When an individual is injured in a motor vehicle collision, they may be eligible to file a claim or lawsuit against the negligent party. To file a claim is to submit the claim in a jurisdiction to notify the court that the party is unable to come to a resolution, and they are now suing somebody. Filing a claim puts the person being sued on notice that they are no longer privately negotiating if that was the case. The injured party is taking the issue to the public forum for resolution.
Following an automobile collision, it is best to discuss your legal options with a seasoned car accident attorney. A lawyer could review the facts and walk you through the Alpharetta car accident case process. Speak to an attorney to get started on your claim.
Where to File a claim in Alpharetta?
A car accident claim could be filed in the state or superior court in the State of Georgia, or they can in magistrate court, which is a small claims court for cases under $15,000. One usually files a car accident claim in the state or superior court in the different counties like Fulton County.
What Is The Process Of Filing A Car Accident Claim?
To file a car accident claim, the individual needs to file a complaint, which is an outline of the issue they are suing somebody for. The injured person is suing the defendant and explains in their complaint why they are suing, what bad actions the defendant or the at-fault driver took, and why they should be held responsible. The claim states why the person is being sued in that jurisdiction. They also explain what they want in return, an amount of money or whether they want a jury trial. The claim is the overall argument they are presenting for why the case should take place.
Forfeiting The Right To Negotiate Outside Of Court?
Once a person files a lawsuit, they are in a litigation position. Sometimes the attorney for the other side wants to continue negotiating. There could be a time where they continue working towards a settlement. Once someone begins the litigation process, they can withdraw and dismiss the case; or the attorney can withdraw, and the case can be re-filed.
Litigation has deadlines. After one files a lawsuit, the answer has to come in, and there is a discovery deadline. Unless they agree to extensions, they are not working in a private settlement environment.
How Does Litigation Proceed In A Car Accident Case?
Litigation has several different phases. The beginning phase is the filing of the complaint. The defendant has to answer the lawsuit within a certain period of time. They explain why they are not at fault, and give all their defenses. The case goes into a discovery period to identify more evidence about the case.
The plaintiff and their attorney should make sure all the evidence they have in the case supports all arguments they are making. If they want to claim the plaintiff has a permanent injury, they need to have a doctor on record who documented the permanent injury. They are not going to be able to present that argument without proving it.
Next, each side sends the other a series of questions called an interrogatory to answer. The questions may include:
- Has the alleged at-fault driver ever been in other accidents?
- What types of medications did the driver take on that day?
- How many doctors has the injured party been to for treatment?
- Has the injured person had these problems prior?