Sometimes, our clients get the impression that, when we file suit on their behalf, we are suing the insurance company. However, our Atlanta accident lawyers do not normally sue an insurance company directly. But that doesn’t mean the insurance company won’t have to pay your damages.
Ideally, Your Car Insurance Claim Will Be Paid Right Away
Most of the time, when you file your insurance claim, you’ll receive a check within a week or two. However, there are times when the insurance company denies a claim. For whatever reason, they don’t think you are entitled to compensation.
Sometimes, your claim is denied simply because you didn’t send the right paperwork to the insurance adjuster. Other times, the insurance adjuster thinks that you were at fault or doubts your injuries.
Was Your Insurance Claim Denied?
When you first meet with your car accident attorney in Atlanta, make sure you let them know why your claim was denied. In fact, it’s a good idea to fax or email them a copy of your denial letter before you go to their office.
Once your Atlanta accident lawyer knows why your claim was denied, they’ll have a better idea of how to approach the situation. It could be something as simple as the insurance company thinking they can settle for less if they deny your claim initially.
Your Car Accident Attorney in Atlanta May Be Able to Negotiate Payment of Your Claim
Depending on why your claim was denied, your car accident attorney in Atlanta may be able to secure payment. Our lawyers have decades of combined experience handling cases just like yours.
Attorneys are familiar with the big insurance carriers. They know how they operate. They also understand what it takes to negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance adjuster. If this isn’t feasible, they’ll have no choice but to recommend that you file suit.
How Will Your Atlanta Accident Lawyer Determine if Legal Action is Warranted?
Our Atlanta accident lawyers would prefer to never have to file suit on behalf of a client. Ideally, your claim will be paid, and you won’t have to worry about it. If things don’t work out this way, your Atlanta accident lawyer will have to make a decision.
Before they file suit, they may send a demand letter to the insurance adjuster. This letter will demand that they pay your claim in full. It will also indicate that, if the claim isn’t paid, your attorney will have no choice but to file a lawsuit against the other driver.
What Kind of Evidence Do You Have That Supports Your Claim That the Other Driver Caused the Crash?
Whether your Atlanta accident lawyer files suit will depend heavily on the strength of your claim. For example, is there evidence that clearly shows that the other driver was at fault? Or, does the evidence make it appear as if both of you were partially at fault?
Another thing your lawyer will look at is the seriousness of your injuries. If you don’t have medical bills to back up your claim for damages, your car accident attorney in Atlanta may not want to sue.
Were You Partially at Fault for the Accident?
One thing you need to keep in mind is that the defendant isn’t going to back down and admit they were at fault. Their lawyer will be trying to prove that you were the one at fault.
Your Atlanta accident lawyer will have to determine just how responsible you were for the crash. If it’s close to 50%, it may not be the best idea to file suit. If there’s a chance you could lose at trial, you may want to reconsider filing suit.
Your Car Accident Attorney in Atlanta Cannot Sue the Insurance Company Directly
Most people don’t realize that Georgia law doesn’t allow you to sue the defendant’s insurance company directly. When your Atlanta accident lawyer decides it’s time to sue, they’ll have to sue the other driver – not their insurance carrier.
There are very few exceptions in Georgia where you’re able to sue the insurance carrier. For example, if you can prove that they acted in bad faith, you may be able to sue them for damages.
The same thing is true if the insurance company refuses to tell your Atlanta accident lawyer why your claim was denied in the first place.
The Insurance Company is Required to Represent Their Insured
While you can’t sue the insurance company directly, that doesn’t mean they won’t be affected by the lawsuit. Legally, the insurance carrier is required to represent the other driver in the case.
What this means is that the insurance company will have to provide an attorney to help the defendant with their case. This is the attorney that your Atlanta car accident lawyer will try to negotiate a settlement with.
Another important thing to remember is that, if you win, the insurance company will have to pay your damages. Technically, they’ll only be liable for the amount of coverage listed in their policy.
Hopefully, Your Atlanta Accident Lawyer Will Be Able to Negotiate a Settlement
Some of our clients are surprised that we can’t sue the insurance company directly. While they may be the ones paying your claim, that doesn’t mean your car accident attorney in Atlanta can sue them.
Suing the other driver can be complicated. As long as your Atlanta accident lawyer can prove the other driver was at fault, you should be able to collect damages. However, the damages don’t come from the other driver. They come from the insurance carrier.
Rather than try to handle this all by yourself, it’s a good idea to meet with an Atlanta car accident lawyer. Sit down and find out what your best options are. Since we offer all new clients a free, initial consultation, you can do this free of charge.