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Insurance Claims

Insurance Claims

The immediate aftermath following any kind of motor vehicle crash in Georgia can be an extremely confusing and stressful time for people who were injured in the accident. In most cases, crash victims must file insurance claims with the proper insurance company, a process that can involve multiple phone conversations and signing several different types of paperwork.

Many people can easily become overwhelmed when trying to sort out what is and is not covered by certain insurance policies. The best way to ensure that you get all of the compensation that you are entitled to following an automobile collision in the Atlanta area is to immediately retain legal counsel who understands all of the complexities involved in insurance claims.

Lawyer for Insurance Claims in Atlanta, GA

If you were recently involved in any kind of car crash in Georgia that resulted in you suffering serious injuries or the death of your loved one, it is in your best interest to seek legal representation before speaking to any insurer. Marcus A. Roberts & Associates helps people injured in automobile accidents in DeKalb County, Gwinnett County, Cobb County, Clayton County, Fulton County, and many other surrounding areas.

Atlanta personal injury attorney Marcus A. Roberts will work closely with you to help fight for the compensation you need and deserve for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. He can provide a complete evaluation of your case when you call 404-577-4444 to set up a free, no obligation consultation.

Fulton County Insurance Claims Information Center

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Types of Insurance Claims in Georgia

When a person has been injured in any kind of motor vehicle crash, one of the first things that needs to be determined is which insurance policy will cover the costs associated with that individual’s injuries. When an accident is the result of another motorist’s negligence, the injured person may be able to file a claim against any of the following insurance policies of the negligent motorist:

  • Liability Insurance, Bodily Injury, or Property Damage Policy — Motorists in Georgia are required under Georgia Code § 33-7-11 to maintain minimum liability coverage amounts of $25,000 bodily injury liability per person, $50,000 bodily injury liability per accident, and $25,000 property damage liability per accident. Some policies may have even higher limits.
  • Personal Umbrella Policy — Some people take out personal umbrella policies for additional protection in the event that the damages in a motor vehicle crash exceed the underlying liability limits of their homeowners and auto insurance policies. For example, an individual who has a minimum automobile insurance policy would only be covered for the $25,000/$50,000/$25,000 limits, but would have to pay the remaining damages out of pocket if they exceed those limits. Umbrella policies typically provide much higher limits that are often hundreds of thousands of dollars.
  • Commercial Policy — When a negligent driver was operating a company vehicle or acting as an employee or agent of a business, that company’s insurance policy may provide compensation for the victim’s injuries.

In addition to the insurance policies of other parties, an injured person may also be able to file insurance claims with his or her own insurance company in certain cases. Some of the types of insurance policies that claims may be filed against following a car accident include:

  • Uninsured or Underinsured (UM or UIM) Motorist Policy — The Georgia General Assembly passed a law during its 2008 Session that requires automobile insurance carriers to provide revised UM coverage to all policyholders unless they specifically reject this coverage in writing. Such policies cover injured individuals when negligent drivers have no insurance or an insufficient amount of insurance to cover injury claims.
  • Health Insurance — Many medical treatment costs that are the result of automobile accidents are covered under the injured person’s health insurance policy. It is important to understand that if an injured person does recover compensation under the negligent driver’s liability policy, the victim could have to reimburse his or her health insurer.
  • Medical Payments Policy — Some auto insurance policies that cover the medical bills resulting from car crashes, regardless of fault.

Other applicable types of insurance in certain cases may include resident relative UM policies, GAP insurance, or life insurance.

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Insurance Claims Process in Atlanta

No two car crashes are the same, and the actual claims process following an accident can also be different for certain individuals depending on the specific facts relating to their cases. Most claims will involve people having to do all of the following:

  • Collect Information — People should take as many pictures as possible of the crash scene and collect the contact information for all people involved in the accidents as well as all witnesses. If a person is seriously injured and requires medical attention, he or she should try to have somebody take care of these details on his or her behalf.
  • Review Insurance Policies — Before filing any claim, a person should make sure to review the specific coverage of his or her various insurance policies. Certain policies may have important time limits that can affect claims.
  • Contact Insurer — Most insurance companies require policyholders to report accidents as soon as possible. It is important to be honest when contacting your insurer about your crash, but you should definitely be careful with what you say and a person should never admit fault.
  • Keep a Detailed Record — Anybody injured in an auto accident needs to begin immediately noting all expenses that are paid relating to their medical care as well as all correspondence with any insurance companies. Bills and receipts will be especially crucial for obtaining compensation later on.
  • Contact Atlanta Personal Injury Lawyer — When a person is prepared to file an insurance claim relating to a car wreck in Georgia, he or she will want to make sure that an experienced attorney reviews all of the facts of his or her case to ensure that all claims are properly filed, and maximum compensation is being sought.

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Georgia Insurance Claims Resources

Insurance Claims Tips — The Georgia Department of Insurance (GADOI) and the Insurance Commissioner are responsible for regulating the insurance marketplace. On this section of the GADOI website, you can find various tips for filing insurance claims in Georgia. The GADOI recommends people seek professional advice when they have questions regarding the fairness of their settlements, and you are encouraged to contact the office if you have further questions about a claim or policy.

Office of Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner
Two Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive
West Tower, Suite 704
Atlanta, Georgia 30334
(404) 656-2070

Cotton States Mutual Insurance Co. v. Brightman, 580 S.E.2d 519, 522 (Ga. 2003) — James Brightman was seriously injured in August 1992 when a van owned by Lynn Martin and driven by Gregory Cumbo struck his car as he was turning left at an intersection controlled by a traffic light. Police charged Brightman with failure to yield the right of way, but also charged Cumbo with speeding, causing serious injury by a vehicle, and—later—driving under the influence based on a blood test that revealed the presence of marijuana metabolites in his blood. When Brightman’s attorney wrote Cotton States offering to settle claims against Martin and Cumbo for $300,000, Cotton States declined to accept the offer, citing a police officer’s testimony that Brightman caused the accident, the company’s inability to discover how a second officer calculated Cumbo’s speed, and its desire to await the outcome of Cumbo’s DUI case, resulting in Brightman withdrawing his offer to settle. Brightman obtained a $1,787,500 judgment against Martin and Cumbo, leading to Brightman suing Cotton States for its bad faith and negligent refusal to settle the personal injury action. A jury returned a verdict in his favor, and the Court of Appeals for the State of Georgia affirmed. On April 29, 2003, the Supreme Court of Georgia affirmed the decision of the Court of Appeals, holding that “an insurance company in a case involving multiple insurers may be liable to its insured on a bad faith claim when it fails to tender its policy limits in response to a settlement offer solely because the offer also seeks the policy limits from other insurers.” The Supreme Court, however, disapproved of the language in the Court of Appeals opinion “placing an affirmative duty on the company to engage in negotiations concerning a settlement demand that is in excess of the insurance policy’s limits.”

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Marcus A. Roberts & Associates | Atlanta Insurance Claims Attorney

Did you sustain catastrophic injuries or was your loved one killed in any kind of automobile accident in Georgia? Do not say anything to an insurance company until you have contacted Marcus A. Roberts & Associates.

Marcus A. Roberts is an experienced personal injury lawyer in Atlanta who represents individuals all over Cobb County, Gwinnett County, Clayton County, DeKalb County, and Fulton County. Call 404-577-4444 or fill out an online contact form to have our attorney review your case and answer all of your legal questions during a free initial consultation.