One of the first things victims consulting a Georgia auto accident lawyer want to know is when they would get paid. Having car repairs and medical bills to cover, they obviously hope to receive compensation for their losses as soon as possible.
However, not even the best Albany car accident lawyers can provide a clear answer. Each case is different, and each insurance company has different strategies and policies. No one can know for sure if and when a settlement can be reached. It could be a matter of days, weeks, months, or even years.
Several factors play an important part in the process. We will review some of the most important ones below.
Factors Influencing Georgia Car Accident Claim Settlements and Payments
- Type of Claim and Damages Claimed – Claims for property damage alone will often be reviewed and paid faster than claims that cover injuries. Similarly, claims covering only car repairs and medical bills will be reviewed and paid faster than claims covering pain and suffering, disability-related expenses, lost income and earning capacity, etc.
- Claim Value – Claims for small amounts are more likely to be reviewed, accepted, and paid fast. When the value of a claim is high, insurance companies will try to diminish it. They will take time to conduct their own investigation and even stall procedures to get the claimant desperate and willing to settle for less.
- Contributory Negligence – When the fault for the accident belongs to a single party, the client of the insurance company, things can move fast. When the claimant shares fault for their accident, the claim process can last longer. The insurance company will try to attribute as much fault as possible to the claimant and the latter will have to defend themselves.
- Available Evidence – Car accident compensations are won with evidence, not stories. Thus, a victim who has overwhelming evidence of their losses and of the negligence of the party at fault can get paid faster than someone who has little or no evidence. Upon taking over new cases, many Albany car accident attorneys will conduct their own investigations. This could take time as well.
- Paperwork Accuracy and Filing Time – Car accident claims involve a lot of paperwork and form filling. When these are filled accurately, with complete information, and filed early, they are easier to review and corroborate. When there are mistakes, inconsistencies, or discrepancies, everything can turn into a back-and-forth exchange of requests for further clarifications and/or corrections and answers.
- Settlement Acceptance – Upon reviewing the claim, sometimes even earlier, insurance companies often make settlement offers to the claimants. If the claimants accept them, they sign the corresponding paperwork and get paid within days or a couple of weeks at the latest. When claimants do not accept settlement offers, further negotiations may take place, of they may need to file an appeal. Things could end up in court and require months of hearings and proceedings before a verdict can be reached. Of course, this does not mean car accident victims should accept settlement offers just to get paid faster.
- The Involvement of an Experienced and Reputed Car Accident Lawyer – Claims handled by experienced car accident attorneys usually settle much faster and for higher amounts than claims handled by the victims themselves.
How Can a Georgia Auto Accident Lawyer Expedite Procedures and Payments?
Car accident lawyers know nearly everyone and nearly everyone knows them. Just the sight of a lawyer’s name can be enough to convince an insurer to accept a claim and make a fair settlement. Moreover, through their activity, auto accident attorneys make many of the factors above work in the claimant’s favor.
They assess fault and claim value, they make sure the evidence is sufficient and convincing, and they follow all procedures fast and without errors. They know how to negotiate great settlements for their clients and get them the compensation these deserve.
The best part is that they only get paid from the compensation they obtain for their clients. This means that, by hiring them, the accident victim does not incur additional costs. It also means that they will be motivated to work hard in order to obtain the highest compensation possible, as soon as possible.
Increase Your Chances to a Fast and Fair Compensation by Consulting an Experienced Georgia Auto Accident Lawyer
At Joe Durham Jr., P.C., our car accident lawyers can provide you with information, advice, and solutions. If you let them, they will make sure you get paid fast and fairly. Schedule a free consultation now!