One thing we’ve witnessed severally as personal injury lawyers in Atlanta is injury victims looking to get a quick compensation. Unfortunately, this sense of urgency they seem to have is why several people take less settlement than they deserve. They forget that there are stages to a personal injury case, just like most things in life.
This article looks at the different stages in an injury case. So, whether you have commenced an injury lawsuit or are about to, you can identify where your case is at and what’s left before it gets resolved. In addition, if you are a victim of another person’s negligence, our experienced lawyers at Ted A. Greve and Associates can help you. We offer excellent legal advice and representation.
What Are the Steps Involved in a Personal Injury Case?
A personal injury case arises from car accidents, medical negligence, slip and fall accidents, product liability, etc. Having a personal injury action means that you suffered harm from the negligence act of another person. As such, you deserve compensation, and thankfully, Georgia law makes provision for it.
However, before you get a financial settlement, there are steps you must take.
Step 1: Consult With an Attorney
Consulting with an Atlanta personal injury attorney is the first step in your journey to get compensation. Most injury victims feel they can handle the claims process alone. While this is true to a large extent, you should consult an attorney if:
- The accident resulted in severe or catastrophic injuries
- The crash resulted in significant property damage
- You want to ask for punitive damages
- The fault party’s insurance carrier denied your claim or offered you a lowball settlement
- The Statute of Limitations is about to elapse
Step 2: Investigation of the Case
After the initial consultation, if you decide to hire the attorney, they will commence an investigation into the case. A personal injury case investigation primarily involves corroborating your version of events. To do this, the lawyer will obtain:
- A copy of the police reports and witness statements
- A copy of any video footage of the accident
- Your medical record and receipt of medical bills
- Your employment history and earning
If necessary, your attorney would get accident reconstruction experts, medical experts, and any other expert that would help your case. A thorough investigation ensures your lawyer has all they need to prove your case and prevent surprises from the fault party’s legal team.
Step 3: Settlement Demand
Before a personal injury case becomes a lawsuit, your lawyer will first try to settle with the fault party and their insurance company. To do this, they will write a demand letter stating your version of events and how much you want as compensatory damages. Your lawyer will also attach relevant evidence to support your claims in the letter.
After receiving the letter, the insurance company can either accept or deny your request or come back with a counteroffer. Acceptance means the case ends there, while a counteroffer results in a series of back and forth negotiations until you settle or don’t. An outright denial means your lawyer will file a lawsuit.
Step 4: Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit
Filing a lawsuit does not mean that your personal injury case would get to trial. Also, there are two major stages before a case gets to trial. They are the discovery stage and mediation. At discovery, your lawyer and the other party’s lawyer will conduct what is known as interrogatories and deposition.
Afterward, they would attend a mediation conference where both parties can arrive at a settlement. However, if mediation fails, the case goes to trial, and both sides will present their argument and evidence. If the jury finds in your favor, you get compensation; you get nothing if they don’t. But, there’s still something you can do.
Step 5: Appeal
If you lose your personal injury case trial, your lawyer can choose to file an appeal. An appeal can be on the grounds of law or fact. If you win, the appeal court will order the fault party to compensate you. But if you don’t, you’ll not get any settlement. You should only appeal a case if there’s new evidence to support your claim to avoid extra expenses.
Atlanta Personal Injury Lawyers Can Help You!
Do you live in Atlanta, Georgia, and believe you have a valid personal injury case? If yes, our injury lawyers at Ted A. Greve and Associates can help you. We have experience handling personal injury claims and have recovered damages for our clients. In addition, we work on a contingency fee basis and offer free case reviews. So, contact us today to get started.