After experiencing a car accident, you may have several different things to take care of at once. You have medical bills to pay off, you need to recover, and you may need to seek counseling if you’ve suffered any trauma. Time constraints can be stressful, and there is a time limit before you will be unable to submit a claim after the car accident. Fortunately, you have plenty of time in Georgia to file a claim.
You Have Two Years If You Were Injured
If you become involved in a car accident, you have two years from the date of the accident to file a claim. This means if you do suffer significant injuries, you have two years from the date you became injured to file a claim against the person at fault.
You Have Four Years If You Suffered Property Damage
The statute of limitations increases to four years if you experienced property damage. If you lost personal items due to an accident or need significant car repairs, you can file a claim no later than four years from the date of the accident.
Exceptions to the Rules
As with many legal matters, there are exceptions to the above rules. Most exceptions are the result of getting into car accidents with government vehicles, but others are due to your age.
If you were a minor who got involved in an accident, your statute of limitations does not begin until you turn 18. For example, if you get into an accident at 17 years old, you have to wait until you turn 18 before your two-year or four-year period begins.
If you get into an accident with a county or city vehicle, you only have six months to file a claim. You have one year to file a claim after an accident with state vehicles. If your accident involves a federal government vehicle, you have to first file an administrative claim with the government. You have two years to file this, but if your claim is rejected, you’ll only have six months to file in court.
When Should I File a Claim?
You might have a lot going on when a car accident occurs, but it’s best to file a claim as soon as possible. The statute of limitations is two years, but the sooner you can do it, the better. If you need time to recover, you can speak with an accident lawyer while you recover so they can begin building a case for you. You can inform them of the full situation and let them determine how to proceed.
Depending on how long you wait to file a claim, it can be more difficult to prove your case due to various factors such as:
- Poor recollection of events
- Loss of physical evidence
- Less time to adequately prepare for your case
- The other party becoming suspicious that you’re filing late
- Being able to perform tasks that would be difficult to do if you were injured
When the events just occurred, you’ll have a better chance of remembering all of the details, and your odds of succeeding in your case will increase.
Our Team Can Help
Car accidents can be overwhelming and difficult to manage. You may need to take some time to heal and process what happened, and that’s okay. However, you shouldn’t wait too long before filing a claim against the other party. If you’re still recovering or if you are unsure how to navigate a complicated legal system, we can help.
Our skilled attorneys at Lamar Law Office, LLC can thoroughly review your situation and build a strong case. We’ll help you get the compensation you’re entitled to. If you’ve been in a car accident in Georgia, don’t hesitate to contact us.