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Serving all of Montana for over 25 years

Bliven Law Firm, P.C. is a Montana personal injury law firm located in Northwest Montana serving all of Montana. A group of experienced, dedicated professionals who care about their clients’ needs. Our Montana personal injury attorneys have over 25 years of experience in aggressively pursuing the goals of our clients.

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MONTANA AUTO INSURANCE COVERAGE – CRITICAL FACTS TV ADS DON’T TELL YOU

Television advertising for auto insurance is so frequent that it would be helpful if it contained more useful and helpful information. While saving you money is so frequently the theme, some commercials actually do talk about getting the right coverage, sometimes even discussing the help of an agent. How many of those ads discuss the need for good uninsured motorist coverage or underinsured motorist coverage? When was the last time you saw a commercial that discussed the need for underinsured motorist coverage? Have you ever seen one? When was the last ad you saw that talked about medical payments coverage? Again, have you ever seen one? Why is this?

Uninsured motorist coverage, and underinsured motorist coverage are some of the most critical coverage a person can buy to protect their family, but it appears to be neglected in the advertising. It certainly appears that it not popular enough with customers or a big enough concern among consumers that the insurance companies find it worthy to advertise on the subject. Montana is a state with a small enough population, that the big companies do not seem to be worried about reaching out to Montana consumers in their ad campaigns, or even particularly concerned about running afoul of our law when it comes to advertising. Our Unfair Claims Practices statute – Montana Code Annotated 33-18-201 – as interpreted by the Montana Supreme Court – places burdens on insurers to make an effort to live up the advertising

http://leg.mt.gov/bills/mca/33/18/33-18-201.htm

33-18-201. Unfair claim settlement practices prohibited. A person may not, with such frequency as to indicate a general business practice, do any of the following:

(8) attempt to settle a claim for less than the amount to which a reasonable person would have believed the person was entitled by reference to written or printed advertising material accompanying or made part of an application

If you insurance company has not lived up to its advertising in how it has addressed or handled your injury claim (or your family) arising from a motor vehicle wreck, contacting a Montana attorney that emphasis personal injury law, notably insurance and motor vehicle injury cases is the right decision.

The time to find out that you do not have enough of the right kind of auto insurance is not after having a wreck where you or your family are injured because of the negligence or reckless conduct of an uninsured, or underinsured, drunk driver. Insurance coverage has to be in place before the crash, wreck or other loss. If you are injured in a car wreck and find out that the at fault driver has no insurance, or simply not enough to address the medical expenses and lost wages, much less other damages, it is like being injured all over again. As the Montana Supreme Court so eloquently stated in the Ridley decision:

One of the most significant obligations that innocent victims of automobile accidents incur and for which mandatory liability insurance laws were enacted, is the obligation to pay the costs of medical treatment. If the insurer has no obligation to pay those expenses in a timely fashion, even though liability is reasonably clear, then the protection provided by Montana’s mandatory liability laws would be of little value.

Medical expenses from even minor injuries can be devastating to a family of average income. The inability to pay them can damage credit and, as alleged in this case, sometimes preclude adequate treatment and recovery from the very injuries caused. Just as importantly, the financial stress of being unable to pay medical expenses can lead to the ill-advised settlement of other legitimate claims in order to secure a benefit to which an innocent victim of an automobile accident is clearly entitled. We conclude that this is not what was intended by the Montana Legislature when mandatory liability insurance laws and unfair claims practice laws were enacted.

Ridley v. Guaranty National Insurance Company, 951 P.2d 987 (Mont. 1997)

– See more at: http://caselaw.findlaw.com/mt-supreme-court/1453789.html#sthash.Doyr5aOV.dpuf

However, many people believe that they have “full coverage” and will have enough insurance for the loss. When folks come into the office after a car wreck and tell us they have “full coverage” the prudent response on our part is to ask them if they have a copy of the declaration sheet, the “dec page” that shows the coverages. While having collision and comprehensive coverage can be helpful and are certainly advisable on most policies – the bodily injury limits, medical payments coverage, uninsured motorist coverage, and underinsured motorist coverage ultimately often have more to do with a good outcome. This is because the ability to pay medical bills and recover for lost earnings are far more important in the longer term – and often the short term – than the coverage to pay to have a vehicle repaired.

If your agent did not properly advise you about under-insured or uninsured motorist coverage, did your agent live up to the advertising of the insurance company? Some large insurers run advertising, and have run advertising touting how helpful an agent is and the company is at making sure you the right coverage. They advertise that agents can help make sure you don’t have gaps in coverage or not enough coverage. If you suffered a loss and your agent did not do so, or if the insurance company changed your coverage without your permission or knowledge, contact us. We seek to hold insurers accountable and live up to their promises in their advertising to their insureds, the customers that pay the premiums.

BOZEMAN CRASH INJURES TWO

The driver of a Subaru caused a two-car accident in Bozeman after the driver of the Subaru turned left into oncoming traffic.

The Bozeman car accident occurred on Secondary Highway 205 and Valley Center spur.

A woman in a Subaru wagon sustained an injury to her face but was talking and coherent, Montana Highway Patrol Sergeant Patrick McLaughlin said. She was taken to Bozeman Deaconess Hospital. The second occupant of that vehicle was also taken to the hospital.

For updated information on the Bozeman crash, visit KAJ18

Bliven Law Firm, P.C. a Kalispell law firm with three attorneys who represent personal injury clients, aggressively represents the victims of car accidents in Bozeman and other towns in Montana including Kalispell, Whitefish, Columbia Falls, Kila, Lakeside, Polson, Missoula and throughout the state of Montana.

For Montana residents injured in a car accident, we provide a free consultation to discuss your case. For most car accident cases, in Bozeman, Kalispell, Missoula or elsewhere, we represent car accident clients on a contingency basis. We aggressively represent our clients rights to reach a fair and just outcome, inside or outside of the courtroom.

DOWNPOUR CAUSES 2 CAR ACCIDENT OUTSIDE OF MISSOULA

51ad03c61020e.preview-620Heavy rain and bald tires caused a two-car accident outside of Missoula A two-car crash caused by a heavy downpour and bald tires slowed westbound traffic on Interstate 90 early Monday afternoon.

Emergency crews responded to the accident near East Missoula at mile marker 108 at roughly 1:30 p.m.

Montana Highway Patrol Trooper Paul Pfau confirmed what witnesses said after the accident: The driver of the Nissan was going too fast for conditions.

“The car was going a little too fast for conditions with bald tires,” Pfau said. “It hydroplaned on the bridge deck, hit the bridge guardrail and bounced into traffic, where it was T-boned by another vehicle,” Pfau said.

Dave and Theresa Scott were traveling from Twin Falls, Idaho, to Spokane, Wash., when the accident occurred in front of them. The couple pulled over to see what they could do to help.

“We didn’t know if anyone was calling 9-1-1,” Scott said. “The rain was coming down pretty hard. We were one of the first who pulled over.”

Pfau said the driver of the Nissan was cited for driving too fast for conditions.

For more information click here

Our office has three Montana attorneys who practice personal injury law for injured Montanans. If you or someone you know has been injured in a Missoula car accident, contact the personal injury attorneys at Bliven Law Firm, P.C. for a free case evaluation.

If you or a loved one has been seriously injured or worse in a Montana or Missoula car accident, you may be entitled to advance payment of medical expenses, lost wages and other damages. Each case is different and depends on the facts. Our Kalispell lawyers aggressively represent and fight for the rights of innocent victims of car accidents in Montana.

ROLLOVER CRASH ON I-90 NEAR CLINTON LEAVES SEVERAL HURT

download (2)The Montana Highway Patrol reported that a pickup truck carrying at least five people rolled over on Interstate 90 near Clinton on Sunday night.

The pickup was heading west on Interstate 90 when the driver lost control and rolled through the median and into oncoming traffic.

Montana Highway Patrol Trooper Wade Palmer says he believes all five people were taken to the hospital, but there’s no immediate word on their conditions.

For more information, click here

If you or a family member has been injured a car accident or a rollover accident in Montana, contact the attorneys of Bliven Law Firm, P.C. for a free consultation. If you have suffered injuries from a Kalispell car accident, you may be entitled to advance payment of medical expenses, lost wages and other damages.

The Montana Attorneys of Bliven Law Firm, P.C. help individuals injured in Montana car accidents. Representation is usually based upon a contingency basis depending on what our firm can do for you. For personal injury cases, consultations are free.

COLUMBIA FALLS MAN FACES CRIMINAL CHARGES AFTER KALISPELL CAR ACCIDENT

Sean Francisco West, A 27-year-old Columbia Falls man, pleaded not guilty Thursday in Flathead District Court to negligent vehicular assault, criminal endangerment and failure to remain at the scene of a Kalispell car accident.

The charges stem from a Jan. 19  Kalispell caraccident where West allegedly ran a red light in his sport utility vehicle and smashed into another car.

According to a court document, when Kristy Elrod entered the intersection of Reserve Drive and U.S. 2 on a green light, West T-boned her vehicle.

The crash ejected Derrick Hayward, one of Elrod’s two passengers. Hayward flew approximately 63 feet before landing in the road. Hayward was hospitalized for several days after the Kalipsell car accident with a lacerated liver and other injuries.

A witness reported hearing a crash and running around the corner of a gas station to see a man running away from the SUV. She told him to stop, to which he responded, “I can’t do this,” and kept running.

For more information on the story, click here

For more than 18 years, the Kalispell lawyers of the Kalispell law firm, Bliven Law Firm, P.C. have been aggressively representing innocent victims of Kalispell car accidents.

If you or someone you know has been injured in a Kalispell, Whitefish, Columbia Falls or Montana car accident, contact the Kalispell attorneys of Bliven Law Firm, P.C. for a free case evaluation. You may be entitled to advance payment of medical expenses, lost wages and other damages.

THREE CAR CRASH ON HIGHWAY 93 IN VICTOR STOPS TRAFFIC

5115029bb0c92.preview-620A three car crash in Victor on Highway 93 stopped traffic on Thursday.

The accident was first reported a few minutes after 1 p.m., Montana Highway Patrol Trooper Lath Keith said.

A pickup truck was in the southbound lefthand lane, stopped to turn into the Axmen Propane in Victor, when it was rear-ended by a utility truck. The collision sent the pickup into the northbound lane, where it was struck by a white SUV, Keith said.

The white SUV rolled numerous times, crossing Highway 93 and ending up on the southbound side of the highway in the ditch heading west.

“The scene was so spread out,” Keith said.

“Both impacts were probably near highway speed,” he said.

The male utility truck driver was transported to St. Patrick Hospital in Missoula for a compound fracture. The two occupants in the white SUV were taken to Marcus Daly Memorial Hospital in Hamilton.

Keith said that the accident was technically a four-car accident, although the fourth car was not struck. He said the fourth car was not impacted, as it swerved to avoid the head-on collision. He said the individual in the fourth car is now a witness in the accident.

Shortly after the accident occurred, Keith said they blocked Highway 93 off for two reasons: first for safety and second to see what exactly took place. Highway 93 was blocked for almost two hours from Bell Crossing to Victor Crossing.

For more information on the crash, visit the Missoulian

For more than 18 years, the Montana attorneys of the Montana law firm have represented injured innocent victims of car accidents in the Flathead and Mission Valleys.

If you or someone you know in the Flathead or Mission Valleys has been injured in a car accident, you may be legally entitled to lost wages, advance payment of medical expenses and other damages. Contact the Montana attorneys of the Montana law firm Bliven Law Firm, P.C. for a free case evaluation.

MISSOULA THREE-CAR CRASH LEAVES ONE DEAD, OTHERS INJURED

The driver of a vehicle traveling north on Reserve in Missoula lost control of his vehicle and entered into oncoming traffic, Sunday, causing a three-car accident in Missoula.

Sergeant Scott Pastian with the Missoula Police Department says the accident occurred just south of the Reserve and Mullan Road intersection. He says two vehicles were southbound and one was northbound when it entered the southbound lane and was struck by the other two vehicles.

Pastian says the 35 year-old male victim was pronounced dead after being taken to a Missoula Hospital. He said two of the injured parties were transported to St. Patrick Hospital, while the third was taken to Community Medical Center.The other two individuals were treated and released.

The crash occurred around 10:30 a.m. Sunday near the intersection of Reserve and Mullan Road, according to a Missoula Police Department press release.

All three drivers involved in the Missoula crash were injured.

More information is available on Montana news sites

If you or someone you know has suffered a wrongful death or serious injuries from a Missoula car accident, the attorneys at Bliven Law Firm, P.C. can help you receive compensation you may be entitled to receive.

Contact the Montana attorneys of Bliven Law Firm, P.C. who represent the families of innocent victims of Missoula car accidents. Victims of Missoula car accidents may be legally entitled to advance payment of lost wages, medical expenses and home assistance.

Contact the law offices of Bliven Law Firm, P.C. for a free consultation. Our Montana lawyers aggressively represent the families of injured victims of Missoula car accidents.

ICY CONDITIONS CAUSE 25 CAR ACCIDENTS IN FLATHEAD VALLEY OVER THE WEEKEND

The Montana Highway Patrol reported it responded to more than 25 car accidents over the weekend.

Car accidents in Kalispell, Whitefish, Columbia Falls, Lakeside and other areas of the Valley are common this type of year.

Ice and snow create slippery conditions which can lead to car accidents in the Flathead Valley.

“If you can obviously afford studded snow tires, that’s the way to go, but if nothing else, have good safe all-season tires and know that your tires are in good shape,” said Tow Operator Dirk Meyer. “That’s 90 percent of safe winter driving…just have good tires and give yourself a little extra time.”

Some other common sense  tips to avoid Kalispell car accidents include:

  • Drive slower on snow and ice;
  • Give adequate room for the car in front of you to slow or stop;
  • Use 4 Wheel Drive if available on your vehicle;
  • Shift into a lower gear to prevent higher speeds and to use more torque;
  • Use a de-icer windshield wiper fluid; and
  • Change windshield blades every winter.

If you or someone you know has been injured in a Flathead Valley car accident, contact Bliven Law Firm, P.C. for a free car accident case evaluation.

Injured parties of a Kalispell car accident may be legally entitled to advance payment of lost wages, medical expenses and other damages. Insurance companies spend millions every year training their adjusters to pay as little as possible. The Kalispell lawyers of Bliven Law Firm, P.C. have combined over 30 years of experience aggressively representing innocent car accident victims.

Call (406) 755-6828 for a free case evaluation.

EVARO HILL CRASH KILLS PLAINS WOMAN AND INJURES OTHERS.

The Montana Highway Patrol reported that aggressive driving was to blame for a fatal Montana car accident on Evaro Hill Sunday.

Montana Highway Patrol investigators say a witness reported seeing the 21-year-old Arlee man driving aggressively before the fatal crash on Evaro Hill on Sunday.

“(The person) witnessed the vehicle being driven aggressively by a driver matching the description of the driver at the time of the crash, who was texting,” said Montana Highway Patrol Trooper Phil Smart.

MHP investigators say the Tundra driver crossed the center line, sideswiped a second truck, continued going the wrong way, hit a guard rail, and then struck a smaller Ford Ranger pickup truck head-on, killing Joscelyn Lea Cook, who was a passenger in the vehicle.

The accident happened just before 4 p.m. on the four lane stretch of U.S. Highway 93 North,a few miles north of the Wye.

A total of three trucks were involved, with the third truck rolling and landing in a nearby ravine. Two people were thrown from that truck.

Emergency crews had to use the Jaws of Life to cut a third victim from one of the wrecked trucks.

There was no immediate word on the condition of the victims, although it’s believed one had life-threatening injuries.

The wreck closed the highway for over an hour, with backups of several miles on either side of the accident scene.

For more information on the story, please click follow local news providers.

If you or someone you know, has been injured in the Evaro Hill crash, contact the experienced Kalispell attorneys of Bliven Law Firm, P.C. for a free consultation.

Bliven Law Firm, P.C. has three Montana lawyers with combined decades of experience handling wrongful death, personal injury and fatal car accident cases. The Kalispell law offices of Bliven Law Firm, P.C. is conveniently located off of Highway 2 in Kalispell. If you’ve been seriously injured in a Montana car accident, an attorney may visit you if more convenient. Call (406) 755-6828 for a free consultation.

TOFT DAIRY ISSUES IMMEDIATE VOLUNTARY RECALL OF BUCKEYE BITES ICE CREAM 48 OZ CARTONS AND 3 GALLON TUBS

ucm323320After receiving a recall notice from a former supplier of peanut butter base, Toft’s has issued a voluntary recall on 48 oz cartons and 3 gallon tubs of Buckeye Bites Ice Cream with expiration dates of March 14,2013 or before.

Any 48 oz or 3 gallon tub of Toft’s Buckeye Bites with an expiration date after March 14, 2013 is NOT involved in this recall due to us switching peanut butter suppliers on March 15, 2012. Toft’s Prime Time Buckeye Bites Ice Cream has been distributed throughout the state of Ohio and Southern Michigan.

The recalled product contains a peanut butter base that contains peanut butter manufactured by Sunland, Inc, which has just announced an expansion of a voluntary recall covering peanut products made in their Portales, New Mexico plant. Sunland’s peanut butter products have been linked to Salmonella outbreaks across the United States dating back to March 1, 2010. However, Ohio has yet to report any illnesses from Sunland’s recall. (Salmonella is an organism which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Healthy persons infected with Salmonella often experience fever, diarrhea (which may be bloody), nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain. In rare circumstances infection with Salmonella can result in the organism getting into the bloodstream and producing more severe illnesses such as arterial infections (i.e., infected aneurysms), endocarditis, and arthritis. For more information on Salmonella, please visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Website at http://www.cdc.gov ).

If you or someone you know has suffered illness or permanent injuries from eating contaminated food including Salmonella poisoning contact the Kalispell lawyers of ABliven Law Firm, P.C.

The Kalispell attorneys of Bliven Law Firm, P.C. handle food-borne illness cases. If you have suffered serious injuries, from food poisoning in Montana, contact our office for a free case evaluation. Our Montana lawyers are dedicated to helping injured food-poisoning victims.