Common Car Accident Injuries
- Neck and Back Strains
- Spinal Cord Injuries including Paralysis, Paraplegia and Quadriplegia
- Shoulder Injuries
- Hip Injuries
- Knee Injuries
- Fractures – Broken Bones
- Lacerations and Bruising
- Internal Injuries and Internal Bleeding
- Traumatic Brain Injury
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
Bicycle, Moped & Pedestrian Accidents
If you or your loved one is involved in a bicycle, moped or pedestrian accident, your medical bills, up to $10,000, are paid for by the insurance company covering the involved motor vehicle or motorcycle. Hawaii law allows you to recover your medical expenses and loss of income, as well as compensation for conscious pain and suffering, mental anguish, disfigurement and scarring and for any permanent injuries that you may have suffered. See Hawaii Auto Accident Law Basics and contact me for a free consultation.
Motorcycle owners are required to maintain a minimum of $20,000 in bodily injury liability insurance for each person injured up to $40,000 per accident. Medical coverage is optional.
Motorcycle operators and passengers are 37 times more likely to suffer fatal injuries because they do not have the protective shell of a closed motor vehicle.
Motorcycle accidents are more complex because the applicable laws differ from that of standard motor vehicles. If you are injured in an accident because of the negligence of a motorcycle operator or a motorist, you will need the assistance of an experienced personal injury attorney to fight for your rights. Contact me for a free consultation.
Premises liability cases that involve trip and falls, slip and falls or falls caused by construction defects or negligence on the part of property owners can be the most difficult cases to pursue. Hawaii law is complex and well developed in this area. Contact Me to see if I can help.
If you have lost a spouse or a loved one because of the negligence or wrongdoing of another, you need to consult with an attorney experienced in handling wrongful death cases. Hawaii law recognizes claims for the decedent’s estate which include medical expenses, past and future loss of income, and conscious pain and suffering. Hawaii law also recognizes claims of spouses, parents, children and dependents for their loss of companionship, and for financial and emotional support.
Insurance Denials & Disputes
If an insurance company denies your claim or refuses to pay you what your case is worth, you need an attorney who has a proven record of successfully handling lawsuit claims and insurance litigation.
For examples of insurance denials and disputes that I have taken to trial and judgment and/or settled successfully, see my Case Results page. Contact me and I will give you a free case evaluation and inform you about your rights under Hawaii law.
HAWAII AUTO ACCIDENT LAW BASICS
This is a basic outline and is not meant to be a complete explanation of Hawaii auto accident law. Call or email me for a free consultation about how the auto accident laws of Hawaii apply to your case. Contact me.
Hawaii’s No Fault Law
Hawaii is a No-Fault state. This means that medical bills (which are incurred by operators and passengers of a motor vehicle as well as pedestrians, bicyclists and moped riders injured by that motor vehicle) are paid for by the insurance policy covering the motor vehicle involved.
Personal Injury Protection Benefits (PIP)
PIP is just another term for medical benefits. Hawaii law requires only $10,000 of PIP coverage but policyholders may opt to purchase higher limits such as $100,000. The higher the limits, the more coverage for medical bills.
Once PIP benefits are exhausted, the injured persons must either pay the medical bills themselves or contact their personal healthcare plan, Medicare or Medicaid to cover the unpaid bills.
If you or a resident relative owns a car that was not involved in the accident which happens to have limits of PIP coverage greater than $10,000 or another option, additional medical payments coverage, Hawaii law allows you to apply your additional medical payments coverage and that portion of your own personal higher PIP coverage which exceeds that of the vehicle involved in the collision.
Minimum Qualifications For Making A Claim for Personal Injury
Before you can file a claim for an injury arising out of an automobile accident, you must meet a threshold minimum of $5,000 in PIP payments. There are exceptions to this rule, which include cases involving death, serious disfigurement and/or permanent loss of use of a significant part of one’s body. One other important exception is where the accident is caused by a person who is under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Likewise, where the injuries are caused by criminal conduct, such as road racing, the $5,000 tort threshold does not apply.
Auto Liability Insurance
Auto liability insurance is what pays for the injuries and damages suffered by an accident victim. Hawaii law requires that every vehicle in the State of Hawaii carry liability limits of at least $20,000 per person, up to $40,000 per accident. The auto owner can opt for higher liability insurance limits.
Uninsured Motorist and Underinsured Motorist Coverage
If the liability insurance on the vehicle responsible for the accident is completely absent or if the liability limits are not high enough for your claim, optional UM and UIM coverages may provide additional benefits for you. Like all other coverages, UM and UIM must be on your policy before the accident takes place.
There are two ways that UM or UIM benefits can apply to your claim. The first way is if there is UM or UIM coverage on the car in which you are an occupant. The second way is where you or a resident relative of your household has UM or UIM coverage on a vehicle that is not involved in the accident. Contact me to see if your case qualifies.
Stacking of Uninsured Motorist and Underinsured Motorist Coverage
UM and UIM coverages on separate vehicles can be stacked or added together if the stacking option is selected by the policy holder. Purchasing stacking coverage is relatively inexpensive.
Reformation of Auto Policies to Include UM/UIM and Stacking
Hawaii law requires that: (a) the auto insurance company offer its policy holders an opportunity to choose UM/UIM coverage and the stacking option; and, (b) the rejection of these options must be in writing. If the company failed to offer UM or UIM coverage, or if it failed to obtain a written rejection of those coverages, the auto insurance carrier may be forced to pay UM and/or UIM and/or stacked benefits. Auto policy reformation does not happen automatically. Only an attorney knowledgeable in the law can force the insurance company to reform the auto policy. Contact me to review your auto policy and your insurance company’s underwriting records to see if an auto policy reformation should be provided in your case.