If you’re ever in a car accident, your one hope is that the other driver’s insurance company will pay your medical bills. The last thing you’ll want to do is fight with an insurance adjustor when you’re trying to recover from your injuries. The good news is that an experienced Athens car accident lawyer can handle this for you. One thing they may find is that the other driver’s policy doesn’t cover all your damages. Unfortunately, when you’re dealing with a serious car accident, there’s always the chance of this happening.
Your Damages May Exceed the Defendant’s Policy Limits
When people sign up for car insurance, they must make a few decisions. First, they need to decide whether they want full coverage or just liability. Liability will only cover damages suffered by the other party. It isn’t going to replace or repair the driver’s vehicle. If somebody purchases comprehensive coverage, it should cover all damages suffered by both parties. The second decision they must make is how much coverage they want to purchase. It’s kind of like when you buy life insurance. You get what you pay for. If you want more coverage, you’re going to pay a higher premium. If the defendant chose a lower premium for less coverage, it may not be enough to pay off your entire claim. If that’s the case, you’ll have to either sue the driver personally for the difference. Or your Athens car accident lawyer can negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance company.
Will You Have to Sue the Defendant Directly?
If the defendant’s policy doesn’t cover all your damages, you may have no choice but to file suit. Your Athens car accident lawyer can help you make this decision. One of the biggest factors will be how much of your claim was not covered by insurance. If your claim was for $250,000 and the policy only covered $100,000, it may be worth suing. After all, you’re not going to want to walk away for $150,000 less than your full demand. Another thing to consider is whether the defendant has any assets. You don\’t want to waste your time and money suing somebody if all you’re going to get is a worthless judgment.
When is it Not Worth Suing the Driver Personally for Damages?
There are times when your Athens car accident lawyer will tell you that it will be a waste of time suing the defendant personally. Even if you go to court and win, that doesn’t mean you’ll ever see a dime. All you’ll have is a civil judgment against the other driver. If they don’t have assets, there isn’t a whole lot you can do. You may never get paid. If you’re lucky, the defendant will want to fix their credit at some point and reach out to you to work out a payment plan. However, even if you agree to a payment plan, it could take more than ten (10) years to pay the judgment off. It may be better to just settle with the insurance company for as much money as you can get.
Contact an Experienced Athens Car Accident Lawyer
If you or your family are involved in a car crash, you have a few options. You can sit back and pray that the insurance company pays your claim. You can pursue legal action against the other driver on your own. Or you can retain an experienced Athens car accident lawyer. Whatever you choose is entirely up to you. Of course, there’s no law that says that you need to be a lawyer to file a car accident lawsuit. There are even websites that promise to walk you through the process step by step. However, there are certain things that the internet can’t do for you.
When you have a skilled Athens car accident lawyer by your side, there’s a certain level of comfort you can enjoy. You know they understand the law. You also know they have years or decades of experience handling cases just like yours. They have working relationships with the insurance adjustors and will get in touch with them to try to settle your claim. If all else fails, they can file a car accident lawsuit on your behalf.
Before you make any final decisions, why don\’t you call our office and schedule your free, initial consultation? It is free and you’ve got nothing to lose.