It’s easy to make mistakes in the aftermath of an accident that could potentially harm your case if you decide to seek compensation. Here are some common legal mistakes to avoid after a car accident in Georgia. Our car accident attorneys are here to help you, so call us today for a free consultation.
1. Not Reporting the Accident
In Georgia, it’s a legal requirement to report any car accident that results in injury, death, or property damage exceeding $500. This is stated in the Georgia Code § 40-6-273. Failing to report an accident can result in penalties and may also impact your ability to claim compensation.
If a driver is involved in an accident that causes injury or death, or property damage of $500.00 or more, they must immediately report the incident. Notify the local police department if the accident happened within a city. If the accident took place outside of a city, the driver should report it to the county sheriff’s office or the closest state patrol office.
2. Admitting Fault
As a general rule, you should not admit fault at the scene of the accident. Even if you believe you may have been responsible, there may be factors you’re unaware of that contributed to the accident. Admitting fault can be used against you later in legal proceedings.
3. Not Gathering Evidence
Collecting evidence at the scene can be crucial for your case. This includes taking photographs of the accident scene, your vehicle, and any visible injuries, and gathering witness contact information. This evidence can be invaluable when proving fault and establishing the extent of your damages.
4. Signing Documents Without Legal Advice
Never sign any documents from an insurance company without first consulting with a lawyer. Insurance companies often try to settle claims quickly and for less than what you may be entitled to. A lawyer can review these documents to ensure your rights are protected.
5. Not Seeking Medical Attention
Even if you feel fine after the accident, it’s important to seek medical attention. Some injuries may not be immediately felt and will be troublesome some days or even weeks after the accident. Having a medical record linking your injuries to the accident can be a crucial piece of evidence in your case.
6. Not Hiring a Lawyer
Perhaps the biggest mistake is trying to handle your case on your own. Navigating the legal system can be complex and confusing. An experienced car accident lawyer can guide you through the process, handle negotiations with insurance companies, and ensure your rights are protected.
7. Dealing with Insurance Companies Yourself
After an accident, you’ll need to deal with insurance companies. It’s important to remember that insurance companies are for-profit businesses and their goal is to pay as little as possible. Having a lawyer on your side can help ensure you get the compensation you deserve.
Call Our Douglasville Car Accident Attorneys Today!
If you have been in a car accident, our team at Hartley, Rowe & Fowler can help you navigate the legal system, deal with insurance companies, and ensure your rights are protected. Contact us today at 678-825-6004 to schedule your consultation. We are available 24/7.