Win Larger MIST Settlements
Many personal injury lawyers shy away from moderate-impact, soft-tissue injury (MIST) cases out of fear – fear of Colossus; fear of a tough negotiation with the insurance company; fear of a trial and the challenge of convincing a jury. Despite the perceived obstacles, you can achieve a favorable result for your MIST clients, without litigation, if you handle these cases efficiently. MIST Cases: Maximize Your Client’s Recovery Without Litigation shows you how to do that, with straightforward advice and practice tools to help you manage your client, gather the evidence, and present a persuasive demand.
Answers to common questions:
- When and how often should you request and review your client’s medical records? [§2:06]
- What is the best way to ensure your client gets adequate medical treatment, while avoiding duplicative or unreasonable treatment? [§2:08]
- Why it is important to develop and maintain a medical referral list? [§2:10]
- What is the difference between a Colossus claim and a “fast track” claim? [§3:09]
- What is the most persuasive way to organize your demand letter and exhibits? [§3:03]
- What steps can you take to expedite the settlement process and avoid complications when your client is a Medicare or Medicaid beneficiary? [§5:03]
Information you can use to strengthen your negotiating position in every MIST case:
- 4 objective signs of injury that can be used to bolster the value of a MIST claim with an insurance adjuster [§2:16]
- 7 types of evidence that demonstrate a more severe impact than may be evident in the photographs of the dent in your client’s rear bumper [§4:03]
- 8 ways to differentiate between your client’s current and pre-existing injuries [§2:15]
- 13 questions to ask your client’s treating doctor to bolster your case [§2:24]
- 24 factors to consider in valuing your MIST case [§3:12]
Practical advice, based on the authors’ experience:
- Practice Point: If your client is hesitant about keeping a diary because he has trouble reading or writing
If you suspect (or know) that your client is not well educated or is, perhaps, illiterate, then make your routine contacts more frequent (such as once a week) and obtain this information yourself in a sort of verbal diary. The extra time you spend obtaining this information will pay dividends in negotiations down the road. [§1:22]
- Practice Point: Act quickly to obtain police officer statements.
Patrol officers see hundreds, if not thousands, of collisions in their careers. Interview the investigating officer(s) quickly after you are retained by your client to ensure you do not lose any valuable information due to the passage of time. If you wait too long, it is unlikely the officer will remember with any particularity the details of your client’s wreck. This is especially so in the MIST case, where the damage to the vehicles and the injuries involved are unlikely to leave a lasting impression on the officer. [§1:12]
- Practice Point: Do it yourself.
Tempting though it may be, do not delegate the task of creating a medical chronology to a paralegal. Creating the chronology yourself is the best way to learn the medical record and ensures . . . . [§2:13.2]