Injuries are not uncommon and can happen to anyone at any time. However, they are unpredictable and seem to happen at the most inconvenient times. Most types of personal injuries can be prevented, and usually happen due to another party’s negligence. For example, a driver may overlook traffic laws and crash, resulting in severe bodily harm to another motorist.
If you have been injured due to the negligent or careless acts of another party in Georgia, you may eligible for compensation. However, proving liability is not as straightforward and you may be in too much pain to handle the claim.
Our Duluth personal injury lawyers at The Herro Law Firm will come to the rescue and help fight for your rights. We have practiced personal injury law for years, helping victims of all kinds of personal injury accidents such as slips and falls, vehicle collisions, dog bites, etc.
What Should You Do After an Injury?
Whether you have been in a car wreck, slip and fall accident, or bitten by a dog, what you do next will play a major role in your claim. To maximize your chances of compensation, ensure you do the following.
Seek Medical Attention
Your health should be the first priority. Whether you feel fine or not, it is important to visit the doctor right after the accident. If it’s an emergency, call 911 so that an ambulance can be sent to your location. Having a doctor check you early on improves the chances of full recovery.
Record the Scene
Chances are you have a smartphone, just like everyone else. Leverage the camera and take photos and videos of the accident scene and injuries sustained. This will act as solid evidence when seeking compensation.
Collect the Names and Contacts of Witnesses
If anyone saw the accident, ensure you collect their names and phone numbers as they will help confirm your version of the story.
Report the Accident
It is important to notify the relevant party about the accident. If it is a car accident, report it to the authorities. If it’s a workplace injury, report it to your employer. If it is a slip and fall at a mall, report it to the manager. Also, ensure you get a copy of the accident report.
Never Admit Fault
Don’t admit fault for the incident for any resulting damages or injuries, even if you think you could be partly liable. Also, avoid saying sorry to other parties involved in the accident.
Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer
If you have sustained a personal injury, it is important to call a Duluth personal injury lawyer with experience in this field as soon as possible. Herro Law firm handles all kinds of personal injury cases and we will fight to ensure your rights are protected.
Why Do I Need a Duluth Personal Injury Lawyer?
The personal injury claims process can be complicated, especially when it comes to proving negligence. A competent personal injury lawyer will help in the following ways:
Case Preparation and Filing a Lawsuit
If you sustain injuries from an accident, it is your responsibility to initiate the lawsuit by reaching out to a personal injury lawyer to discuss the claim, injuries, and how to seek maximum compensation. Your Duluth personal injury lawyer will then perform a thorough investigation and garner the necessary evidence. Next, they will file a lawsuit to pursue compensation on your behalf.
The party at fault and your personal injury lawyer will try to reach a settlement as nobody wants to go to court. At this stage, your Duluth personal injury lawyer will ensure that the insurance company doesn’t trick you into accepting an amount that is too low.
Trial Preparation & Representation
If you don’t come to an agreement, the case will need to go to trial. Here, the judge or jury determines whether the defendant is responsible for your injury and damages. If so, the court will determine the damages to be awarded. A reputable personal injury lawyer will be of great help in preparing your case for trial and representing you accordingly.
What Types of Damages Can You Recover?
In Georgia, you can recover three types of damages for personal injury cases. These include:
These entail the tangible losses you incurred from the personal injury. Economic damages tend to be more concrete as they are readily documented and thus easier to calculate. Examples include lost wages, property damage, medical expenses, physical therapy bills, etc.
These entail intangible damages incurred from the injury. They are subjective in nature, making them harder to calculate. Examples include pain and suffering, emotional distress, reduced quality of life, disfigurement, and scarring, etc.
Punitive damages are rarely awarded in personal injury lawsuits and are designed to punish the defendant for willful or especially reckless actions that resulted in injury or damages to other people.
How Is Personal Injury Liability Determined in Georgia?
In order to prove liability for a personal injury claim in the state, you need to prove negligence, which requires showing the following elements.
Duty of Care
This is the first aspect of proving negligence in Georgia. For a claim to be considered valid, the defendant should have owed you some degree of obligation to keep you safe. This can be driving safely, or keeping a premises’ floors dry to prevent slips and falls.
Breach of Duty of Care
Second, you need to show that the defendant breached their obligation to keep you safe. An example includes skimping on the required truck inspections, leading to an accident.
Next, you need to show that the defendant’s breach of duty of care was the direct cause of the accident. Using the example above, it could be faulty breaks from not inspecting the truck, thus resulting in an accident.
Damage is the last element of negligence that you need to prove. To do this, you must show that the incident resulted in economic and/or non-economic damages like property damage, loss of wages, pain and suffering, disfigurement, etc.
Bear in mind that Georgia operates under the principle of modified comparative negligence. This means that in determining liability, a percentage of blame is assigned to the parties involved. If you are found to be 50% or more at fault, then you are not eligible for compensation. The compensation amount is reduced by your percentage of fault.
Is There a Deadline for Filing a Personal Injury Claim in GA?
Yes, as with every other state in the U.S, Georgia has a time limit for filing personal injury claims referred to as the statute of limitations. The deadline for these claims is 2 years from the date of the accident.
However, there are a few exceptions where the deadline can be extended, like when the victim is a minor or mentally incompetent.
What Is the Process of Filing a Personal Injury Claim?
Filing a personal injury claim in Georgia is not always straightforward and the complexity depends on your case. However, the general process involves meeting with a personal injury lawyer to file a claim, gathering the necessary evidence, calculating the compensation amount, holding negotiations, and going to trial if negotiations don’t bear fruit.
How Much Does a Duluth Personal Injury Lawyer Cost?
The good news is that reputable personal injury lawyers operate on a contingency basis. This means you do not have to pay upfront for legal representation. You will only pay a certain percentage of the settlement amount. If you don’t win the case, then you won’t be charged anything.
Personal Injury Cases We Handle at The Herro Law Firm
At The Herro Law Firm, we have extensive experience in representing people who have sustained injuries in Duluth and surrounding areas due to the negligence of another party. We fight to protect your rights and seek compensation if you have been in the following types of incidents:
Car accidents can be extremely severe, leading to injuries or even death. Our Duluth personal injury lawyers will be ready to investigate liability and determine a fair compensation amount.
Commercial trucks, tractor-trailers, semi-trucks, etc., cause some of the most devastating accidents, often leading to fatalities. Our team is here to help if you have been a victim of a truck accident.
Motorcycle accidents often cause severe injuries or death, since riders have little protection. If you have been a victim, don’t go through the tiring process alone. Call us instead.
Property owners have a legal responsibility to ensure their premises are safe for both tenants and visitors. If you have been injured on another party’s property, you may be able to demand compensation in a premises liability lawsuit.
If you have lost a loved one because of someone’s criminal or negligent actions, you may be able to claim compensation. While a successful wrongful death lawsuit can’t take away your grief, it can help your family cope with the financial impact.
Hire the Best Duluth Personal Injury Lawyer Today!
Sustaining injuries due to the negligence of another person or entity is not fair and you should be compensated in order to have your life in order. The personal injury lawyers at The Herro Law Firm is ready to fight for your rights and all you have to do is call our offices at (404) 433-6876 today!