Why Do I Need An Attorney When I Have Been In A Car Accident?
You may be able to handle a claim on your own. If you are not very injured or if you don’t have any injuries at all, then you can handle the claim directly with the insurance company. Obviously, if you have catastrophic injuries, it’s highly advisable to have counsel but even for medical bills in excess of $5,000, it’s important to have an attorney, so that you don’t get taken advantage of. What an insurance company would do in that situation is try to lowball and pay you as little as possible, which is their goal.
One aspect of the case that you are probably able to handle is the property damage portion. In a car wreck, there are generally two claims; there is a medical claim and a separate claim related to the damage to your property. It could be your vehicle; it could be your iPhone. If an iPhone breaks during a car accident, you can recover for that. Normally, it is going to be the damage to your vehicle. It’s a fairly simple process because you are entitled to recover for the repairs to your car or the fair market value to replace it.
There is another type of claim you can make under the realm of property damage in a case where you have a brand new car and there is damage to it, and the damage will decrease the value of new your car. In addition to the cost of repair, you can also have a claim for the diminished value of your vehicle.
What Happens If A DUI Results In A Car Wreck And Leads To A Personal Injury Claim?
In the context of a car accident case, being hit by a drunk driver means your case is a little bit different. The fact that the other person was driving drunk is a factor in the value of your case and it could increase the value of your case. At that point, you could seek punitive damages. Punitive damages are awarded when the other party’s conduct is so reckless that it disregards the safety and wellbeing of anyone else on the road. A jury can award punitive damages to deter that sort of behavior, to punish the person who did it, and to send a message out to the community that we don’t want drunk drivers on the road. You definitely want to seek the advice of an attorney to help you navigate that and make sure that you are fully compensated in that situation. I would argue that texting and driving could also be a ground for punitive damages. Road rage is certainly a ground for punitive damages. Georgia law allows up to $250,000 in punitive damages. There is a cap.
In A PI Claim Involving A DUI, Do We Have To Wait For The Criminal Side To Be Settled Or Is That Handled Separately?
A criminal case and a civil case are completely separate. You don’t have to wait until anything is handled. If the person has already plead guilty to the DUI in a criminal matter, then you can use that against them in their civil case. If they plead not guilty, you can’t use it because it’s not an admission of guilt.
It’s very important to have an attorney represent you in something as complex as a DUI accident. The investigation part is really important. I have a private investigator I use, so I might be able to get some more dirt than you could on your own. That dirt increases the value of your case.
For more information on Need For An Attorney In An Auto Accident Claim, an initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (404) 382-9926 today.
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