In my practice of 23 years of doing car accident cases, I have seen every possible combination of situations. With more and more people going out on Social Security disability and more and more baby boomers and older folks in the population it is has become even more common for the person I am representing in a personal injury case arising out of a car wreck to be already disabled from work as a result of some prior health problem or injury.
One of the main things in this situation that an experienced personal injury attorney knows to look for is to make sure that nothing that happens as far as getting money from the car wreck case causes the person to lose their government benefits upon which they rely.
Normally, if our government benefits are under S.S.D.I based upon your work history then no amount of money that you might get from a personal injury case will negatively affect your Social Security.
The two are totally separate. However, if the kind of Social Security you are on is based upon not your work history but just having been disabled and those benefits are “Means Tested” that might be a different matter. “Means Tested” benefits are those that are dependent upon you showing that you have financial need.
If you are on S.S.I it is often the kind of Means Tested benefits that if you got some money from a personal injury case, they might cut you off from your Social Security for a period of time. An experienced attorney like myself knows to ask the right questions to make sure that we do not do more harm than good. You do not want to collect $2,000 or even $2,000,000 from a car or truck wreck injury only to give up benefits in an equal amount that you are entitled to. There are various ways to avoid this problem but the first issue is having an attorney who knows the right questions to ask. The last thing you want is to have the case settled and find out that you have a problem with the government that the lawyer did not tell you about.
The Norfolk, Virginia Beach and Hampton, VA personal injury law firm, Cooper Hurley, handles automobile, truck, and motorcycle injuries as well as wrongful death, railroad injury cases and medical malpractice. John Cooper and Jim Hurley have more than 40 years of combined experience in specializing in auto injury as well as other accident claims. Attorney John Cooper has been named to Virginia “Super Lawyers” since 2010. Cooper Hurley represents people hurt in accidents in Norfolk, Virginia Beach, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Chesapeake, Hampton, Newport News and throughout VA, and always put the best interests of our clients first. The firm is recognized by other lawyers as “AV” by Martindale-Hubbell, a national attorney rating service, for our top level of legal skill and highest ethical standards. Our motto is: “Your Injury. Our fight.” If you need help or advice about a serious injury, please call us at (757) 455 -0077 or contact us through this website.