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Pittman, Dutton & Hellums Team Named 2018 Super Lawyers

At Pittman, Dutton & Hellums, we are thrilled to announce that our four of our founders and team members have once again been included on the 2018 roster of Super Lawyers. This prestigious honor is only achieved by no more than 5 percent of attorneys in each state. This is the tenth consecutive year our firm’s founders Tom Dutton and Lee Pittman have been included on the list, and the sixth consecutive year founder Chris Hellums has been included. This is the third consecutive year attorney Jon Mann has been named to the Super Lawyers Rising Stars list, an honor that only 2.5 percent of lawyers achieve.

We’re incredibly proud to receive this distinguished accomplishment,” says Pittman. “Our firm strives to serve our clients with the utmost in ethical considerations and due diligence. To be recognized by this renowned organization and by our peers in the law field is truly an honor.”

Worthy Consideration

Super Lawyers, which produces the Super Lawyers Magazine, rates outstanding lawyers out of more than 70 practice areas. To be considered for inclusion, nominees are nominated by peers from within their states and participate in a rigorous selection process that includes peer evaluations and independent research. Candidates are evaluated based on a dozen indicators, including professional achievements and peer recognition.

To be nominated in itself is a privilege that our firm’s team members greatly appreciate,” Dutton says. “Receiving the title motivates each member of our team to continue the level excellence our clients have come to expect. We’re passionate about our work, and achieving the Super Lawyers distinction reinforces our commitment to continued growth in our practice and in what we can provide to our clients and community.”

To be eligible for the Rising Stars category, candidates must be either in practice for 10 years or less or be 40 years old or younger.

I feel so thankful to be included in the Rising Stars roster for Super Lawyers,” Mann says. “The team at Pittman, Dutton & Hellums holds each other accountable for exceeding expectations and doing our best work. The caliber of professionals I’m surrounded by within the Rising Stars category inspires me to keep contributing at a high level and be a meaningful representative of our firm.”

Super Lawyers Pittman Dutton HellumsMeet the Lawyers

Pittman, Dutton & Hellums was founded to provide those in need with experienced, ethical and dedicated law professionals to help them obtain the justice and compensation they deserve. Learn more about the four Pittman, Dutton & Hellums attorneys who have been recognized by Super Lawyers in 2017 below.

Tom Dutton‘s practice areas focus on medical malpractice, nursing home malpractice, defective medical devices and equipment and pharmaceutical mass torts. Dutton’s representation of clients extends throughout the United States, giving the firm a national presence and helping those clients who need an experienced attorney in these areas the most. Dutton is an Alabama native and founding partner of the firm. He is a member of the American Association for Justice, Alabama Bar Association, Alabama Association for Justice, Birmingham Bar Association and Mississippi Bar Association.

Chris Hellums is an Alabama native and shareholder in Pittman, Dutton & Hellums. He practices litigation in areas including bad faith, class actions, commercial disputes, consumer protection, identity theft, insurance fraud, personal injury and tax shelters. Hellums practices law on a national level and is a member of the Alabama State Bar Association, Alabama Association for Justice, American Association for Justice and Birmingham Bar Association.

Jon Mann‘s primary areas of practice include auto and trucking accidents, bad faith, commercial disputes, defective medical devices, insurance fraud, mass torts, personal injury and product liability involving pharmaceutical drugs. He practices law throughout the United States and is a member of the Alabama State Bar Association, Alabama Association for Justice, American Association for Justice and Birmingham Bar Association.

W. Lee Pittman‘s practice areas include personal injury, wrongful death, auto accidents, workers’ compensation, consumer protection, environmental law, health and health care law, class actions, mass torts, product liability, fraud, aviation, nursing home abuse and neglect, and toxic torts. Pittman is a member of the Alabama Bar, Birmingham Bar, American Bar Association and American Association of Justice. As a founding partner of the firm, Pittman strives to be an ally for his clients through a dedicated commitment to serving their needs.

The Pittman, Dutton & Hellums law firm includes a robust team of experienced, caring and empathetic law professionals who work for their clients’ best interests to ensure compensation is fair and just. If you need attorney representation in any of the areas our firm practices in, please contact Pittman, Dutton & Hellums for a free consultation at (866) 722-0250 or by emailing us here.

What to Do If You’re in a Car Accident on an Uber Ride

What to Do If You’re in a Car Accident on an Uber RideIf you’ve ever needed a ride somewhere, you may have used Uber, the most-recognizable, largest rideshare service on the planet. The company says ride requests have increased 150 percent year-over-year, rising to $8.7 billion in the second quarter of 2017. The convenience of ordering a ride on an application and getting one within mere minutes is tantalizing for many, but every time you ride as an Uber passenger, you’re also granting your health and safety to the control of the driver. If you’re in the scary situation of being in a car accident while someone from Uber is driving you, you may be wondering what action to take.

Uber is a software application that is used by independent contractors to perform the ridesharing service. This agreement means Uber drivers are not technically employees of Uber. Uber requires that all drivers have their own insurance policies, and Uber also manages an insurance policy that complements that of the driver. This is important, because typical car insurance coverage only covers personal driving, not commercial driving for employment.

The Uber insurance policy covers:

  • The driver’s liability to a third party, or you the passenger
  • Any injuries due to an uninsured or underinsured motorist
  • Collision and comprehensive coverage if the driver already has such coverage on their personal insurance

Despite this insurance coverage, getting the compensation you deserve when you’re in an accident as an Uber passenger can be difficult when you’re dealing with insurance companies and multiple entities. In 2014, an Uber driver who had a reckless driving conviction struck and killed a 6-year-old girl, and the company denied responsibility because the driver was not technically logged into the app.

As a for-profit business, Uber will take the action it needs to protect its finances. That’s why it’s so vital to take as many precautions as possible immediately, days and weeks after the accident to stay protected and get the full compensation you deserve.

What to Do If You’re in a Car Accident on an Uber RideImmediately After an Uber Accident

Immediately after an accident in an Uber vehicle, check for any injuries you, other passengers or the driver may have sustained. If the driver is unresponsive, do not touch them or attempt to move them. Immediately call emergency services in any case. Even if there are no apparent injuries, you’ll want a police witness and a police report to help you with your claim.

If there were witnesses to the accident, and you are able to talk with them, ask them to remain at the scene of the accident until police arrive. Ask for their full names and contact information, including phone number, address and email address, in case they need to be contacted in the future.

Document the scene by shooting photos or video footage of any injuries or property damage, including to the vehicle and the surrounding area. Get the full name, contact information and insurance information of the Uber driver, as well as all the same information from any other driver or party involved. Document any signs of negligence on behalf of the driver who, like previous Uber drivers, may have been hired by Uber despite having a risky driving background.

Accept any medical services that are offered to you, because you may have experienced an injury that is not immediately apparent or that is more serious than you realize. Keep all records of medical visits safe and organized.

The Uber help site recommends to contact Uber through the app to give accident details, but in most cases when you’re in an accident with an Uber driver, you should contact a lawyer first before speaking with a representative from Uber. Never admit you are at fault, which may compromise your case.

What to Do If You’re in a Car Accident on an Uber RideWhen You’re Home from an Uber Accident

After you’ve received treatment and have gone home after an Uber accident, contact your insurance company about the accident and provide them with everything they need. You may want to contact a car accident attorney in Birmingham for guidance, especially in case you are contacted by Uber or by the driver’s insurance carrier.

If you receive a claim that you believe is too low, or you think that negligence may have been a factor in the Uber car accident, it’s essential to consult with an attorney. If the Uber driver was tired, under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or not driving safely, you may have a substantial car accident personal injury case. Also, improper maintenance of the vehicle may have been a factor that compromised your safety.

Because ridesharing is a relatively new form of transportation that has only emerged in recent years, legal aspects to car accidents involving Uber drivers can become complicated and confusing to the average passenger. An experienced car accident lawyer can help you navigate the complexities to help you build a better case that obtains you justice.