The insurance company cannot force you to accept an insurance settlement offer. You need to realize, however, that you only have a limited amount of time to negotiate with the insurer. Georgia has a statute of limitations that sets a deadline for going after money damages. If your case has not settled and the deadline is approaching, you will need to file a lawsuit to protect your right to compensation for your injuries.
Usually, you cannot get out of a settlement if you change your mind after signing the paperwork and taking the money. People who try to handle their own accident claims often find out too late that they should have gotten much more money rather than simply accepting their insurance settlement offer. Unfortunately, there is usually no remedy for people in this situation.
Why You Should Talk to a Lawyer Before Accepting a Settlement Offer
Georgia law does not require you to have a lawyer take care of your injury case, but it can be a wise decision to do so. Working with an attorney can help you avoid these situations:
- Missing the deadline to file a personal injury lawsuit. If you do not settle your claim or file a lawsuit in time, you can lose the right to ever go after financial damages, no matter how severe your injuries are. The at-fault person and his insurance company have no legal obligation to you after the statute of limitations expires.
- Accepting a low-ball offer from the claims adjuster. Every case is different, so after we talk with you and investigate your case we can calculate a fair amount to resolve your claim.
- Providing a recorded statement. These statements are for the benefit of the insurer, not you. The adjuster can twist your words to try to pay you less money. If the insurer asks you to provide a recorded statement, tell him to talk to your lawyer.
- Being pressured by the insurance company to accept an insurance settlement. It can be intimidating to try to take on a billion-dollar corporation by yourself. The insurer has teams of people who have the job of paying you as little money as possible. When you have a lawyer handle your injury claim, the insurance company is not allowed to contact you directly. You should not get harassed by the insurer’s telephone calls and correspondence.
- Falling for the sneaky tactics of the claims adjuster. Sometimes an adjuster will pressure the injured person to make a quick decision to accept an insurance settlement. The adjuster might claim that the offer is only good until the end of that day, for example. This statement is rarely true. If the adjuster’s supervisor approved settling the case for a specified amount, the insurance company thinks that amount is preferable to going to trial.
- Settling your claim before completing your medical treatment. Until your doctor releases you, there is no way to tell if you will heal entirely from your injuries. Sometimes people settle their cases too early and later find out that they have to undergo surgery. The insurer will not pay the person more money for the operation, and his health insurance will likely deny coverage. The surgery could be out-of-pocket for the injured person.
A personal injury lawyer can help you in many ways, in addition to these examples.
How to Get Legal Help for Your Injury Claim
You might have anxiety about how much it will cost you to have a lawyer negotiate your settlement and file a lawsuit, if necessary. At S. Burke Law, though, we handle personal injury claims on a contingent fee basis. You do not have upfront legal fees. We get paid out of the settlement proceeds or court award at the end of the matter. We do not get paid until you win.
We perform a thorough investigation of every personal injury claim that we handle. We can collect the evidence to build your case, analyze your medical records, and determine the monetary value of your case.
We advocate for our clients and treat them like family. You will receive personal, attentive legal services. We love to help people who have been injured because of the carelessness of others. We will work hard to get you all the money damages that you deserve so that you can take care of yourself and your family.
Be sure to contact us right away so that you do not miss the deadline. Call us today at (404) 842-7838 to get started with an initial, no-obligation consultation.