How Long Does It Take to Settle a Car Accident Claim?

How Long Does It Take to Settle a Car AccidentA car accident in Georgia may leave you wondering when you will be able to get compensation for your injuries. You may be experiencing significant financial stress in addition to medical expenses and lost income. When faced with these challenges, it's essential that you have an experienced car accident lawyer in Duluth, Georgia, who can help you get compensation. 

Broughton Accident & Injury Lawyers has nearly three decades of experience obtaining just and fair compensation for clients. Our firm handles all aspects of our client's injury cases so that they can focus on recovery. The staff at our firm is known for being friendly, approachable, and providing clients with regular updates.

Our team at Broughton Accident & Injury Lawyers wants to help if you were injured or lost a loved one in an auto accident due to someone else's recklessness. For a free case evaluation, contact us at 404-842-7700 to learn more about your legal options.

So, How Long Does It Take to Settle a Car Accident?

The length of time it takes to settle a personal injury claim depends on many factors. For instance, some cases may take just a couple of months, while others may take many years.

Because some cases are complicated, it is impossible for an attorney to give you an idea of how long it will take. However, they will do everything in their power to ensure that your case is resolved as quickly as possible.

You must file a personal injury claim to begin the settlement process when you are injured in a car accident. Before you speak with an insurance company, consult with a Georgia car accident lawyer. If you need advice on your claim, you can talk to Broughton Accident & Injury Lawyers in Atlanta or Duluth, GA, for free.

A lawyer will review the facts of your case with you and explain how the personal injury claims process works. They could also help you decide what steps to take based on your unique case.

After your consultation, you can hire an attorney to help you recover compensation and protect your rights in dealing with the insurance company.

The insurance company will review your medical bills and damages when you file a claim. After that, they may deny your claim or offer you a low settlement. In that case, your lawyer can negotiate with the company to ensure that you get the compensation you deserve. There may be some waiting involved, including sending demand letters and waiting for responses. The lawyers at Broughton Accident & Injury Lawyers are not afraid to take your case to court if a fair settlement cannot be reached. 

How Do Car Accident Cases Get Settled?

Several steps play a role in settling a typical Georgia car accident case following a car accident.

Collecting Evidence

In order to begin gathering evidence for your injury claim, your car accident lawyer will meet with you as soon as possible following the accident. The team may gather medical records, police reports, witness statements, and more to help compile evidence.

Your medical records are crucial to your personal injury case. Medical treatment must be completed before the value of your claim can be determined. In some cases, healing takes months or requires ongoing treatment. It is essential to include all of these expenses in your personal injury claim.

Filing Your Claim

After your medical treatment is complete, your doctor will give you all your medical records. The process of collecting these records can take up to 45-60 days in some cases.

Your lawyer may then file a claim on your behalf against the insurance company of the at-fault party. A demand letter may then be sent by your lawyer detailing all of your damages.

Insurer Negotiations

It is the insurer's responsibility to respond to your demand letter promptly after receiving it. Because insurance companies hope to convince you to accept low settlement offers, they drag their feet in responding. A lawyer with experience will know whether to follow up with the insurance company at this point.

In some cases, the insurance company may respond quickly to your claim, but with a very low offer. Due to your financial needs, they hope you will accept this offer out of desperation.

The first thing you should do if this happens is to reach out to a car accident lawyer if you don't already have one. Personal injury attorneys like those at Broughton Accident & Injury Lawyers have handled cases like yours for years and could determine if the insurance company's offer is appropriate. 

Filing a Lawsuit

Depending on the situation, your lawyer may recommend filing a lawsuit if the insurance company won't increase their offer. Litigation preparation can take a month or more. Normally, the other party has 30 days to respond to your lawsuit after you file it. When a lawsuit is threatened, insurance companies are usually less inclined to take the case to court and are more inclined to settle. If they don't offer a fair settlement, then your lawyer may prepare you to take them to court.

Discovery and Trial

A discovery phase occurs when both sides ask questions and request documents to gather information. If the case is complicated, it may take several months.

In many cases, the discovery phase leads to a settlement. The trial will proceed if this does not happen. Typically, Georgia car accident trials last around two days, but much preparation takes place beforehand. During the trial, you will be required to attend, while a jury or judge will decide whether or not you should receive compensation.

The Factors Affecting Settlements

How long your claim takes to settle can be affected by a number of factors. Some of these include:

Injury Recovery Time

It will take you some time to fully recover from your injuries before you receive a final estimate of your medical bills. Once you have fully recovered, you can estimate how much your medical costs will be and what future medical treatment you may need. In addition, you could include any lost income resulting from time missed at work for medical reasons. You may be able to settle your claim with the help of an accident lawyer after recovering from the accident.

Insurance Company in No Rush to Settle

Generally speaking, the more significant an accident is, the longer it will take for a lawsuit to be resolved. An insurance company will investigate your claim in order to find any small piece of information they can use against you. Additionally, they may take a long time to offer or pay settlements.

You may benefit from the services of a car accident lawyer if you have been injured in a car accident. A legal professional has a good understanding of insurance companies' tactics and can communicate with them effectively.

Questioning of Liability

Proving negligence and establishing liability can be challenging after a car accident. In situations where fault is shared, comparative negligence determines which party is responsible for damages. The settlement process could be delayed if liability has to be determined.

Talk to a Car Accident Lawyer in Duluth, GA, for Free

Depending on the details of each case, the time it takes to settle a car accident claim varies. After an accident, you should contact a Georgia car accident lawyer as soon as possible. Contacting an attorney is the first step in putting the process in motion for your claim.

Attorney Allen Broughton is here to assist you after you've been injured in a car accident. After helping thousands of victims of car accidents get the settlements they deserve over the past three decades, our firm knows what it takes to get the best outcome.

Fill out the quick online form or call 404-842-7700 to speak with an attorney at Broughton Accident & Injury Lawyers.

What Should I Do After a Rear-End Accident in Georgia?

What Should I Do After a Rear-End Accident in GeorgiaSuddenly, a car hits you from behind while you are sitting at a red light. Now, you're injured and not sure what to do. Unfortunately, many people have experienced this situation when driving in Atlanta.

With all the distractions people have today, it's no surprise that rear-end accidents are so common. Texting while driving is against the law in Georgia, yet it still happens. It is estimated that 400 fatal accidents occur each year as a result of texting and driving, and this number rises to over 30,000 when you include accidents caused by distracted driving in general. Please read our advice below if this has happened to you or someone you love. 

What To Do at the Scene of a Rear-End Accident in Atlanta

Atlanta, GA, rear-end accident victims may suffer injuries and car damage due to the accident. Obviously, you need medical treatment if you've been injured and you need your car fixed. When you're drowning in bills and your car is broken, you may not be sure how to handle it all.

That's why we're here. Our team at Broughton Accident & Injury Lawyers is committed to helping you after a serious accident. We aim to ensure that you receive quality medical treatment without having to pay any upfront costs and to help you recover damages.

So, how do you get compensation after an accident? Here are a few steps you can take to protect your injury claim after an Atlanta car accident.

Check for Injuries and Seek Immediate Medical Treatment

Inspect yourself and your passengers for any injuries, and get medical attention for your injuries as soon as possible. No matter how minor your injuries may seem or if you think you are fine, you should still seek medical treatment to make sure that there are no internal injuries.

An accident can cause the effects of adrenaline to mask injury symptoms. So it is possible to feel fine at first but then have symptoms hours (or even days) later. Additionally, some injuries may not be noticed for days or even weeks, such as whiplash or traumatic brain injury.

See a doctor as soon as possible after an accident. If you have suffered severe injuries, you need to go to the ER immediately. Even if someone does not have health insurance, an emergency room does not turn away an injured victim.

 Primary care physicians and urgent care clinics are other good options.

The longer you wait to see a physician, the more likely you will suffer health problems, and your compensation claim may suffer. In many cases, insurance companies use a delay in treatment to say that you're not really injured.

Call the Police

You should call the police and report the crash. You need a police report to establish liability. Without an official police report, both parties rely on their own word.

The police do not necessarily have the final say on who is at fault in a crash. The court ultimately is responsible for this if the parties and insurers cannot agree.

According to Georgia's comparative fault law, more fault can be assigned to the other driver if proven in court. So even though proving fault can be difficult, you can save thousands of dollars by accurately determining the responsible party.

Also, never admit fault to the police, and don't speculate about things you don't know for sure. Instead, simply answer their questions and let them document the incident. Finally, it's essential that you keep a copy of your police report for your records and that your insurer also has a copy.

Take Photos, Collect Evidence, Exchange Information

Photograph the accident scene. They can be valuable evidence when filing an injury claim. Also, write down the license plate number, drivers license details, name, address, and phone number of the driver who hit your vehicle.

Getting a picture of the other driver's insurance card is a good idea. While the officer will write down the name of the other driver's insurance company, they will not note the amount of coverage. This information may appear on the insurance card, so take pictures of both sides. Do not speak with any insurance company before meeting with a competent lawyer in Atlanta.

You should also write down the names of any witnesses and their contact information. It's possible witnesses won't stay until the police arrive, and even then, a busy officer may not speak with everyone. So if you do not record the witness's name and contact information, you could lose them forever.

Keep in mind that it may be a long time before you can see your car again if it is towed or you are transported by ambulance. So you should also remove any valuable items from your vehicle.

Do Not Admit Fault

It is crucial not to admit fault, even if you believe you were partially responsible for the accident. In a similar vein, resist the urge to apologize, as it may be twisted into an admission of guilt if taken out of context.

Factors such as speed, weather conditions, mechanical failure, and others play a role in determining fault for an accident. It is impossible to know what the other driver is doing in their car, so don't make assumptions based on what you don't know. According to the Georgia Department of Transportation, 70% of car accidents are caused by unsafe driving behaviors, including distractions, texting and driving, impairment, drunk driving, or driving too fast for conditions.

Instead, let the police and insurance companies decide who was responsible for the accident. If you disagree with their determination, you should consult with a car accident lawyer in Atlanta, like Broughton Accident & Injury Lawyers, as soon as possible. Ensure that the liable party is held accountable by hiring an experienced attorney to represent your best interests.

Contact an Experienced Car Accident Lawyer in Atlanta

When dealing with a rear-end accident case, an experienced Atlanta accident attorney like Allen Broughton can help you fully understand your legal options. In addition, car accident lawyers are experienced in gathering evidence for cases, negotiating with insurance companies, and requesting the maximum compensation after your car accident.

What To Do After You've Left the Scene of a Atlanta Car Accident

Unfortunately, your ordeal is not over once you leave the accident scene; it's just getting started. You will still have to worry about getting your car fixed, handling insurance companies, recovering from your injuries, etc. Here are some tips for getting started with your case after a car accident in Atlanta.

Follow Your Treatment Plan

Always follow all orders from your doctor. When doctor's orders are not followed, an insurance company could claim that your rear-end accident injury was not serious. Be sure to keep track of all your appointments and related expenses too, and try not to miss any medical appointments.

Keep Your Records and Receipts

Don't discard any receipts or documents regarding the accident. Keeping a record of every doctor's appointment, prescription, and medical bill is a good idea. It is essential to give these documents to your lawyer.

Without receipts, some expenses will be difficult to recover. However, when an experienced injury attorney handles this evidence, the at-fault party's insurance company will likely pay out.

Document Your Recovery in a Journal

In the days following the accident, keep track of all your symptoms and the challenges you face financially and physically. Keep a journal of the dates and times.

If you have to file a lawsuit, your pain journal could be crucial evidence. In addition, people often forget the details of how an injury affected their lives. Journaling helps you remember everything you experienced and missed because of the crash.

Don't Post About Your Accident or Injuries

Do not share any details about your car accident or injuries on social media. Your case's value will depend on the nature and extent of your injuries from your rear-end accident.

You should expect insurance adjusters to look for reasons to diminish your claim, and they may even take a look at your social media accounts. In other words, anything you share on social media about your accident may impact your claim.

Rear-End Accident Victims Have a Limited Time to File a Claim

Following a rear-end crash in Atlanta, Georgia, there is a limited time frame for pursuing compensation. For a typical personal injury claim, the victim has two years from the accident date to file a lawsuit. The victim has four years to file a claim for most property damage claims.

You will most likely lose your chance to claim compensation if you do not submit your claim by the deadline. It is rare for the deadline to be extended, but it is always best to consult an Atlanta accident attorney like Broughton Accident & Injury Lawyers if you think you missed the statute of limitations for your case. In some instances, various circumstances can lengthen the statute of limitations, so every case is different. But it is best not to take a chance of missing the deadline, so call an attorney like Broughton Accident & Injury Lawyers in Atlanta, GA, right away after being rear-ended at 404-842-7700.

How Do I Pay for Medical Treatment After a Car Accident in Atlanta?

You might wonder, "what if I don't have medical insurance?" The emergency room cannot turn you away if you need emergency treatment after an accident. In addition, if you require additional treatment following your ER visit, you may be able to defer payment until your case has been resolved.

Emergency rooms are not allowed to turn you away, and they are equipped to run tests for internal injuries and other more severe injuries. If you don't have insurance, you can let them know that you are there due to a car accident, and they can often guide how to handle the bills. Keep in mind that you may be entitled to reimbursement of your medical expenses after the case settles.

You can also use your health insurance coverage to pay for your medical expenses before your case settles or goes to court. The first benefit is that no money has to be spent out of pocket, and you won't have to wait for a reimbursement. Second, experienced attorneys can negotiate down medical expenses at the end of the case, leaving you with more money for your settlement. 

As always, listen to your body, and seek medical attention as soon as possible if you are in pain following a car accident in Atlanta.

Contact a Rear-End Car Accident Lawyer in Atlanta, GA, for a Free Consultation

For a free rear-end accident consultation, give Broughton Accident & Injury Lawyers a call at 404-842-7700.

Attorney Allen Broughton specializes in helping injured victims, and unlike most attorneys, his firm only handles personal injury cases. At Broughton Accident & Injury Lawyers, we have over 30 years of experience winning personal injury cases. No fee is charged unless we recover compensation for you, so you don't have to worry about another bill at this stressful time. Get in touch with us today to get your case started for free!

What to Do if You Are Injured as a Passenger in a Georgia Car Accident

What to Do if You Are Injured as a Passenger in a Georgia Car AccidentAs Georgia car accident lawyers, every day we speak to injured drivers seeking compensation after being involved in car accidents they didn't cause. Many of these people are passengers who were not even driving the vehicle at the time of the accident. A passenger who has been injured in a car accident might wonder who they should turn to for help paying for medical expenses.

Injuries sustained in an automobile accident may be compensated differently depending on who is ultimately at fault. Nevertheless, insurance companies might not have the same view on their responsibilities even when the situation initially seems clear-cut.

Obtaining justice for an injured passenger may require multiple injury claims. When you are involved in a car accident in Atlanta, the Georgia personal injury attorneys of Broughton Accident & Injury Lawyers are here to help you.

Determining Who is at Fault

Vehicle drivers are responsible for their passengers in Georgia car accidents. The law requires drivers on Georgia roads to exercise reasonable care to avoid endangering other road users, including passengers.

When an accident results from a driver's negligence or carelessness, that driver is responsible if they cause an injury. Injury victims in Georgia are entitled to specific compensation under civil law.

People who are injured in car accidents usually seek compensation for their injuries from the driver who was at fault, which is typically paid by the driver's auto insurance policy.

The minimum liability insurance requirement for Georgia drivers is $25,000 per person, $50,000 per accident, with $25,000 coverage for property damage. In addition, drivers can purchase insurance with higher coverage amounts.

Insurance companies will provide compensation only if you can demonstrate that their policyholder's negligence caused your injuries. Several pieces of evidence, such as a police report and medical records, will likely be needed if an insurance adjuster disputes your initial claim.

Don't let the insurance company pay you less than you deserve. It's their job to pay for the medical bills and suffering of injured victims under their policy. It's best to work with an attorney and file a personal injury lawsuit. A lawsuit outlines your demands and the evidence to support your compensation claim.

A personal injury attorney with experience can perform a detailed car accident case review and build a solid case. As part of a contingency fee arrangement, your attorney will cover the upfront costs of your accident claim. In such an arrangement, your lawyer receives a percentage of any money recovered as a fee. Clients are not charged a fee if they do not recover compensation.

You probably won't hesitate to seek compensation if the "other driver" is at fault. But, you may feel differently about suing a friend or relative if the driver you were riding with caused the accident. Keep in mind that you're not suing your friend or relative; you're suing their insurance company.

They pay their insurance company monthly to cover expenses in case of an accident. It is for this reason that liability insurance exists. Unfortunately, accidents are bound to happen, and insurance covers people injured in accidents.

It is sometimes appropriate to file claims against both drivers involved in an accident if both are responsible for the accident. In addition, a third party could also share liability, such as an establishment that served alcohol to an underage person or someone driving as part of their job duties.

Does My GA Car Insurance Cover Me as a Passenger in Another Car?

UM/UIM coverage (uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage) can be purchased in addition to liability insurance, and protects victims when drivers do not have auto insurance or do not have enough insurance to cover losses.

A car accident passenger might have UM/UIM coverage, through which they can obtain compensation for medical expenses over the at-fault driver's limits. UM/UIM may also cover a hit-and-run accident. Additionally, your health insurance may cover medical costs if you are injured as a passenger.

In the event of a successful lawsuit against the at-fault driver, your health insurance company may legally demand repayment. This is called "subrogation of a claim."

A vehicle insurance company could sue the insurance company of the other driver in the event you fail to file a claim against the at-fault driver. Depending on the amount of expenses paid on your behalf, your insurer would decide whether it is worthwhile to seek reimbursement from the at-fault driver's insurer.

What to Do After A Car Accident That Was Not Your Fault in Georgia

Following a car accident, these steps can help you protect your rights:

Talk To an Atlanta, GA, Car Accident Lawyer

Our accident attorneys have recovered millions of dollars in compensation for auto accident victims. Count on our 30+ years of experience and determination to successfully pursue your injury claim. Contact us now by calling 404-842-7700 or visiting our contact page.

5 Mistakes To Avoid in an Atlanta Car Accident

Mistakes to Avoid After a Car Accident in GeorgiaNo one wants to be involved in a car accident in Atlanta. Accidents can be scary and stressful, as well as harmful to those affected due to injury or even death. If you have never been in a car accident before, you may have no idea what to expect or how to act once the accident has happened. Knowing what mistakes to avoid can ensure that you are not found at fault or liable for something you did not do. Read on to learn more about common mistakes to avoid after being involved in a car accident in Atlanta.

MISTAKE 1: Giving a Recorded Statement to the Insurance Company

The first mistake you can make after an accident is agreeing to give a recorded statement to your insurance company or the other driver’s insurance company. You must first consult with an Atlanta auto accident attorney, as an insurance representative will be skilled in manipulating what you say and what you can hurt your case. Many drivers do not know that what they say can destroy their case before it even starts.

If you have not been through this process before, or are unsure of what to do, speak with an Atlanta car accident attorney first. Your attorney will be able to help you determine if you should give a statement and will be with you to ensure that you are treated fairly.

MISTAKE 2: Delaying Treatment for Medical Needs

A second commonly made mistake that is delaying treatment for medical needs. Some insurance companies will promise to help you, and many accident victims think that this means that the company will help with medical treatment. Insurance companies are not prepared to help anyone who is injured with medical treatment. A gap in treatment will hurt your case, and insurance companies know this. To avoid this issue, be sure to have treatment completed as soon as possible. Never wait for your insurance company to tell you when to go for treatment as they never will.

MISTAKE 3: Seeing Only Doctors Recommended by An Insurance Company

Another commonly seen issue is that an accident victim is told to see company doctors by insurance companies. An insurance company may imply that you can only see the doctors they recommend. This is not true. You can see your doctors or whoever you like. If you see only their doctors, it can hurt your case. An insurance company will steer you towards a doctor that they want you to see, and they will pay for their services. The doctors know how they are being paid and may be biased based on who is providing them with compensation.

Avoid this mistake by seeing the doctors you want to see and who you trust. Tell the doctor how you are feeling, what is hurting, and what happened so you can receive a proper diagnosis.

MISTAKE 4: Not Telling the Truth

Accident victims should always tell the truth during their case. There will be opportunities to lie, but you should never stretch the truth as it could hurt your case. Even a small misrepresentation can hurt your case and lessen your credibility. To avoid this issue, be sure to tell the truth when talking to your doctor, personal injury lawyer, the insurance company, etc.

MISTAKE 5: Choosing to Settle Without Speaking to an Atlanta Personal Injury Attorney

Another mistake is an accident victim will settle without speaking to an Atlanta personal injury attorney. An insurance company will hope that you do this without seeking representation from legal counsel. This makes their job more difficult as lawyers are more well-versed in the rights of the car accident victim.

Insurance companies will work fast to see you settle your case for a low value within days of the incident. The insurance company will make you believe they are on your side, but they are not. They want the case to be settled, so they are not out too much money, and litigation does not begin.

Avoid the mistake of settling early by speaking to an experienced Atlanta car accident attorney. A representative will be able to help you determine which direction to go in regard to your case.

Speak to an Atlanta car accident attorney today if you or a loved one have been involved in an automobile accident. Contact the Broughton Accident & Injury Lawyers Atlanta or Duluth office so one of our representatives can assist you.