What to Expect Following Your Accident
If you’ve recently been injured in an accident in Georgia, you may be wondering what to expect during the personal injury claims process. The personal injury attorney at The Law Firm of Walter Gabriel, LLC can explain what the claims process entails in the aftermath of your accident.
Attorney Walter Gabriel can work with you to help protect your rights throughout each step of the personal injury claims process. From his main office in Atlanta, Georgia, Walter Gabriel also serves injured victims in surrounding areas, including Alexandria and Dunwoody.
Personal Injury Claims Process in Georgia
Georgia’s at-fault state law requires that individuals who are at fault for an accident provide financial compensation for any injuries caused by their negligence.
Thus, the first step of the personal injury claims process is usually determining who is at fault for the accident. In Georgia, this is done through a process called “comparative negligence,” which evaluates each party’s degree of responsibility for an accident and assigns liability accordingly.
As long as both parties were partially responsible for the accident, they can still recover compensation from the other party through a personal injury claim. However, if one party is deemed to be more than 50% responsible, they won’t be able to receive any compensation from the other party.
Once it has been determined who is liable for an accident, it’s crucial to gather evidence that will support your claim. This could include medical records documenting your injuries, photos or videos of the scene of the accident, police reports, and statements from witnesses who observed what took place, among others.
You should also keep detailed notes about how your injuries have impacted your daily life and any financial losses related to your medical bills or lost wages due to time spent away from work. These documents will help strengthen your argument and ensure that you receive fair compensation for your damages.
Here’s an overview of what to expect when dealing with car repairs after an accident:
Investigation to determine fault. After an accident, both parties must report it to their insurance companies. Upon receiving the report, the insurance company will send out an adjuster or investigator who will look into the details of the case and determine which party was at fault. It’s important to note that the investigation can take anywhere from several days to several weeks, depending on the complexity of the case and how quickly information can be gathered.
Assessment of the damages. Once fault has been established, the next step is for the insurance companies to assess any damages resulting from the accident. During this process, they will evaluate all related expenses such as medical bills, repair costs, lost wages due to the time off work, and other associated costs. These expenses will then be divided between each party based on their degree of fault.
Payment is made to the repair shop. Once all damages have been assessed and payment has been made by the insurance company, it’s time for you (or your insurer) to make arrangements with a repair shop for your car repairs. Depending on your policy coverage and the type of damage sustained in the accident, your insurer may require that you have your car repaired at one of their preferred repair shops in order for them to pay for it directly. If not, then it’s up to you (or whoever is responsible for paying) to find a reputable repair shop and make sure they get paid once repairs are complete.
Automobile accidents can be stressful experiences, but understanding what comes next can help ease some of your worries when facing car repairs after an incident occurs.
According to the Georgia Department of Public Health, automobile accidents are the second-leading cause of emergency room visits and hospitalizations in the state. If you were injured in a car accident, you need to seek medical treatment for the following reasons:
Protecting your health. The main reason why it’s so important to seek medical attention after an accident is to protect your health. The shock of being involved in an accident can make it hard to recognize certain symptoms or physical complaints until days or weeks later when they become more pronounced. By seeing a doctor, you can ensure that any underlying injuries are caught as early as possible and receive proper treatment before they worsen into something more serious or permanent.
Documenting your injuries. Seeing a doctor after an accident is essential for documenting your injuries. You should always document any physical symptoms or complaints that you are experiencing, no matter how minor they may seem at the time or how much time has passed since the accident occurred. Seeing a doctor allows you to get an official diagnosis and begin treatment for all of the injuries that were caused by the accident, even if those injuries were not apparent right away. This documentation will also be critical if you decide to pursue a personal injury claim against the party responsible for causing your accident.
Protecting your legal claim for compensation. In addition to protecting your health, seeking medical attention after an auto accident can help protect any legal claims for compensation that you may want to pursue down the line against those responsible for causing the crash. Insurance companies use medical records and bills as evidence when evaluating personal injury claims, so it’s essential that you have complete documentation of all of your injuries and treatments in order to maximize potential damages recoverable from those responsible for causing the crash.
As you can see, the importance of seeking medical treatment following your accident cannot be overstated.
Once you have gathered all of the necessary evidence and information about your case, it’s time to file a formal legal complaint with a court in Georgia or with an insurance company if there was one involved in the incident. This document will outline all of your damages and seek reimbursement on behalf of yourself or anyone else who sustained injuries as a result of someone else’s negligence.
After submitting this paperwork, it can take some time before a resolution is reached depending on how complicated the case is and whether both parties agree on what amount should be paid out as compensation.
Your attorney will help you negotiate with the insurance company to ensure that you are getting the compensation to which you are entitled. If negotiations fail or the insurer does not want to provide an adequate settlement, your attorney will take your case to court to fight for the compensation you deserve.
Discuss Your Next Steps With an Attorney
Navigating the personal injury claims process in Georgia can be complex, but with guidance from an experienced attorney, it doesn’t have to be overwhelming. If you were injured in an accident and do not know what to expect, consult with Attorney Walter Gabriel. Gabriel’s law firm – The Law Firm of Walter Gabriel, LLC – has five offices in Georgia: three in Atlanta and one in Dunwoody and Alexandria each. Call for a free consultation today.