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Maryville, TN | Hal Bishop | Personal Injury Lawyer

Frequently Asked Questions

Do you charge for a consultation?

No.  I do not charge for an initial consultation to discuss the basis of your potential personal injury lawsuit.  If I agree to take your case and you want to hire me, a contract will be signed and we would probably have several more meetings over the course of your case.  I take personal injury cases on a contingent fee basis.  In other words, I only get a fee if there is a settlement or judgment.

How long do I have to pursue a case after an injury?

Tennessee’s Statute of Limitations for personal injury is controlled by T.C.A. § 28-3-104 and sets a limit of one (1) year to commence an action in court.

a)(1) Except as provided in subdivision (a)(2), the following actions shall be commenced within one (1) year after the cause of action accrued: (A) Actions for libel, injuries to the person, false imprisonment, malicious prosecution, or breach of marriage promise;

There are other factors that can affect this time limit, but it is best to contact an attorney as soon as possible.  It takes time to do an investigation and prepare the paperwork to file in court, so I recommend that you secure an attorney early in the process.

What should I bring to an appointment with you?

Every injury case I handle will involve medical records and bills, so copies of them will be needed.  If you have them, or can get them, bring them.  Accident reports for any crash will be needed as well.  Copies of lost wage documents and insurance documents will be needed too.  While you do not have to have all of these things to meet with me, they are helpful to have in the beginning.

How much are your fees?

My typical fee on personal injury suits is one third of the recovery, which is standard in the field.  There are some rare cases that the fee could be higher due to the novelty or difficulty of the case.  There are a few types of cases that the fees are controlled by statute.  Expenses are in addition to any fee.  I typically pay these expenses initially and have them reimbursed out of the recovery.

Wills are done on a flat fee and based upon the complexity of the will.  Estates are handled on an hourly basis.  There is usually a retainer fee required when you hire me and the hourly charges are paid out of the retainer and you are kept apprised of the time spent on the matter.

What kind of cases do you handle in your practice?

I represent people who have been injured by another person/corporation. This  could be another driver who caused an accident, a health care provider who did not perform up to the standard of care, or a corporation that designed or manufactured a defective product that caused injury.  I also handle name changes, simple wills, living wills, and powers of attorney, both general and for health care.

Where is your office located?

I am located at 403 S. Court Street in Maryville, TN, just across the street from the Old yellow-brick Courthouse with the clock tower.

Should I give a recorded statement to the Insurance Company?

I have seen numerous recorded statements, taken before I got involved, come back to hurt or complicate a client’s case.  Those people told the truth, but the way a question is worded, or the way an answer is worded, can have an impact.  People tend to want to be helpful and kind and may say something to spare feelings that complicate a case. I make sure I am present with my client before I let them give a recorded statement to an insurance company.

What are the office hours for Attorney Bishop’s Office?

The office is open Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. I make appointments after hours and on the weekends if necessary and depending upon my availability.

What is mediation?

Mediation is a process required by law in all workers compensation cases and often used in injury cases. Mediation is an attempt to settle a case.  A mediator has no “dog in the fight” so to speak.  They are a neutral and just attempt to get the parties to resolve their differences if possible.

How long does a case take?

Every case is different, and for many different reasons.  Generally, the injured person must reach MMI (maximum medical improvement, a medical determination) before you consider settling or trying a case.  Sometimes a doctor may treat a serious injury for more than a year or two.  You would not want to settle or try your case before you know the outcome of your treatment or the permanent effects of the injury.  So, a great deal of the time from injury to resolution is dependent on medical treatment.