The at-fault driver pays for the rental car. If you are responsible for the accident, you would need to pay for your own rental car unless your insurance covers it. If someone else is responsible, you can be reimbursed for the cost.
If you did cause your own accident, your insurance company will only cover it if you have comprehensive and liability coverage for your primary auto insurance. After all, the point of car insurance is to help you pay for the cost of injuries and expenses. If you have any further questions, your personal injury lawyer may be able to help.
Georgia Is a Fault State
Georgia is a fault state. That means you will be required to pay out damages to the other party if you are responsible for the majority of your accident (over 50%). This concept is described under O.C.G.A. § 51-12-33. The contributory negligence doctrine may ultimately determine who will need to pay for any necessary rental.
This law states that liability is not automatically 100% one way or the other. Liability can be split between numerous factors, including:
- Driver errors
- Vehicular malfunctions
- Defective products
- Inclement weather
- Poor roadway conditions
- Human intervention
If you retain your car accident lawyer, they can work to gather evidence on your behalf. This evidence can be used to help determine your percentage of liability. This will affect whether you are found to be at fault for the other party’s damages.
Partial Responsibility for Car Accidents
As we have established, the individual who is responsible for the majority of the accident is responsible for the victim’s damages. However, if you were partially responsible for your accident, you are not free to recover the full amount of your settlement.
Having any amount of liability will result in a negative effect on your settlement. The court will review the accident and assign a percentage of fault to you. Finally, your settlement will be reduced by the percentage of liability you are assigned. As an example:
- 35% liability results in your settlement being reduced by 35%
- 10% liability reduces your settlement by 10%
- And so on
If you retain a car accident lawyer on our team, they could help you access many sources to prove liability. From physical evidence to expert witnesses to police reports and beyond, there are many ways to reach an accurate percentage of liability.
Addressing Your Losses After a Car Accident
When someone else is found liable for your car accident, you can seek compensation to make up for the hardships they caused in your life. Compensation can cover the physical impact of your injuries, your financial hardships, and your emotional suffering.
When it comes to your emotional suffering, you can add financial value to ruined personal relationships, mental health difficulties, and more. Given the abstract nature of these claims, many victims find it difficult to valuate emotional losses. Your lawyer can contact expert witnesses to help calculate the true value of your losses, though.
Additional examples of recoverable damages include:
- Lost wages
- Diminished earning capacity
- Medical treatments, including surgeries, hospitalizations, medical devices, prescriptions, future treatments, and more
- Damage to your vehicle and other personal property
- Diminished quality of life
- Vocational rehabilitation services
- Disability assistance
- Permanent disfigurements
- Pain and suffering
- General mental anguish
What to Remember About Your Georgia Car Accident Case
After suffering a collision or vehicle-related injury, remember the following:
- You only have a limited amount of time to protect your right to compensation (O.C.G.A. § 9-3-33 only gives you two years to file car accident lawsuits).
- The insurance company is not your friend (they might not want to pay you fairly).
- Any evidence you have could be helpful to your lawyer.
- You should track your healing and symptoms in a journal.
- Stay off social media so the insurance company cannot make assumptions about you, your health, and your vehicle.
- Do not accept the first offer the insurer provides you with (let your lawyer analyze your total expected losses first).
Set Your Mind at Ease with Your Georgia Car Accident Lawyer
We have stood up for countless car accident victims over the years. Along the way, we have spent countless hours learning about how car insurance works in Georgia. If you wonder whether the at–fault driver pays for the rental car, we can educate you. We are here to help with all your legal needs. Our team can take on insurance claims, lawsuits, settlement negotiations, and beyond.
To help set your mind at ease, we want you to know our attorneys work for contingency fees. As such, you do not have to worry about paying us for our services until your case is settled.