Frequently Asked Questions
If you are injured due to the fault of another person, company, organization, or government entity, you have the right to pursue a claim for financial compensation. In a typical personal injury case, the injured person files a claim against the at-fault party’s insurance company. However, individuals, companies, or other entities can also be held financially responsible for compensating an injured party.
Common types of personal injury cases include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Car accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Truck/Tractor-Trailer accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Pedestrian accidents
- Rideshare accidents
- Boating accidents
- Dog bites
- Premises liability
- Product liability
- Slip and fall accidents
- Negligent Security and Third-Party Criminal Acts
- Sexual Assaults
- Nursing home negligence
- Medical malpractice injuries
- Medical battery
- Daycare negligence
- Wrongful death
Personal injuries range in severity. Some injuries are short-term and heal with treatment. More severe personal injuries can affect a person’s ability to work or even perform the activities of daily living, such as personal care.
Personal injury claims include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Neck, back, and spinal cord injuries
- Fractures, dislocations, and broken bones
- Rotator cuff ruptures and tears
- Loss of limb and amputation
- Hip injuries
- Knee injuries
- Lacerations, bruises, and “road rash”
- Internal organ damage
- Nerve damage
- Soft tissue damage
- Joint injuries
- Foot and ankle injuries
- Shoulder injuries
- Wrist and hand injuries
Our firm operates on a contingency fee basis. Under this agreement, there are no upfront costs or charges while we work on your case. You do not have to pay any legal fees unless we recover compensation on your behalf. Our fees are an agreed-upon percentage of the financial recovery as payment for our services.
If you are injured in Georgia and it is another party’s fault, you should contact a personal injury attorney immediately to discuss the specific facts of your case and to understand your legal rights. It is also important to take certain steps after your accident to protect your case.
- Report the incident:- If you are involved in a car accident, it is important that you do not just exchange insurance information at the scene. Immediately call 911 and report the incident. The police officer who arrives at the scene will prepare an accident report, which will detail what occurred, any observations from the scene and will have any witness information. If you are involved in a slip and fall incident, immediately report the accident to the responsible business owner or manager and insist that an incident report is prepared and that a copy is provided to you.
- Obtain medical treatment:- If you are injured, it important to seek immediate medical treatment to help you recover. Your medical records will also be used as evidence to support your claim. Delaying medical care and/or large gaps in your treatment can negatively affect your case and will be used by insurance companies to minimize your injuries and your claim.
- Do not give a recorded statement to an insurance adjuster after your accident:- It is important to speak with a skilled personal injury attorney before you agree to a recorded statement with an adjuster. Giving a recorded statement without legal representation may harm your case. If a recorded statement is necessary, your attorney should be on the phone with you.
- Contact a personal injury attorney as soon as possible:- The sooner you contact a lawyer the sooner they can start investigating your claim and securing the necessary evidence to pursue your case. Your attorney will also ensure that you do not miss any deadlines which can jeopardize your right to a recovery.
All personal injury cases rely on the theory of negligence, and you and your attorney will need to gather evidence to satisfy the following four elements.
- The at-fault party owed you a duty of care.
- The at-fault party breached his or her duty of care.
- The breach of care directly caused your injuries.
- You suffered losses or damages that can directly be attributed to actions taken by the party at fault.
You can file a personal injury lawsuit against one person, or multiple parties, depending on the facts of your case. The at-fault party may be another driver, a property owner, a government entity or employee, manufacturer, or even a medical professional.
The first step to identifying who to hold liable for your injuries is to contact a Georgia personal injury lawyer who can investigate the facts and circumstances surrounding your accident. Your lawyer will have the knowledge and resources to determine who is legally liable to compensate you for your injuries.
All personal injury claims are subject to a statute of limitations, a rule that sets a deadline by which all plaintiffs must file personal injury claims – or lose the right to recover compensation.
In Georgia, you generally have two years from the date of your injury to file your claim. There are some exceptions to this rule, depending on the circumstances surrounding your claim.
If your claim is against a government entity there are different time frames and requirements.
Georgia law sets out specific requirements and deadlines for when and how you must notify a city, county, or state government of your intent to bring a legal action. The legal term for this is an ante litem notice, a notification of your intent to bring a claim.
For a claim against a city, you must provide a written ante litem notice to the city within six months of the event that caused your injury.
For a claim against a county or state entity you must provide a written ante litem notice within twelve months of the event that caused your injury.
If you suspect your injuries were caused by a government employee or official, or that you were on government property at the time you were injured, bring this to your attorney’s attention immediately. If you fail to provide a written ante litem notice to the government entity by the required deadline, you may lose your rights and be barred from bringing a legal claim and receiving compensation.
Compensation for a personal injury varies according to the type of injury and its severity. However, most personal injury cases allow financial recovery for damages that include:
- Past medical expenses, such as doctor visits and hospital bills
- Future medical expenses, such as physical therapy
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of property
- Lost wages
- Loss of future earning capacity
- Physical disfigurement
- Mental and emotional trauma
Some cases involving an egregious or willful act may allow for punitive damages to be pursued. These damages are intended to punish the responsible party. In an auto accident, if the driver was operating a vehicle while intoxicated by drugs or alcohol, it may be possible to seek a higher level of compensation.
Damages are also available for wrongful death expenses when personal injury leads to the death of a loved one.
To maximize the value of your personal injury claim, be sure to do the following:
- Report the accident immediately.
- Seek immediate medical treatment.
- Follow all doctors’ orders.
- Attend all doctors’ appointments.
- Contact police, management, or security where the injury occurred.
- Get a copy of any report made at the scene.
- Collect all witness contact information.
- Take photos of the accident area, any injuries, and any other relevant matter.
- Write down precisely what happened while it is fresh in your mind, including the time before and after the accident.
- Keep all accident-related materials, including bills, receipts, clothing, shoes, and correspondence.
- Do not give a recorded statement to the other party’s insurance company.
- Avoid providing any recorded statements.
- Do not sign anything offered by an insurance adjuster.
- Stay off all social media.
- Consult an experienced Georgia personal injury lawyer before giving any statements or agreeing to any settlement from an insurance company.
- Stay in contact with your attorney.
Contact Us Today
Schedule a free consultation now. You should never pay for an accident caused by someone else’s negligence or reckless behavior.
Call Roberts-Williams & McPhillip to speak with one of our personal injury lawyers.
We can explore your legal right to recover financial compensation for your injuries in Georgia.