Georgia accident injuries are often unpredictable, as is any settlement associated with them. The accident victim doesn’t know how long they’ll suffer the damage. Sometimes, even the doctors are in the dark about a patient’s wounds. Furthermore, an accident victim can have recurring consequences of the injury. During this confusion, the at-fault party may be proposing a settlement. That’s why you have to hire an Atlanta car accident lawyer.
An excellent lawyer will know the actual value of your injury claim. In addition, they can know whether to include settlement conditions for future injuries. However, filing a claim after receiving a settlement can be challenging. So, read on to understand how a worsened injury affects your legal right.
Why Would My Accident Injury Worsen?
Car accident injuries can deteriorate for several reasons. First, it doesn’t even matter that a doctor has stabilized your condition. Second, your injury could worsen if you stop receiving medical treatment. This often happens when accident victims think they no longer require treatment. Furthermore, injuries could worsen because patients aren’t following their doctor’s instructions.
Sometimes, a worsened injury could be the doctor’s fault too. For example, it could be that the doctor wrongly diagnosed you. A wrong diagnosis means that the doctor will be treating you for the wrong ailment. For instance, suppose an accident victim has traumatic brain injury (TBI). Now, imagine a doctor treating such a patient for a head injury. The TBI would only worsen as you didn’t get the appropriate treatment.
What if I’ve Accepted a Settlement?
A settlement is an agreement between parties to resolve their dispute. This agreement is often followed by the payment of damages by the at-fault party. However, the problem is that plaintiffs often sign a “release of liability” with the settlement contract. This document releases the at-fault party from any further liability regarding the accident.
Consequently, if your injury worsens, you cannot sue the liable party. Liability releases almost always follow settlement agreements. This is because it’s the strongest motivation for the at-fault party. However, if you haven’t signed the settlement, you can negotiate damages for this new condition. Experienced lawyers often pre-empt this possibility by thoroughly evaluating injuries. In the process, they can include compensation for future medical bills.
What if There’s Another At-Fault Party?
Usually, several parties are liable for auto collisions. When this happens, each party may be responsible to you for damages. Notably, too, it’s rare for all fault parties to sign one settlement agreement. Instead, it’s often the primarily liable party that proposes the settlement instead. Therefore, you can have legal recourse if your injury worsens under these circumstances.
Here, you can sue one or more of the other liable parties. A typical example would be a multi-vehicle accident. Suppose there were five negligent drivers. In such a case, you can proceed against any of the other drivers. Accidents from vehicle defects can also give you the right to sue the vehicle manufacturers. Essentially, you can proceed against anyone who contributed to the crash.
How Long Do I Have to Sue These Other Parties?
You don’t have all the time to sue fault parties. Instead, the Georgia Statute of Limitations prescribed statutory periods for legal claims. If you don’t respect these time limits, the court will bar your claim. Generally, you have two years to file an accident lawsuit. This time starts counting from the accident date.
Therefore, if you knew these other parties were liable, your statutory period starts from the accident date. It’s noteworthy that the relevant date isn’t the day your injury worsened. Fortunately, though, the law can suspend this statutory limit in some cases. These would include where the fault parties were out of the state. Furthermore, suppose they fraudulently prevented you from filing a claim. Here, the law also pauses the statutory period.
What if the Worsened Injury Leads to Death?
Often, car accident injuries lead to death. If this happens, the deceased’s estate can sue for wrongful death. However, a Statute of Limitations also regulates this claim. So, the deceased’s estate must file the lawsuit within two years from the death date. Recoverable damages here would typically include funeral and burial expenses.
Atlanta’s Car Accident Lawyers Can Help You!
Have you been in a Georgia car accident? If you have, then you deserve compensation for your injuries. Furthermore, you can either accept a settlement or file a lawsuit. If your damage worsens after taking payment, you still have legal options. However, you’ll need the best Atlanta car accident lawyers.
At Bethune Law Firm, our attorneys can help you sue other liable parties. This way, you can recover the medical bills for treating the worsened injury. In addition, you can also get other types of damages. So contact us for a consultation today.