You recently got into a car accident. It wasn’t your fault – you were simply driving as usual when another driver hit into you and injured you as well as damaged your car. Now, you have to not only go to doctor’s appointments and the mechanic, but you also have to try and get a settlement to cover your bills.
After your accident, you probably heard from the other driver’s insurance company. If the accident just occurred, then you’re still waiting for that call.
During this call, the insurance company is likely going to offer you a settlement for your injuries and damage to your car. However, you shouldn’t accept that offer, even if it seems attractive. Instead, you should get in touch with a personal injury attorney in Georgia so that you can receive the compensation you deserve.
Why You Should Never Accept an Insurance Company Settlement
Insurance companies are not in the business of paying out money. They want to do whatever they can to avoid compensating people, even if those people truly deserve it. So when they contact you about a settlement for your car accident, what they’re going to try to do is get away with paying you as little as possible.
Let’s say your accident caused whiplash and a little bit of pain your hands and wrists. You think, “Well, my injures aren’t a big deal. I’ll take the $500 settlement and that should be fine.”
This is a mistake. You must think about the impact your injuries could have in the long run.
You’ll notice how a car insurance company will call you immediately after your accident, perhaps that same day or the next day. Why? That gives you very little time to see how your injuries are going to play out.
The effects of your injuries may not appear right away. You could feel pain overtime. The pain could get worse, even with treatment.
When you accept that $500 or whatever amount they’re offering you, you’re not taking into account the fact that injuries are unpredictable. Though $500 or so may seem like a lot of money, it pales in comparison to how much your bills are going to be, since healthcare is quite expensive.
Without insurance, the average doctor’s visit in the United States costs $300-$600. With insurance, it could cost $68 to $234, but it could be even more if you need to go to a specialist. Even if the cost of the visit is low, you may still have to pay for medications and different types of tests like X-rays and MRIs. And what if you also have to purchase special medical equipment, too?
The more extensive your injury is, the higher the cost. If you suffer from a traumatic brain injury, for instance, your lifetime medical bills could cost you hundreds of thousands of dollars, if not more.
You also have to take into account the fact that you’ll need to take time off of work to go to appointments and focus on your healing process. Will the insurance company pay your lost wages? No – not unless you fight for them.
Though it may seem like the insurance company is being nice when they offer you a settlement right away, don’t be fooled: They’re just trying to get away with paying you as little as possible. And you deserve better, and are likely entitled to more under Georgia state law.
What to Do When an Insurance Company Calls You
When an insurance company calls you, they’re going to ask you details about the accident. Though their questions may seem innocent enough, they could try to pin the blame on your so that they don’t have to offer you anything. It’s best to avoid answering any questions about the accident so that your recorded statement can’t be used against you.
At the end of the call, they may provide you with a settlement offer. Aside from the fact that it’s going to be low, you should decline it because you may not be able to pursue a higher settlement down the line. Once you agree, you could be prevented from taking further action.
Instead of giving details and accepting an offer, you should get in touch with a personal injury attorney.
Why You Should Work With a Personal Injury Attorney
A personal injury attorney is going to fight for you to get the right amount of compensation for your accident. And the best part is that you won’t pay your attorney unless you win.
You can simply set up a free consultation, and your lawyer will work with you to collect details on your accident as well as your medical records. You will get the treatment you need and then when it’s complete, your lawyer will contact the insurance company to work out a settlement that will cover the cost of your medical bills and your injury. Then, your lawyer will take their pay out of the settlement. When you first sign on with your attorney, they will let you know how much they’re going to charge you when it comes to the commission, so there won’t be any surprises.
Just remember to have all the information about the accident ready so that when you contact your lawyer, they will have the facts they need to pursue your case. For instance, you should have gone to the hospital immediately after your accident occurred and gotten a medical record of what happened during your visit. You should also provide your lawyer with any photos, witness statements or police records that you gathered as well. The more details you have, the better.
So, what are you waiting for? Now is the time to get in touch with a personal injury attorney to hopefully achieve an excellent outcome with your case.
Contact a Personal Injury Attorney in Georgia
If you’ve been in a car accident and an insurance company has offered you a settlement, you can get the compensation you deserve by contacting the Atlanta Personal Injury Lawyer Winston Briggs today.