(503) 378-7777
Attorney David Smith

David E. Smith


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(503) 378-7777

Personal Injury Law and Insurance Accountability

In the area of personal injury law, when tragedy strikes and negligence or recklessness is at play, someone must be held accountable. Typically, this accountability falls on insurance companies.

The Crucial Role of Insurance Policies in Injury Cases

That is, once we can prove that the other guy caused the accident or injury, we need to prove that there’s an insurance policy that must pay the damages.

Most injury cases are settled rather than tried in court, and the amount of money the victim can get may depend on the specific language in the insurance policies. Before discussing with an insurance company how much we feel they owe for the injury, you first have to prove to them that there’s a binding insurance policy that commits them to pay.

Uncovering Necessary Coverage: A Key Aspect of Legal Strategy

This policy typically belongs to the responsible party, for example, the careless driver who caused the accident. Sometimes, where they don’t have enough insurance, the injured person’s underinsured motorist coverage (UIM) or umbrella policy may come into play. At Spooner, my role is to meticulously analyze these policies and uncover the necessary coverage.

Expertise in Insurance Policy Analysis

Analyzing insurance policies can be overwhelming, even for trained lawyers; the language is ridiculously complicated. Yet I thrive on figuring out all the intricacies and obscurities. My background includes spending many years working at various insurance companies, interpreting those exact contract terms. This has given me a keen understanding of what to look for and where to find it.

Maximizing Compensation through Skilled Negotiation

Few injured victims realize how important it is to have this particular skill on a firm’s team. Very simply, the more insurance coverage we can find, the more money is available to compensate our seriously injured clients.

I like working with adjusters. They’re my people; I used to be one of them. I use my insight as a former insider to persuade them to agree to cover the injury and then help them get it approved up the chain to their supervisors. I approach these interactions with empathy, recognizing the challenges they face. They see that I respect them as professionals trying to do a good job; they say they enjoy working with me. And that gets our clients better results and bigger dollars.

Adapting to Technological Changes in Insurance Litigation

However, in recent years, insurance litigation has changed. Technology, particularly artificial intelligence (AI), has turned the industry upside down, stripping away its human element. Computers operate without humanity, empathy, or moral compass. They reduce devastating injuries in tragic accidents to cold, uncaring calculations.

Fighting for Justice in the Courtroom

At Spooner, we’ve responded to this change by shifting our focus. Our firm has an exceptional trial team that’s renowned across Oregon for their skills in battling for justice in the courtroom. We fight fiercely for injured people who have been denied insurance coverage or received insultingly low settlement offers. In these instances, I use my insider’s expertise to help our clients get the real justice they deserve.

Standing Ready to Fight for Clients’ Rights

In a world where insurance disputes are increasingly complex and adversarial, I stand ready to navigate these challenges and fight for our clients’ rights.

  • B.A. Whitworth University 2006
  • J.D. University of Oregon 2012
  • Oregon
  • U.S. District Court, District of Oregon
  • Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals
  • Oregon State Bar
  • Marion County Bar Association
  • Multnomah Bar Association
  • Oregon Trial Lawyers Association
    • OTLA Amicus Committee

Salem Office

Equitable Center
530 Center Street NE, Suite 712
Salem, OR 97301

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Portland Office

Sunset Business Park
9400 SW Barnes Rd., Suite 550
Portland, OR 97225

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(503) 378-7777