Mr. Helton is a native of Hickory, North Carolina. He is a 1988 graduate of Lenoir-Rhyne College, a former United States Navy officer, and a 1993 graduate of Wake Forest University School of Law. He is licensed to practice law in Virginia, Maryland and North Carolina.
After graduating from law school, Mr. Helton completed a prestigious clerkship with a federal judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia. Mr. Helton began his North Carolina legal career practicing in Charlotte representing corporations and insurance companies.
After realizing how personally troubling it was for him to help insurance companies profit at the expense of working people, Mr. Helton returned to his home town of Hickory, North Carolina. He now represents only working people in claims involving personal injuries and on-the-job workers’ compensation injuries. In most cases of medical malpractice, he limits his clients to those who have suffered very serious, life-changing injuries.
Mr. Helton’s time as an insurance defense lawyer taught him how insurance companies operate. He now uses that information to fight for working people who have been injured.
Mr. Helton enjoys raising Angus cattle, gardening and cooking with his wife and Scouting with his sons, one of whom is an Eagle Scout and another who hopes to be.
As we all know, insurance companies are happy to collect premiums for insurance policies. They are never happy to pay out what is fair and reasonable. That is why the insurance industry is one of the most profitable in America.
Once the insurance company learns that you have been injured, it will set up a file on you, called a Claims File. The person assigned to investigate your injury is called the Claims Adjuster, or adjuster. The adjuster will want to take statements from witnesses and you, take photographs and gather medical records and bills. DO NOT GIVE A STATEMENT OR SIGN A DOCUMENT ALLOWING THE ADJUSTER TO COLLECT YOUR MEDICAL RECORDS AND BILLS UNTIL YOU HAVE TALKED TO AN ATTORNEY. Every time you speak to the adjuster, they are gathering information and building their file. Nothing good can come from this. What you may believe is unimportant may be of huge legal significance and may be taken out of context and unfairly used against you.
Insurance companies have attorneys and experienced adjusters working for them. They do this for a living. Unlike them, you are a normal person with a normal life. Make no mistake, even if the adjuster is nice to you, they are building a case against you each time you talk with them. (Why wouldn’t they be nice to you? They always catch more flies with honey.)
Insurance company adjusters are promoted and receive bonuses based upon how much money they save their company. It’s their job. It’s their livelihood. It’s their career. Who do you think they are looking out for?
Like an adjuster, Mr. Helton is paid to produce results — results for you. He is paid a percentage of what the insurance company pays to you. The better the result, the greater his fee. In automobile accidents and other non-work personal injury cases the fee is 33.3%, and in workers’ compensation cases it is 25%. He is not paid more if your case is tried rather than settled, so you should feel free to have your day in court if that is what you feel is best. He is not paid by the hour, so you can always feel free to schedule an appointment to meet with him.