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Claridge Law Firm
206 Pleasant Home Road
Augusta, GA 30907

Fax: 706-860-4050
Phone: 706-860-4500
Augusta Law Office

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Do I have to go to court to settle a car accident claim?

You suffered injuries from a car accident. You are tired, in pain and bleeding money trying to cover your losses. Being unable to work has not helped your financial situation. You believe that you are owed compensation, but you are afraid going after it would mean going to court. This has you thinking that you should just take the insurance settlement initially offered to you.

Here is the deal. Yes, sometimes to achieve fair compensation going to court is necessary. Sometimes, it is not. Insurance providers know it is in their best interests to settle before you take the matter to court. Unfortunately, it can take time for insurance to offer fair compensation.

Starting settlement negotiations 

There is no specific timeline for completing insurance settlement negotiations. It can take time to walk through all the steps, which are:

  • Reporting the accident
  • Waiting for the insurance agency to investigate
  • Receiving a settlement offer 
  • Accepting or rejecting the offer
  • Continuing or finalizing negotiations

If you decide to refuse the initial settlement offer, it is necessary to send a refusal letter to the insurance carrier. With it, you can submit a demand letter which states what you believe is a fair amount. If may take some negotiation before terms are reached, if agreement is reached at all.

If negotiations fail

If the negotiation process is not going anywhere, court may be beneficial to consider. Legal counsel can advise whether litigation may be a worthwhile step. If it is, your personal injury attorney can file the appropriate motions in civil court and help you prepare your case. Know that litigation can take time. Also know that if you wish to pursue legal action, you have to do it within a certain time frame.

Know your options

Going to court is not the only way to settle a car accident claim. You may have other options. Legal counsel can help you find the best way to resolve the issue and will do everything possible to assist you in seeking maximum compensation for your losses, whether they are economic or non-economic. Take time to review your options before jumping on the initial insurance settlement to make sure it is the most beneficial option given your situation.

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