How Can I Prove My Injuries in a Car Accident Claim?

How Can I Prove My Injuries in a Car Accident Claim?

Car accidents are unpredictable and often result in severe injuries along with significant financial burdens. One of the most crucial steps in securing rightful compensation is proving your injuries. This process can be complex, involving various forms of evidence, understanding legal procedures, and honing negotiation skills. This article aims to guide you through what you need to know to successfully prove your injuries in a car accident claim.

The Importance of Immediate Medical Attention After a Car Accident

Right after an accident, seeking immediate medical attention is not just critical for your well-being, but it also serves as the first and perhaps most essential piece of evidence in your case. Medical records from a qualified healthcare provider can effectively substantiate the nature and extent of your injuries. Failing to seek timely medical treatment can cast doubts on the severity of your injuries, thereby weakening your claim.

Types of Evidence to Prove Negligence and Injuries

Collecting robust evidence is the cornerstone for proving negligence and, by extension, your injuries. There are several types of evidence that can reinforce your claim:

  • Police Reports: These offer an impartial view of the accident and are usually considered credible.
  • Witness Testimonies: Eyewitness accounts can add different perspectives that corroborate your version of the incident.
  • Medical Records: As mentioned earlier, these can verify the extent of your injuries.
  • Photographs and Video Footage: Visual documentation of the accident scene, vehicle damages, and your injuries can provide compelling evidence.

The Role of an Attorney in Proving Injuries

Engaging an attorney can be a game-changer in bolstering your case. At Castan Lecca & Boeschen we can guide you on the types of evidence to collect, how to preserve them, and how to present them most effectively. Moreover, we can:

Negotiate with Insurance Companies: Lawyers possess the expertise to tackle insurance adjusters’ tactics and can protect your interests during settlement talks.

Consult with Medical Professionals: They can bring in medical experts to testify on your behalf, further strengthening your case.

Navigate Legal Procedures: Your attorney takes care of all the legal intricacies involved in filing the claim, ensuring you meet all deadlines and fulfill every procedural requirement.

Understanding the Framework of Negligence in Car Accident Claims

For your claim to be successful, you must understand the basic framework of negligence. There are four elements you need to establish:

Duty of Care: All drivers owe a responsibility to others on the road to drive safely and responsibly.

Breaching the Duty of Care: This involves showing that the defendant failed to uphold their duty, which is often the core of car accident litigation.

Causation: The link between your injuries and the defendant’s violation of their duty is essential.

Damages: Finally, you need to prove that you suffered losses that can be monetarily compensated, such as medical expenses, lost wages, and emotional distress.

Importance of Proving Negligence

In 2016, fatal car accidents resulted in approximately $44 billion in medical costs and work loss, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Therefore, proving the other driver’s negligence is not just legally essential but also critical for social justice. With adequate evidence, you may qualify for a range of compensations like medical expenses, lost income, reduced earning capacity, emotional distress, and even scarring or physical deformity.

Considering Future Losses

Depending on your injuries, you may need ongoing or even future medical treatment. Hence, it’s critical to factor in these costs—past, present, and future—when calculating your total losses related to the accident.

Navigating Comparative Negligence in Georgia

In Georgia, even if you are partially at fault, you could still recover some compensation. According to O.C.G.A. § 51-12-33, you’re only barred from recovery if you’re 50% or more at fault. This is known as comparative negligence.

Insurance Traps to Avoid

Insurance companies are in the business of minimizing payouts. Be wary of the following tactics that they may use to reduce your settlement:

Quick Settlement Offers: Insurance adjusters may try to entice you with a quick but lowball offer. Always consult an attorney before accepting any settlement.

Recorded Statements: Be cautious when giving any recorded statements to insurance companies. They may use your words against you to diminish the value of your claim.

Medical Authorizations: Never sign a medical release form without consulting your attorney as it may give the insurance company access to your medical history, which they could use against you.

Why It’s Important to Consult an Attorney

Consulting an attorney before making any recorded statements can protect you from insurance traps and other potential pitfalls. An attorney can act as a barrier between you and aggressive insurance adjusters, ensuring that your claim is not undermined.

Proving your injuries in a car accident claim is a complex, multi-step process. Legal expertise in this area can be invaluable. If you’re facing challenges in proving your injuries, consider contacting Castan Lecca & Boeschen. Our seasoned attorneys can guide you through each stage of your claim to ensure you obtain the compensation you rightfully deserve.

You could also be interested in: How to document accident scenes effectively to support insurance claims and legal cases. 

 

 

 

 

Why is having a personal injury lawyer important?

Whenever you suffer physical injury from car accidents, slip & falls, or medical malpractice, you are entitled to make a personal injury claim. Most of these claims are based upon negligence, which originates from reckless behavior carried out by an individual while performing an activity. However, they can also stem from wrongful intent by the other party involved.

Therefore, thanks to personal injury law, you can file a civil lawsuit in court or file a claim and be compensated for all the losses that you’ve suffered as a result of the accident.

Whether your personal injury case is based on negligence or an intentional act, it is recommended to hire a lawyer. At Castan & Lecca, we provide a specialized team of personal injury lawyers to help you win your case so you receive the compensation you need for recovery.

 

What is personal injury law?

Personal injury law is meant to protect you or your property if you sustain an injury or if damage is done by another party, whether it stems from negligence or a wrongful intent on their behalf.

Physical personal injury claims can stem from:

– Automobile accidents

– Workplace accidents

– Assault

– Product defect accidents 

– Medical malpractice

– Nursing home abuse

– Toxic tort (exposure to a chemical or a dangerous substance)

– Slip & fall

Regardless of the injury claim, any physical stress and trauma caused by your injury is described as pain and suffering in court. By working alongside health professionals and relying on evidence such as medical documentation, and any testimonies from witnesses or videos, the team at Castan & Lecca provides the proper legal aid to help you win your case and receive the correct compensation that you deserve.

 

On what grounds can I plead a personal injury case?

Your personal injury claims can be brought under these three grounds:

  • Negligence: According to the Georgia Negligence Law, negligence is defined as when a person fails to apply a certain degree or duty of care to minimize risks of injury to others. In Georgia courts, a modified comparative negligence approach is used where the plaintiff (you) can only recover if you’re less than 50% responsible for your injuries.  
  • Strict Liability: Under Georgia’s product liability law, an injured person has the right to sue the manufacturer, distributor or retailer that caused them harm. The plaintiff doesn’t have to prove negligence, but they must show that the defendant was the manufacturer at fault, the product was defective, and its condition caused the plaintiff their injury.
  • Wrongful intent: Whenever conscious, intentional wrongdoing is carried out, whether it be a civil wrong (e.g. libel) or a criminal act (i.e. assault), it is malice. However, there must be proof that the conduct was carried out intentionally to win the lawsuit.

In Georgia, the statute of limitations for personal injury is two years, starting from the date of the plaintiff’s injury or death. Therefore, we recommend that you should take legal action and realize the seriousness and extent of your damages as soon as possible to help your case.

 

What are the benefits of having a personal injury lawyer?

By hiring a personal injury lawyer, your claims will have a higher success rate; in fact, according to a study conducted by Cornell Law, between 60 and 80 percent of cases reach a settlement. Also, with the help of an attorney, you won’t have the full weight of stress when dealing with insurance companies and proceedings by yourself. This can free up your personal time. Therefore, at Castan & Lecca, these are the benefits you will receive while we plead your case: 

  1. We deal directly with the insurance company: instead of personally dealing directly with your insurer, we take over this process by carrying out the correct steps in filing an insurance claim and help you receive full compensation for your injury without having to reach a settlement before knowing the whole extent of the damages. Let us do all the heavy lifting while you solely concentrate on your recovery. 
  2. We understand the legal requirements to prove liability: our team of experts will handle the investigation to gather the evidence needed to back up your claim while identifying the responsible party.
  3. Handling Settlement Negations and Lawsuits in your best interest: with our experience, we prepare a detailed settlement package that includes the necessary evidence that proves your damages along with the monetary value of your claim. We undergo the negotiations so you can receive your compensation.
  4. We make the legal process much smoother for you: we understand that filing and dealing with a personal injury claim can be a hassle (filing documents, dealing with insurance companies, etc.). Therefore, with our experience in personal injury, we make sure your best interests are protected and your demands are met.
  5. Your compensation will arrive much quicker: by filing your personal injury claim on your behalf, we undergo the correct procedures to make sure there are no setbacks during the case and to help you be compensated as soon as possible. Instead of waiting until you have fully recovered to go and seek your compensation, contact us immediately after your accident to accelerate the process.

 

How can you get started on your personal injury claim? 

If you have suffered any personal injury recently, it is not late to act. Before hiring an attorney, the first step to start filing a claim is collecting all the evidence related to your accident. Photographs, videos, even witnesses (if required) with their names and contact information are useful.

Also, keep a journal and write down everything that has happened to you after the accident such as medical bills, lost workdays, or any physical changes that have occurred to you. These items will back up your claim.

Afterwards, our main recommendation is to hire an attorney to help you with the judicial process. However, since we understand that the judicial process can be overwhelming and time-consuming, with Castan & Lecca, you will have experts alongside to help you through this process. Let our legal knowledge and experience help you obtain the compensation that is rightfully owed to you.

Contact us to schedule a free consultation to start working on your case.

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MICHAEL BOESCHEN

Attorney

Michael Boeschen (Mike) was born in Wichita, KS and raised in Chattanooga, TN. Mike graduated from The McCallie School and went on to study history, Spanish, and Latin American Studies at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX. After graduation, he went on to pursue a law degree from the University Of Georgia School Of Law. During law school, Mike participated in the Legal Aid Clinic, assisting in the defense of indigent criminal defendants. Mike has been licensed to practice law in Georgia since 2002 and his main practice area consists of representing injured workers as they navigate through the Georgia workers’ compensation system. Mike is also fluent in Spanish. In his spare time Mike enjoys following soccer, cooking, and spending time with his wife and two young daughters. Mike and his family are parishioners of the Holy Spirit Catholic Church in Sandy Springs, GA

CHRISTIAN PECONE

Attorney

ED DENKER

Attorney

Edward Denker was born in Philadelphia, PA but has made Georgia his home since 1999. He graduated from the Pennsylvania State University with a Bachelor’s degree in liberal arts. He then earned his Juris Doctorate from the University of Georgia. Edward spent his first years in practice representing clients in personal injury and wrongful death claims. He then spent more than a decade honing his litigation skills representing employers and insurers in workers’ compensation claims, where he gained immense experience and knowledge of how insurers defend those claims. In 2017, Edward returned to his passion of representing people who have been injured at work or through the negligence of others. When he isn’t working, Edward enjoys spending time with his wife and their two children. He is also an avid sports fan, and enjoys cooking and travel

ILIANA DOBREV

Attorney

Iliana Dobrev was born in Bulgaria. After high school, she immigrated to the United States to study law. She graduated magna cum laude from Georgia State University with a Bachelor’s in political science concentrating on pre-law and minoring in Spanish. In 2015, she graduated from Georgia State University College of Law. While in law school, Iliana completed a Graduate Research Assistantship in Labor and Employment Law and Employment Discrimination and two externships in Immigration Law. As an immigrant herself, Iliana is passionate about advocating for and defending immigrants. She is delighted to help families stay together and pursue the American dream. Iliana is a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association and worked in both a fellowship and a firm specializing in immigration law. Iliana is fluent in Bulgarian and Spanish

KEN THAXTON

Attorney

Ken Thaxton was born and raised in Roberta, GA. When Ken was a child, his father started a trucking business, which Ken ultimately spent over ten years working with through his late teens and twenties. Ken graduated from Houston County High School in Warner Robins, GA in 2001 with a 4.0 GPA. He then studied Business and Information Technology at Macon State College, ultimately graduating with a 4.0 GPA in 2004. After graduation, Ken continued to work with his father’s trucking company, and in late 2005, Ken and his father started an aircraft charter company, Southern Jet, Inc., under Part 135 of the Federal Aviation Regulations. Ken served as President of Southern Jet from 2006 until 2010, when he and his father sold the company. Ken is a Commercially Licensed Instrument, Multi-Engine Pilot. While serving as President of Southern Jet, Ken started Law School at the University of Georgia School of Law in 2009. Ken focused primarily on business and civil law, including Workers’ Compensation, while at UGA. He graduated Cum Laude and in the top 25% of his class from UGA Law in 2012. Ken is a licensed to practice law in the State of Georgia, and he is also a licensed neutral (mediator) in the State of Georgia. Ken represents small businesses in transactional matters and business conflicts, and he also represents injured workers and Plaintiffs injured in cases of negligence. During his spare time, Ken enjoys swimming, cycling, sporting clays, and fishing. He also does charity work with a national scholarship fund

ALEXANDER LECCA

Attorney

Alexander Lecca (Alex) was born in Miami, Florida to immigrant parents from Cuba and Peru. Alex graduated from Coral Gables High School, where he was a recipient of the Elsa Glazer Award (given to students who graduate with a 3.5 GPA and above). He went on to study marketing at the University of Miami School of Business Administration. At the University of Miami he was also a member of the Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity. After graduation, he went on to pursue a law degree from St. Thomas University School of Law. In law school, Alex received several book awards and graduated Cum Laude. During law school Alex clerked for the Honorable Beth Bloom, had an internship with the Miami-Dade County Public Defender’s office, and clerked for a prestigious litigation law firm. Alex is licensed to practice law in both Georgia and Florida and handles workers’ compensation and personal injury cases. He is also a registered mediator with the Georgia Office of Dispute Resolution. Alex is also fluent in Spanish. During his spare time, Alex enjoys outdoor activities with his wife and four children. He also helps coach his children’s baseball, football, basketball, and soccer teams. Alex and his family are parishioners of St. Catherine of Siena Catholic Church

DANIEL CASTAN 

Attorney

Dan Castan is a senior partner at Castan and Lecca, PC in Buckhead and represents injured workers before the State Board of Workers’ Compensation and plaintiffs in State and Superior Courts of Georgia for injuries suffered in accidents. Dan litigated one of the seminal claims securing the rights of undocumented workers to receive Workers’ Compensation benefits in the state of Georgia when injured in the case of Wet Walls, Inc. vs. Ledesma. Dan has successfully fought and settled multi million dollar cases. He was born and raised in Newark, New Jersey to immigrant parents from Cuba. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Boston College and received his Juris Doctor from The Washington College of Law at The American University in Washington D.C.  Dan was admitted to the Georgia Bar in November, 1993.  He is an active member of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Georgia Trial Lawyers Association, Atlanta Bar Association and the Workers’ Compensation Section of the State Bar of Georgia. Dan is a founding member and Director of the Latino Victory Fund Georgia and serves on the Board of The Latin American Association. Dan has been dedicated to getting Latinos elected to local, state and Federal offices in Georgia. He has been a Big Brother through Big Brothers and Sisters of Metro Atlanta and a mentor through The Latin American Association’s mentor/mentee program. Dan is married with two children.