If you or someone you love have suffered a personal injury in Marietta, you may qualify for a substantial financial recovery. This compensation can be crucial when paying medical bills, offsetting missed workdays, and other losses you have suffered because of your accident. Speaking to a Marietta personal injury lawyer from John Foy & Associates can help you understand your options.
Our legal experts are dedicated to helping you recover the highest compensation available to cover your needs while you heal. Sadly, many people who are injured resort to accepting an insurance settlement that is far too small. Known as the Strong Arm across Georgia, we have helped our clients secure over $1 billion in jury awards and settlements in the last two decades.
What to Do After Suffering a Personal Injury in Marietta
While you need the help and guidance of an experienced personal injury attorney to protect all your rights, you should always be your own best advocate in legal proceedings. No one knows your story as well as you do, and your lawyer should listen compassionately and negotiate aggressively for your best interests. There are basic steps you can take to assert and protect your legal rights, such as:
- Document your injury – Take time as soon as possible after your accident and write what happened in detail. If possible, take pictures of where it occurred.
- Watch what you say – You may instinctively want to apologize and accept the blame for an accident, but your words will be used against you by the insurance company. Never minimize your injuries or say you are fine unless a doctor has told you so.
- Talk to a lawyer – It may be hard to know what to do or how much your claim might be worth, but a consultation with a lawyer could be all it takes for you to decide on a course of action.
The person at fault or their insurance company may want you to sign an agreement, but this can leave you bound to unfair conditions and a lowball payout. Always have your attorney read and discuss any documents before you sign them. Insurance companies will argue that you do not have enough proof of your injuries or that you do not need a larger settlement. They are not on your side.
to find a John Foy office near you
Injuries that Qualify for a Personal Injury Claim in Marietta
Any kind of injury can potentially qualify for a personal injury claim. The key to these claims is not how you were hurt but whether anyone’s negligence was involved.
In the law, negligence basically means that someone else was careless and that it was their behavior that led to your injury. Examples of negligence can include:
- A dark stairwell where the light bulbs were never replaced
- A spill in a store that no one has cleaned up
- A driver changing lanes without signaling first
- A parking lot owner who does not clean up debris or fix potholes
- A dog owner whose pet runs loose and bites someone
- A bicycle rider who crashes into pedestrians in a crosswalk
Notice that nobody wanted to hurt anyone in these examples. Most likely, everyone involved is a good person. But in all these situations, someone failed to take basic precautions to look out for the people around them. They were careless with other people’s safety, and if that leads to an injury, then there is a valid personal injury claim.
Marietta Personal Injury Lawyer Near Me 404-400-4000
Common Types of Personal Injury Cases
All personal injury cases involve an injured individual and someone who acted negligently or carelessly. Some common types of personal injury cases in Marietta include:
- Pedestrian accidents: Marietta’s city square and surrounding streets attract hundreds of shoppers daily, and drivers looking for parking may fail to notice someone in a crosswalk.
- Tripping, slipping, and falling: Falling because of a puddle in a supermarket can leave you with a lifelong disability or worsen a pre-existing injury or medical condition.
- Truck accidents: Marietta highways and streets are traveled by large commercial trucks at all hours of the day and night. These trucks are heavy and hard to control with large blind spots, risking catastrophic injuries if they collide with your vehicle.
- Car accidents: Streets around Marietta can be narrow and filled with vehicles. Higher-speed and low-speed crashes are common, causing head-on collisions, and T-bone accidents.
- Construction accidents: As more people move to the area, more construction brings the chance of more injuries. Hazardous materials, faulty equipment, and failure to follow safety rules can all result in tremendous medical expenses.
- Wrongful death accidents: A wrongful death can happen from negligence such as nursing home abuse, medical malpractice, or medical injury.
- Intentional acts: Crimes such as robbery, sexual assault, assault, or battery that are meant to hurt you can be cause for a personal injury lawsuit.
- Dog bite attacks: When someone’s dog runs loose or is uncontrolled, you or a loved one could suffer disfiguring injuries and nerve damage from a bite.
- Nursing home injuries: Negligent care or abuse to elderly loved ones is cause for a personal injury claim.
- Defective products: When something is made poorly or marketed misleadingly, you may suffer harm or become ill. Product manufacturers, distributors, and sellers can be held liable.
- Dangerous prescription drugs: The Federal Drug Administration (FDA) has ways to fast-track medication approval, which means some could be improperly tested and cause illness or injury.
- Pharmacy errors: Technicians and pharmacists at your local store, in a hospital, or nursing home could give the wrong kind of drug or the wrong dosage, resulting in illness or fatality.
- Defective medical devices: Devices meant to save your life or help you recover can malfunction or have a faulty design that causes injury or death instead.
This list is not exhaustive, and your Marietta personal injury attorney can work with you to determine if your case qualifies for a claim.
How to Prove Liability in Your Personal Injury Claim
When you pursue a personal injury suit, it is critical to gather as much credible evidence as possible showing the liability of the person at fault. A strong case relies on proving that those to blame acted in a way that led to your injuries. Be aware that the defendant’s lawyer will often try to show that you were partially at fault.
Georgia law describes comparative negligence, which means a plaintiff can be assigned some of the blame for their accident. If you are found to carry some of the responsibility, your damages may be reduced by that same percentage. This can be upsetting, but it is where a skilled personal injury lawyer in Marietta can really help by conclusively demonstrating how the defendant injured you.
Your attorney and their team should assist you in gathering evidence such as:
- Police report: You can ensure an official record of your injury if you contact the police and request all reports about the incident for evidence.
- Photographs and video: Traffic cameras, store security cameras, and bystanders’ cellphone videos may provide valuable proof of your claim. Photos taken at the scene of the conditions, injuries, and anything contributing to your harm can also be helpful.
- Witness statements: When you are injured where there are witnesses, gather the witness contact information so your lawyer can obtain statements from them.
- Medical reports: Documentation of your injuries and diagnoses of your conditions will show the full extent of how you have been harmed and support your claim for damages.
- Criminal and civil suit histories: If the person who hurt you has a past of acting negligently or criminally, this can enforce the argument that they are to blame.
- Driving records: If you were injured by someone driving negligently, a record of driving recklessly, drunk driving, or failure to show due care can be highly valuable to your case.
- Social media histories: If the defendant has bragged about hurting you or discussed the incident on social media, these statements can be used to show liability.
You should gather these items as soon as possible after your injury so that the witnesses’ memories are fresh and the evidence is intact. For example, if someone neglected to clean up a spill and you slipped and fell, photographs showing the spill on the floor will be useful, rather than waiting until later when the area has been cleaned. You should also retain any clothing with the fluid on it as evidence rather than wash it or throw it away.
For a free legal consultation with a personal injury lawyer serving Marietta, call 404-400-4000
Proving Negligence in a Marietta Personal Injury Case
Proving liability is one part of a personal injury claim. The other part is proving that the person who hurt you was negligent in their behavior. Each personal injury case is unique, but they all revolve around a careless action someone did or did not take.
Your Marietta personal injury attorney can help you prove the four elements of negligence to validate your claim:
- The defendant owed you a duty of care to behave a certain way.
- The defendant failed to uphold this duty.
- This failure harmed the plaintiff.
- The plaintiff sustained financial losses as a result of this harm.
There are laws that add nuance to this process, such as those involving state government entities (GA Code § 50-21-24), comparative negligence, or instances of medical malpractice. A legal team can help you understand the specific laws that pertain to your case.
Going to Court for Your Personal Injury Claim in Marietta
Most personal injury claims do not go all the way to court. Usually, insurance companies will agree to a settlement, or the offending party will pay compensation themselves. Negotiating a satisfactory amount is best done by your personal injury attorney in Marietta so that the payout covers all your past, present, and future expenses.
With some pressure on the insurers to settle quickly and easily, and some strong evidence, you can get a much higher offer of money. All the evidence you gathered for an insurance claim can also benefit you if you need to proceed to trial. Going to court is when you will need an experienced personal injury lawyer the most.
The Benefits of Hiring a Marietta Personal Injury Attorney
While you can go it alone, a personal injury lawyer in Marietta can review your case for free and advise you on your next best steps. An attorney can ensure you have included all damages available to you in your claim. They can also make sure you file your claim correctly, and on time, so you don’t miss your window to do so.
A personal injury attorney can protect your legal rights. Some of the benefits you can reap in hiring a lawyer for your case include:
- Hiring expert witnesses to support your claim
- Investigating the scene of your accident to gather strong evidence on your behalf
- Completing all the necessary paperwork you have to file and filing it timely
- Negotiating a settlement amount until the insurance company and/or the liable party come to a number that’s fair to you
Many experienced and trustworthy law firms do not think you should be charged for talking to a lawyer. That is why many do not charge hourly fees. Instead, personal injury lawyers offer free consultations with no upfront costs. You pay nothing out of pocket, and your attorney works on a contingency fee basis, meaning if you do not win money, you owe them nothing.
Your attorney will also ensure you do not miss any deadlines for filing your personal injury claim. Marietta uses deadlines established in state and federal law. Some cases have deadlines of up to two years, per Georgia Code §9-3-33. In many cases, you have only a few weeks from the date of your injury. These short timeframes mean you should see a personal injury lawyer right away.
What Kind of Damages Can I Seek in a Personal Injury Claim?
The law defines personal injury as “damage to your mind, body, or emotions.” While the first thing most people think of is medical injuries or property damage, there are many types of damages you can pursue that may not come to mind immediately. Your personal injury lawyer will assist you in creating a complete list of how you have been harmed by another person’s negligence.
There are two main damages you can sue for: economic and non-economic. Economic ones usually have a price tag or specific cost, while non-economic damages are more subjective. However, they are no less consequential in your life and are equally relevant for compensation.
Some examples of damages you can sue for include:
- Economic losses:
- Lost wages
- Doctor bills
- Hospital expenses, such as surgery, the ER, and the ICU
- Travel costs for medical treatment
- Property repair or replacement
- Medical and mobility devices
- Funeral and burial costs in the event of a wrongful death
- Loss of earning ability
- Non-economic losses:
- Mental anguish
- Loss of enjoyment of life, such as hobbies or travel
- Pain and suffering, both physical and emotional
- Loss of companionship
- Isolation from society
- Scarring or disfigurement
In Georgia, there are no limits on the amount of economic or non-economic damages you can receive if you win. Your lawyer will help you claim the full amount of what you are owed and present a solid case to support those losses. The court may also decide to award punitive damages when a defendant’s negligence was egregious.
Talk to a Marietta Personal Injury Lawyer for Free
John Foy & Associates exists for one reason: to help people who have been injured. Our law firm has earned the nickname “the Strong Arm of the Law” because we know how to hammer an insurance company at the bargaining table. We put pressure on the insurers to settle quickly and easily, so the stress of a lengthy legal process is taken off of you.
Let our Marietta personal injury attorneys give you a free consultation to discuss your claim