If you survive a car accident in Georgia, you deserve compensation from the fault party. Georgia is a fault accident state. So, it’s the responsible driver that bears the brunt of your losses. However, many people shy away from pursuing car accident claims. This is sometimes because they don’t want to go to court.
Everyone has a right to choose to avoid trial. So, it’s not true that you have to file a lawsuit to recover compensation from the fault party. Instead, you can settle your car accident claim out of court.
If you want to settle your car accident case outside the courts, you’ll need an experienced Atlanta car accident lawyer. An excellent lawyer would know how to deal with all the relevant parties. Furthermore, they’ll ensure you still get the maximum compensation for your losses.
How To Settle a Car Accident Claim
If you want to settle with the fault party, you’ll have to send a demand letter to their insurance company. Next, you’ll follow up your letter with settlement negotiations. A settlement is an agreement to resolve the auto collision case for a definite sum. Usually, you’ll give up your right to sue the responsible driver once you accept a settlement.
The Demand Letter
With the demand letter, you’re officially filing a claim with the other driver’s insurer. So, you’ll have to set out the facts and circumstances of your claim. This would include the when, where, and how of the car accident. You have to present a solid case to the insurer. Therefore, you cannot reduce your argument’s strength because you’re not in court.
After narrating the accident to the insurance company, you’ll have to state your losses from the crash. These would include:
- Medical bills
- Costs of vehicle repairs
- Lost wages
- Non-economic losses
In addition, you need to include any documentation that proves your losses. This would consist of receipts and medical records. Finally, your demand letter must make a settlement demand. This is precisely why it’s called a demand letter.
Here, you’ll ask the insurer for a definite sum to cover your damage from the vehicle collision. An intelligent lawyer will know to ask for significantly higher than you deserve. This then gives you room to negotiate with the insurance company.
After receiving your demand letter, the insurance company will make a settlement offer. This is the amount they think is reasonable for your injuries. Usually, this sum will be lower than you asked for or deserve. Therefore, it would be best not to accept this initial offer.
Instead, an excellent attorney would prepare a reply letter officially declining the settlement offer. This second letter has to state specific reasons why you’re refusing the offer. For example, it could be that it caters to only your financial losses while ignoring your non-economic losses.
Whatever the case, you’ll then have to make a counter demand to the insurance company. This is the new sum you’re willing to accept from the insurer. Negotiations often continue like this until you reach a figure that’s acceptable to both parties.
Where settlement negotiations fail, you can always resort to mediation. Here, a neutral professional mediates between both parties for an agreement. The mediator here is often another car accident lawyer. Mediation is an excellent option because it breaches the gap between both parties.
In addition, the mediator can offer fresh insight into the case. For example, they can point out the strengths and weaknesses of each party’s case. Usually, the mediator can bring both parties to an agreement.
Georgia’s Statute of Limitations
If you choose to settle your accident claim, it will help to remember the Statute of Limitations. This law prescribes a time limit within which you must approach the court. In Georgia, you have only two years to file an accident claim. So, it’ll help to ensure that settlement negotiations don’t stretch beyond this period.
Atlanta Car Accident Lawyers Can Represent You Outside Court
Have you survived a Georgia car accident? Do you dislike litigation, or do you not want to sue the fault party? Then, you need the best Atlanta car accident lawyers. You need excellent attorneys because out-of-court settlements can get as complicated as litigation. So, you need a lawyer to protect and prove your right to compensation.
At Bethune Law Firm, we have just the right lawyers for you. Our attorneys have represented Georgia car accident victims for many years. In addition, we have won both car crash lawsuits and accident settlements for our clients. Therefore, we’re the perfect choice for accident victims who don’t want to enter the courts. So, call us today for a consultation on your case.