Got a question?
Have a question?
When should I hire a lawyer?
It is important to consult with a lawyer immediately when an incident occurs. There are numerous reasons to speak with a lawyer about your potential case right away.
Any evidence must be preserved. For example, we must interview witnesses as soon as possible. It is also crucial to send an anti-spoliation letter or letters in most cases. These letters demand the preservation of all evidence and put the recipient(s) on notice that evidence shall not be destroyed.
Time matters. Under Georgia law, injury victims have a limited amount of time to file a lawsuit. If one is not filed in time, the injured party’s claim will be barred under the statute of limitations.
Ante Litem Notice may be required. If the person that caused your injury was a city, county, or state employee or if you suffered an injury on city, county, or state property, Ante Litem Notice must be provided before filing a lawsuit. In some cases, this formal notice must be filed within six months of the date of injury.
Insurance companies are not on your side. It is essential to realize that insurance companies and insurance adjusters do not work for you or represent your best interests. If you have been injured, never give a recorded statement. These statements can be used to harm your case in the future.
Lawyers know the law. This may seem obvious, but I frequently receive calls from potential clients that have tried to handle their claims themselves. Unsurprising, these potential clients tell me that the insurance company has not made an offer or made a very low offer. Trying to handle your claim yourself is like trying to play a game without knowing the rules, and it seldom works out in your favor.
If you or a loved one has been injured, please do not wait to contact us. Insurance companies and adjusters have the upper hand if you go at it alone. Do not let these major companies take advantage of you!
How should I choose an injury lawyer?
- Is the lawyer’s fee reasonable? Some firms charge clients up to 40% to settle a case plus case expenses. Selecting a lawyer is like choosing any other service. It pays to be informed about costs and fees upfront. At Pirkle Law Firm, we settle car accident injury cases for a 29% fee.
- Did you talk to the lawyer that will be representing you? Many large firms have intake staff and case managers that handle files, and clients rarely speak with their lawyers. At my firm, every client receives my personal cell phone number and communicates directly with me about their case.
- Does the lawyer focus his or her practice on personal injury law? The days of hiring one lawyer for all of one’s legal needs are gone. The law is too complex for one lawyer to be competent in many areas. At Pirkle Law Firm, we handle only injury cases.
- Did the lawyer outline reasonable expectations for your case? We have all watched TV commercials with lawyers describing million-dollar settlements, but in reality, these cases are few and far between. Be skeptical of any lawyer that promises a significant result and does not disclose potential issues or problems with your case. An effective lawyer must know all of the facts. Ignoring the negative aspects of a case prevents a lawyer from overcoming or limiting them down the road at trial or settlement negotiations.
- Are you comfortable with the lawyer? You must be able to communicate effectively with your lawyer. Your lawyer should explain things in plain terms that are easy to understand and allow you to ask questions along the way.
Why hire Pirkle Law Firm, LLC?
Experience, reasonable fees, and responsiveness. Clients come first in all that we do at Pirkle Law Firm. We start by providing a reasonable contingency fee that allows our clients to keep more of their settlement money. After all, what good comes from getting a large settlement if the law firm keeps most of your settlement money by charging a high percentage contingency fee?
I have handled thousands of cases over more than a decade of representing injured people in Georgia. Most cases are resolved by settlement outside of Court. However, we are also prepared to go to arbitration, mediation, or trial if necessary. But we will not push a client to go to court if it isn’t in his or her best interest.
Will my car insurance drop me or raise my rates if I make a claim?
Georgia insurance law, O.C.G.A. § 33-9-40 1 , prohibits insurance companies from either adding a surcharge to premiums or cancelling the policy of a customer who makes a claim for an accident in which they were not at fault. Further, O.C.G.A. § 33-24-45 specifically prohibits an insurance company from failing to renew a policy due to an accident for which the driver of the insured vehicle was not at fault or where the insured makes a claim against the uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage, med pay, comprehensive coverage or towing and road service coverage of a policy.
How long do I have to make a claim?
Will I have to go to Court?
Probably not, but every case is unique. Most people assume injury lawyers file a lawsuit when hired. This rarely happens because it is often unnecessary. Hiring an experienced injury lawyer immediately can significantly reduce the odds of having to go to Court.
A skilled injury lawyer will send an effective time-limited demand for settlement to the insurance company before filing a lawsuit. These demand letters frequently result in successful settlement negotiations.
We will gather the evidence and present a strong demand for settlement.
When competent counsel represents you, the insurance companies know that any low offers they make will be rejected, resulting in lawsuits against their client. Such is not the case if you try to handle your claim alone. In other words, settlement demands made by unrepresented injury victims are not taken seriously.
If we do have to litigate a case, we will have a proper foundation from which to work. All of the necessary letters will have been sent, evidence gathered, and a working attorney-client relationship established.