appointment with a good lawyer.

While I write this I was researching Slip & Fall cases. I did not know that this covers far more than just someone who has slid on a wet surface and ended up with injuries. It might be an overhead piece of equipment that was so low you hit your head that resulted in personal injuries and caused loss of work and a slew of medical bills. It can also be:

  • Broken sidewalks and steps
  • Lack of railings
  • Falls at water parks, theme parks, and swimming pools
  • Merchandise that is stored high and falls

It is up to property owners to fix these things but when they don’t and you are left with medical bills who can you trust to help you? Yes, you’ve got it, Robert A. Rush P.A.

I have lost far too many friends in Motorcycle Accidents. Don’t you want a lawyer that has the courage and the expertise to fight for your rights? Robert Rush has gone to trial, not only on motorcycle accidents including, accidents involving wrongful death of the motorcyclist, but he has also tried every type of injury case including:

  • Car Accidents…………….YES!
  • Slip & Fall …………………YES!
  • Premises Liability………YES!
  • Bicycle Accidents……..YES!
  • Pedestrian Accidents…YES!
  • Diving Accidents……….YES!
  • Wrongful Death…………YES!
  • Dog Bites………………….YES! and on and on!

You don’t want an attorney with zero record of taking anything to trial as the insurance agencies know they never take cases to court and know that they will always settle for far less that you are entitled to. Of course, this is much easier work for lazy attorneys, but it’s definitely not in your best interest.

It is easy to get lost in legal jargon and to feel very intimidated by it. For instance,  what is Premises Liability? Well, I’ve learned that it is a legal concept that typically comes into play in personal injury cases where the injury was caused by some type of unsafe or defective condition on someone’s property. Here are a few examples of this-

You are staying in a hotel and were attacked in the parking lot and found that the hotel had a history of this happening but neglected to have adequate security.

You are thrown out of a bar by a bouncer and received head injuries and the bouncer had a history of doing bodily harm to patrons but the bar did not fire him.

It is very important to make sure that the lawyer you choose to represent you is willing to fight for YOUR right AND has the knowledge, expertise, and resources to do so! Robert Rush is an accomplished TRIAL ATTORNEY, he has over 30 years of experience in court, and his team of professionals have won many high profile cases.

Working with Robert Rush is his sister, Marian Rush, an attorney with over 30 years of experience; Jake Rush, a former deputy sheriff in Alachua County who has been an attorney in this office for over 10 years; and Steve Frisco, who joined the firm in May of 2018. Steve is a former Assistant State Attorney in Alachua County, he has been a lawyer for over 11 years, and he has successfully handled thousands of criminal cases. All of the attorneys working for you at Robert A. Rush, P.A. have actual, proven trial experience.

This is the type of representation you need. You also want an attorney that will talk directly to you, clearly explain your rights, and come up with a plan to follow through with so that YOU receive what you deserve. You would be surprised at how many attorneys there are out there who have never taken a case to trial. It’s like a dog a rolling over with it’s paws in the air.