Personal Injury Attorney Atlanta
Finch McCranie LLP’s personal injury attorneys offer individualized attention, high professional standards, and a long track record for multi-million-dollar settlements and jury verdicts. Every personal injury and wrongful death case we accept is handled on a contingency fee basis, which means we take a percentage of any verdict or settlement. Our firm advances all expenses incurred in the case, so our clients never pay anything out-of-pocket. We invite you to visit our Results page which lists some of the settlements and verdicts we have obtained on behalf of our clients over the years.Why You Need An Atlanta Personal Injury Attorney
When you have been injured or lost a loved one, you may be entitled to compensation from the party who caused the harm. One of the most important factors to ensure that you recover from the other party is hiring the appropriate personal injury law firm in Atlanta as soon as practicable to handle your claim. The first thing we do when evaluating a case is to determine whether the party who caused the harm can be held legally liable. This involves reviewing the police report or incident report (if applicable), interviewing witnesses, inspecting the scene where the incident occurred, and locating any photos or videos which may depict the incident or the events leading to the incident. In every case, it is of critical importance to act quickly to gather evidence and interview witnesses. In many instances critical evidence can be lost or destroyed unless it is secured quickly. In certain cases, we use a team of retired FBI agents who help us investigate the incident and locate and interview witnesses and other relevant persons. We also hire medical experts, accident reconstructionists, and engineering experts in appropriate cases.Insurance Companies And What To Look Out For
Another important step in investigating a potential case is to identify any insurance policies which may provide coverage for the incident. This involves reviewing applicable automobile liability policies, excess policies, homeowners’ policies, and any other insurance policies which may provide coverage. If the party who caused the harm was acting in the course and scope of their employment (or “on the job”) then their employer may be legally responsible for their actions. In several cases, we have been able to identify and recover insurance proceeds where other lawyers were unsuccessful.Personal Injury Lawsuits, Claims, Damages, And Compensation
We also conduct a thorough evaluation of our clients’ damages. This enables us to maximize the recovery in our cases. We will obtain and review medical records, tax returns (if the client is unable to work as a result of their injury), and all other documentation that shows how our clients’ lives have been affected by the incident. We also interview family members, friends, and in some cases the client’s employer to understand the extent of harm caused by the incident. This enables us to determine the most effective way to present our clients’ damages to maximize the settlement or verdict. In Georgia, there are three types of damages available in a personal injury or wrongful death case:
This includes your lost wages, medical bills, loss of future earning capacity, property damage, and funeral and/or burial expenses.Non-Economic Damages
This includes your pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of companionship.Punitive Damages
This is designed to punish the wrongdoer. They are available when the responsible party intentionally caused the harm or acted with a reckless disregard for the consequences of their actions. Punitive damages recoveries are rare, though our firm has successfully obtained punitive damages for many clients over the years.
Once we have conducted our investigation regarding liability, available sources of recovery, and evaluated our clients’ damages, we send what is called a pre-suit settlement demand letter demanding compensation from the party who caused the harm. In some instances, this can lead to negotiations which allow us to resolve the matter in its early stages. If we are unable to resolve the case at this stage because the responsible party refuses to offer fair compensation, we then proceed with filing a lawsuit naming the responsible parties as defendants.What Separates Us From Other Atlanta Personal Injury Law Firms
There are many law firms that handle complex personal injury and wrongful death cases, but very few whose lawyers actually try cases to a jury on a regular basis. Finch McCranie, LLP is one of those few. Our personal injury attorneys have extensive jury trial experience, which enables us to prepare each case with a willingness to go to trial. Because opposing firms know this, it allows us to resolve many cases before trial. In the cases we choose to take to trial, we have a long track record of success in obtaining multi-million dollar verdicts on behalf of our clients.
Questions & Answers
At Finch McCranie, LLP, our personal injury attorneys based in Atlanta, Georgia have a long track record of successfully representing people who have been seriously injured or killed due to the negligence of others. The numbers speak for themselves: over the last 50 years, we have recovered over $500 million for our clients. We have been able to obtain such terrific results through representing clients with care, compassion, and zealousness. In other words, we represent clients the way we would want to be represented.
Over the years we have learned that many clients have similar questions they want to ask a lawyer after they are involved in an accident and suffer an injury as a result. Following a significant injury, whether in a motor vehicle wreck, tractor-trailer accident, trucking collision, medical malpractice incident, or a premises liability matter, most people want to know what rights they have under Georgia law to sue the person or entity that caused the injury and to recover damages. Below, the Atlanta personal injury lawyers at Finch McCranie, LLP have compiled a list of the most common, frequently asked questions (FAQs) regarding Atlanta, Georgia personal injury cases. If you believe you have a personal injury claim in Atlanta, or anywhere in the State of Georgia, you should always consult an experienced personal injury lawyer regarding the best way to handle your case.
If you have a matter you would like to discuss, we encourage you to contact one of the Atlanta personal injury attorneys at Finch McCranie, LLP today at 404-658-9070.
A - If you are injured, the first step that you take depends on the type of case you have. For instance, if you are involved in a serious automobile or tractor-trailer collision, the very first thing you should do is call 911 to report the incident and request medical assistance. Typically, the police will gather information and complete a police report. If you are in this situation, you should get the contact information for the officers who have responded to the scene, and ask them how you can obtain the police report. The police report is typically the starting point for any Atlanta personal injury attorney’s investigation in a motor vehicle collision. If there is property damage involved, you should try to take pictures of the damage and give those to your attorney. After you have received the medical care and assistance you need, you should then contemplate your next steps, which should include consulting with an Atlanta personal injury attorney.
In other types of cases, such as a medical malpractice case, the critical evidence will be contained in the medical records. If you are still in a medical setting such as a hospital when you or your family suspect medical malpractice has occurred, you should make notes concerning your interactions with the healthcare providers. For example, many times victims will contact our office because a healthcare provider who treated the patient after the malpractice occurred will tell the patient and their family that the previous provider made an error or failed to provide appropriate care. In these circumstances, it is important for the patient (or typically a family member or close friend) to make notes and document everything the provider told the patient. This is because memories fade over time, and in many instances, after a lawsuit is filed, the subsequent provider will deny telling the patient that they were critical of the at-fault provider. Having a witness who made notes of the conversation at the time it occurred can be compelling evidence. It is almost always counter-productive for a patient or a patient’s family members to threaten legal action while a loved one is still under that provider’s care. The better practice is to document as much as possible, and then consult with a medical malpractice lawyer privately.
A - A personal injury attorney in Atlanta, Georgia typically charges one-third (1/3), or 33.33%, for a standard motor vehicle collision case. Other types of cases, such as tractor-trailer collisions, medical malpractice, and premises liability cases, typically require significantly more time and resources in order to get a favorable recovery for a client. For these cases, it is not uncommon for attorneys charge a fee of 40%. The Atlanta, Georgia personal injury attorneys at Finch McCranie, LLP only receive a fee in the event we are able to recover a settlement or verdict on behalf of our clients. In other words, our client never pays us anything out of pocket. We only recover if you recover.
A - In short, yes. Unfortunately, insurance companies routinely try to take advantage of injured persons who have not retained a competent Atlanta, Georgia personal injury attorney. The insurance company will typically try to contact an injured person very shortly after the incident and offer to pay all of the person’s medical bills. While this may sound like a generous offer, it is disingenuous for two reasons.
First, by offering to pay medical bills very quickly after the incident, many times the insurance companies pay the outstanding bills and then have the client sign a release, waiving all claims for future treatment. Unfortunately, many times injuries can linger, or manifest themselves well after the incident. We have seen many cases where an unrepresented person has accepted compensation from the insurance company very shortly after the accident, only to discover that their injuries had not completely resolved, and in some incidents had gotten much worse, requiring surgery.
The second problem with insurance companies offering to settle quickly after the incident and pay medical bills in exchange for signing a release, is most injured persons do not realize they are entitled to compensation for other things in addition to their medical expenses. For example, in many instances, an injured person is forced to miss time away from work while treating for their injuries. Under Georgia law, injured persons are entitled to recovery for lost wages. In the event that the incident causes a person permanent impairment which leaves them unable to perform their job, an injured person is entitled to future lost wages as well. Any person who has been seriously injured in a motor vehicle collision or other incident will tell you that it causes a substantial amount of mental and physical pain and suffering. Under Georgia law, an injured person is entitled to recover damages for past, present and future pain and suffering.
Again, many injured persons who are not represented by an attorney are unaware of the recovery available to them following an incident where they are significantly injured. An insurance company is very unlikely to disclose this to an injured person when they are trying to settle with them cheaply. As an example, the Atlanta Georgia personal injury attorneys at Finch McCranie LLP recently settled a case on behalf of a client for $500,000. The pre-suit offer by the insurance company before we got involved in the case was only $10,000. This is just one of many examples we have seen over the years of insurance companies trying to take advantage of unrepresented persons. It is critical that you consult with a highly experienced Atlanta personal injury lawyer with a long track record of success as soon as possible following an incident.
A - If you are considering hiring an Atlanta personal injury lawyer, you should inquire about the lawyer’s track record and experience. Many cases that appear to be fairly simple, straightforward injury claims, may actually be much more complex. For example, you want to be sure that the personal injury attorney you that you retain has extensive experience in identifying potential sources of recovery. It is critical that your attorney investigate whether the person who caused the harm was “on the job” at the time of the incident. If so, there may be a large insurance policy provided by the employer to cover its employee, which could be an available source of recovery. Also, clients should always purchase uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage. This protects you in the event the at-fault person who injures you does not have any insurance. Essentially, your insurance company has the option of stepping into the shoes of the at-fault driver and defending the case in their name. If you have purchased uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage, this will protect you in the event that you are injured by someone who does not have any insurance.
A - As outlined above, you need to be sure that the Atlanta personal injury attorney you hire has extensive experience and a long track record of successful verdicts and settlements. In addition to those qualities, you need to talk with the attorney and make your own decision as to whether you trust the attorney, and whether your personalities are compatible. Personal injury victims often feel vulnerable, or even scared, and therefore it is imperative that the client have the utmost trust in the lawyer they retain to represent them. There is no “one size fits all” approach here. The injured person should use their best judgment and decide, on a personal level, whether they are comfortable with this person being their lawyer.
A - This is a question the personal injury lawyers at Finch McCranie receive regularly from clients. This is a complicated question that is highly fact specific. The bottom line is it depends on the unique facts of each case. For example, even if you believe the other party is completely at fault, a good defense lawyer may be able to raise doubts as whether you had some responsibility in causing the harm. It is important to retain your own attorney as quickly as possible so the attorney may investigate the incident while the evidence is still available, and while eyewitness memories are fresh. How much you can expect to recover is also highly dependent on the insurance coverage that is in play.
For example, in a case where a person is catastrophically injured in a motor vehicle collision, if the defendant driver only has the minimum limits, i.e., $25,000.00 per occurrence, and the potential client does not have any uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, and if the at-fault driver was not on the job at the time of the wreck occurred, it is likely that the recovery would be limited to the $25,000.00 limits, despite the fact that the injuries and the client’s suffering are worth far more. As noted above, this is why it is critical that the personal injury attorney you decide to hire has experience in identifying potential sources of recovery, i.e., available insurance proceeds.
At Finch McCranie, LLP, our Atlanta personal injury attorneys have a long track record of successfully representing persons who have been seriously injured or killed due to the negligence of others. Over the last 50 years, we have recovered over $500 million for our clients.
If you have a matter you would like to discuss, we encourage you to contact one of the Atlanta personal injury attorneys at Finch McCranie, LLP today at 404-658-9070.
Click here for directions to our Downtown, Atlanta office
- Head & Brain Injury
- Burn Injuries
- Burn Injuries to Children
- Spinal Cord Injuries
- Wrongful Death Claim
- Bus and Motorcoach Accidents
- Liquor Liability
- Motorcycle Accidents
- Pedestrian Accidents
- Trucking Accidents
- Police Chase Victims
- Medical Malpractice
- Premises Liability
- Products Liability
- Victims of Crime
- Professional Malpractice
- Construction Accidents
- Aviation Accidents
- Auto Accidents
- Catastrophic Injuries
- Amputation Injuries
- Slip and Fall