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Atlanta Car Accident Lawyers
Matt Wetherington with Wetherington Law Firm,P.C. is the hardest working attorney I have ever worked with. He went above and beyond our expectations. Calls and emails are returned promptly and by Mr. Wetherington himself.
5 Stars is nowhere near enough to rate how awesome Matt and his colleagues were. They took my case even when I didn’t think there was anything we could do. I was in a bad situation at the time and Matt, Robert, and Sarah were there for me every step of the way.
I’m so grateful to Ben Levy and everything he did for me. He was truly dedicated to helping my case. Throughout the process, Ben was very thoughtful, responsive, organized, and made sure I was fully informed along the way.
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Dedicated Atlanta Car Accident Lawyers
Accidents happen, but when they do, Wetherington Law Firm is here to stand by your side. As one of the leading Atlanta car accident attorneys, we specialize in bringing justice and fair compensation to those affected by car accidents in the bustling heart of Georgia. Our skilled team combines years of experience with a deep understanding of Georgia’s traffic and personal injury laws, making us your ideal partner in navigating the complex aftermath of a car accident.
We know that every car accident case is unique. Our Atlanta car accident attorneys bring personalized attention to each case, ensuring that your specific situation is handled with the utmost care. Whether it’s a rear-end collision, a T-bone accident, or a more complex multi-vehicle pile-up, our team has the expertise and resources to manage your case effectively.
Georgia’s fault-based car accident system can be complex, but our car accident lawyers in Atlanta are well-versed in its nuances. We work diligently to prove fault, maximize your compensation, and minimize your stress. Understanding comparative negligence and statute of limitations is key, and our attorneys are experts in leveraging these laws to your benefit.
From the moment you entrust your case to us, we take on all the heavy lifting. Our team conducts thorough investigations, gathers critical evidence, and consults with top experts to build a strong case. We handle every legal detail, allowing you to focus on what’s most important – your recovery. Get in touch with our team for a free consultation.
Understanding Your Rights After a Car Accident in Atlanta
Understanding your rights after a car accident in Atlanta is crucial for ensuring you receive the appropriate compensation and support. Here are key points to consider:
- Fault-Based System in Georgia: Georgia operates under a fault-based system for car accidents. This means that the driver who is found to be at fault is responsible for the damages caused by the accident. Their insurance company typically covers these damages, including medical expenses, lost wages, and property damage.
- Comparative Negligence Rule: Georgia uses the comparative negligence rule, which means that if you are partially at fault for the accident, your compensation can be reduced by your percentage of fault. For instance, if you are found to be 20% at fault, your compensation will be reduced by 20%.
- Statute of Limitations: In Georgia, you have a two-year window from the date of the car accident to file a lawsuit for personal injury. Missing this deadline could bar you from pursuing legal action for compensation.
- Insurance Claims Process: After an accident, you can file a claim with the at-fault party’s insurance company. Be cautious when dealing with insurance adjusters as they may offer a settlement that doesn’t fully cover your damages. It’s advisable to consult with a lawyer before accepting any settlement offers.
- Documenting the Accident: It’s important to document the accident thoroughly, including taking pictures of the scene, gathering witness information, and keeping all medical records and bills. This documentation will be crucial in building your case.
- Seeking Legal Assistance: Consulting with a skilled Atlanta car accident lawyer can be invaluable. They can help you understand your rights, handle negotiations with insurance companies, and if necessary, represent you in court.
- Dealing with Uninsured Motorists: If the at-fault driver does not have insurance, you may still have options for compensation, such as filing a claim under your own uninsured motorist coverage.
- Impact on Future Insurance Premiums: Understanding how a car accident can affect your future insurance premiums is also important. This varies depending on the details of the accident and the insurance policies involved.
- Handling Hit-and-Run Situations: In case of a hit-and-run accident, you may still be able to receive compensation through your insurance or by identifying the other driver with the help of law enforcement and your attorney.
Steps to Take Following an Atlanta Car Accident in Georgia
- Ensure Safety: If possible, move vehicles out of traffic to a safe location. Turn on hazard lights to alert other drivers.
- Check for Injuries: Assess yourself and others for injuries. Do not move if you are seriously injured, and wait for emergency services.
- Call 911: Report the accident to the police. They will document the scene and file a report, which is crucial for insurance claims and potential legal actions.
- Exchange Information: Obtain the name, contact information, insurance details, and vehicle information from the other driver(s) involved.
- Document the Scene: Take photos of the accident scene, including vehicle positions, damages, and any relevant road signs or signals. Also, note the time, location, and weather conditions.
- Seek Medical Attention: Even if you don’t think you are injured, it’s advisable to get a medical examination. Some injuries may not be immediately apparent.
- Report the Accident to Your Insurance Company: Notify your insurance company about the accident. Be cautious in your communication and avoid admitting fault or giving detailed statements without legal advice.
- Gather Witness Information: If there are any witnesses, collect their contact information. Witness statements can be valuable in determining fault and supporting your claim.
- Consult an Attorney: Consider consulting with our skilled Atlanta car accident lawyer, especially if the accident involves significant property damage, physical injury, or if fault is contested. Get free consultation to understand your chances better.
- Follow Up on Medical Care: Keep all medical appointments and follow the prescribed treatment plan. Document all medical treatments related to the accident.
What Types of Compensation Can I Get After a Car Accident in Atlanta?
After a car accident in Atlanta, you may be entitled to various types of compensation, depending on the specifics of your case. These compensations are generally categorized into economic damages, non-economic damages, and in some cases, punitive damages:
- Economic Damages: These are tangible losses that have a specific monetary value and are directly related to the accident. They include:
- Medical expenses: Costs for emergency care, hospitalization, surgery, medication, rehabilitation, and ongoing medical treatments.
- Lost wages: Compensation for the income lost due to the inability to work following the accident.
- Property damage: Costs for repairing or replacing your vehicle and other personal property damaged in the accident.
- Out-of-pocket expenses: Any additional costs incurred as a result of the accident, such as travel expenses to medical appointments.
- Non-Economic Damages: These compensate for intangible losses and are more subjective. They include:
- Pain and suffering: Compensation for the physical pain and emotional distress caused by the accident.
- Loss of enjoyment of life: Damages for the loss of enjoyment in daily activities and hobbies.
- Emotional distress: Compensation for psychological impacts like anxiety, depression, or trauma resulting from the accident.
- Loss of consortium: Compensation for the impact on the relationship with your spouse or partner due to the accident.
- Punitive Damages: In cases where the at-fault party’s behavior was particularly reckless or egregious, punitive damages may be awarded. These are intended to punish the wrongdoer and deter similar conduct in the future. However, punitive damages are relatively rare and are typically only awarded in cases involving extreme negligence or intentional harm.
It’s important to note that the specific compensation you may be eligible for can vary depending on the circumstances of the accident, the extent of your injuries, and other factors. An experienced car accident attorney in Atlanta can provide a more precise evaluation of your potential compensation based on the details of your case.
Every case receives a dedicated team of experienced car accident lawyers and legal professionals who will keep you informed throughout the case.
Who Can I Recover Money from After a Car Accident in Atlanta?
After a car accident, there are several potential parties that you might be able to recover money from. Although the specifics vary by state and this is a complicated area of law, the following parties must be considered:
The At-Fault Driver
When involved in an accident with two or more vehicles, you can assert a claim against the driver of the responsible vehicle. In Georgia, every driver is required to carry liability insurance. The minimum coverage amount in Georgia is set by a statute, O.C.G.A. 33-7-11:
- $25,000 for bodily injury or death of one person in a single accident
- $50,000 for bodily injury or death of more than one person in a single accident
- $25,000 for injury or harm to the property of others in a single accident
These coverages are the minimum amounts of coverage required, and it is generally advisable to carry higher coverages. Under certain circumstances, if your damages exceed the policy limits, the at-fault driver can be held personally responsible for the difference. In other circumstances, the insurance company can be responsible for the full value of your injuries.
The Owner of the At-Fault Vehicle
In many states, including Georgia, an injured person may have a claim against the owner of an at-fault vehicle, even if the owner was not driving the car at the time of the accident. This is because of a legal theory called negligent entrustment. In a negligent entrustment claim, liability arises from the negligent act of the owner in lending his automobile to another to drive, with actual knowledge that the driver is incompetent or habitually reckless. This theory commonly arises in drunk driving cases where a person has a history of DUIs and tractor trailer accidents where the company knew that the driver was a bad driver.
Where the owner of the vehicle is a large corporation, there is generally no limit to the amount that can be recovered.
The Resident Relatives of the At-Fault Driver
Some liability insurance policies provide liability coverage for all family members who live in the same household. This type of coverage is not common, but it is important to obtain all relevant liability policies to confirm that insurance coverage is not missed.
The Employer of the At-Fault Driver
If the negligent driver was working and in the course and scope of his or her employment, the employer is liable for the employee’s negligence even if the employee was driving a personal vehicle. Where the at-fault driver was using his or her employer’s vehicle, there is a presumption that the person was working in the course and scope of their employment. However, this presumption can be rebutted by the employer. When an accident was caused by an Uber or Lyft driver, this analysis can become very complicated.
The Manufacturer of the Vehicle
If a vehicle component causes an accident, such as a sudden vehicle acceleration, you may be able to assert a lawsuit against the vehicle manufacturer. This is commonly referred to as a defective vehicle claim.
Even if the accident was caused by a negligent driver, you may still be able to assert a claim against the vehicle manufacturer if the injuries in the accident were made worse by the failure of a vehicle component. For example, a defective roof system might crush into the vehicle’s occupants or a seatbelt may become unlatched and allow a person to be ejected from the vehicle.
There is generally no limit to the amount that can be recovered from a vehicle manufacturer in Georgia.
The Manufacturer of the Vehicle’s Tires
If a tire fails and causes an accident, the manufacturer of the tire may be responsible. A significant portion of our practice is dedicated to defective tire claims. Tires fail for a variety of reasons. One of the most common tire failure reasons is the failure to include reasonable design features that would make the tire safe. These features include things like belt wedges and cap plies.
There is generally no limit to the amount that can be recovered from a tire manufacturer in Georgia.
The Repair Shops That Serviced the Vehicle and Tires
Once a vehicle is sold, it requires regular maintenance. As vehicle systems, including tires, become more complex, the ability of consumers to perform self-maintenance is decreasing. As a result, most consumers have to trust service centers to keep their vehicle and tires safe. Unfortunately, some service centers cut corners to save time or money and consumer lives are placed at risk. When a service center agrees to service a vehicle, the service center assumes a duty to identify and warn of dangerous conditions and to perform repairs and maintenance in a safe and professional manner. The failure to do so can subject the retailer to liability.
The Contractor Responsible for the Design or Maintenance of the Road
If the accident was caused by a hazardous condition on the roadway, such as a large pothole, the contractor responsible for the roadway may be responsible for the injuries and damages caused by the accident. Similarly, if the design of the roadway makes it more prone to accidents or serious injuries, such as failing to install a guardrail on a sharp curve, the contractor may be responsible for the accident.
Your Insurance Carrier – Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage
If the at-fault driver does not have insurance or does not have enough insurance to cover your injuries, it may be possible to recover from your own insurance coverage through underinsured or uninsured motorist coverage. This is a complicated area that generally requires an lawyer to confirm that you are receiving the full benefit of the coverage that you have purchased.
Your Resident Relative’s Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage
In Georgia, all underinsured/uninsured insurance policies provide liability coverage for all resident relatives of a household. If you live in the same house as a family member, but have different insurance policies for your vehicles, you may be able to recover some insurance benefits from your relative’s carrier after you have exhausted all coverage on your own uninsured/underinsured policy.
Your Employer – Worker’s Compensation
If a person is injured in an accident while in the course and scope of his or her employment, the injured person may be able to recover worker’s compensation benefits. It does not matter who was at fault. If the person is eligible for worker’s compensation benefits, he or she can receive coverage. It is possible to recover both worker’s compensation and liability insurance.
What Must I Prove to Recover for Personal Injuries After a Car Accident in Atlanta?
Although the application of the law in each type of case is very different, all car accident cases come from the same rules. To recover for personal injuries after a car accident, you must establish the basic elements of a tort:
- The existence of a duty on the part of the other driver to act a certain way;
- The failure of the driver to perform that duty;
- Actual injuries; and
- Proof that the injuries were proximately caused by the driver’s negligence.
These elements can be confusing. That is why we have written detailed articles on each of these elements that you can read here. The important thing for you to know is that the first element, duty, is very important in evaluating a car accident case. Another good word for duty is responsibility. In Georgia, all drivers have the responsibility to drive in a safe manner and avoid causing harm to others. “Driving safely” generally means driving in a manner that a reasonable person would under similar circumstances. Under most circumstances, a reasonably prudent driver will:
- Drive at a reasonable speed;
- Keep a lookout for hazards and pedestrians;
- Yield to others when necessary;
- Stop or slow when appropriate; and
- Maintain the vehicle in a safe condition.
When a person fails to drive in a reasonable manner, they are deemed “negligent.” Simply driving in a negligent manner without causing harm does not allow someone to file suit against the negligent driver. For example, if a tractor-trailer is speeding, failing to keep a lookout ahead, and has to drive on the shoulder of the roadway at very high speeds and almost hits several vehicles, the owner of the cars he almost hit would not have a valid claim against the negligent driver. Here is a real-world video of this exact scenario:
However, if a negligent truck driver causes an accident, the negligent driver will be liable for damages and injuries he or she causes. Whether a person has operated a vehicle in a negligent manner is generally a question that is submitted to a jury.
In addition to the general rule that a driver must act reasonably, there are rules of the road that every driver must comply with. Unlike ordinary negligence, when a driver violates one of these rules and causes an accident, the injured person does not prove that a reasonable person should have acted differently — the conduct is automatically considered negligent. In Georgia, these rules include the following (click the links below to learn more):
Driving While Intoxicated
OCGA 40-6-253 and OCGA 40-6-391
Using a Phone While Driving
Failing to Yield to Pedestrians
OCGA 40-6-91, OCGA 40-6-92, OCGA 40-6-93, and OCGA 40-6-96
Failing to Obey a Traffic Official
Conducting a Police Chase in a Reckless Manner
Failing to Change Lanes to Give Space for Parked Emergency Vehicles and Construction Workers
OCGA 40-6-16 and OCGA 40-6-75
Tampering with or Stealing Road Signs
Failing to Maintain One Lane
OCGA 40-6-40 and OCGA 40-6-48
Going the Wrong Way on a One-Way Road
OCGA 40-6-47 and OCGA 40-6-240
Driving a Tractor-Trailer or Bus in the Far-Left Lane(s)
Failing to Yield to Emergency Vehicles
Making an Improper U-Turn
Failing to Exercise Due Caution Near Railroad Crossings
OCGA 40-6-140 and OCGA 40-6-142
Driving Too Slow in the Fast Lane
Failing to Slow and Exercise Caution in Construction Zones
Obstructing an Intersection
Failing to Secure all Loads
OCGA 40-6-248.1 and OCGA 40-6-254
Causing Serious Injury by Vehicle
Running a Red or Yellow Traffic Light
OCGA 40-6-20, OCGA 40-6-21, and OCGA 40-6-23
Traveling Too Close to Other Vehicles
Running Stop and Yield Signs
Failing to Yield to Other Vehicles
OCGA 40-6-70 and OCGA 40-6-73
Driving on the Shoulder, Gore, or Other Prohibited Areas
Fleeing Police Officers
Tampering with Traffic Signals
OCGA 40-6-25, OCGA 40-6-17, and OCGA 40-6-396
Driving on the Wrong Side of the Road
OCGA 40-6-40 and OCGA 40-6-45
Passing Another Vehicle Improperly
OCGA 40-6-42, OCGA 40-6-43, OCGA 40-6-44, and OCGA 40-6-46
Going the Wrong Way in a Roundabout
Turning the Wrong Way at an Intersection
OCGA 40-6-71 and OCGA 40-6-120
Failing to Yield to Funeral Processions
Failing to Use Turn Signals
Failing to Stop First Before Exiting a Parking Lot
Parking a Vehicle in an Unsafe Place
Driving a Vehicle with an Obstructed View
Laying Drags or Intentionally Making Skid Marks
Intentionally Striking and Killing a Person with a Vehicle
Failing to Follow Pedestrian Traffic Signals
Failing to Drive Motorcycles Safely
OCGA 40-6-310 and OCGA 40-6-311
If there is evidence that an at-fault driver committed one of the above violations, the jury will likely be read the following law at trial:
The plaintiff contends that the defendant violated certain laws or ordinances. Such violation is called negligence per se, which means negligence as a matter of law. It is your duty to decide whether such violation took place or not.
This means that if you successfully prove that the alleged violation took place, then negligence is established and you only have to prove that your injuries were caused by the negligent act.
How Can You Lose a Car Accident Case in Georgia?
After a car accident, proof of an injury does not automatically create liability on the other driver. People are injured in car accidents every day and do not receive any type of compensation. In some cases, the injured person does not receive the compensation they were likely entitled. There are many reasons why people lose car accident claims. Here are the most common ways that a case is lost.
Failing to Bring a Claim in Time Can Result in a Complete Bar of the Claim
Georgia has a two-year statute of limitation for most personal injury lawsuits after a car accident. A statute of limitation provides the maximum period of time in which a civil lawsuit must be started or it is forever barred. The purpose of a statute of limitation is to prevent an injured party from delaying the commencement of an action. Over time, evidence is lost, memories fade, and witnesses move away or die. This is why it is important to bring a personal injury claim as soon as possible.
The Doctrines of Contributory Negligence and Comparative Fault Can Limit Recovery After a Car Accident
Contributory negligence is a common defense used in car accident cases. The defense of contributory negligence claims that you failed to keep an adequate lookout of your surroundings or otherwise did something that contributed to the accident, and you should be disqualified from recovering. If a defendant is successful in a contributory negligence defense, you will not recover any damages. The contributory negligence doctrine is extremely harsh and intended to be cruel to injured people. It is currently only used in North Carolina, Alabama, Maryland, Virginia, and Washington D.C.
A majority of states, including Georgia, have adopted a “comparative negligence” system. For states that have adopted comparative negligence, the jury compares the plaintiff’s negligence to the defendant’s negligence and applies percentages to each. Depending on the state, the Court either reduces the total recovery by the percentage assigned to the Plaintiff or rules in favor of the Defendant if the percentage assigned to the Plaintiff is over a certain amount.
Georgia’s comparative negligence rule is codified under O.C.G.A. 51-12-33: Reduction and apportionment of award or bar of recovery according to percentage of fault of parties and nonparties:
Where an action is brought against one or more persons for injury to person or property and the plaintiff is to some degree responsible for the injury or damages claimed, the trier of fact, in its determination of the total amount of damages to be awarded, if any, shall determine the percentage of fault of the plaintiff and the judge shall reduce the amount of damages otherwise awarded to the plaintiff in proportion to his or her percentage of fault. … The plaintiff shall not be entitled to receive any damages if the plaintiff is 50 percent or more responsible for the injury or damages claimed.
Alternatively stated, if the plaintiff is found to be 50% or more negligent when compared to defendant(s), then he is barred from recovering anything in Georgia. If the plaintiff is instead found by the jury to be 40% at fault, he would still be entitled to recover 60% of his damages(100% minus 40%).
Here is an example:
Famous Atlanta rapper Ludacris is looking for a parking spot. He encounters an open parking spot and prepares to turn into the spot. Unfortunately, another Atlanta rapper, Usher approaches from the opposite direction and also wants the spot. Both drivers see the other and know that proceeding will cause an accident. Nonetheless, they both attempt to turn into the spot and they crash into each other.
If Ludacris attempts to sue Usher, it is likely that the jury will determine that he is equally at fault for the accident. If so, Ludacris would be 50% at fault for the accident and will not be entitled to recover anything. However, if the jury determines that Ludacris is only 40% responsible for the accident because he arrived at the spot first, Ludacris would be entitled to recover 60% of his damages (100% minus 40%).
Assuming the Risk of Injury Bars a Recovery After a Car Accident
Assumption of the risk is another defense frequently seen in car accident cases. Like comparative negligence, assumption of the risk is very difficult to prove. A defendant asserting an assumption of the risk defense has the burden of establishing that the plaintiff had actual knowledge of the danger, understood and appreciated the risk, and voluntarily exposed his or her self to the risk.
Actual knowledge is required to show an assumption of the risk. Even where there is evidence to show that one party could or might have discovered and avoided the risk, the defense cannot be presented to the jury. This is because the knowledge requirement does not refer to an injured persons’ comprehension of general, non-specific, risks that might be associated with such conditions or activities.
Nonetheless, if the fact finder finds that the plaintiff had actual knowledge of the hazard and voluntarily assumed the risk of injury, then that is a complete bar to the plaintiff’s recovery. Here is an example from a recent case in Georgia:
Wilson has prior knowledge that her neighbor’s dog, Baby, had previously bitten one of her neighbors. Wilson also has years of experience with dogs. In the past, to avoid injury, Wilson had broken up dog fights using a stick. Despite this knowledge, Wilson attempts to break up a dog fight between Baby and her own dog with her bare hands.
While attempting to break up this fight, Wilson was bitten by Baby and seriously injured. Because of Wilson’s prior knowledge, and because Wilson voluntarily engaged in an obviously dangerous activity, Wilson has assumed the risk and cannot recover for her injuries as a matter of law.
Saulsbury v. Wilson, 348 Ga. App. 557, 561, 823 S.E.2d 867, 870 (2019)
Government Entities are Sometimes Immune from Liability
This is an area of law that is too broad to be covered in this article. However, please know that where there is a possibility that a government employee or entity was partially responsible for an accident, special rules apply. There are different deadlines for presenting claims, different rules for filing suit, and limits on who can be sued.
What Damages Can You Recover After a Car Accident?
The main public policy purpose for tort law is compensation. Compensatory damages are money damages awarded to compensate the plaintiff and make the plaintiff whole. The system is not perfect. Life, limb, and freedom from pain cannot be restored. However, compensatory damages are a means of attempting to place the plaintiff in the same relative position that he or she was in before the loss by way of monetary compensation. Compensatory damages are categorized as either general damages or special damages.
You Can Recover “General” Damages After a Car Accident
General damages are “non-economic” losses, such as pain and suffering, disfigurement, or mental anguish, all of which have no specific, itemized value. The monetary value of general damages is determined by the jury, and jury verdicts are not consistent. A broken ankle in one courtroom could be worth $10,000 in pain and suffering.
In another courtroom, it could be worth $100,000. Matt Wetherington tried a case in Fulton County that resulted in a $2.8 million verdict for a broken ankle. However, it is important to know that jury verdicts and settlements vary widely, even for the exact same injury. The variance is due to the individual plaintiff, the jurors at the trial, and the effectiveness of the injured person’s lawyer.
You Can Recover “Special” Damages After a Car Accident
Special damages are “economic” losses, such as medical expenses, lost wages, or the cost of hiring household help, all of which do have a specific itemized value and can be more easily determined or calculated on a simple mathematical basis – once you have obtained the necessary records to prove that the expenses were incurred. It is important to note that only medical expenses “proximately caused” by the accident itself can be recovered. If you would like to learn more about how proximate cause is determined, click here. For simplicity sake, you should know that proximate cause is often highly contested.
Punitive Damages for Injuries Caused by Reckless or Intentional Conduct
In tort actions, there may be aggravating circumstances that may warrant the awarding or imposing of additional damages called punitive damages. Punitive damages, when authorized, are imposed not as compensation to a plaintiff but solely to punish, penalize, or deter a defendant. To recover punitive damages, the victim must prove that the at fault driver’s actions showed willful misconduct, malice, fraud, wantonness, oppression, or that entire want of care that would raise the presumption of conscious indifference to consequences.
The Spouse of an Injured Persons is Entitled to Recover Also
The spouse of an injured person is entitled to recover for something called a loss of consortium. Loss of consortium damages compensate for the loss of any services one spouse provides to another. Besides those sexual in nature, such services may consist of cooking, cleaning, household chores, household repairs, general companionship, and everything else that comes with a marriage.
If the Car Accident Results in a Death, Special Rules Apply
When a car accident results in a death, the case turns into a wrongful death claim, instead of a personal injury claim. To learn more about wrongful death claims, click here.
Atlanta Georgia Car Accident FAQ
What Do I Do After A Car Accident?
Your first priority after a car accident is to check yourself and your passengers for injuries. If any injuries are found, seek medical attention before anything else. It’s important to stay at the scene and collect all the information if you are uninjured or only have minor injuries. Focus on getting insurance and contact information from the other driver. If there were witnesses to the accident, get their information as well. Take as many photos of the scene and damage to the vehicles.
How Long Do I Have To Report The Accident?
Every state has different statutes of limitations for car accidents. In the state of Georgia you have 2 years to report the accident to your insurance, and file a lawsuit for injuries.
In most cases, you have 4 years to file for damage to property. This would allow you to sue for personal items destroyed in the accident along with the cost of car repairs.
Do I Have To Call The Police After A Minor Accident?
Yes, you are required by law to report accidents to police if the damage appears to exceed $500 dollars or if anyone is injured. It can be difficult to tell if anyone is hurt after an accident, so it’s a safer practice to always call the police to document the incident. Failure to report an accident may limit your ability to collect from insurance and make it impossible to establish who was at fault for the accident.
In Rear-End Collisions Are The Rear Drivers Always At Fault?
In the state of Georgia, the rear driver is presumed to be at fault unless adequate evidence is presented to prove otherwise. The logic is that the rear driver is responsible for maintaining an appropriate following distance. With that said, if evidence can be provided to prove the lead driver was at fault or that the accident was unavoidable and not due to anyone’s individual negligence fault may be shifted or shared between both parties.
What Do I Do If The Other Motorist’s Insurance Adjuster Asks For A Statement?
You do not have any obligation to give a statement to their insurance company, and should not. It’s possible that you may accidentally make a comment that puts your claim in jeopardy. If you mention that you don’t remember details of the event clearly or feel injured at the time, those comments may be used against you to limit the compensation you may be entitled to.
Contact Our Experienced Atlanta Car Accident Lawyers
With years of experience handling all types of motor vehicle accident claims, you can put your trust in our firm. Contact us today for a free initial case consultation. We know what it takes to get results, protect your rights, and hold negligent parties accountable.