Answers to commonly asked questions about car, truck and motorcycle crashes in Atlanta, GA
The aftermath of an auto accident can be a stressful and confusing time. The questions you have following a crash begin from the moment of the wreck and can go on for months, even years, following the incident.
If you or a loved one were involved in a serious auto wreck, it’s important to focus on your recovery, health and well-being. But how can you do that with so many unanswered questions and concerns?
Simply put, consulting with an experienced Atlanta car accident attorney near you as soon as possible is the best way to get your pressing questions answered and understand your legal rights. But in the meantime, below we’ve compiled a list of some of the most common questions about Georgia auto accident law and filing an injury claim.
While we hope this guide provides some answers for you, understand that there may be many complicating factors with your individual claim. Contact a knowledgeable and friendly legal expert at Scholle Law today for your free consultation.
Car Accident FAQ
- What are the most common injuries in a T-bone collision?
- Why are there so many rear-end car collisions in Atlanta?
- What should I do if injured in Georgia by a drunk driver?
- What should I do if injured in Georgia by a distracted driver, or driver who was texting?
- The adjuster in my Georgia personal injury claim refuses to consider my lost income. Why?
- How do I get treated if I was injured in a Georgia wreck that wasn’t my fault and I don’t have health insurance?
- What should I do if the adjuster only wants to pay a fraction of my Georgia car accident claim?
- What are the types of Georgia auto insurance coverage and what do they cover?
- I live in Georgia, and an out-of-state driver with “no-fault” insurance hit me. What now?
- What happens if I was injured in a Georgia car wreck, but the other driver is uninsured?
- I got a ticket for a wreck that wasn’t my fault. What should I do?
- What do the codes mean on a Georgia motor vehicle accident report?
- How can I determine the car insurance company of the driver who hit me in Georgia?
- How much is the settlement value for a bulging disc in a Georgia auto accident?
- How much is a settlement for a herniated disc in a Georgia car accident?
- How much is a broken bone injury worth in a Georgia auto wreck case?
- What is a torn meniscus knee injury?
- How much is a settlement for a knee injury in a Georgia accident case?
- How much is my ankle injury worth in a Georgia auto accident claim?
- What is the settlement value for a foot injury in a Georgia car crash?
- How much compensation can I get for a wrist injury after a Georgia car accident?
- How much is the claim value for an elbow injury after a Georgia collision?
- What is the settlement value for a hip injury in a Georgia auto accident?
- How much is a settlement for a pelvis injury in a Georgia motor vehicle accident case?
- What is a concussion worth in a Georgia car accident claim?
What are the most common injuries in a T-bone collision?
The most serious and common injuries in a T-bone collision are whiplash, shoulder and head injuries. These injuries occur often due to the jarring nature of the side-impact, but injuries to the hips and knees, while usually less serious, are common as well.
Even with a seat belt on, a head injury can be sustained from striking objects close to the head such as a closed window, seat back or door frame. The sideways motion of the head can put extreme and sudden strain on the spine. Shoulder injuries often occur as a result of the driver or passenger tensing and holding onto something in the moment before the impact, resulting in strains and tears of ligaments in the shoulder.
We always encourage you to get treatment for your injuries, however minor they seem, and you are welcome to reach out to us. Scholle Law has experienced attorneys who have helped our clients maximize their compensation for damages they have suffered from all types of injuries.
Learn more about common T-bone injuries.
Back to top
Why are there so many rear-end car collisions in Atlanta?
There are many reasons behind the high rate of rear-end car collisions in Atlanta; however, a couple of the main contributing factors are the city’s traffic congestion combined with distracted driving.
Atlanta has a population of over 6 million as of July 2019, making it one of the nation’s fastest-growing metropolitan areas. As the population grows, so does the number of cars on the roads, leading to a world-class traffic problem.
In addition to the overwhelming number of commuters, the increased use of cell phones has made distracting driving the most common cause of rear-end accidents in Atlanta. Texting while driving, although illegal in Georgia, is an ongoing problem that seems to get worse every year as people become more attached to their devices and disregard the law.
Learn more about the common causes of rear-end car accidents.
Back to top
What should I do if injured in Georgia by a drunk driver?
If you are involved in a motor vehicle accident in Georgia that involves a drunk driver, make sure that you immediately call the police. Tell the responding officer about your suspicions because the officer may not necessarily come to that conclusion on his or her own. Make sure that a police report is written.
If possible, collect as much information from the accident scene as you can. This includes obtaining the at-fault driver’s insurance information, the names of any potential witnesses and taking photographs of the scene and any property damage.
If you are injured in any way, seek medical treatment as quickly as possible. Waiting days, weeks or months will give the at-fault driver or their insurance company a better argument that the injuries you are claiming from the auto accident were caused by something else due to the delay in obtaining medical treatment.
Continue reading about Georgia DUI law and compensation after a drunk driving accidentBack to top
What should I do if injured in Georgia by a distracted driver, or driver who was texting?
According to O.C.G.A. § 40-6-241.2, it is against the law to write, send or read texts while operating a vehicle in Georgia. If you are hit by a driver that was texting, you should first call the police. This ensures, at the very least, that your claim that the other driver was texting is properly documented. While it can be extremely difficult to prove someone was texting and caused an auto accident, the police officer will typically note your claim that the other driver was texting in the accident report.
Once that is done, depending on how seriously you are injured, you should go to a doctor or hospital. While you should always seek out medical treatment after an auto accident, this step is especially important if the reason you were injured is that someone was texting while driving.
Read more about distracted driving car accidents.Back to top
The adjuster in my Georgia personal injury claim refuses to consider my lost income. Why?
The insurance adjuster handling your Georgia personal injury or accident claim might refuse to consider your lost income due to a lack of proper documentation. You must prove that any time spent away from work was medically necessary and directly related to your injuries. This can be done by obtaining a work slip or medical narrative from your treating physician, pay stubs, W-2(s) from the tax year before the accident and any years following that you were still undergoing treatment, or a salary or wage verification form from your employer.
Learn more about how to prove lost income.Back to top
How do I get treated if I was injured in a Georgia wreck that wasn’t my fault and I don’t have health insurance?
If you were injured in a wreck and you do not have health insurance, Scholle Law can help you find a medical provider who will treat you on a “lien.” This means you can get the treatment you need now, with the agreement that the bill will be paid out of the proceeds from the settlement of your claim.
You also may qualify for a Marketplace policy from www.HealthCare.gov.
Some people have Med Pay as part of their automobile insurance policy. Our attorneys can explain your options.
Get more information on paying for medical bills after a crash.Back to top
What should I do if the adjuster only wants to pay a fraction of my Georgia car accident claim?
It’s the job of the insurance adjuster to get you to settle your case for as little as possible. When dealing with property damage and injuries, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. But if you settle before knowing the full extent of your injuries, or without having them reimburse you for all of your medical expenses and pain and suffering, then it will be too late to collect more.
Don’t let the adjuster pressure you into accepting a settlement that is less than you deserve. If an insurance adjuster only wants to pay a fraction of your Georgia auto accident claim, the best thing you can do for yourself is hire an experienced personal injury attorney to review the claim impartially and professionally.
Continue reading about the various tactics adjusters employ to undermine your claim.Back to top
What are the types of Georgia auto insurance coverage and what do they cover?
Insurance coverage for motor vehicles in Georgia may extend from your insurance policy or an auto policy of another driver in an accident. Coverage from your policy is called “first-party coverage,” and coverage from another is called “third-party coverage.” The types of available first-party coverage will be listed on your declarations page. Your insurance carrier can supply this to you upon request.
In general, first-party coverage will entail collision coverage, which addresses damage to your vehicle after an accident. Rental coverage is first-party coverage that addresses the need for a temporary replacement vehicle after an accident. First-party coverage may also include MedPay coverage that can address your accident-related medical expenses. If the other driver has no insurance or not enough, uninsured/underinsured coverage from your policy will address this.
If you cause an accident, then the liability coverage from your policy will address the damages you caused to another person. However, if another driver is at-fault, their liability coverage would apply, and this is third party coverage. Be aware that the popular term “full coverage” does not accurately inform anyone as to what coverages are listed on the declaration page of a policy.
Learn more about Georgia’s auto insurance requirements and laws.Back to top
I live in Georgia, and an out-of-state driver with “no-fault” insurance hit me. What now?
If you live in Georgia and you are hit by an out-of-state driver with “no-fault” insurance, you should speak with an experienced attorney. Although Georgia law will govern the claim if the collision happened anywhere in the state, and the no-fault carrier must provide coverage for the accident according to Georgia law, it’s important that a knowledgeable and experienced attorney help you through the process to make sure the out-of-state insurance carrier doesn’t accidentally (or even intentionally) violate your rights or fail to properly compensate you for your injuries.
At Scholle Law, we routinely investigate and pursue claims against out-of-state drivers and insurance policies. If you were hit by an out-of-state driver with no-fault insurance coverage, we would be happy to speak with you and help you navigate this difficult process.
Continue reading for more information about insurance coverage options.Back to top
What happens if I was injured in a Georgia car wreck, but the other driver is uninsured?
If you’ve been injured in an accident and the at-fault driver appears to have no insurance, there are several steps you should take right away.
First, question how this conclusion was arrived at in the first place. Never take someone’s word that they don’t have insurance the first time you hear it. This may or may not be true. Check the police report. If the at-fault driver is not the owner of the car, there may be coverage for the car, even if there is none for the driver. Even if an at-fault driver produces an expired insurance card (or no card) at the scene, pursue a claim anyway. It is possible that their policy was renewed. And even if an insurance carrier determines there is no coverage, the adjuster has special search tools and may assist you in determining who the right insurance carrier is.
If there truly is no coverage from the at-fault driver, you will need to turn to your own auto insurance policy and file an uninsured motorist claim. This coverage is applicable if and only if coverage from the at-fault driver has been ruled out, and you have uninsured coverage. The adjuster handling the uninsured claim may take up to 30 days of due diligence to rule out other coverage.
Once other coverage is ruled out, you will then be able to proceed with your claim using your uninsured motorist coverage. To mitigate a wait time regarding the damage to your car, you may consider using your collision coverage to address any property damage.
Read more about the importance of UM/UIM coverage in Georgia.
I got a ticket for a wreck that wasn’t my fault. What should I do?
If you get a ticket in a wreck that isn’t your fault, you should immediately speak with both a criminal traffic attorney and a personal injury attorney. Not only are you subject to the traffic fine itself, but the long-term effect on your car insurance rates could be substantial if you don’t have the assistance of an experienced attorney to help you.
Beyond the immediate financial consequences, you may be left without any recovery for your own injuries and your insurance may pay for the injuries of the true at-fault party. Our personal injury attorneys can help investigate the claim itself, locate witnesses or other evidence, and fight against the other insurance company to make sure that your carrier is not paying out wrongfully.
At Scholle Law, we have a great deal of experience helping clients who have been wrongfully accused of causing an accident. If you are facing this difficult situation, please reach out and so we can speak with you and try to preserve your rights.Back to top
What do the codes mean on a Georgia motor vehicle accident report?
Georgia’s Motor Vehicle Accident Report uses special codes in order to condense a report, making it easy to understand a lot of information with just a glance. These codes typically convey contributing factors (causes of the accident), vehicle type, location of impact, injury code (0 not injured, 1 killed, 2 serious, etc.) and airbag function. If the police officer doesn’t give you a key to help you decipher all the codes, you can download the decipher overlay here.
Of course, our attorneys can also translate it for you and tell you what any of them mean.
Learn how to read a Georgia accident report here.Back to top
How can I determine the car insurance company of the driver who hit me in Georgia?
All drivers should have a valid insurance card in their vehicle. The investigating officer should collect information from everyone involved and prepare an accident report. The accident report should list the names and addresses of all drivers, as well as the make and model of each vehicle involved, and their insurance information.
The accident report usually isn’t available for several days following the wreck. If the report does not include the insurance carrier for the at-fault driver, your insurance company should be able to locate the insurance carrier for you. Our attorneys at Scholle Law are happy to review your automobile policy and explain all of your options.
What if you were involved in a hit and run? We’ve got more information here.Back to top
How much is the settlement value for a bulging disc in a Georgia auto accident?
Final settlement amounts for bulging discs are dependent on multiple factors. First, we have to answer important questions such as:
- Does the disc now press on a nerve?
- Did you follow through with a recommended surgery, or is surgery not needed for you to feel better?
- Did you have pre-existing disc issues, like herniations?
Because there could be a slew of variations in your actual injury and treatment, it can be difficult to pinpoint an exact amount of money you would receive in a settlement. Rest assured that the personal injury attorneys at Scholle Law are here to help maximize the value of your case. Our decades of experience have served our clients well.Back to top
How much is a settlement for a herniated disc in a Georgia car accident?
If you were involved in an auto accident in Georgia and suffered a herniated disc, you may be looking at a settlement value that ranges from the thousands to multiple millions, depending on the severity. This is because no 2 herniation injuries are the same. Each is based on numerous factors, such as the total amount of medical expenses, if you have a history of any pre-existing disc herniation(s), if you need surgery or not, and if that surgery completely heals you or if additional treatment is needed.
As there is no specific formula for determining exactly how much your herniated disc injury might be worth, it’s vital you reach out to an experienced Georgia personal injury attorney for help.Back to top
How much is a broken bone injury worth in a Georgia auto wreck case?
People often wonder how much suffering from a broken bone is worth, but it can be difficult to calculate an exact amount. Every case has unique circumstances that must be considered, and injuries aren’t always obvious at the outset of a personal injury claim.
For example, the body part that was injured and the long-term impairments, the length of time for recovery, and the type of treatment received can all affect the amount of a settlement.
Scholle Law has the experienced staff to help anyone through the claims process. This will allow you to focus on recovering from your injuries with the knowledge and comfort that you will receive full compensation for pain and suffering.Back to top
What is a torn meniscus knee injury?
Knee injuries are typically caused by twisting the knee or by blunt force trauma. If you twisted your knee in an attempt to avoid injury during the wreck or struck the dashboard with your knee, the blunt force trauma may have caused a torn meniscus.
Each knee has 2 C-shaped pieces of cartilage, located between the shinbone and thighbone. These pieces, known as the “meniscus,” act as a cushion to the knee cap. You may hear a popping sensation, have swelling or stiffness, and difficulty straightening your knee. Sometimes you can actually hear a grinding sound (known as “crepitus”), especially when going up or down stairs.
Conservative treatment, such as rest, ice and medication, will sometimes be enough to relieve knee pain and allow the injury time to heal on its own. In other cases, a torn meniscus requires surgery. Scholle Law understands how to handle serious injuries caused by a vehicle collision. We will help you navigate the medical treatment required for recovery.Back to top
How much is a settlement for a knee injury in a Georgia accident case?
The settlement value of a knee injury varies greatly depending upon the severity of the injury to your knee. In some cases, it may be painful to walk but your knee can heal with a course of physical therapy or a steroid injection. In other cases, the injury to the knee may be more substantial and require surgical repair of tendons or cartilage. In a recent case with our firm, our client’s kneecap completely shattered and had to be reconstructed.
Much of the settlement value will depend on the total medical expenses incurred for the treatment, the financial impact the knee injury has had on the client’s life, and the degree to which future medical treatment is required. No matter how severe the injury, it’s important to speak with an attorney to make sure that you are being fully compensated. At Scholle Law, we have a tremendous amount of experience helping clients achieve the best recovery possible, whatever their injury.Back to top
How much is my ankle injury worth in a Georgia auto accident claim?
If you were involved in an auto accident in Georgia that resulted in an ankle injury, you could be looking at a settlement value that ranges from hundreds to thousands depending on the severity of the injury, the total amount of medical expenses, if there is any scarring, if you have a history of any previous ankle pain or injuries, if you have to undergo surgery, and if you fully recover following that surgery or if additional treatment is required.
Because no 2 ankle injuries are the same, it is important to reach out to an experienced Georgia personal injury attorney who can help determine exactly what the value might be for your ankle injury case.Back to top
What is the settlement value for a foot injury in a Georgia car crash?
No 2 foot injuries are exactly alike. If you suffered a foot injury when you were involved in an auto accident in Georgia, you could be looking at a settlement value that ranges from thousands to hundreds of thousands, depending on the severity of the injury.
Each case value is determined by several unique factors, such as the total amount of medical expenses, scarring, prior history of foot pain or injuries, surgery, and post-surgical prognosis. Since there is no exact formula for determining exactly what the value might be for your foot injury, reaching out to an experienced Georgia personal injury attorney is essential.Back to top
How much compensation can I get for a wrist injury after a Georgia car accident?
If your wrist was injured in an automobile accident in Georgia caused by another person, you have the right to be compensated for your pain and suffering, as well as all reasonable and related medical expenses. While all wrist injuries have value, the specific facts of your own injury claim will determine the final outcome.
Factors that determine the value of wrist injuries may involve whether or not there were fractures or breaks to the bones themselves (as in a Torus fracture), permanent deformity (common with Colles fractures), or damage to the wrist ligaments (common after holding tightly to a steering wheel during an accident). As the severity of damage to the wrist increases, so does the value of the case.
It’s also important to note that the value of a claim does not end with the injury itself. Some wrist injuries heal over a period of 6 to 8 weeks after consistent immobilization of the injured area by cast or splint. However, some wrist injuries require surgical intervention to address repairs to the broken area. In some instances that require wrist surgery, external fixation devices are needed to stabilize and maintain alignment of the broken or fractured bones. Damaged ligaments and tendons in the wrist are typically measured as Grade 1 (mild) to Grade 3 (severe or torn).Back to top
How much is the claim value for an elbow injury after a Georgia collision?
The most common cause of injuries to the elbow is blunt force trauma. Blunt force trauma is a non-penetrating forceful impact, usually causing some level of damage to both the inside and outside of the body parts impacted. In an automobile accident, direct, blunt force trauma against the elbow is very common. This usually happens when the victim is in the direct area of impact but can also happen under other circumstances depending (rollover type accidents, etc.).
As with all injury claims, proper compensation for an elbow injury takes into consideration the kind of injury sustained. When considering the value of an elbow injury, it is important to take into account the specific injuries that are documented and diagnosed by the treating physician in a given case. For example, if the victim of an accident received a bone contusion to the elbow, the adjuster will document their file with a “contused elbow.”
Add to this that pain is not an injury, but the symptom of an injury and the value granted by an adjuster may not be very much. In such an instance, other value drivers surrounding the claim (such as DUI) may have to be utilized to argue for a higher value.
On the other hand, if the elbow (olecranon process) or any other proximately related bones (humerus, radius, ulna, etc.) are broken or fractured, these injuries are objective and demonstrable and will be granted a much higher value by the adjuster.Back to top
What is the settlement value for a hip injury in a Georgia auto accident?
Numerous details will ultimately determine the settlement value of your case, such as whether or not surgery was recommended and pre-existing conditions. For instance, a hip replacement would likely be considered more serious than an arthroscopy. If a fracture happened at the joint, it might not be considered as serious, but anywhere else could increase the value of your case exponentially.
It is best to discuss your case with an experienced personal injury attorney near you as he or she can help increase your settlement by appropriately valuing your injury. Scholle Law’s attorneys specialize in maximizing our clients’ settlements, from a simple bruising to a total hip replacement.Back to top
How much is a settlement for a pelvis injury in a Georgia motor vehicle accident case?
There is no standard formula to determine the exact value of a car accident claim, but rather many factors that can impact your final settlement. At Scholle Law, we can calculate the value of your case—starting by asking the following questions:
- Did you have pre-existing pelvis issues?
- What type of treatment have you been recommended to undergo?
- Were you recommended to undergo surgery, or not?
- What type of surgery?
A pelvis fracture repair will be considered more serious than an arthroscopy. Our experienced personal injury attorneys can recognize all the signs to determine the maximum value of your case and get you the most money for your injuries and pain and suffering.Back to top
What is a concussion worth in a Georgia car accident claim?
There is no exact settlement value for a concussion. So much depends on the severity of the concussion and the ways in which it has affected the client’s life. If the concussion is mild, then most likely the client has had some bad headaches that required pain relievers and the injury heals within a few weeks with minimal medical treatment. With a more severe concussion, the client may be unable to work or function because of dizziness, vertigo, migraines, blurred vision, or a number of other serious impairments.
While most concussions will eventually heal without the need for invasive medical treatment, it can still have a significant financial impact on the life of the victim. With any injury, it’s always important to speak with a knowledgeable attorney about what your rights are and make sure that you get a full financial recovery from the at-fault party.
Scholle Law specializes in helping personal injury victims with all types of injuries get the best possible recovery.
Back to top
Have more questions?
Visit our Georgia Personal Injury & Accident Guide for answers.