- Even in minor car accidents, you may be able to seek compensation from the at-fault driver or their insurance company.
- Because in-depth investigations are not common for minor accidents, at-fault drivers may be more likely to lie about what happened.
- Before accepting any compensation offers from an insurance carrier, it is usually wise to discuss it with a personal injury attorney who can help ensure it covers the full costs of your damages.
Minor accidents can be more costly than they initially appear to be, and the costs can add up quickly. If you’ve been in a minor car accident, you may be wondering if it’s possible to sue the at-fault driver to recover money for the costs incurred. Luckily, the size of an accident is not what determines if you can recover money for damages.
If another driver’s neglectful or unsafe behavior causes an accident, then you may have a legal claim, regardless of how extreme the accident seems. Here’s how to proceed with a case for a minor car accident.
Minor Injuries Are Often Expensive to Treat
If you suffered a minor injury in a car crash, you might believe the costs associate with treatment may not add up to much. However, healthcare in the U.S. can be expensive, no matter what.
For instance, minor back pain from a fender bender can result in numerous and costly chiropractor visits. Even one medical exam in the emergency room can easily be easily $500 to $1,000. Any time spent at urgent care or your family doctor can quickly add up to thousands of dollars in medical bills, too.
What seems like a relatively minor injury may also linger and never truly heal, leading to chronic pain and suffering. These conditions may include:
- Neck pain
- Back pain
- Shoulder pain
Of course, there are plenty of other injuries you may be able to recover compensation for if you are suffering from pain related to a minor car accident.
Damage May Not Present Itself Immediately
In some cases, the full extent of damage caused by an accident is not immediately apparent. Some injuries, such as internal damage, may not be visible, while other injuries, like whiplash, may take time for the full pain to kick in. It is important to document what you experience and seek medical attention immediately, if necessary.
These “silent car accident injuries” may not appear to be serious initially but can be harmful to accident victims over time.
At-Fault Drivers May Be More Likely to Lie in Smaller Car Accidents
Police don’t always respond to minor accidents where nobody was injured, and the accident is not blocking traffic. Even when police do arrive at the scene, it’s not likely that there will be an in-depth investigation for smaller crashes. Typically, responding officers will simply take statements and compile any information they are given into a police report.
Some insurance companies also have limits to what they will investigate. If a case is small enough, they may only do a cursory investigation rather than give the claim full attention due to costs. This means claims may be approved without the proper research. When little or no investigation is complete, it may mean the at-fault driver is more likely to lie about what happened.
In some cases, at-fault drivers will not even report the accident and might even deny it if asked. If an at-fault driver lies about your conduct, this can result in more expenses for you, including:
- Higher car insurance costs
- A traffic ticket
- Repair costs for the damage to your car
- Expenses for a rental car or other transportation while your vehicle is fixed
Don’t let the other driver’s lies cause you to bear the costs of an auto accident. Make sure you have experienced counsel on your side that can help you recover the money you deserve.
Insurance Companies Can Be Difficult to Work With
Simply put, insurance companies make their money by not paying out money for claims. Insurance adjusters and company attorneys will work to find any fault on your part to save their company money. Georgia is a comparative fault, which means the amount of your fault for an accident can result in a reduction of your ability to recover damages.
For example, if you are considered 20% at fault, then your maximum recovery would be reduced by 20%. Insurance companies may not return your calls and emails, or they may offer nothing for your claim.
Even if you do receive an offer for compensation, it will likely be a lowball offer that will inevitably miss many medical costs. Medical bills often take time to accumulate, and insurance companies know that you may not be aware of all involved costs right away.
Before accepting any offers from an insurance carrier, it is usually wise to discuss it with a personal injury attorney who can help you weigh your options.
Common Questions About Minor Car Accident Legal Claims
Do I have a car accident case if my accident cost me a few hundred dollars?
If you incur bills due to your accident, whether or not you have a case may depend on your insurance deductible, coverage, as well as who was at fault.
Will the at-fault driver’s insurance company pay for rental car or Uber fees while my car is being fixed?
Yes, if you must use alternate transportation after your vehicle is damaged in an accident, the at-fault driver’s insurance company will be responsible for these costs.
What expenses should be documented after a car accident?
Any costs incurred either directly or indirectly because of the accident should be documented and presented to your personal injury attorney.
Will the other insurance company pay for health exams after a car accident?
The other insurance company will pay for medical expenses once it’s proven that the other driver was at fault.
Attorney Consultations Are Free, Even If Your Accident Was Small
You might be questioning if a car accident attorney cares about your minor car accident.
We can’t speak for other attorneys, but we do know that we care. Don’t be fooled by the big case results online; we help those involved in small accidents collect money just the same.
If you or a loved one has suffered an injury in a minor car accident, make sure you seek the advice of an experienced personal injury lawyer.