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Douglasville, GA Car Accident Lawyer

Car accidents and other automotive accidents are some of the most dangerous accidents there are.  One of the highest-ranked causes of injury and death for nearly every age group is car accidents, making it one of the most likely ways you can be hurt.

If you were injured, it is important to turn to a lawyer and get the help you need rather than relying on insurance alone to get you compensated after an accident.  While the at-fault driver and their insurance company might be the ones paying your damages either way, the difference between going through an insurance claim without a lawyer’s help and taking their case to court with a legal professional at your side could be a difference of thousands of dollars in damages for you.

For a free review of your car crash case, call Howe Law’s car accident attorneys right away at (844) 876-4357.

The Process for Recovering Compensation After a Car Accident in Douglasville, GA

The overall process of getting a car accident compensated will be different in every case.  Your specific facts might be “better” than in other cases in the sense that the defendant might have done something obviously dangerous and might have admitted fault.  Contrast this with cases where fault is questionable or where the defendant has excuses for how the crash happened, resulting in a claim that is harder to prove and get compensated.  Overall, the following are the potential stages your case could go through, but many cases will settle at some point along the way, ending the case early.

Collecting Evidence and Getting Medical Care

In the immediate aftermath of the crash, you should call 911 and get an ambulance ride to the nearest hospital, if necessary.  If the ambulance crew determines that your injuries are not severe enough, it is still important to receive any first-aid care you need and schedule follow-up appointments as recommended by the EMTs.  If you need to go to the hospital where you might undergo surgeries or other emergency treatment, do so immediately and follow through with all recommended medical care.

If you can stay at the scene of the crash and collect evidence, it will help you later on.  Responding police officers will draft crash reports which contain essentially the same information, but it is better for you to have your own records in case they make mistakes or miss important details.

At the scene, get the other driver or drivers’ contact information, name, address, and insurance info.  Also write down the make, model, color, license plate number, and other details about the car that hit you.  If the driver fled, make sure to write down any details you can, like the make, color, and partial license plate.

Additionally, talk to witnesses and passengers, get their info, and collect other information such as the weather and road conditions, where the accident happened exactly (what store it was in front of, what mile marker on the highway you were at), what the lighting was like, what traffic control devices were present (traffic lights, stop signs, etc.), and any other information you can think of, such as how the cars were arranged and who hit whom.

Call a Lawyer

If you are going to have a lawyer help you with your case, you should talk to a lawyer as soon as you can after the crash.  In the days after the accident, make sure to call our car accident lawyers so we can help you with the rest of the steps.

Get a Copy of the Police Report

Police reports are usually available online through BuyCrash.com, according to the Douglasville Police Department website.  If you are having trouble getting your report, it might be because it is not ready yet.  Reports are usually available within two weeks of the crash, but our lawyers can help if you are having trouble accessing the report.

Call the Insurance Company

Usually, if you are involved in a crash, your own insurance company wants to know so they can investigate the cause.  They might try to pay your claim and then seek reimbursement from the other driver’s insurance company but do not accept any settlements without speaking with your lawyer first.  Moreover, do not admit anything to your insurance company or the other driver’s insurance company; your insurance company might raise your rates if they believe you caused the crash, and the other driver’s insurance might deny your claim.

If you have some first-party benefits on your insurance policy, these can help you cover medical expenses while you await full settlement or a full trial.

Ultimately, however, the driver who caused the crash should use their insurance to pay for your injuries.  This means the most important part of speaking with insurance will be filing a claim with the other driver’s insurance.  Again, our lawyers can help you with this.

Collect Evidence of Fault and Proof of Damages

Insurance companies will want to see all evidence you have of what happened, who was at fault, and how much your damages cost you.  This means collecting your medical bills and other receipts, financial statements, and proof of any costs you faced.  When you do this, your lawyer can help you present it to the insurance company.

You might need to get your car appraised or get medical exams to confirm your injuries.  Our lawyers can help you determine what is necessary.

Negotiate Damages

The insurance company will often give you a settlement offer that is just enough to try to convince you not to sue.  These settlements might be too low to cover your needs in full, and it might be in your best interest to reject the initial offer and negotiate for a better settlement.  Our car accident attorneys will handle the negotiations and communications and present you with their settlement offers so you can decide whether to accept or not.

File Your Lawsuit

When your injuries are serious and the insurance company does not offer full payment, you might need to ultimately file your case in court to get what you need.  Just the presence of a pending lawsuit can push car insurance companies to take the case more seriously and potentially get your case settled faster.  If not, then proceeding through the civil court system puts you in a position to take your case to trial if you cannot settle.

To file your case, our lawyers will draw up a complaint that details what happened, who is at fault, and how much the accident cost you.  This will include all legal arguments and evidence we have about your case.

Discovery

While we might have some evidence, the defense might have more evidence you have not seen yet.  During the discovery stage of a trial, both parties exchange all the evidence they have so everyone has fair access to the facts before presenting their case.  You can also, at this stage, call witnesses in for depositions so we have a record of what they say happened.

Once the case goes through discovery, most cases will settle.  At this stage, everyone knows how strong or weak their case is, and it is one of the last stages before trial where the defense and their insurance company can still back out before spending more money trying to fight the case against them.

Mediation

In some cases, the court might ask you to try to mediate your claim before a neutral third party.  Mediation is non-binding but can result in a settlement that becomes binding if and only if you sign it.  If the case is still not resolved after mediation, it goes to trial.

Trial

At trial, our attorneys will represent your case to the jury and make arguments that you should win your case.  We will call witnesses – including you – to testify as to what happened.  We might also use experts to explain intricate scientific or medical information.  We can also cross-examine the defense’s evidence and witnesses to try to challenge the validity of what they say.

Verdict

If the jury rules in your favor, then you win your case and the defense will be ordered to pay the damages the court assigned you, as well as certain legal fees and filing fees.  Often, our lawyers can set up an agreement with you so that you pay us absolutely nothing for our services unless and until we win the case for you, paying us out of a portion of your winnings.

Settling Early

As mentioned, most cases settle before going to trial.  As such, our lawyers will review settlement offers with you and, if you accept, deliver the signed settlement paperwork to the defense.  From there, you will receive the damages they agreed to pay according to the lump sum settlement or annuity you agreed upon.  Again, our legal fees will usually be paid out of this money, with you paying nothing until you settle your case.

Determining Who is at Fault in a Douglasville, GA Car Accident

You have to prove that the other driver is at fault for an insurance company or jury to rule in your favor.  Fault, in a legal sense, is made up of the following elements: a driver will be found “negligent” if they violated a legal duty that they owed you, and that violation was what caused your crash and your injuries.

Fault often means an explicit traffic violation.  For example, if a driver hit you because they were speeding, driving under the influence, or driving while texting.  In these instances, the violation of the traffic law that is meant to keep others safe is what caused the crash, so it can form the basis of a car accident claim.

In other cases, the driver’s actions might not be explicitly illegal, but they are certainly dangerous under the given circumstances.  For example, a road might normally be okay to drive on at 45 miles per hour.  However, if the road is partially flooded from a rainstorm and the other driver is still driving at 45, it is more likely they will skid out and lose control.  This makes it patently unsafe, and if that is what caused your crash, then you could have grounds to sue them.

To prove which driver was at fault, we will look at which one violated the law.  If you both did, we can look into whose violation actually caused the crash.  For example, if you were speeding, but you would have still crashed had you been under the speed limit, then that is not an actual cause of the crash, and the other driver’s violation might be to blame.  If courts find you both were partially responsible, they can assign you each partial blame and reduce your overall damages so long as you are under 50% at fault.

Common Causes of Car Accidents in Douglasville, GA

As mentioned, car accidents often happen because of direct traffic violations.  As such, these violations are some of the most common causes of traffic accidents:

Distracted Driving

Drivers who keep their hands on the wheel and eyes off their cell phones are much safer, on average.  Texting while driving or even having your phone in your hand is illegal and can be the legal cause behind a crash.  Other distractions, such as a heated conversation with a passenger or a meal on the go, can also be distractions that cause a crash.

Drunk and Drugged Driving

Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is patently dangerous and an explicit traffic violation.  Drivers who are drunk or high might be unable to make clear-headed decisions on the road or stop in time to avoid a crash.

Speeding

Speeding might not be the core cause of your crash, but it can make your injuries worse.  If the driver does not slow down because they were distracted or drunk, then the crash will happen at higher speeds and cause more damage than a low-speed crash.  Speeding is also a common contributing factor, where the accident might be caused by another violation but the driver who hit you was also speeding, supplying more evidence that they were responsible.

Call Our Car Accident Injury Attorneys in Douglasville, GA Today

For a free review of your car accident case, call (844) 876-4357 to speak with Howe Law’s car accident lawyers today.

We've Recovered Hundreds of Millions of Dollars for Victims

$1.75 Million

Commercial Vehicle Accident

$1.75 Million

Commercial Vehicle Accident

Howe Law achieved a recovery of $1,750,000 for our client, who sustained injuries after being T-Boned by a Commercial Vehicle on a neighborhood roadway.

$1.75 Million

Commercial Vehicle Accident

Howe Law achieved a recovery of $1,750,000 for our client, who sustained injuries after being T-Boned by a Commercial Vehicle on a neighborhood roadway.

$1.6 Million

Car Accident

$1.6 Million

Car Accident

Our client sustained knee and back injuries after he was struck by a drunk driver. The Legal Team at Howe Law was retained to obtain a recovery against the at-fault driver.

$1.6 Million

Car Accident

Our client sustained knee and back injuries after he was struck by a drunk driver. The Legal Team at Howe Law was retained to obtain a recovery against the at-fault driver.

$1.2 Million

Car Accident

$1.2 Million

Car Accident

Our client was injured when struck from behind by a speeding company car causing injuries to his neck and back.

$1.2 Million

Car Accident

Our client was injured when struck from behind by a speeding company car causing injuries to his neck and back.

$1.18 Million

Lawsuit

$1.18 Million

Lawsuit

The Legal Team at Howe Law successfully obtained a judgment in a long fought lawsuit in the amount of $1,188,000.

$1.18 Million

Lawsuit

The Legal Team at Howe Law successfully obtained a judgment in a long fought lawsuit in the amount of $1,188,000.

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