If an accident caused by another person’s negligence, or recklessness, has resulted in the serious personal injury of you or a loved one, the experienced attorneys at Nicholson Revell are ready to help. Our Augusta GA personal injury lawyers have years of experience in helping accident victims. Our personal injury attorneys fight so that our clients receive the compensation they need to help pay medical bills, cover repair bills, make up for lost wages, and offset pain and suffering and other financial burdens that often result from serious personal injury.
Insurance companies are interested in minimizing their economic exposure when a serious injury or death occurs. They hire attorneys who aggressively undermine each aspect of your claim and try to derail your case from the start. We have dealt with insurance companies throughout the state of Georgia and have successfully prevented them from taking advantage of injury victims. We relentlessly pursue our clients’ causes to help them receive the full, and in some instances additional, amount of the coverage they deserve from insurance companies.
At Nicholson Revell LLP, we understand how these companies and their lawyers think, and the legal tactics they attempt to employ. With decades of successful experience dealing with personal injury cases in Augusta, GA, and the CSRA, our practice diligently pursues your right to compensation and security, and specializes in personal injury litigation due to negligence from a variety of sources:
Our Georgia personal injury lawyers take on each case as if it will proceed to trial. We are known for our willingness to pursue the best possible result for your case.
In Georgia, personal injury law is a facet of the civil justice system. It allows injured accident victims to seek justice from negligent or reckless parties. In Georgia, an injured party (known as the plaintiff) can only file an injury claim if someone else caused the accident or injury. A successful claim against the at-fault party (the defendant) could make a victim whole again by providing financial compensation for related losses.
Personal injury law revolves around the legal theory of negligence. In personal injury law, negligence is the failure to take proper care in doing something. If one person is negligent and this causes another person injury or harm, the negligent party may have to pay for his or her careless actions or lack of action. Negligence consists of four elements:
With proof of negligence, a plaintiff could be eligible for financial recovery. A plaintiff could also receive a payout for a defendant’s professional malpractice, recklessness, wanton disregard for others’ safety, intentional wrongdoing, or malicious intent to harm. These are all grounds on which a plaintiff can base a personal injury claim.
The burden of proof – the responsibility of proving a case – rests with the plaintiff in a personal injury case. It will be up to your Augusta injury lawyer to fulfill this burden by proving that the defendant is more likely than not responsible for causing your accident and injuries. This burden of proof is called a preponderance of the evidence. Evidence can include:
If you can gather any of this information and evidence yourself to bring to a lawyer, do so. Otherwise, rely on an attorney to collect evidence on your behalf. A lawyer will understand Georgia’s personal injury laws and how to successfully navigate them for the best possible case results.
Note that not all injury claims require proof of negligence. Some cases use the doctrine of strict liability. This means someone will be responsible for another person’s injuries regardless of whether or not that person was negligent. An example is a product liability claim, where a manufacturer is responsible for the injuries its defective product causes, regardless of negligence. Most personal injury cases, however, are based on negligence.
Before you can file a personal injury case in Georgia, your attorney must identify the liable party. This is the person or entity that will act as the defendant during your injury claim. If someone is liable for your personal injury, he or she will have to pay for your losses. Identifying the liable party in your personal injury claim requires an investigation into the cause of the injury.
Liable parties may include any of the following:
In some cases, multiple defendants share fault for an accident. At Nicholson Revell LLP, our Augusta personal injury lawyers can investigate your accident to determine its cause and source. From there, we can help you file an injury claim against the correct at-fault party or parties.
Comparative negligence is a defense the defendant may raise against your claim. It alleges that you were partially to blame for your accident or injury and, therefore, the defendant should not be fully liable for your losses.
The State of Georgia uses a modified comparative negligence law. Under this law, your own contribution to an accident will not bar you from financial recovery. It will, however, reduce your recovery based on your proportion of fault.
If you are found to be 20 percent at fault for an accident, for example, you will receive 20 percent less in financial compensation from the defendant. A lawyer can help you combat the comparative negligence defense, if necessary.
One of the main goals of filing a personal injury claim in Augusta is to obtain financial compensation. If someone else caused your injury, that person will owe you a monetary award. In Georgia, a successful injury claim could reimburse you for many losses:
The compensation available in your case will depend on the economic and noneconomic losses you suffered because of the defendant’s negligence. In general, the amount you receive will correspond with the severity of your injuries. If you suffered a catastrophic or permanent injury, you can typically expect more for your personal injury claim than if you have a minor injury. The lawyers at Nicholson Revell LLP can accurately assess the value of your claim.
The first step of your personal injury case is to file a claim through the insurance company of the at-fault party. You may be able to file through the defendant’s auto, home, or business insurance, depending on the type of accident and insurance coverage available. Your claim will then go to someone called an insurance claims adjuster, whose job it is to review your claim and recommend to the insurance company to either accept or reject coverage.
The most important thing to keep in mind is that the claims adjuster is not on your side. The claims adjuster may use special tactics to try to convince you to settle for less than your claim is truly worth. Take certain steps to protect your rights and best interests when speaking with an insurance claims adjuster in Georgia:
If you don’t feel comfortable speaking to an insurance claims adjuster about your personal injury case, hire an attorney to represent you during these conversations instead. An attorney will be able to recognize bad faith insurance tactics and fight against them on your behalf.
When you think about hiring a lawyer and filing a personal injury claim, you probably imagine a courtroom with a judge and a jury. However, the vast majority of injury cases never see the inside of a courtroom. They settle rather than going to trial.
Settling means reaching a settlement agreement with an insurance company. You will receive the offered amount of money in exchange for signing over the right to hold the defendant further liable for your accident. Since an insurance company has the most to lose from a trial, most insurers strive to resolve cases at the settlement stage.
An attorney can improve your chances of achieving a settlement. Your attorney will use proven strategies for negotiating with the insurance claims adjuster during your claim. If the insurance company refuses to offer enough compensation to adequately cover your financial losses, your lawyer can help you take your case to trial instead.
No law in Georgia requires you to hire an attorney for representation during a personal injury case. You always have the option of handling your case by yourself (pro se). This might be a good option if you have a simple case involving minor injuries only. Cases that can be filed in Georgia’s small claims courts are often too small for an attorney to accept.
If, however, your accident in Augusta caused serious injuries that will affect you for the foreseeable future, an attorney can be invaluable. It is critical to work with an attorney if you have a high-value personal injury case, such as one involving broken bones, a traumatic brain injury, a spinal cord injury, scarring or disfigurement, or a permanent injury. An attorney will protect your rights and best interests.
Achieving a fair award with help from an attorney is not just about how much money you can get out of your case. It is about preparing you and your family for the future. If someone else’s negligence gave you a serious injury, you could be facing years of medical care, physical therapy, and rehabilitation. You may have a permanent injury that will impact you for life. You need a fair award from a defendant to pay for ongoing costs.
You can also benefit from hiring a lawyer if your case has any complications, such as a defendant who is refuting fault, an insurance company that has wrongfully denied your claim, multiple defendants, not enough insurance coverage, or the comparative negligence defense. If you are unsure whether you could benefit from hiring a lawyer for your personal injury case, use a free consultation to get legal advice at no financial risk.
It is critical to understand how long you have to file a personal injury claim. Georgia has a statute of limitations of two years from the date of the accident. If you try to file after two years have passed, the courts will most likely refuse to hear your case, with rare exceptions. If you are filing a property-damage-only claim, however, you will have four years from the date of your accident to file.
If you don’t discover your injury right away, you will have two years from the date of discovery to file a claim. If, for example, you get into a car accident in Augusta but do not notice the symptoms of whiplash until three days later, you will have two years from the date you discovered the injury rather than the date of the car accident.
It is important to speak to an attorney about a potential claim as soon as possible. Waiting could not only put you at risk of missing the statute of limitations but also losing important evidence. Take immediate action to protect your legal rights.
If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident in Augusta, Georgia, protect yourself by consulting with an attorney from Nicholson Revell LLP. Our lawyers can review your case, listen to your story and give you trustworthy legal advice.
Our passionate personal injury attorneys can connect you to the medical care, justice, and compensation you deserve after an accident in Augusta. Contact us today for more information about how we can help you. Call (706) 722-8784 or contact us online 24/7.