The Lyman Firm August 2019

How UM Coverage Can Cover You Pay a Little Now, Pay Less Later The Truth About Lyman Beginning a Journey Starts with Dedication to Transparency 2860 Piedmont Road, Suite 275, Atlanta, GA 30305 T: 404 267 1986 F: 470 745 0699 The Lyman Firm Newsletter TELEGRAPH Amicus Curiae 404-267-1986 February 2019 The Lyman Firm Newsletter


Welcome to the second installment of The Lyman Firm’s newsletter! We hope your summer is going swimmingly and that you’ve had a chance to jump into a body of water or three. As I write this, perhaps you’re gearing up for that annual family summer adventure or maybe even planning a trip to some exotic locale before school starts again. Here at the firm, we’re working hard and trying to beat the heat — not an easy proposition when Atlanta consistently offers 95-degree weather with 75% humidity. All these thoughts about travel and heat bring us to this month’s scorchingly hot topics: uninsured (UM) and underinsured motorist (UIM) insurance coverage. (If the heat is really getting to you and you just can’t stand to read the next 400 or so words, go on and skip to the last few sentences. All the info you need is there.) UM Coverage For the uninitiated, UM/UIM coverage is auto insurance that protects you in the event that you are in a car wreck with a driver who doesn’t carry liability insurance or who doesn’t have enough coverage to pay for all damages incurred from the wreck. With respect to those other drivers, recent studies from the Insurance Research Council indicate that 1 in 8 drivers in the nation are uninsured. Hitting a little G eorgia is a blue-collar state — a grassroots mix of farmland, mountains, and urban development representing ever-expanding opportunities. Being a native of North Atlanta, I have spent most of my life in this fair state, cultivating both my character and my profession as I grew up. Now, I have a distinct opportunity to help those around me in ways I hadn’t anticipated in my younger days. I lead The Lyman Firm as a proud curator of justice for the everyday person, somebody who might not have gotten a fair shake before they met me. I believe one person can be the face of a greater movement, and these are the everyday people — the heroes — I work for as I drive our cases forward to the fullest extent within our legal system, fighting for what’s right. My passions weren’t always for courtroom thrills, though. Growing up in Smyrna, I sought to chase a different kind of rush: the roar of the racetrack. I wasn’t half bad either, eventually taking my hobby for auto racing from amateur status in 2004 all the way to semi-pro in 2007. Unfortunately, like so many other things that went down along with the economy the following year, my racing career crashed in 2008. Shattered by the abrupt end to my racing journey due to a lack of financing, “These small payments are going to hurt a lot less when we move to resolve a personal injury case.” “I believe one person can be the face of a greater mov m nt, and these are the everyday people — the heroes — I work for as I driv our cases forward to the fullest extent within our legal system, fighting for what’s right.”

coverage. Even if someone wants to argue that paying for the UM plan costs a little more day in and day out, these small payments are going to hurt a lot less when we move to resolve a personal injury case. James and three-year-old daughter Cleo — I am fully immersed in the fun-loving, homely, and exciting life of my family. They are my foundation, and without them nothing would be possible. But I also have a second family of sorts in my clients, whom I treat with the respect and attention a person is owed whenever they find they’re backed in a corner and need help. The pleasure I get from representing good, honest people in the courtroom is unrivaled when compared to the other fields of profession I’ve engaged in life. Oftentimes, I ask a client to share the names of the attorneys they’ve worked with on other cases. Almost none of them are able to muster an answer — the names of their lawyers completely lost in the tides of life’s trials. That’s when I tell them that there are a million different lawyers out there doing a million different things, but when I take on your case for a serious injury or a wrongful death suit, you’ll remember me as a man who gave you the best possible chance while shooting you straight every step of the way. When a case like this comes in, we try to explain to the client the benefits of UM coverage and detail how they’re really doing themselves a favor in the long run when they add it to their insurance plan. From there, we negotiate with the insurance companies regarding what the individual can actually pay. Even after we’ve helped our clients in these frustrating situations, most of them wish they opted for the UM plan in the first place. So, while prepping for your family road trip, destination vacation, or even diving into your favorite book this summer, take five minutes to call your insurance agent to ask what your current coverage looks like and whether a UM/ UIM plan would benefit you down the road.

closer to home, according to the Insurance Information Institute, 12% of all Georgia drivers are uninsured. I began to look for a new avenue to pour my passions into. As we grow older and further away from our teens and 20s, we begin to realize that life isn’t always about going fast, both literally and metaphorically. It was during my post racing downtime that I realized I wanted to go back to school at Georgia State. After spending years as a writer and editor, I discovered and followed my newfound calling and began practicing law after graduating from law school. After years of unparalleled grit, drive, and success in the field of law, I was fortunate enough to be able to open my own practice in January of 2018. This new venture has even allowed me to work alongside my brother, a paralegal and case manager, in what has been one of the most exciting periods of my life. For now, our plans for the future include an imminent expansion of the fir and growing the company in ways that still allow us to keep our fundamental values and operations in check. Unfortunately, not all drivers know what UM coverage is or how it can help them. And, while the last thing I want to do is tell my clients to pony up money on more insurance, this coverage is some of the cheapest around. After Googling a bit, we were able to find run-of-the- mill UM/UIM plans offering $25,000 in add-on coverage for somewhere between $25 and $75 per month. This is a pittance compared to the following scenario. My client was rear-ended at a stop light, and, because of her injuries, she accrued over $37,000 in medical bills. Sadly, this client had declined UM coverage because she viewed it as simply adding more money to her insurance. When we ultimately resolved the case, her recovery was significantly diminished because the at-fault driver’s plan only covered up to $25,000 in damages. That’s about par for the course with many of these UM/UIM cases, as they usually involve low- limit policies of $25,000 or $50,000 in total At home with my wife Lindsay beside me, and our two children — our five-year-old son

Have a great summer, everyone!

-Thomas J. Lyman -Tho as . | 1

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