TIP OF THE DAY NO. 9: DO NOT SIGN A RELEASE AFTER YOUR CAR ACCIDENT BEFORE YOU HAVE SPOKEN WITH A CAR ACCIDENT LAWYER
Today’s tip of the day is really simple: you absolutely should not sign a release issued by an insurance company (or anybody else) after your car accident before you have spoken with a qualified car accident lawyer. A release is a document typically provided by an insurance company and it has the potential to completely relieve them of any further liability to pay for the injuries and damages you suffered as a result of a car accident.
In Georgia, we have limited and general releases in car accident cases. What you must realize is that if you issue a general release to the at-fault party in a car accident case, it will bar you from seeking a recovery against your uninsured motorist policy. So, we have to be very careful about how what types of releases are issued to the at-fault party following an accident.
If you have questions about whether you should accept a proposed settlement after a car accident, call the car accident lawyers at Sessions & Fleischman for a free consultation. There are numerous factors (injuries, liens, reimbursement claims, available insurance limits, etc.) that should be considered before you accept a proposed settlement. If you have any question about what your ultimate recovery will be if you accept a settlement offer and issue a release to the insurer and/or their insured (the at-fault party in the car accident), do not accept it and consult an attorney that can you understand the implications of the decision.
Remember that once you decide to accept a settlement and issue the other party a release, particularly a general release, your claim is generally forever barred from being re-opened and litigated. This rule applies even if you subsequently discovery that your injuries were much more sever than you thought when you accepted the settlement.