Georgia Car Accident Laws and Settlement Process

Let us make the car accident laws & settlement process work for you. The Marsh Law Firm helps car accident victims in and around Statesboro, Georgia to get the attention and compensation they deserve from insurance companies. Troy Marsh knows what it takes to build a strong claim, so don’t settle for less or accept a wrongful denial. Put your faith in attorney Marsh because auto accidents are our specialty.

(912) 764-7388

Available 24/7 / Free consultation / No fee unless you win

"No fee unless you win" refers only to fees charged by the attorney. Court costs and other additional expenses of legal action usually must be paid by the client. Contingent fees are not permitted in all types of cases.*

Georgia Car Accident Laws You Should Know

Georgia has many car accident and personal injury laws. You don’t need to know them all. With over 26 years of legal experience, tackling car accident claims attorney Troy Marsh does. Let him explain what laws apply to your case, and what that means for your case in and around Bulloch County.

Georgia Auto Insurance Requirements

Vehicle owners must register their vehicles and pay for a certain amount of auto liability insurance. In Georgia, drivers are required to carry at least $25,000 for one person’s bodily injuries, $50,000 for multiple people’s bodily injuries, and $25,000 for property damage (25/50/25). This is the minimum amount. Drivers could have higher policy limits.

No other type of auto insurance is required, but drivers can choose to pay for uninsured/underinsured motorist, medical payments, collision, rental, comprehensive, and other types of coverage. Vehicle owners should always buy as much uninsured/underinsured (UM) insurance as they can afford.

Car Accident Negligence

To demand compensation after a car crash, you have to prove another person was at fault. Usually, to prove fault, you have to establish negligence, which is failing to uphold a duty of care.

All drivers are responsible for following the law and driving carefully to avoid a crash. When drivers break the law or drive carelessly and cause a wreck, they are considered negligent.

Comparative Negligence in Auto Accidents

Many car accidents are straightforward. But, when two or more drivers might’ve contributed to the crash, then an insurance company, judge, or jury must evaluate each party’s amount of responsibility.

Under Georgia’s modified comparative fault law, anyone who is 50% or more at fault for an accident can’t recover any compensation. Any party 49% or less at fault can, but the final amount of their damages will be reduced by their percentage of fault.

Fatal Car Accidents & Wrongful Death Lawsuits

When a person dies from car accident injuries, his or her heir(s) have the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit. Depending on the survivors and their relation to the deceased person, a surviving spouse, child, or parent may be able to pursue compensation for the full value of the life of the decedent (the deceased person). Laws about identifying the proper party to bring a wrongful death lawsuit are complicated and best left to an attorney like Troy Marsh that specializes in these types of cases.

Statute of Limitations after an Accident

There’s always a limit on the time you have to file a lawsuit after a car accident. The statute of limitations in Georgia is generally two years from the date of the crash or the date of your loved one’s death, but you should always talk with a lawyer about whether certain factors give you more or less time.

The Car Accident Settlement Process

Here’s how to go about getting a car accident settlement. First, notify your insurer and the at-fault driver’s insurance carrier of the crash and your claim, but don’t answer any questions just yet. You’ll want to talk with a lawyer first.

Gather Evidence

Gather and keep all the original healthcare bills you receive in a safe location. You’ll want to get a copy of the crash report. Keep all medicine bottles, medical devices, crutches, splints, wheelchairs, and other items in a safe place.

Hire a Car Accident Lawyer

If you’re dealing with serious injuries after a crash, don’t try to handle the insurance claim process yourself. Let a lawyer deal with the claims adjuster and settlement process on your behalf. Once you retain The Marsh Law Firm, we assess fault and liability in your case. We’ll identify all the relevant insurance companies, notify them of your claim, and gather important information like policy limits.

Review the Evidence

It helps to organize all of this information before you schedule a consult with a car accident lawyer, but Troy Marsh will help you gather evidence, too. He’ll carefully review everything, including the police report, vehicle repair estimates, photos of the crash, and witness statements.

Calculate Your Claim’s Value

How much should you expect from a car accident settlement? That depends on many, many different factors, including the nature and extent of your injuries, your health condition before the accident, and others. Mr. Marsh will talk with you about how to calculate the value of your car accident claim. Tort compensation covers things like medical costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

Cooperate With Your Insurer

When you’re dealing with your insurer, called a “first-party” insurance company, you have a duty to cooperate. That can include giving a recorded statement. When you’re dealing with the at-fault driver’s insurer, called a “third-party” insurance company, you do not have to give a statement or even talk to the company at all until you are ready. Either way, we highly recommend you have a lawyer represent you. Attorney Marsh knows when an insurer’s request is reasonable and can fulfill that request, whether for medical records or other proof.

Go Through Settlement Negotiations

If you get a first settlement offer from the insurer, it’s probably too low. An insurer generally isn’t going to start by offering the maximum amount. We might start the process with a time-limited settlement demand letter, which is a formal demand for an amount of money, authorized by you, that covers all your injuries and damages. Georgia law allows attorneys to limit the amount of time the insurance company can consider a settlement demand before running the risk of being found liable for bad faith refusal to settle.

It’s always up to you whether or not to accept an offer, but Mr. Marsh is experienced in negotiating favorable settlements.

How Long Will it Take for Me to Get a Settlement?

There’s no specific time frame for the car accident settlement process. In car accident claims, you can recover compensation in a few weeks or months, or it may take years, depending on countless factors and variables that only an experienced car accident lawyer can determine.

Complex car crashes take more time. How long do settlement negotiations take when there are disputes over comparative negligence, medical expenses, and other issues? They can take many months or years. Mr. Marsh will be upfront with you when you’re looking at a lengthy insurance claim or litigation process.

What If the Insurance Claim Process Doesn’t Work?

Most of the time, the car insurance process results in a settlement. It might take several months or over a year, but most cases never go to trial. Unfortunately, not everyone’s case goes smoothly. If the driver was uninsured, the policy limit was lower than your damages, or the insurer denied your claim, you may need to go to court.

Filing a Lawsuit

It’s important to work with an attorney during the car accident lawsuit process. You have to file a complaint, serve a copy on the at-fault driver, any other liable party, and your uninsured/underinsured motorist insurance company, and then go through the discovery process. Preparing for trial is a complex process that should be handled by an experienced car accident lawyer.