Georgia Car Accident Questions
Every year in the United States, millions of people are injured in car accidents. Many accidents also occur with no injuries, but significant property damage. With the great frequency of which car accidents take place, it is important to know a bit about what you should do if you find yourself in one.
I was in a car accident, what should I do first?
The first thing to do is determine if anyone was injured. If anyone requires medical attention, that should be the first priority. Call emergency services as quickly as possible. You should stay at the scene of the accident. Leaving the scene can get you in serious trouble, especially if anyone was injured in the course of the accident.
Should I call the police?
If anyone was injured, or if there is property damage, call the police and make sure they file a report regarding the accident. You should get the name of the officer who arrived at the scene and document which police department responded. Also make sure you obtain the accident report number.
Should I speak to the other driver?
You should speak to the other driver in order to get their contact information, drivers' license number, and insurance information. Try to be civil, even if you are angry. The moments following a car accident are disorienting and confusing. You might not even realize that you are not quite in the right frame of mind.
Should I gather information myself?
If it is possible to do so safely, take photos, and speak to witnesses at the scene to get their information. If disputes arise, you will want to have as much information as possible.
What if I am injured?
If you are in pain, you should see a doctor and make sure that you are not seriously injured. As a side benefit of doing so, your medical records can document your injuries as well as Pain and Suffering should you decide to pursue an injury claim later on. It is also a common tactic for insurance companies to deny or minimize claims when victims wait too long to seek treatment. If you delay in seeking medical care, you run the risk of the insurance company arguing that your injuries were not caused by the accident, not as serious as you claim, or that you would have expressed those concerns to a doctor and received treatment if you were really injured. Take pictures of any visible bruises, abrasions or other visible injuries that you suffered before they heal. You should also keep information about any property damage that occurred as a result of the accident. Be sure you have records regarding costs for repairs as well as photos of the damage.
What if I think I might be partially at fault?
In many cases, more than one person is to blame for an accident. If you were somewhat responsible, but the other person was more to blame, then you can still recover, but the amount you recover might be lowered to account for your share of the liability. Make sure you discuss these issues with an attorney before you give any statements to any insurance companies.
What if I wasn't wearing my seatbelt?
In Georgia, an insurance company is generally not allowed to argue in negligence cases that because you were not wearing your seatbelt, your injuries would not have been as serious had you done so. However, if you or your family are claiming a product liability claim against the manufacturer of a vehicle, not having worn your seatbelt can affect your ability to prevail in such a claim.
Should I contact an attorney?
You should contact an attorney as soon as possible. It is important to discuss your claim and get advice early in the process. Every case is different, and an attorney will be able to give you advice specific to your case. Insurance companies also frequently offer settlements early on to try to make a claim disappear. These settlements might be lower than what you are entitled to, and you might not even realize the full extent of your injuries until after some time has passed. If you have been involved in any type of accident caused by negligence, contact our attorneys at Montlick & Associates to learn about your rights as well as what steps are necessary to protect those rights.
Put Our Law Firm's Over 36 Years of Legal Experience to Work For Your Case!
Do not delay in seeking legal assistance, as you have a limited amount of a time to pursue a claim. Call Montlick & Associates, Attorneys at Law for your free consultation today. Montlick & Associates has been representing those who suffer serious injuries throughout all of Georgia and in the Southeast for over 36 years, including but not limited to Albany, Athens, Atlanta, Augusta, Columbus, Gainesville, Macon, Marietta, Rome, Roswell, Savannah, Smyrna, Valdosta, Warner Robins and all smaller cities and rural areas in the state.
No matter where you are located our attorneys are just a phone call away, and we will even come to you. Call us 24 hours a day/7 days a week for your Free Consultation at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333). You can also visit us online at www.montlick.com and use our Free Case Evaluation Form or 24-hour Live Online Chat.
Montlick & Associates, Attorneys at Law
17 Executive Park Dr NE
Atlanta, GA 30329
Telephone: 1 (404) 529-6333
Toll Free: 1 (800) LAW-NEED