How Much is My Georgia Auto Wreck Personal Injury Claim Worth?
One of the most frequently asked questions of Atlanta personal injury attorneys is: “how much is my case worth?” In fact, that is a topic of discussion amongst lawyers themselves when it comes to looking at cases. The reason that the question is asked so frequently is that there is no real answer.
However, when evaluating your Georgia personal injury claim, there are some factors that determine how much your case is worth, including:
- How serious the injury is. When looking at a personal injury claim, the type of injury is probably the most important factor in valuing the claim. A broken bone or a fracture is going to be worth more than injuries that cannot be seen. A lot of people who are involved in car accidents suffer from what is known as “soft tissue” injuries. What that means is, that you can experience pain and soreness from an auto accident that may require some conservative treatment such as physical therapy. However, you’ll ultimately heal and be better without a permanent injury.
- How severe the crash was. When evaluating the value of a car wreck, seeing badly damaged vehicles will cause insurance companies to give more value to the claim. Without discussing the science of whether a low-impact car accident can cause a severe injury when there is severe property damage, the chances of the case being worth more increase.
- The amount of available insurance. In Georgia, individual drivers may not carry a lot of insurance. The minimum coverage in Georgia for bodily injury is $25,000.00 per person/$50,000.00 per car accident. Thus, if the at-fault driver only has $25,000.00 in insurance coverage, even the worst injury could result in a settlement for whatever insurance is available. Even worse, some drivers may not have insurance, at which point you could make a claim under your uninsured motorist policy or sue the driver. However, most drivers carry insufficient amounts of uninsured motorist protection. And, suing the at-fault driver could be futile if s/he does not have any assets.
- Venue. Venue is where your personal injury lawsuit would be filed. In Georgia, the lawsuit is usually filed where the at-fault driver resides or where a corporation is registered. In the Atlanta metro area, venues with juries that are traditionally more likely to award higher judgments in personal injury suits include Clayton County, Dekalb County, and Fulton County.
- Likeability of the Plaintiff (YOU!). When you bring a lawsuit for injuries in Georgia, you will ultimately rely on a jury of 12 of your peers to determine the value of your case (if you do not settle it beforehand). Thus, demonstrating that you’re an honest, likable person who, by no fault of your own, was injured in an automobile accident and incurred medical bills or lost time at work, is just one important element of maximizing your claim. That means, from the start, it is imperative to be honest with your Atlanta personal injury attorney so that all of the pros and cons of your case will be properly presented at trial.
There is no set formula for determining the value of your personal injury case. However, having a qualified Atlanta injury lawyer will certainly enable you to maximize the value of your automobile accident case in Georgia. For a consultation with an Atlanta injury attorney, please call The Davis Injury Firm at (404) 647-0722.