It is estimated that every driver will be involved in at least three car accidents during their adult driving lifetime. While car accidents may seem like an everyday occurrence, they usually don’t feel that way to the people involved in them, especially the injured victims. If you have been injured in a crash caused by the negligent behavior or actions of another party, Georgia law allows you to pursue legal action against that at-fault party. The following are some of the most common questions that the lawyers at our firm hear from clients. For more detailed information regarding your case, call Norris Injury Law to schedule a free and confidential case evaluation.
What are the most common factors that lead up to car accidents?
There are many different reasons why car accidents happen. The following are some of the most frequent causes that show up in the cases that each Athens, GA car accident lawyer from our firm sees:
- A driver who was engaged in distracted driving behaviors, such as reading text messages, posting on social media, grooming, fiddling with their GPS, talking to a passenger, etc.
- A driver who was operating under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol.
- A driver who was speeding.
- A driver who ran a red light, stop sign, or disregarded some other traffic violation.
- A dangerous defect or mechanical failure of the vehicle.
- Poor road or weather conditions.
What are the three types of damages a car accident victim can pursue?
- Economic damages – These are damages that have a tangible dollar amount attached to them.
- Non-economic damages – These are losses that the victim suffered and should be compensated for but they do not have a tangible dollar amount. Instead, your lawyer will use a formula to calculate the value of these losses.
- Punitive damages – In some car accident cases, the actions of the at-fault party were so egregious, that the jury deems they should be punished for their actions. Punitive damages are also meant to send a message to society that these behaviors will not be tolerated.
What are some of the economic damages that can be recovered in a claim?
All medical expenses that a victim is billed for treatment of their injuries are included in a car accident claim. This also includes any future medical expenses the victim may have if their injuries leave them with long-term or permanent health issues. Victims can also recover the cost of travel (gas, tolls, etc) to and from their appointments.
If the victim was unable to work while they recovered from their injuries, any lost wages and benefits can also be included in the claim. If the injuries prevent them from returning to their occupation or ability to work at all, they can also be compensated for the loss of future income.
What are some of the non-economic damages?
There are a number of losses a victim can suffer that they can be compensated for, including:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional anguish
- Permanent disability
- Loss of life enjoyment
What if the at-fault driver did not have vehicle insurance?
Unfortunately, some drivers choose to not carry auto insurance, despite Georgia law that all vehicles must have the minimum requirements of $25,000/ $50,000 bodily injury or the victim’s losses exceed the insurance policy amount. In these cases, your lawyer can assist you in filing a claim with your own insurance company to make sure you are covered.