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Georgia Personal Injury Blog

Monday, May 26, 2014

What should you do if you’re in an accident? Tips from a Personal Injury Laywer in Henry County, Georgia

The stats are in, and they’re not looking good.  According to the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety, crash data indicates that there has been more traffic fatalities in Georgia compared to this time last year. 

As of June 2012, there were 499 crash-related fatalities, and that number has already reached 520 for this year.  Alcohol is related to 23 percent of the crashes, but the majority of car accidents can be attributed to distracted driving and other factors.  

What does this mean to you?  It’s more important than ever to drive carefully, and know what to do if you’re involved in a car accident.   

First, ensure that you are in a safe place and call 911.  Describe the type of help you need from the police and medics. 

Second, protect yourself against further damage by following these steps:

  • Contact an attorney: In these types of situations, it’s tempting to immediately start addressing repairs and other remedies.  But if you delay in calling an attorney, it could result in loosing certain rights and ultimately make a bad situation even worse.

  • Insurance:  Don't accept a cash offer from the insurance company without talking to a lawyer first, and definitely not before knowing the true nature and extent of any injuries. You may be entitled to compensation for pain and suffering and lost enjoyment of life. Also, an insurance adjuster may ask you for a recorded statement.  Say “no thanks” to the recorded statement if you have not yet retained an attorney. This statement may be used against you if the case proceeds to litigation, because any inconsistencies in the statement and later testimony could be used to impeach the injured claimant. 

  • Medical Expenses: Keep records of all medical expenses related to the accident. If your insurance provider pays some or all of your medical costs, they may have a right to subrogation.  Regardless of who pays the medical expenses, it is important that you keep track of all costs associated with the treatment provided as a result of the car accident to enable a full recovery of these costs.

  • Vehicle Damage: It’s also important to keep good records of any estimates or expenses related to your car damage, including the cost of a rental car while your car is repaired.  When calculating damage to your vehicle, it’s also key to determine the diminished value of your car.

Ultimately, be careful out there and use good judgment when you hit the road.

Smith, Welch, Webb and White is recognized as a premier law firm throughout the state of Georgia.   We have investigated hundreds of automobile collisions and have recovered millions of dollars in compensation for injured clients and families of those killed in wrongful death accidents.  Our team of experts routinely handles a wide range of legal matters, and will provide outstanding service for you, your family or your business.  For more information on this topic, email John Webb at jwebb@smithwlechlaw.com or call 770-389-4864.

 

Any representations regarding the law in this Blog is made available for educational purposes only as well as to give you general information and a general understanding of the law, not to provide specific legal advice. By using this blog site you understand that there is no attorney client relationship between you and the Blog publisher. The Blog should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed professional attorney in your state.



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