If you’re filing a car accident claim for injuries or vehicle damage, we want to show you how to get the most from your settlement. If you were involved in a car accident, you may be trying to figure out the best way to proceed with settling your auto accident against the at-fault driver, so put the accident behind you and move on with your life. This article provides some tips for settling Atlanta car accident claims.
First Things First
While the other driver was at-fault for causing the accident, you usually won’t be deal directly with the driver while trying to settle your claim. Typically, you’ll be dealing directly with the insurance company of the other driver.
Therefore, it’s essential to gather as much information as possible while you are at the scene of the accident including the name and contact for the following:
- the other driver
- witnesses to the accident
- the insurance company of the other driver, and
- any law enforcement officers at the scene.
Take photos while you’re still at the scene of the accident.
It’s also important to take photos while you’re still at the scene of the accident. Most of us have smartphones that have exceptional camera capabilities. While you’re at the scene of the accident, take photos of the following:
- The license plate of each vehicle.
- The location of the vehicles, and.
- The physical damage on every vehicle.
You should understand that the insurance company will ask you to provide a lot of information. Being ready to provide the required information is the best way to pursue and settle Atlanta car accident claims with the other driver or their insurance company successfully.
Furthermore, you should remember that the insurance company is NOT advancing your best interests. They are in business with the primary goal of making money. That is why they strive to pay out less money to you on a claim than it otherwise has to.
To accomplish this, the insurance company will try to argue that (1) you’re completely or partially responsible for the accident, and therefore, you deserve a reduced amount on your claim, and (2) you provided inadequate information/documentation to support your claim. Sometimes, they may advance both points against you.
This process may be frustrating, and even exasperating. However, providing more documentation and information to the insurance company increases your chances of receiving fair compensation for all of your damages. Remember that nothing compels the insurance company to reach a settlement agreement with you. At some point, the insurance company may tell you that, “this is the best offer we will make – if you’re not satisfied and want more money, then file a lawsuit”.
Potential Damages To Collect
If you’re filing a claim for property damage only, you may be entitled to collect the following different types of damages:
- Vehicle damage
- Personal property damage – if items such as a bike on a carrier, or a computer that may have been in the car were damaged in the accident, then you may receive compensation.
- Car rental – most insurance companies will reimburse the amount that you used to rent a car while they repaired your vehicle, and
- Out-of-pocket expenses – for instance, the amount you may have used to hire a taxi to take you home from the scene of the accident or police station.
The insurance company will consider the information and documentation you provide when extending a settlement offer to you. For instance, failure to provide proof of an out-of-pocket expense means that the insurance company will decide that you don’t deserve compensation for that part of the loss.
What If I Am Injured?
Sometimes a car accident may be more serious than an ordinary “fender blender”. The injuries you suffer in a car accident complicates the legal issues involved. Besides the damages listed above, you may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses and lost wages. You may also seek compensation for your physical and mental pain and suffering.
Negotiating a settlement for property damage may seem easy and straightforward initially. Often, it may get complicated and difficult to reach an agreement.
Therefore, at Singleton Law Firm, we strongly advise that you hire an experienced and reputable Atlanta car accident claims attorney if you’ve been injured in a car accident. Remember, bodily injuries and medical expenses present unique circumstances.
Feel free to call us today at (770) 889-6010 or use the contact form to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with our attorney.