Most car accident injury cases in Georgia are resolved through insurance claims and negotiations. But if you are hit by a car, you do have a right to file a lawsuit and ask a judge or jury to award you money. Lawsuits do not always end with a court trial. Many are settled by the insurance company long before the trial begins.
Why aren’t there more car accident lawsuits?
When you file a lawsuit, you begin a process that can take more than a year to complete. The driver who hit you has a chance to file a response, and both sides have months to request and receive information from each other. The trial date must fit into the judge’s busy calendar. Meanwhile, you have not received a dime to help you pay for your medical bills and other costs of the accident.
Insurance negotiations, on the other hand, may be wrapped up in a matter of days if your injuries are not serious. In more serious accidents, it may be awhile before the doctors really know what kind of care and treatment you will need. But even then, the insurance claims process will typically get you paid much quicker than a lawsuit.
Lawsuits are also unpredictable. When you settle a claim through the insurance company, you are in control. You can decide to accept the insurance company’s offer, or you can negotiate for more money. You don’t get to bargain with a jury – they make the decision. You’ve probably heard of juries awarding millions of dollars to accident victims. But a jury can also award you less than the insurance company was offering. Juries are made up of ordinary human beings, and people can sometimes do things you don’t expect.
Are there times when a car accident lawsuit is necessary?
There are certain times when the best course of action is to file a lawsuit. The most common reasons we file lawsuits on behalf of our clients include these:
- There is a looming deadline. Georgia law gives most car accident victims two years to file a lawsuit. If you miss this deadline, you are out of luck – you will never be able to recover any money for your injuries. If your claim is getting close to the deadline, you may need to file a lawsuit to protect your rights.
- The driver who is at fault doesn’t have insurance. If a driver doesn’t have insurance, you obviously can’t get money from the driver’s insurance company. You must go after the driver directly, and the only way to do that is through a court case.
- The driver who is at fault doesn’t have enough insurance to cover your claim. There is always an upper limit to what an insurance policy will pay. If the driver who hit you doesn’t have enough insurance to cover all your injuries, we may file a lawsuit and pursue the driver directly.
A good good car accident lawyer can advise you on whether you should file a lawsuit and your chances of winning at trial, but the ultimate choice is always yours.
What can I recover money for in a lawsuit?
The goal of a lawsuit is to decide who is at fault and make them pay the full cost of your injuries. The money you recover can include expenses you have had so far, estimated expenses in the future, and money that attempts to make up for the way the accident has changed your quality of life. If you were hit by a drunk driver, you may be able to recover additional punitive damages.
The money you receive in a lawsuit or insurance claim can never really make up for the way the accident has affected you. But it can help you heal faster and more completely by relieving your financial worries and giving you the money you need to continue seeing doctors and getting treatment. If you were hit by a car in a pedestrian accident, bicycle accident or vehicle accident, the best way to get all the money you are entitled to is to get in touch with a car accident lawyer.
Talk to an Atlanta Car Accident Lawyer for Free
Our law firm only has one focus: to get you all the money you deserve. Let us give you a FREE consultation to talk about your case. We won’t charge you a thing unless we win money for you. Call us at (404) 341-6555 or fill out the form to the right to get your free consultation today.