Metro-Atlanta is home to some of the country’s busiest highways. In Georgia in 2016, 1,554 people died from car crashes, which was a significant increase from 2015. Auto wrecks are a serious problem all around the United States. Recklessness of drivers on I-285, I-85, I-75, I-20 and GA 400 can cause catastrophic injuries.
If you or a loved one has suffered injuries from a car accident in Atlanta, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact the Atlanta personal injury lawyers at ChancoSchiffer P.C. to help you discover the merits of your case.
Getting involved in an accident can be a very frightening and chaotic experience. In the midst of everything going on, it’s easy to forget to gather some information that will be helpful to you later down the road if you wish to pursue an injury claim. Below are three things you should remember to do if ever injured in an Atlanta Car Accident:
If the court determines the other driver was responsible for your Atlanta personal injury, it can award you damages. The first thing you can receive compensation for in Georgia are any past and future medical expenses. The defendant may have to cover hospital bills, cost for any doctor visits, physical therapy, or any other medical fees you have because of the wreck.
The court can also order the defendant to compensate you for lost wages, which includes any money you lost from days off work that you needed to recover, and a difference in earning potential before and after the injury.
Pain and suffering damages cover the difference in overall quality of life. A car accident attorney will often prove pain and suffering by getting a statement from someone who can testify about your life before and after the accident.
Most auto wrecks lead to vehicle damage. If you win your auto wreck claim, the defendant may need to compensate you for the cost of repairing or replacing your vehicle.
Georgia follows the modified comparative fault rule. The courts have the right to adjust your compensation if it determines you are partially responsible. For example, if the court determines you are 15% at fault for the wreck, it will reduce your compensation by 15%.
In 2016, 1,554 people died in traffic accidents in Georgia. Many more people suffered injuries in accidents. Hit-and-run accidents, though not as common as other types of car accidents, are a serious problem, and victims believe they have no recourse after suffering an injury in a hit and run. However, if you suffered an injury in a car accident and the at-fault driver fled the scene, you may be able to file a claim against his or her insurance company.
In Georgia, the laws about hit & run accidents are clear. If you caused or are involved in a collision, you must stop and remain at the scene of the accident. The circumstances that would warrant you to stop include:
Once you stop at the scene, you must exchange information with the other people involved. You must provide your name, address, and vehicle registration information. You must also, if possible, get your vehicle off the road to avoid obstructing traffic and assist any injured people as much as you can.
Hit-and-run accidents are more difficult because the responsible party is not on the scene to give you the necessary information and identify him or herself. To receive full compensation from the responsible party, you need to be able to find the at-fault driver. If you can, take down some information as he or she is driving away. The more information you can provide the police, the more likely it is that they will find the driver. Some of the information could include:
You should also record the time and location of the accident and get the contact information of any witnesses. Take pictures of the scene, damage to your car, and anything else that could be relevant when you are filing a claim.
After the accident, contact your insurance company. Even if you have not identified the at-fault driver, your insurer can begin the claims process. Depending on your company and policy, your insurer may help with towing your car and finding a rental car. If you have the necessary insurance, you may be able to receive a certain amount of compensation even if you do not find the at-fault driver.
If you can determine who caused the hit & run, he or she can suffer serious penalties. The same laws apply that courts use for regular car accident personal injury claims. The responsible party may have to compensate you for past and future medical expenses, lost wages and earning capacity, and pain and suffering. The defendant may also need to pay punitive damages if the court believes that he or she demonstrated gross negligence and should suffer a more severe punishment.
Georgia courts consider causing injury or damage and fleeing the scene a much more serious offense than a regular car accident. Even though the basic penalties are the same, the court will most likely increase the compensation significantly. The court may automatically triple the amount in damages, to further punish the defendant.
There are several advantages to hiring an Atlanta personal injury attorney to handle your car accident case. Some people mistakenly believe that they can successfully navigate their personal injury claims without legal representation. While some people may have the time to complete extensive legal research to compile strong cases, it is highly unlikely that a plaintiff representing his or her own interests in court will be as successful as a trained attorney.
Your Atlanta injury attorney will not only help you navigate the court’s filing requirements and various deadlines, but also help uncover valuable avenues of compensation you may have overlooked otherwise.
The expense is one of the main causes for hesitancy in hiring an attorney for personal injury claims. While attorneys’ fees can indeed be expensive, the alternative would be failing in your lawsuit, or never getting a lawsuit off the ground at all. Besides, personal injury attorneys offer contingency fee billing, which means they do not accept attorneys’ fees unless they win their cases. Additionally, some plaintiffs will be able to claim their attorneys’ fees as damages in their cases, so hiring a lawyer can actually increase a plaintiff’s net award in such a case.
Your attorney will also contact expert witnesses who can further strengthen your case by testifying to the extent and effects of your injuries, the pain and suffering you likely experienced as a result, and the potential for long-term or permanent disability resulting from your accident. Other experts may be able to testify to the extent of your financial losses following an accident or other aspects of your case.
If a negligent driver injured you in an auto wreck in Atlanta, ChancoSchiffer P.C. can help. We have experienced attorneys who cover all our cases. Our extensive knowledge of Georgia’s auto wreck laws gives us the ability to inform and guide you through the entire process. Contact ChancoSchiffer P.C. for personal representation in your Atlanta auto wreck claim.