If you get into a car accident in Georgia, it’s a good idea to call a car accident attorney in Atlanta right away. You’re going to need to focus on recovering from your injuries. You want to have someone who knows the law by your side.
When you get into a car wreck, there are three things you need to do:
- Call the police. No matter how much the other driver begs you not to, you need to call the cops. In fact, the more they ask you not to, the more important it is that you make the call.
- Go to the hospital. Even if you think you’re okay, it’s important that you get checked out. If left untreated, some injuries can prove fatal.
- Call an experienced car accident lawyer in Atlanta. You want someone there to help you from day one.
As long as you do these things, you should have a good shot at recovery. If the other driver was at fault, they need to be held accountable. They should have to compensate you for your injuries and other losses.
If you don’t follow these guidelines, you could jeopardize your chances of recovery.
How Long Do You Have to File Suit for a Car Crash?
If you get injured and intend to file a lawsuit, you only have a certain amount of time to do it. Every state has something called a statute of limitations. A statute of limitations outlines how long you have before you have to file your claim.
The statute of limitations starts on the day you have your accident. There are very few exceptions to this rule. For a car accident in Georgia, you have two (2) years from the date of your accident to file suit.
If you miss the statute of limitations deadline, you’re out of luck. Your claim will be forever barred. You won’t be able to file your case later. There’s nothing your Atlanta car accident lawyer can do to change the situation.
Judges won’t extend the statute of limitations. There are reasons why these rules are in place and the judges aren’t going to make exceptions.
Why Do We Have a Statute of Limitations in the First Place?
The reasons judges won’t extend the statute of limitations has to do with the reason why we have the laws in the first place. Just like old food, lawsuits can get stale with time. People forget what they saw. Witness statements get fuzzy.
Two years is a fair amount of time for a plaintiff to file a lawsuit. It gives Atlanta car accident lawyers plenty of time to gather evidence. It also gives you enough time to find out just how bad your injuries are. In two year, your doctors should know if you’re going to need medical care in the future.
The courts think two years is fair for the defendant as well. Defendants shouldn’t be blindsided ten years down the road with a lawsuit. It’s not fair to expect a defendant to come up with information to defend themselves this far down the road.
If you don’t file your lawsuit within two (2) years of the date of your accident, the claim will be dismissed. The court doesn’t want to entertain worthless cases. Nor do they want to drag defendants into court who don’t have the resources to defend themselves.
Will the Statute of Limitations Be Extended?
There are very few situations in which the court will extend the statute of limitations. One of these exceptions is when the defendant leaves the state for more than two (2) years. If the defendant is intentionally avoiding the lawsuit, it can’t be held against you.
Another time the court may extend the statute of limitations is when you were in such bad health that you couldn’t be expected to prepare your case. If the accident left you in a coma, for example, the statute may be extended.
Your Georgia car accident lawyer will have to apply for this extension. It isn’t going to be granted automatically. Nor will the court apply it retroactively.
Contact a Georgia Car Accident Attorney Today
If you get into a car accident, you need to call and speak with a Georgia car accident attorney. Your Georgia attorney can make sure you file your suit before the deadline. They’ll make sure you don’t miss the window provided by the statute of limitations.