Most people do not necessarily consider handling an Atlanta car accident claim with a lawyer on hand – because most accidents are minor, they can usually navigate the process successfully. However, there are circumstances in which hiring an attorney is a good idea, but strongly advised.
You should not consider handling a car accident claim by yourself if:
- The accident involves injuries of any kind (especially if the injuries are serious)
- You are not 100 percent certain of liability in the accident
- If you need to seek significant and complex damages
In any of these circumstances, an attorney with extensive experience can significantly increase both the likelihood and size of your recovery.
Severity: How Serious is the Accident?
If the accident was a minor fender-bender with no injuries, you should have may be able to secure a getting a proper settlement. However, if it was a potentially life-threatening accident with serious injuries, property damage and losses, it may be in your best interest to hire an attorney to guide you through the process.
In a serious accident situation with a potentially large recovery, there is a lot at stake. Insurance providers will do everything they can to prevent you from seeking litigation, including a quick settlement that is far lower than what you deserve for your damages. In these cases, it’s best to contact a law firm who has the experience in dealing with insurance companies who are reluctant to compensate you fairly. They have the knowhow and resources to put yourself on a level playing field with the insurance providers.
Liability: Is it Clear the Other Person was at Fault?
Liability in car accidents is a tricky topic in Georgia, thanks to the 50 Percent Modified Comparative Fault Rule.
Also known as the 50 Percent Bar Rule, this law allows parties to pursue compensation for damages, even if they’re found partially at fault. However, it also states that if a party is found to be more than 50 percent liable for the accident, they do not have a legal right to recover compensation.
In accident cases where the other party is overwhelmingly at fault, a fair settlement should be relatively easy to negotiate without a lawyer. However, if liability for the accident can be heavily disputed by both parties, it’s usually worth it to hire a lawyer to handle the case. They know how to more effectively debate liability, and know exactly what holds more weight in the eyes of the court.
Damages: How Complex are the Calculations?
Determining the exact damages in a car accident is a straightforward process in minor car accidents, but when serious injury and property damage are involved, it can get messy.
Adding up repair bills, car insurance claims, hospital bills, and any other medical bills (including rehab and prescription drugs) can be a tedious process, but calculating damages from lost wages and pain and suffering can be seemingly impossible. These damages require you to put a price tag on intangible things that may be dependent on a number of different factors.
If putting a value on your mental anguish and lost future earning capacity is too difficult, it’s best to consult a car accident and an Atlanta personal injury attorney to assist you. These lawyers use their experience and professional knowledge to maximize your recovery – and if they don’t have the knowledge, they have the resources to hire economists and financial advisors who do.
Hire Experienced Personal Injury and Car Accident Lawyers for Serious Accidents
The scale of the car accident should ultimately inform your decision on whether or not to consult an attorney. The more serious an accident, the more legwork and effort is involved in ensuring you receive the compensation you deserve. Ultimately, it’s likely a good idea to contact an attorney no matter how serious the accident. Our attorneys offer free, no obligation consultations and can walk you through your situation.
The car accident and personal injury lawyers at Kaufman Law can get you on the right track. With 45 years of experience in personal injury and car accident claims, we are well-versed in the process, from the data-gathering stage to the negotiation process. We offer free consultations, so that you can make an informed decision about your car accident, and decide to proceed accordingly.