It has been two years since my automobile accident on January 24, 2013, and it has taken that long for all of the pieces to wrap up. I've written several blogs about the accident. The first one about how it happened, then one on coming home from the Hospital, and more recently about being subpoenaed for the trial.
The young man who hit my car was 18 at the time and considered an adult. Back when I was 18 adulthood began at 21, and even then I was not very mature. The voting age was lowered during the Viet Nam War with the belief that if someone is old enough to be drafted and sent to war, he or she should be able to vote for the people with the power to do that. That's a reasonable reason to lower the voting age, but I still don't consider 18 to be an adult.
I hired an attorney to handle the legal end of the accident. My nephew who is a trial lawyer in Maine, told me a lawyer would cost too much and I could do it all myself. I thought that was strange advice coming from him, but the case was open and shut. The person who hit my car admitted to searching for his cell phone on the floor while running a red light at 40 mph.
My Insurance Company, Farmers, gave me $16,200 for my wrecked Focus. This was as high an amount as could be expected for a three year old car. It was like new with only 4,000 miles on it. The new Focus I bought cost $5500 more, including tax and license.
I also had to drop two online classes I was in the middle of teaching, so I lost about 1/3 of the pay remaining on them. I was offered two more classes to start about two weeks after I got home, but I wasn't in good enough shape to accept them. So that added another $3600 in lost wages. All together my expenses or losses came to $9100.
The young man only had $25,000 in insurance. My attorney took 1/3 of that. My medical plan with Humana was reimbursed $8300 for my medical expenses but agreed to pay their share of the lawyer's fee. So I wound up with $9100 which just about covered my expenses and lost wages.
Because the young man was under insured, my attorney recommended filing a claim with Farmers for the uninsured motorist coverage on my auto insurance policy. My attorney wrote a very convincing case for why I deserved more than $9100. He completed those negotiations last month, almost exactly two years after the accident.
I prefer not to say how much he recovered, but it was no where near my maximum uninsured motorist coverage. For those who say lawyers are just in it for the money, his cut was not very much for the two years of work he and his staff put into it.
The other half of the accident was the trial of the young man who hit my car. I have also written about the Subpoena I received as a witness in the trial. The trial was originally scheduled for October 8, 2014 but postponed to November 5, 2014. I didn't want to drive to Martinez the day after Election Day, but the trial was postponed again.
When I didn't hear back from the DA by the end of the year, I phoned them early in January to find out when the trial would be rescheduled. I was told the young man pled to a Misdemeanor in December, so there would be no trial. I don't recall being notified that the trial was cancelled, but I am relieved that it is all over with.