If you’ve ever been involved in a car accident in Georgia, you know it can take forever to get your insurance check. In Georgia, there’s a two-year window for filing a car accident lawsuit. Whether you’ve filed a first party claim or you’re pursuing the other driver’s insurance company, you won’t be paid immediately. The insurance adjuster typically needs some time to research the incident and determine who they feel was at fault. Atlanta accident lawyers don’t get to handle the cases that are no-brainers. Those cases are usually paid right away. It’s only when it’s unclear who was at fault that things can get messy.
If the insurance company denies your claim or only pays part of it, you have a decision to make. You need to decide whether you want to accept what they give you or take further action. You have the right to do either. If you think you were entitled to more money, then the least you can do is talk to an Atlanta accident lawyer about a car accident lawsuit. Let the review your case and give you an idea of what it may be worth. If the attorney feels your case is strong, you may want to move forward. You just want to make sure you don’t wait too long before you decide to do this.
Two Years Seems Like a Really Long Time
Every state has their own rules when it comes to filing lawsuits. One of the most important rules has to do with the filing deadline. The law that governs this is called the statute of limitations. In Georgia, the statute of limitations is two (2) years. That means you have two years from the date of your accident to file your car accident lawsuit. If you miss this deadline by a day, or an hour, your case will be dismissed. Rather than risk this happening, you should consult with a seasoned Atlanta accident lawyer. They’ll make sure your car accident lawsuit is filed on time. They understand the law and the court rules. They understand that if they wait too long, you may not have an opportunity to sue the other party.
One of the problems a lot of Atlanta accidents have is their clients wait until the last minute to hire them. Two years sounds like an awfully long time. People can have two children in two years. A person can get their associates degree in less time than that. Yet you’d be surprised just how fast two years can fly by. If you’ve been involved in a car crash, you may need a lot of medical care. Perhaps you need multiple surgeries. Or maybe you need long-term physical therapy. By the time you’re done with this, two years may have already gone by. It’s important to remember that the court doesn’t care that you were getting medical care. They don’t want to hear your excuses. If you don’t file in time, you’re out of luck.
Your Atlanta Accident Lawyer May Have to Wait to Gather Evidence
Sometimes, waiting to sue has nothing to do with your needing medical care. It may take your Atlanta accident lawyer quite some time to locate all the evidence related to your car accident lawsuit. Maybe an eyewitness moved, and they can’t find them. They may be waiting on the report from a medical expert that is taking longer than they expected. This is when it can get tricky. You don’t want to sue too early and undercut your demand. You also don’t want to sue for damages that you can’t prove. If you do this, the defendant’s attorney may ask the court to dismiss the case as a frivolous lawsuit. Your Atlanta accident lawyer must strike a fine balance between filing too soon and waiting too long to file.
What Happens if You Miss the Filing Deadline?
As mentioned earlier, the judge will have no sympathy if you miss the car accident lawsuit filing deadline. One of two things will happen. When you do finally file your lawsuit, the judge may dismiss it out of hand. If they notice that you’ve missed your filing window, they won’t entertain your claim. If the judge doesn’t dismiss it, the defendant’s attorney will file a motion to dismiss. If this happens, the judge has no choice but to grant their motion. They can’t break or change the law for anybody no matter how bad they may feel for you.
Rather than have this happen, call and talk to an experienced Atlanta accident lawyer today. They can review your case and get things rolling immediately.