Georgia’s laws on negligence determine fault after a car accident, and we prove that negligence with evidence. The evidence in your car accident case may include:
- Police reports
- Medical records
- Eyewitness statements
- Expert testimony
- Photo and video records
- Possibly other sources
In most cases, the fault is easily shown. Other times, it may be more complicated, or there may be multiple parties or factors involved. Our auto accident lawyer can help you identify the at-fault party for your damages.
Proving Fault and Liability Requires Four Elements
There are four elements that we seek to prove when determining fault and liability following a car accident. Those four elements include:
- Duty of Care: Also known as the duty of care, you expect the at-fault driver to follow the law and drive consistent with what you would expect from other drivers in the same situation.
- Breach of Duty: When the at-fault driver fails to obey the law, we refer to this as the breach of duty.
- Causation: When the at-fault driver disobeyed the law, they caused an accident, and you were injured.
- Damages: Your injuries lead to damages. Damages include tangible, financial losses and intangible losses, such as pain and suffering.
Each of these elements will be necessary to prove if you decide to file a civil lawsuit for your losses, but you do have some options before that comes.
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How We Prove Fault in Your Georgia Car Accident
One of our primary services is investigating our client’s accidents to help collect the evidence necessary to prove fault. We can use this evidence to strengthen your insurance claim or in a civil lawsuit.
You don’t have to sit back and leave all it up to the insurance adjusters. There is plenty we can do to help prove that the other party caused the accident. These actions include:
We will photograph the vehicles and the damages incurred at the scene. We will also take photos of any traffic lights, streetlights, and the area where the accident occurred to help determine who violated the rules of the road.
Speaking With Eyewitnesses
If you collected any information at the accident scene, we can follow up with those eyewitnesses. They can be instrumental in providing an unbiased third-party opinion when the drivers disagree on how the accident happened.
Getting the Police Report
This is your most important piece of evidence. A police report will say who was at fault in an accident when the circumstances of the crash make fault clear.
The police officer’s version of the events is seen as more reliable (and credible) than the version of those involved, and it will often be the determining factor when the accounts don’t match up.
The responding officer may also include their opinion about fault in the police report, but your car accident lawyer might be able to dispute this. No matter what, you should make sure that you always file a police report.
Collecting Medical Reports
After your accident, your doctors will give you a prognosis for your recovery. Any reports, scans, and charts related to your injuries can be used in your case.
Estimating Your Expenses
Any financial losses you incurred from your accident can also assist in your case. These losses can include:
- Lost or diminished wages
- Medical bills
- Repaired or replaced property
- Lowered quality of life
- Pain and suffering
Fault Can Be Determined By Car Accident Damage
In some cases, the insurers will determine fault, at least in part, based on where and how badly the vehicle is damaged. Investigators for the insurance company may be able to figure out who caused the wreck by comparing each vehicle’s damaged areas.
For example, if the damage is on the rear of the vehicle, it is most likely the rear driver who was at fault. However, you won’t be totally at their mercy. There is plenty your car accident attorney can do to demonstrate fault to the insurers.
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How to Resolve a Car Accident if Both Drivers Are at Fault
Known as contributory negligence, O.C.G.A. § 51-12-33 allows victims to collect compensation only if they are less than 50 percent responsible for the accident. Also, their percentage of fault reduces the amount of compensation they may collect. Our car accident attorney can explain how this law will affect your case.
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How to Dispute Car Accident Fault
The first thing you’ll need to do if you disagree with the percentage of fault you’ve been assigned in an accident is to report it to your insurance company verbally and in writing.
Next, report the at-fault party’s insurance company’s findings to your personal injury lawyer. If the insurer doesn’t settle fairly, you may end up taking your case to trial.
Georgia Has a Deadline for Filing a Lawsuit
Per O.C.G.A. § 9-3-33, car accident victims have two years to file a lawsuit in personal injury cases.
If you are unable to reach a fair settlement with the at-fault driver, you can take your case to court, but if you miss this deadline, you may not be able to collect any compensation.
We will maintain your timeline and file your paperwork so you do not miss this important deadline.
Contact a Car Accident Lawyer to Prove Fault
Let a car accident lawyer be your voice and fight for your rights throughout the settlement process. Attorney Evan Kaine can help. Call (404) 214-2001 today for a free case review. We work on contingency, so you pay nothing unless we win.