115 Essential Personal Injury Questions … Answered

Essential List Of Personal Injury Questions

Most personal injury victims have never filed an insurance claim. Therefore, we’ve answered the 115 most commonly asked personal injury questions to help you understand the best steps to take after you’re injured.

If you’ve got a question that isn’t covered by this list, call our Atlanta personal injury lawyers today at (404) 939-9470. Also, you may fill-out our online contact form to schedule a free case review.

No. 1: What Is A Personal Injury?

Answer: A personal injury is a physical or mental harm to an individual, as opposed to property damage. Common physical injuries include:

Common mental injuries include:

No. 2: What Causes a Personal Injury?

Answer: Personal injuries are typically caused by auto accidents, such as:

However, the following incidents also cause many personal injuries:

No. 3: How Do I Know If I Have a Personal Injury Claim?

Answer: You have a personal injury claim if:

  • Someone acted negligently and their actions harmed you; and,
  • Your suffered damages. For instance, you incurred medical bills to treat your injuries. Or, perhaps, you suffered lost wages. Even if you didn’t suffer any monetary losses, you can still recover pain and suffering compensation.

No. 4: What Is Negligence?

Answer: Negligence is a legal term that means “careless.” A person acts negligently when they needlessly expose someone else to harm. Negligence can be an “act” or an “omission.” For instance, a truck driver “acts” negligently when they improperly change lanes and cause an accident. A truck driver’s employer “acts” negligently “by omission”, when they hire a truck driver without confirming that the driver has a safe driving record.

No. 5: Why Should I Hire A Personal Injury Lawyer?

Answer: You should hire a personal injury lawyer if you want to settle your claim for its maximum value.

For instance, car accident victims that hire a lawyer receive a $77,600 average settlement. Conversely, unrepresented car accident victims only receive a $17,600 average settlement.

Your lawyer can also litigate your case if the insurance company doesn’t offer you what you deserve. In fact, car accident victims that file, or threaten to file, a personal injury lawsuit receive a $45,500 average settlement. By contrast, those who don’t file a lawsuit only recover a $23,000 average settlement.

No. 6: When Should I Call A Personal Injury Lawyer?

Answer: You should call a personal lawyer ASAP. Time is of the essence after a serious accident. For instance, the longer you wait to call a lawyer, the likelier it is that evidence may be lost or destroyed. Memories also fade over time and you need to capture eyewitness testimony before that occurs.

No. 7: Will A Personal Injury Lawyer Meet With Me At My Home?

Answer: Yes. Personal injury lawyers know that you and your family are suffering. You might be spending long hours at the hospital. Perhaps, you lost your vehicle in the collision that injured you. Those challenges may make it difficult for you to travel to the lawyers’ office.

That’s OK. Our Atlanta personal injury lawyers will come to meet you – wherever you are. We also offer virtual consultations.

No. 8: There Are So Many Personal Injury Lawyers. How Do I Hire The Right One?

Answer: Most Atlanta personal injury law firms are big. Some even purchase billboard and bus ads bragging about how big they are. Big law firms cast a wide advertising net to snare thousands of cases. Then, they settle those cases as quickly as possible for less than their clients deserve.

You should hire a law firm that:

  • Only accepts a sensible number of cases.
  • Invests the time and money to maximize each client’s settlement.

Big law firms are also set up so that you’re never able to speak with a lawyer. You should hire a law firm that:

  • Gives you its lawyers’ personal cell phone numbers. That way, you can reach your lawyer 24/7.
  • Returns your calls and keeps you informed every step of the way.

If you want a lawyer that will “churn and burn” your case, hire one of Atlanta’s billboard or bus lawyers.

But, if you want the best customer service and the greatest result, call Graham Scofield Injury Lawyers at (404) 939-9470.

We’re not big. We’re better.

No. 9 I Can’t Afford A Personal Injury Lawyer. What Should I Do?

Answer: You don’t have to pay your personal injury lawyer any money until they settle your case. Their fee is a percentage of your settlement. Typically, if your lawyer settles your case before a lawsuit is filed, the lawyer’s fee is 33.33% of the settlement. If your case is litigated, your lawyer’s fee increases to 40% because litigation is time-consuming and expensive. Also, litigation requires your lawyer to turn down other cases so that they can fully focus on winning your case.

No. 10: Will a Personal Injury Lawyer Charge Me for Our Initial Consultation?

Answer: No. All personal injury lawyers offer free initial consultations. However, not all initial consultations are equal. Law firms that process thousands of personal injury claims per year spend very little time with their clients.

In fact, big law firm consultations typically don’t even involve a lawyer. Make sure that you speak with an actual lawyer during that initial consultation. If the law firm doesn’t provide a lawyer for that meeting, that means that they only care about making a profit on your case. They don’t care about you.

No. 11: What Should I Bring with Me to the Initial Consultation?

Answer: Below is a list of documents that you should bring to the initial consultation if you have them. If you don’t have them, your personal injury lawyer can help you acquire them.

  • Police report
  • Copies of medical bills and medical records
  • Photos of the collision damage
  • Collision repair estimate
  • Your auto insurance declaration page
  • Your health insurance card
  • Copies of any communications (texts or e-mails) that you’ve had with the insurance adjuster

No. 12: What Questions Should I Ask A Personal Injury Lawyer During Our Initial Consultation?

Answer: Here are some of the questions that you should ask your potential personal injury lawyer:

  • Will you give me your personal cell phone number so that I can reach you whenever I have a question?
  • How many cases does your firm handle at the same time?
  • Have you handled a case like mine before?
  • What is your success rate with cases like mine?
  • How much money do you think you can recover for me?
  • Do you have some client reviews that I can browse before I hire you?
  • Are you the lawyer that is going to handle my case? Or will someone else handle it?
  • Are you going to refer my case to another law firm?
  • How long have you practiced law?
  • How long will it take you to resolve my case?

No. 13: Is Our Personal Injury Consultation Confidential?

Answer: Yes. Everything that you discuss with your lawyer is confidential. Even if you decide not to hire that lawyer, they still must keep everything confidential.

No. 14: During Our Initial Consultation, Should I Expect To Meet With A Personal Injury Lawyer, Or Someone Else?

Answer: Most personal injury firms delegate case intake to legal assistants and paralegals. They do that because they care more about making a profit on your case than they do about you.

At Graham Scofield Injury Lawyers, our Atlanta personal injury lawyers always put our clients first. That means that you’ll always meet with a personal injury lawyer during your initial consultation.

No. 15: The Insurance Adjuster Told Me I Don’t Need a Lawyer. Is that True?

Answer: No. The insurance adjuster tells you not to hire a lawyer because they’ll have to pay you much more money if you hire a lawyer. If the insurance adjuster tells you that they can quickly settle your claim if you don’t hire a lawyer, tell them to “take a hike!” A quick settlement = a small settlement. Don’t let them fool you.

No. 16: Will The Insurance Adjuster Help Me Settle My Claim?

Answer: No. The insurance adjuster won’t help you settle your claim. They don’t want to pay you what your claim is worth. In fact, they’re incentivized to pay you as little money as possible. You need to hire an Atlanta personal injury lawyer to fight for you. That way, you’ll settle your claim for its top value.

No. 17. The Adjuster Made An Offer To Settle My Claim. Should I Accept It?

Answer: You should never accept an adjuster’s settlement offer until you’ve discussed it with a personal injury lawyer. The adjuster will typically make you a small offer shortly after the accident. They hope you’ll accept that offer because you don’t care about your case, or because you’re desperate for cash.

Don’t let the adjuster take advantage of you. Hire an Atlanta personal injury lawyer to negotiate the best result for you. If you’re tight on money, your lawyer can help you obtain a loan to cover some of your expenses while your claim is pending.

No. 18: If I Settle My Claim On My Own, I Don’t Have To Split The Fee With A Lawyer. Shouldn’t I Just Settle My Claim On My Own?

Answer: It’s a bad idea to settle your claim on your own. Why? Because the insurance adjuster knows that you don’t have the financial resources or the legal knowledge to fight your claim in court. Thus, they’ll only make low-ball settlement offers to you. In fact, the adjuster might even “dare you” to sue their insured. If you sue their insured, they’ll ask the court to dismiss your case. Then, the court will dismiss your case if you haven’t satisfied all of the technical pleading requirements. If the court dismisses your case, you’ll recover nothing.

On the other hand, if you hire a skilled Atlanta personal injury lawyer, the insurance adjuster will offer you far more money than you’d receive if you negotiated your claim on your own. Why? Because they know your lawyer can win a big trial verdict if they don’t pay you what you deserve.

No. 19: Should I Give The Insurance Adjuster A Recorded Statement?

Answer: Don’t give the adjuster a recorded statement unless your lawyer has prepared you. The insurance adjuster isn’t your friend. That interview is designed to create a basis for denying your claim. Sometimes, the adjuster also asks you questions about your injuries and medical treatment. Those questions might seem harmless. However, if you don’t answer them correctly, the insurance adjuster will use your responses to diminish your claim’s value.

If you hire a lawyer, your lawyer will prepare you to give accurate responses that also provide context. If you’re wondering what questions the insurance adjuster may ask you after a car accident, contact an Atlanta personal injury lawyer.

No. 20: Should I Discuss My Personal Injury Case With Anyone Other Than My Lawyer?

Answer: No. Don’t discuss your case with anyone other than your immediate family unless your lawyer is present. You should always request identification if you’re unfamiliar with the person that contacted you about your case.

Also, don’t talk to the insurance adjuster without first notifying your lawyer. Your lawyer will ensure that the insurance adjuster doesn’t misrepresent your statements.

No. 21: The Insurance Adjuster Asked Me To Sign A Medical Records Release. Should I Sign It?

Answer: No. The adjuster hopes that you’ll sign that release so that they can obtain medical records from every provider that ever treated you. Then, if you complained of similar pain 15 years ago, they’ll try to deny you compensation by claiming that you had a pre-existing injury.

No. 22: The Insurance Adjuster Asked Me To Sign An Employment Records Release. Should I Sign It?

Answer: No. The adjuster hopes you’ll sign that release so that they can contact all of your former employers and “dig up dirt” on you. For instance, if you filed a prior workers comp claim, they’ll try to deny you compensation by claiming that you had a pre-existing injury.

No. 23: How Much is My Personal Injury Claim Worth?

Answer: Your claim is worth the sum of your economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages include your:

  • Medical bills
  • Lost income
  • Property damage
  • Lost earning capacity
  • Other out-of-pocket accident-related expenses.

Your non-economic damages include your intangible losses, such as your pain and suffering. Most juries use what is known as a “medical bills multiplier” to calculate pain and suffering damages. Insurance adjusters use that same formula when calculating a potential settlement. That method multiplies your economic damages by a number between 1 and 6. Your injury severity impacts that multiplier.

For example, let’s say that your injuries were resolved with conservative medical treatment and your bills only totaled $25,000. In that scenario, a jury might award somewhere in the range of 1-2 times your medical bills for pain and suffering which would bring your total recovery (economic damages plus non-economic damages) to approximately $50,000 to $75,000. If you had to undergo orthopedic surgery and your total bills exceeded $100,000, a jury might award somewhere in the range of 3-6 times for your pain and suffering which would bring your recovery to approximately $400,000 to $700,000.

Your Atlanta personal injury lawyer will evaluate all of your damages. Then, they’ll help you calculate your claim’s value.

No. 24: Should I Trust A Settlement Calculator That I Find Online?

Answer: No. There are many online personal injury compensation calculators. Most of them are quite unreliable. In fact, insurers create those calculators to persuade injury claimants that they have weak claims.

Also, those online calculators don’t consider the venue (county) in which your claim is filed. Atlanta metro claims are typically more valuable than claims filed in rural areas.

You might also think that your claim isn’t valuable if your injuries haven’t been fully evaluated. Your Atlanta personal injury lawyer will ensure you receive the best medical care. That way, you’ll know the true value of your claim.

No. 25: Is There A Minimum or Maximum Personal Injury Compensation Amount?

Answer: No. Georgia doesn’t set a minimum threshold for personal injury compensation. It also doesn’t cap personal injury compensation.

No. 26: Will A Personal Injury Lawyer Accept My Case?

Answer: Maybe. But you’ll never know if you don’t call a personal injury lawyer. Many injury victims hesitate to contact a lawyer because they think the lawyer will reject their case. Don’t make that mistake. Many cases initially appear to be low-value cases. However, once your lawyer works them up, they are far more valuable. If a lawyer declines your case, they’ll refer you to a lawyer that might be able to help you.

No. 27: I’ve Just Been Injured In A Car Wreck. What Should I Do Now?

Answer: First, you should call 9-1-1. Next, you should report any pain symptoms that you’re experiencing. You should also request an ambulance if you’re in pain. The 9-1-1 operator will dispatch a police officer to the scene. That police officer will obtain statements from you and the at-fault driver. Next, they’ll issue a car accident citation to the at-fault driver. Finally, they’ll prepare a report that you’ll use to resolve your claim.

If you’re able to get out of your vehicle, take some photographs of the collision damage. Those photos will help demonstrate the impact severity.

Once the scene is safe, you should call an Atlanta car accident lawyer. Your lawyer will help you obtain great, affordable medical treatment. Next, your lawyer will help you settle your case. If the insurance adjuster won’t offer you the money you deserve, your lawyer will take your case to trial. Then, they’ll ask the jury to compensate you for all of the harm you’ve suffered.

If you’ve got questions about what you should do after a car accident, contact an Atlanta car accident lawyer.

No. 28: Do I Have To Go To The Doctor?

Answer: If you’re injured, you should get checked out by a medical doctor. Some injury victims go to the ER. Others prefer an urgent care clinic. Once the doctor discharges you, you’re welcome to treat with a chiropractor or physical therapist if you’re still suffering pain. It’s also a good idea to get examined by an orthopedic doctor that specializes in treating spinal injuries.

If you’ve got questions about the types of doctors that may treat you after a car accident, you should contact an Atlanta personal injury lawyer.

No. 29: I Don’t Like My Doctor. Can I Switch Doctors?

Answer: Yes. If your doctor isn’t giving you the care and attention you deserve, you’re welcome to switch doctors. In fact, your lawyer can refer you to a doctor that will give you the best care at an affordable price.

No. 30: How Do I Pay My Personal Injury Medical Bills?

Answer: Most medical providers treat personal injury victims on a lien basis. That way, injury victims don’t have to pay those medical bills until their case settles.

Other medical providers accept health insurance. If you have health insurance, your lawyer will help ensure that those bills are charged to your health insurance plan.

Some medical providers refuse to bill health insurance. However, if you purchased medical payments coverage on your auto insurance policy, they may accept that coverage. If you didn’t purchase medical payments coverage, your personal injury lawyer will help you resolve that bill when your case settles.

No. 31: Will My Unpaid Personal Injury Medical Bills Hurt My Credit Score?

Answer: Yes. If a medical provider sends you a bill, you should contact them and tell them to bill your health insurance. If you don’t provide your health insurance information and you also don’t pay the bill, that provider will send their bill to a collector. Then, the collector will report that unpaid bill and that report may damage your credit score.

Many personal injury victims don’t have health insurance. That’s OK. However, you need to let your Atlanta personal injury lawyer know that you’ve received a bill that you can’t pay. That way, your lawyer can contact the medical provider and make a payment arrangement. Sometimes, the medical provider will hold off on sending the bill to a collector if they know you’ve got a lawyer that will pay their bill when your cases settles.

No. 32: If My Health Insurance Covered My Medical Bills, Can I Still File A Personal Injury Claim?

Answer: Yes. Your medical bills are only one part of your personal injury claim. You can also recover compensation for your lost wages, lost earning capacity, and pain and suffering, among other damages.

No. 33: I Had A Similar Injury In The Past. Will That Harm My Personal Injury Claim?

Answer: Not necessarily. If the accident aggravated your pre-existing injury, you can still recover damages. In fact, many personal injury victims have had similar orthopedic issues in the past. Once they treated those symptoms, they got better. However, when the accident occurred, the symptoms re-emerged, or worsened.

No. 34: Is There A Database That Tracks A Person’s Prior Personal Injury Claims?

Answer: Yes. There are many electronic databases, such as ISO ClaimSearch that keep track of every single personal injury claim that you’ve ever filed. In fact, every insurance adjuster has access to those databases.

Therefore, when you hire your lawyer you must disclose all prior injury claims. That way, your lawyer won’t be blindsided by the insurance adjuster when they try to settle your claim.

No. 35: What If I’m Sore – But Not Hurt?

Answer: Many personal injury victims just feel a bit sore right after an accident. That’s perfectly normal. When your body experiences trauma, it activates its “flight or flight” response and releases adrenaline to dull your pain.

However, it’s still a good idea to get checked out at the hospital or an urgent care clinic right after an accident. That way, you’ll know whether the adrenaline is actually masking a serious injury.

Also, if you don’t treat your injuries, the insurance adjuster will claim you’re not injured. Then, they’ll offer you less money.

No. 36: How Do I Get My Car Repaired?

Answer: The at-fault driver’s insurance carrier is responsible for repairing your vehicle’s damage. Once your attorney sets up your insurance claim with the at-fault driver’s insurer, the collision repair shop will inspect your vehicle. Next, the repair shop creates its repair estimate. Then, the at fault driver’s insurance carrier pays for the repairs.

No. 37: How Do I Get a Rental Vehicle?

Answer: If you have rental car insurance, your insurer will provide you a rental vehicle while the repair shop fixes your vehicle. If you don’t have rental car insurance, the at fault driver’s insurance carrier will provide you a rental vehicle. However, they typically investigate liability before agreeing to provide you a vehicle. Therefore, if you need a rental vehicle ASAP, you should request it from your own insurance carrier.

No. 38: Will I Get Paid for My Car’s Diminished Value?

Answer: Maybe. If your vehicle is repairable, the insurance adjuster will pay for your vehicle’s repairs. Then, they’ll cut you a check for your vehicle’s “diminished value” if your car is eligible. In order to qualify for a Georgia diminished value claim, your vehicle must meet the following criteria:

  • Age. Your vehicle must be less than 10 years old. You’ll receive a larger diminished value check if your vehicle is newer.
  • Value. Your vehicle must be worth more than $7,000. You’ll receive a larger diminished value check if your vehicle is valuable.
  • Mileage. High mileage vehicles are less valuable. Thus, you’ll receive a larger diminished value check if you have a low mileage vehicle.
  • Damage history. If your car was involved in more than one prior crash, it may not qualify for a diminished value claim. Also, you’ll receive a larger diminished value check if your vehicle wasn’t previously damaged.

No. 39: What if the Accident Totaled My Car?

Answer: Your vehicle is “totaled” if the repair costs exceed your vehicle’s “fair market value.” If the car accident totaled your car, the at fault driver’s insurance carrier will pay you for the “fair market value” of your vehicle. The “fair market value” of your vehicle is based upon your vehicle’s year, make, model, mileage, and condition. If you’re wondering how much your vehicle is worth, you can use an online vehicle calculator. That’s the tool that insurance adjusters use when they calculate your vehicle’s value.

No. 40: Does the Insurance Company Have To Buy Me A New Car?

Answer: No. But, they have to pay you for the “fair market value” of your vehicle. Once you receive that payment, you can purchase a new vehicle.

No. 41: Do I Have To Share The Property Damage Settlement With My Lawyer?

Answer: No. The money that you receive from the property damage settlement belongs to you.

No. 42: What Do I Do If The Negligent Party Doesn’t Have Any Insurance?

Answer: If you were hit by an uninsured driver, you can file an uninsured motorist (UM) claim with your insurer if you purchased UM coverage. Most drivers have at least $25,000 UM coverage on their policies. If you’re unsure whether you have UM coverage, you should contact an Atlanta uninsured motorist accident lawyer.

If you’ve got questions about the different types of insurance coverage you should purchase, call an Atlanta personal injury lawyer.

No. 43: What Do I Do If The Negligent Party Doesn’t Have Enough Insurance?

Answer: If you were hit by an underinsured driver, you can file an underinsured motorist (UIM) claim with your insurer if you purchased UIM coverage. Most drivers have at least $25,000 UIM coverage on their policies.

No. 44: The Insurance Agent Told Me I Have “Full Coverage.” What Does That Mean?

Answer: “Full coverage” means that you have liability insurance coverage and “stacking” uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. “Stacking” coverage “stacks” on top of the at fault driver’s liability insurance coverage. For instance, if the at fault driver has $25,000 liability coverage and you have $25,000 “stacking” underinsured motorist coverage, your $25,000 coverage “stacks” on top of the at fault driver’s $25,000 coverage. Thus, you’d have $50,000 total coverage if you’re injured in a car wreck.

Many of our clients think they purchased stacking UM/UIM coverage because their insurance agents told them they were “fully covered.” Unfortunately, our clients’ agents misled them if they purchased “reduced” or “difference-in-limits” coverage which doesn’t stack. Indeed, they’re far from “fully covered”.

It’s not our clients’ fault. Insurance agents urge them not to buy stacking coverage. Their agents tell them that their premiums will be lower if they purchase “reduced” coverage. That’s true. But, they don’t tell our clients that the cost savings is negligible when you compare it to the lost coverage. You will need that coverage if an underinsured motorist injures you.

If you’re unsure whether you’re “fully covered,” you should contact an Atlanta uninsured motorist accident lawyer.

No. 45: Why Do I Need Uninsured Motorist Coverage If Everyone Must Carry $25,000 Liability Coverage

Answer: Georgia law requires all drivers to carry at least $25,000 liability insurance coverage. Unfortunately, 12.4% of Georgia motorists are uninsured. Therefore, there is a substantial chance that the motorist that injured you is uninsured. If you didn’t purchase uninsured motorist coverage, then there’s no insurance to cover your losses. Therefore, you should always purchase uninsured motorist coverage.

No. 46: Will My Insurance Rates Increase If I File An Uninsured or Underinsured Motorist Claim?

Answer: You insurer cannot penalize you for making an uninsured or underinsured motorist claim. O.C.G.A. § 33-9-40 states: “No insurer shall surcharge the premium or rate charged on a policy of motor vehicle insurance or cancel such policy as a result of the insured person’s involvement in a multi-vehicle accident when such person was not at fault in such accident.”

If you’ve got questions about whether your car insurance rates will go up if someone hits you, contact an Atlanta personal injury lawyer.

No. 47: What Do I Do If the Other Driver Blames Me?

Answer: You should hire a lawyer if the other driver blames you. It’s difficult to prove fault by yourself. In fact, even when the police officer cites the liable driver, that driver often denies fault. If the police officer cited the other driver for failing to yield to your vehicle, that driver often claims you were driving too fast. In order to prove they’re lying, you’ll need to track down witnesses and persuade them to testify on your behalf. If there aren’t any witnesses, you’ll need to sue the at fault driver. Then, you’ll have to cross-examine them to prove their excuse isn’t credible.

No. 48: What If I Partially Caused the Accident?

Answer: If you were partially at fault, you can usually still recover damages. Georgia has enacted a modified comparative negligence law. That means that your damages are reduced by your fault percentage. So, if you were 25% at fault, and the jury awarded you $100,000, then your award would be reduced to $75,000. However, if you were at least 50% at fault, you can’t recover any damages.

No. 49: What is “No-Fault” Insurance Coverage?

Answer: No fault insurance coverage, also known as personal injury protection (PIP), covers an injured victim’s medical bills, lost wages, funeral costs, and other out-of-pocket expenses regardless of whether they caused the car accident. However, the injured victim cannot usually sue to recover additional damages, such as pain and suffering compensation.

No. 50: Is Georgia A “No-Fault” Insurance State?

Answer: No. Georgia is an ““tort liability”” state. There are no lawsuit restrictions in a “tort liability” state. In fact, Georgia car crash victims can sue the at fault drivers even if they’re only moderately injured and their medical bills are low. Also, Georgia car crash victims can recover pain and suffering damages in addition to out-of-pocket expenses, such as medical costs.

By contrast, car crash victims in “no fault” states can only sue the at fault driver if they suffer death or significant disfigurement, or, if their medical bills exceed a certain threshold. Most car crash victims in “no fault” states also cannot recover pain and suffering compensation.

No. 51: Are Medical Bills Included in a Personal Injury Claim?

Answer: Yes. Medical bills are recoverable economic damages. Economic damages also include your lost wages, your lost earning capacity, and other out-of-pocket accident-related expenses.

No. 52: Are Lost Wages Included in a Personal Injury Claim?

Answer: Yes. Lost wages are recoverable economic damages. In order to prove your lost wages claim, you need copies of your pay stubs. Your pay stubs reveal the difference between what you actually earned and what you should have earned, but for the accident.

You can still pursue a lost wages claim if you were self-employed. In that case, you typically use your income tax returns to prove your claim.

No. 53: How Do I Earn Income If I’m Unable to Work?

Answer: Many of our clients are unable to work for an extended time period after they’re injured. If you were employed at the time of the accident, you may be eligible to receive short term disability benefits from your employer. Those benefits cover a portion of your wages while you’re unable to work. If you’re unable to work for an extended time period, you may be eligible to receive long-term disability benefits.

You may also be eligible to use your “sick time,” “vacation time,” or “PTO” to cover some of your lost wages.

No. 54: What Evidence Do I Need To Settle My Personal Injury Claim?

Answer: Here are the documents and data that our Atlanta personal injury lawyers typically use to settle a personal injury claim:

  • Post-incident medical bills and medical records
  • Prior-incident medical records. We use those records to show our client didn’t have a history of similar injuries.
  • Incident report
  • Photos and videos
  • Witness statements
  • Lost wages documentation
  • Collision repair invoice

No. 55: How Long Will It Take To Settle My Personal Injury Claim?

Answer: Every personal injury case’s timeline is unique. However, if you suffered mild to moderate injuries, your case is typically settled within 6 months after the accident. If you suffered serious injuries, your case is typically resolved in 1-2 years. Serious injury cases take longer to resolve because there’s more money at stake. In fact, the insurance company typically won’t pay you top value until your case is ready for trial.

No. 56: Can My Lawyer Settle My Case Without My Approval?

Answer: No. Your lawyer can only settle your case if you approve the settlement.

No. 57: Why Do I Have To Sign A Settlement Release?

Answer: You must sign a settlement release when you settle your claim. A release is a legal document in which you (the releasor) give up certain legal rights. For instance, once you sign a general release, you can no longer pursue your claim against the at fault party (the releasee). In exchange, the releasee (via their insurance carrier) pays you the agreed upon settlement amount.

Many personal injury victims sign a limited liability release (LLR). An LLR is a special settlement agreement whereby you release the defendant from any personal liability in return for payment of the liability policy limits. When you sign an LLR, you can still pursue your claim if there’s any other available insurance. However, once you sign an LLR you can no longer collect money from the at-fault party’s personal assets.

No. 58: When Will I Receive My Settlement Check?

Answer: Once you settle your case, your lawyer must resolve all subrogation claims before distributing the settlement money to you. That process usually takes 30 days. However, sometimes it takes longer.

No. 59: What Is A Subrogation Claim?

Answer: Any person or entity that provided benefits to you as a result of your injuries may be entitled to a share of your settlement. That is known as having a subrogation claim.

Liens are the most common subrogation claims. Hospitals, doctors’ offices, and insurance companies each may assert a lien against your settlement.

A hospital or physician may have a lien for charges relating to any medical services, care, or treatment they provided. Alternatively, Medicare, Medicaid or your own health insurer may seek to recover payments made for medical bills. In addition, if you received disability benefits from Social Security or a private insurer, they may also pursue a subrogation claim.

Your Atlanta personal injury lawyer will help you identify all subrogation claims so that you can timely resolve them.

No. 60: Will You Pay The Subrogation Claims Without My Approval?

Answer: No. Your personal injury lawyer won’t not pay any subrogation claim unless you authorize them to pay the claim. However, if the subrogation claim is valid and you don’t pay it, the following may occur:

  • The subrogation claimant(s) may sue you.
  • The liability insurance carrier(s) may sue you. (If the subrogation claimant(s) sues them for failing to pay their claims).
  • You may have to pay attorneys’ fees; and,
  • Your credit may be impaired

No. 61: Will There Be Enough Settlement Funds to Pay The Subrogation Claims?

Answer: Hopefully. Your personal injury lawyer will help you resolve your subrogation claims in a way that allows you to recover the greatest amount of settlement proceeds.

There are two ways to accomplish that goal:

First, your lawyer can negotiate with certain third parties to reduce your financial obligations. Second, your lawyer can pursue additional insurance coverage (if it exists). Those two methods can also be used together. If there is no additional insurance, your lawyer will negotiate with each one of your medical providers to reduce their bills as much as possible. That way, you’ll still receive some settlement money.

No. 62: Is My Personal Injury Settlement Taxable?

Answer: Generally, personal injury settlements aren’t taxable. That means that you don’t have to report them on your tax return. However, if you previously took an itemized deduction for medical expenses related to your injury, you must report the settlement portion that’s for those medical expenses, if the itemized deduction provided a tax benefit.

No. 63: Will I Receive A Settlement Statement?

Answer: Yes. When your personal injury lawyer settles your case, they should give you a settlement statement that lists all of the case expenses, fees, and reimbursement claims. That way, you’ll know every factor that impacted your take-home pay.

No. 64: How Much Do I Have To Pay My Personal Injury Lawyers?

Answer: Your personal injury lawyers’ fee is defined in the contract that you signed when you hired your lawyer. At Graham Scofield Injury Lawyers, our fee is 33.33% of the total settlement if we settle your case prior to litigation. If we have to litigate your case, our fee increases to 40% of the total settlement. We increase our fee when a case is litigated because litigation is time-consuming and expensive. Also, when we choose to litigate your case, we have to turn away other cases so that we can focus on winning the best result for you.

No. 65: Will I Have To File A Personal Injury Lawsuit?

Answer: Maybe. Approximately 50% of personal injury cases are settled pre-suit. If your case doesn’t settle pre-suit, you’ll need to sue the at fault party to recover additional compensation.

No. 66: I’ve Never Filed A Lawsuit Before. Is That Normal?

Answer: Yes. Most personal injury victims have never filed a lawsuit before because they’ve never been seriously injured. If this is your first time, don’t worry. Your lawyer will guide you through the process.

No. 67: I Don’t Like Lawsuits. Do I Have To File A Personal Injury Lawsuit?

Answer: No. You don’t have to file a lawsuit. Approximately 50% of cases are settled prior to a lawsuit because most people prefer to live in peace and avoid lawsuits.

However, sometimes the insurance adjuster makes a very low settlement offer. If you accept that offer, you’ll recover very little money after you pay your medical bills and attorneys’ fees. The only way to get more money is to file a lawsuit. A few people still prefer not to sue. However, most people choose to file a lawsuit so that they can recover the compensation they deserve.

No. 68: Is My Lawsuit Publicly Accessible?

Answer: Yes. All lawsuits are publicly accessible. Most Georgia courts have an electronic docket that a user can use to locate the pleadings that were filed in your case.

No. 69: Who Do I Sue?

Answer: You sue the at fault party. Sometimes, there are multiple at fault parties. Here are the parties that you typically sue:

  • Car accident. You sue the at fault driver. If someone negligently entrusted their vehicle to the at fault driver, you can sue that person, as well.
  • Truck accident. You typically sue the truck driver, as well as their employer.
  • Dangerous property condition. You typically sue the property owner and the property manager.
  • Medical malpractice. You typically sue the doctor that injured you, as well as the nursing staff and the hospital.

No. 70: How Long Do I Have to File a Personal Injury Lawsuit?

Answer: There is a 2-year statute of limitations (SOL) to file Georgia personal injury lawsuits. Thus, you must file your personal injury lawsuit within 2 years after the accident. It’s a good idea to file your lawsuit well ahead of that deadline because you also need to timely serve the defendant. If you’re not able to serve the at fault party until after the two-year SOL deadline expires, the court might dismiss your case.

No. 71: My Loved One Died Before They Could File A Lawsuit. What Can I Do?

Answer: Many injury victims die before they file a lawsuit. Others die while their lawsuit is pending. If your loved one died, your lawyer can help you get appointed as the deceased’s estate administrator. Once the probate court appoints you as the estate administrator, you can pursue a claim on the deceased’s behalf. If the deceased died as a result of their accident injuries, you can file a wrongful death claim on their behalf.

No. 72: Where Should I File My Personal Injury Lawsuit?

Answer: You generally file your lawsuit in the county where the defendant lives. If the defendant injured you while they were on the job, you can typically sue their employer, as well. In that situation, you can file your lawsuit in the county where the driver lives, or the county where the employer’s office is. Your personal injury lawyer will know which county is best to file in.

No. 73: I Was Injured In Another State. What Do I Do?

Answer: If you were injured outside of Georgia, you typically have to file your lawsuit in that state. However, a Georgia personal injury lawyer can still help you. For instance, they can help you settle your claim pre-suit. If your claim has to be litigated, your Georgia personal injury lawyer can associate a local law firm that’s authorized to file a lawsuit in that other state. Then, once the lawsuit is filed, the local court will admit your lawyer “pro hac vice” which means that your lawyer is admitted for the purpose of litigating your case.

No. 74: Will My Spouse Be A Party To My Personal Injury Lawsuit?

Answer: If your spouse was injured in the same accident as you, they should jointly file the lawsuit with you. However, if your spouse wasn’t involved in the accident, they can join your lawsuit if they want to assert a “loss of consortium” claim. A “loss of consortium” claim enables your spouse to recover monetary damages for the loss of companionship, moral support and/or intimacy that they suffered as a result of your injuries.

No. 75: Can I File A Personal Injury Lawsuit Without A Lawyer?

Answer: Yes. But, we don’t recommend that you do that. If your lawsuit is legally deficient, the defendant’s lawyer will move to dismiss it. If the court dismisses your lawsuit, you can’t recover any damages.

No. 76: Will My Social Media Accounts, Like Facebook and Instagram, Be Examined During My Personal Injury Lawsuit?

Answer: Yes. The defense may examine your social media accounts. In fact, they routinely request access to injured victims’ social media accounts. Why? Because they want to “dig up dirt” on you, minimize your damages, and identify your friends and enemies.

Don’t post any comments online until your claim or lawsuit is resolved. At a minimum, we recommend that make your social media accounts private. That way, you’ll prevent unintended viewers from accessing your private information.

No. 77: How Often Will My Personal Injury Lawyer Communicate With Me During My Lawsuit?

Answer: Over the course of your case, there are time periods when your lawyer communicates with you more often, such as when your lawyer prepares you for your deposition. However, most of the time, your lawyer won’t communicate with you unless you have a question or would like an update.

If you do not hear from your lawyer, don’t assume that they aren’t working on your case. It may just mean that they don’t need any information from you at that time. However, you should always feel free to contact your lawyer if you have any questions.

At Graham Scofield Injury Lawyers, if our Atlanta personal injury lawyers unable to take your call or immediately respond to your e-mail, we’ll follow-up with you within twenty-four (24) hours.

No. 78: Can I Switch Lawyers During My Personal Injury Case?

Answer: Yes. In fact, you should switch lawyers if your lawyer isn’t responding to any of your communications. Also, if it’s clear that you lawyer isn’t qualified to successfully resolve your case, you should hire a new lawyer.

No. 79: Can My Lawyer Withdraw From Representing Me?

Answer: Yes. Your lawyer can withdraw from your case. However, if your lawsuit is active, your lawyer must ask the court for permission to withdraw from your case. If the court approves your lawyer’s withdrawal, your lawyer must provide you a copy of your case file. That way, you’ll have the information you need to proceed with your case.

No. 80: How Long Will The Lawsuit Process Take?

Answer: Most Georgia lawsuits are resolved within 1-2 years. However, some lawsuits take much longer than 2 years. For instance, it often takes a long time to set your case for trial because there are many other cases competing for the same trial date as your case.

Additionally, the COVID-19 pandemic has created such a backlog of cases that it may take three additional years for a Georgia personal injury case to receive a trial date.

Thus, if you don’t settle your case prior to trial, you could be waiting a long time to try your case.

No. 81: What Happens After My Personal Injury Lawsuit Is Filed?

Answer: Once your lawsuit is filed, your personal injury lawyer will serve the defendant with your lawsuit. Next, the defendant files an answer to your lawsuit. Once the defendant files their answer, your case enters a six-month “discovery” phase.

During the “discovery” phase, your lawyer will request documents from the defendant that they will use to build your case. Your lawyer will also take the defendant’s sworn deposition statement. Your lawyer may also depose eyewitnesses and hired experts. The defendant’s lawyer will depose you, as well.

Once those depositions are concluded, your case is mediated. If your case doesn’t settle at mediation, your personal injury lawyers will prepare your case for trial.

No. 82: What Is Mediation?

Answer: Mediation is an informal process in which a neutral third party helps the opposing parties settle the lawsuit. Mediation gives the parties a chance to discuss the strengths and weaknesses of your personal injury claim.

A mediator doesn’t resolve the claim or impose a decision on the parties. Instead, the mediator helps the parties reach a mutually acceptable resolution. The mediation process is strictly confidential. Information disclosed during mediation will not be revealed to anyone.

No. 83: What Happens At Mediation?

Answer: Mediations usually start with a joint meeting of the parties, the attorneys, and the mediator. During that meeting, the lawyers for each party explain their parties’ positions. Then, the joint meeting ends, and the parties break out into separate rooms.

Next, the mediator separately visits with each party. During that meeting, the mediator might point out the strengths and weaknesses of your case, based on their experience with similar cases. They’ll do the same thing when they meet with the defense.

Eventually, the mediator starts to talk about how the parties might settle the case. Once the mediator receives approval from you to make an offer, they’ll communicate that offer to the other party. Over the course of the day, the mediator will communicate offers back and forth between the parties. It’s common for mediation to last a full day.

No. 84: Will My Personal Injury Case Settle At Mediation?

Answer: Lawsuits settle during mediation approximately 50% of the time. If the case doesn’t settle at mediation, the parties prepare your case for trial. Many cases settle as the case approaches trial. Some even settle during, or after trial.

No. 85: What Damages Can I Recover In A Personal Injury Lawsuit?

Answer: Damages are the losses you incurred as a result of the accident. There are two types of damages that personal injury victims can recover: economic damages and non-economic damages. Your medical bills are known as “economic damages”. Economic damages also include lost income, lost earning capacity, property damage, and other out-of-pocket expenses caused by the accident.

Non-economic damages are also known as general damages. General damages are intangible losses, such as:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Mental anguish
  • Physical disfigurement or impairment
  • Lost companionship
  • Lower quality of life

No. 86: What Damages Can I Recover In A Wrongful Death Lawsuit?

Answer: Georgia wrongful death damages enable victims’ families to recover compensation for the “full value” of the victims’ lives. That claim has an economic component and a non-economic component.

The economic component covers all future income the deceased would have earned, but for their death, such as:

  • Actual lost salary, wages, and benefits.
  • Potential lost salary, wages and benefits. If the deceased wasn’t employed, the jury considers the deceased’s age, health, education, and prior work history.
  • Expected future profits if the deceased was self-employed.
  • Caregiver services if the deceased was a stay-at-home spouse.
  • Funeral expenses.

The non-economic component covers the “intangible” losses, such as:

  • Marriage companionship.
  • The joy of raising children.
  • Recreational hobby pleasures.
  • Satisfaction of earning a living.

No. 87: Can I Recover Punitive Damages?

Answer: In rare cases, you can recover punitive damages, in addition to economic and non-economic damages. Punitive damages are designed to punish reckless people, such as drunk drivers. They’re typically capped at $250,000. However, some injury victims can recover uncapped punitive damages. In fact, an injured victim can recover uncapped punitive damages from a drunk driver.

No. 88: Will I Have To Give A Deposition?

Answer: Yes, you will have to give a deposition if you file a personal injury lawsuit. A deposition is a sworn statement regarding your personal injury claim. Your personal injury lawyer will prepare you for that deposition. Your lawyer will also depose the at fault party, eyewitnesses, your medical providers, and experts.

No. 89: What Questions Will I Be Asked At My Deposition?

Answer: Your personal injury lawyer will cover the specific deposition questions when they prepare you for your deposition. However, the defense lawyer will typically cover the following topics:

  • How the accident occurred
  • Your injuries
  • Your medical treatment
  • All of your damages

No. 90: Will My Family Members Be Deposed In My Personal Injury Case?

Answer: Yes. If you’re seriously injured, the defense lawyer typically wants to depose your family members. During those depositions, the defense lawyer asks them to compare how you were before and after the accident. Your personal injury lawyer will prepare your family members for their deposition so that they feel comfortable discussing your losses.

No. 91: Can I Attend The Depositions Of Other Parties and Witnesses In My Personal Injury Case?

Answer: Yes. You’re welcome to attend any deposition. However, during a deposition, you’re not permitted to ask any questions. Your personal injury lawyer is the only one that can ask questions. If there’s a particular question you’d like your lawyer to ask, write it down and show it to your lawyer. That way, your lawyer will also cover the questions that are meaningful to you.

No. 92: Do I Have To Go To Court?

Answer: If your case goes to trial, you’ll have to appear in court throughout trial. However, since 95% of cases settle before trial, there is a very low chance that you’ll ever have to appear in court.

No. 93: I Don’t Want To Go To Court. Can You Help Me Settle My Personal Injury Case?

Answer: Yes. If you don’t want to go to court, your personal injury lawyer will help you settle your case. However, you might not recover as much money as you’d like unless you go to court. Our Atlanta personal injury lawyers will explain the costs and benefits of going to court so that you know when you should settle your case.

No. 94: Will My Personal Injury Case Go To Trial?

Answer: It’s unlikely that your case will go to trial. In fact, 95% of personal injury lawsuits settle before trial. Why? Because trial is risky. If the jury rules in your favor, the defendant’s insurance company might have to pay you lots of money. If the jury rules in the defendant’s favor, you won’t recover anything.

In an effort to avoid the risks of trial, the parties try to settle the case. However, sometimes the insurance company won’t offer you what you deserve. In that case, you have to go to trial to obtain justice. Other times, the insurance company makes an offer that’s less than you prefer. However, you might accept it to obtain closure and avoid the risks of trial.

Your personal injury trial lawyer will explain whether you should accept the insurance company’s settlement offer. They’ll show you jury verdict research that demonstrates what juries typically award accident victims with injuries like yours. That way, you’ll know whether the insurance adjuster’s offer is reasonable.

No. 95: Will I Need to Testify at My Personal Injury Trial?

Answer: Yes. Most people fear public speaking more than death. Therefore, many injury victims are anxious about testifying at trial. They fear that trial is a “beauty contest” where jurors will quickly size them up and make a snap judgment about them.

Fortunately, juries thoughtfully evaluate each case. First, they review the documentary evidence. Then, they carefully listen to each witnesses’ testimony. They want to hear from you, as well, so that they can understand the harms you’ve suffered.

Our Atlanta personal injury lawyers at Graham Scofield Injury Lawyers know how important it is for our clients to testify. We’ll make sure that you’re fully prepared for your big day in court.

No. 96: Will My Doctor Testify At My Personal Injury Trial?

Answer: Yes. The insurance defense lawyers will try to persuade the jury that your injuries were caused by something other than the subject incident. For instance, they might suggest that your injuries were pre-existing. Also, they might argue that your injuries worsened because you didn’t follow your doctor’s orders. In some cases, the defense even accuses you of faking your injuries.

The jury naturally wants to hear your treating doctor’s testimony. Once your doctor explains that the subject incident caused your injuries, they’ll know that the defense is just making up excuses to avoid paying you what you deserve.

No. 97: If The Jury Awards Me Damages, When Will I Receive Them?

Answer: You’ll typically receive your award within 90-120 days after the trial ends if the defense doesn’t appeal the verdict. If they appeal the verdict, it may take years to resolve that appeal.

No. 98: What Are My Options If The Jury Rules In The Defense’s Favor?

Answer: If the jury rules in the defense’s favor, you can potentially appeal the verdict. First, you need to obtain a copy of the trial transcript. If that transcript reveals any reversible legal errors, you can challenge them on appeal.

No. 99: What If I’m Injured On The Job?

Answer: If you’re injured on the job, your employer is typically liable for your injuries. You can obtain compensation by filing a workers’ comp claim. Georgia requires most employers to carry workers’ comp insurance. However, railroad carriers, U.S. government agencies, domestic servants, and farm laborers don’t have to carry workers’ comp insurance.

If you’re unsure whether you’re covered by workers comp, call our Atlanta work injury lawyers. We’ll figure out whether you’re covered.

No. 100: My Employer Wants Me To Sign A Release. Should I Sign It?

Answer: No. You should never sign an employer’s release unless you have discussed it with a lawyer. That release could prohibit you from pursuing compensation for your injuries.

No. 101: Can I Sue A Third Party For My Work Injury?

Answer: Yes. If someone other than your employer or co-worker injured you at work, you can sue that third party for your work injury. For instance, many people work alongside third-party contractors. If one of those third-party contractors harmed you, you can sue them and their employers. Also, if a machine injured you, you might be able to sue the machine manufacturer or the company that maintained the machine.

No. 102: My Child Had A Serious Birth Injury. Do I Have A Case?

Answer: You might have a birth injury case. If your doctor violated the applicable patient care standard and injured your child, you can sue that doctor for damages. Sometimes, the doctor also harms the baby’s mother. If so, the baby’s mother can also file a lawsuit.

No. 103: How Do I File My Child’s Injury Claim?

Answer: If you’re the parent, or natural legal guardian of a minor child, you can file a claim on that child’s behalf. Essentially, you “step into your child’s shoes” and recover damages for them. The damages you may recover include pain and suffering, diminished earning capacity, and future medical expenses.

You can also file a claim on your own behalf to recover the medical bills you’ve incurred caring for your child until they turn 18. Also, if you had to quit your job, or you took an extended leave to care for your child, you can recover lost wages.

No. 104: Can A Parent Access Their Child’s Settlement Funds?

Answer: Generally, no. If a parent or natural legal guardian settles a child’s claim for more than $15,000, the probate court must approve the settlement. Typically, the probate court won’t approve that settlement unless there is a “special needs trust” setup for the child. A court appointed conservator manages the special needs trust. That way, the trust funds are always used in a way that benefits the child.

No. 105: How Can I Use Special Needs Trust Funds?

Answer: Special needs trust funds can only be used to benefit the beneficiary, which is typically a child or a disabled person. For example, trust funds might be used to purchase:

  • Medical equipment
  • Medical treatment
  • Home renovations to improve accessibility
  • Vacations
  • Educational training
  • No. 106: I Was Injured On Someone Else’s Property. Do I Have A Claim?

    Answer: You can’t recover damages simply because you were injured on someone’s property. You must prove:

    • The defendant owned or occupied the property;
    • You were a lawful visitor;
    • The property owner/occupier knew or should have known about an unsafe property condition;
    • The property owner/occupier failed to correct the unsafe property condition;
    • You were injured as a result of the unsafe property condition(s) despite acting carefully;
    • You suffered damages.
    • No. 107: I Was Injured During A Medical Procedure. Can I Sue My Doctor?

      Answer: Maybe. In order to successfully resolve your medical malpractice claim, you must demonstrate:

    • Provider error – Your doctor breached the applicable care standard. You must obtain a sworn statement from a relevant medical expert to prove that breach. Your lawyer will help you find the right expert for your case.
    • Injury – Your doctor’s carelessness injured you. You typically need a causation expert to link the misconduct to your injury. Your lawyer will help you find a causation expert, as well.
    • Damages – You suffered damages. Damages include pain and suffering, medical bills, and lost income.
    • No. 108: My Neighbor’s Dog Attacked Me. Can I Sue My Neighbor?

      Answer: Potentially. Many dog bite attacks occur because the owner failed to keep their dog within a fenced yard. Other attacks occur because the owner or caretaker let the dog roam freely around the neighborhood without a leash. If a loose dog attacked you, you can typically sue the dog’s owner. Alternatively, you can sue the dog’s caretaker if someone other than the owner was “supervising” the dog when it attacked you.

      No. 109: I Was Injured In A Truck Accident. Who Should I Sue?

      Answer: If the truck driver caused your accident, you should sue the driver and their employer. The truck driver’s employer is responsible for all harms that truck driver caused because the truck driver is their “agent.” Additionally, the truck driver’s employer is independently negligent if it failed to properly hire, train, or supervise the truck driver.

      Sometimes, you can also sue a third party for your injuries. For instance, if you were injured by loose cargo that a third party failed to properly secure, you can sue that third party.

      No. 110: I Was Shot On Someone’s Property. Can I Sue The Property Owner?

      Answer: Potentially. Many victims are killed by gunfire or knife attacks. If the victim didn’t incite the attack and the property owner improperly secured the premises, the surviving family members may file a wrongful death claim against the property owner. The victim’s family may also sue the property management company if they were also responsible for securing the premises.

      No. 111: I Was Injured As A Passenger In Someone’s Vehicle. How Do I Get Paid?

      Answer: If you were injured as a passenger in someone else’s vehicle, your primary source of insurance coverage is from the at fault driver’s policy. If that coverage doesn’t sufficiently cover your losses, you can file an underinsured motorist (UIM) claim with your vehicle driver’s policy. However, if that policy also doesn’t sufficiently cover your injuries, you can file a UIM claim with your own insurer. You can also file a UIM claim with any of your resident relatives’ insurers.

      No. 112: Who’s Responsible For A Multi-Vehicle Collision?

      Answer: Sometimes it’s easy to determine who’s at fault for causing a car accident. For instance, when a distracted driver rear-ends the vehicle in front of him, the distracted driver is at fault. However, in a multi-vehicle collision, it’s often more difficult to determine which party caused the wreck. If you were involved in a crash with two or more vehicles, you should call an Atlanta car accident lawyer. Your lawyer will determine which party caused the wreck. If more than one driver was negligent, your lawyer will help you hold all of the drivers accountable.

      No. 113: Who Is Liable When I’m Involved In A Car Accident With A Rental Car?

      Answer: If a rental car driver injured you, you might wonder who is liable for your injuries. The rental car driver is usually the responsible party. The rental car driver’s personal auto liability coverage is your primary insurance coverage source. If they also purchased rental car insurance coverage, that coverage is your secondary insurance coverage source.

      Sometimes the rental car company is liable, as well. For instance, if the rental car company rented the vehicle to an unlicensed driver, or they rented the vehicle to a driver with a suspended license, you might be able to sue the rental car company, as well.

      No. 114: Does Car Insurance Follow The Car Or The Driver?

      Answer: In Georgia, car insurance follows the car, not the driver. So, if the negligent party drove a non-owned vehicle, that vehicle’s insurance policy will usually provide coverage. That’s true even if the negligent driver lacks insurance coverage. If the negligent driver purchased their own insurance coverage, that coverage will act as secondary coverage.

      No. 115: Who Causes The Most Car Accidents?

      Answer: Many people believe that seniors cause a disproportionate share of car accidents. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, seniors (age 70 and older) cause more accidents than middle-aged drivers. However, they don’t cause as many accidents as young drivers.

      Men claim to be more knowledgeable about automotive technology than women. But, that perceived knowledge doesn’t translate to safer driving behaviors. In fact, according to a CBS news report, men are 3.4 times more likely than women to get a ticket for reckless driving and 3.1 times more likely to be cited for drunk driving.

      If you’ve got questions about who causes the most car accidents, contact an Atlanta car accident lawyer.

"When I felt all hope was lost, I contacted Graham Scofield to see if he could represent me. He immediately called me back and thoroughly reviewed with me the case. He was the most patient, kind, sympathetic and the upmost professional attorney throughout the entire process. He was also extremely knowledgeable about the law and was creative when the case worked through the twists and turns. He was also a heck of a fighter for me and got me more settlement than I was expecting. I only wish I called him sooner! Thank you so much Graham, you are an amazing lawyer!!"
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