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Comparative Negligence in Car Accidents

Unfortunately, many car accidents occur every day in Georgia. If you have been the victim of a car accident, it is critical that you are aware of your legal rights and your legal options. Car accident civil cases will generally come down to the legal issue of negligence. Essentially, negligence means that there was a failure to take proper reasonable care in a given situation. Under Georgia law, the negligent party is responsible for the accident. But, there is a common defense to this known as contributory negligence. When the defendant makes a claim of contributory negligence, they are claiming that the plaintiff was negligent too and therefore is also responsible for the car accident. If you have been in a car accident and you believe you might be partially at fault, contact an experienced Atlanta car accident attorney to understand the concept of comparative negligence in car accidents.

Georgia uses Modified Comparative Negligence

In some states a finding of contributory negligence in a car accident eliminates any possible recovery by the plaintiff. However in other states, including Georgia, a more plaintiff friendly system has been implement. Georgia’s system is known as modified comparative negligence. The goal of comparative negligence is to divide the damages in direct relation to the percentage of each party’s fault for the car accident. In Georgia, comparative negligence has been modified so that there is a 51 percent fault limit on recovery. This means that no one can ever recover any compensation for an accident for which they were at majority fault, as an Atlanta attorney can explain.

An Example of how Modified Comparative Negligence Works in Georgia

Imagine that you get into an accident with another car in downtown Atlanta, in this accident you sustained 10,000 dollars worth of damages. It was also determined that you were 20 percent at fault for the accident. In a contributory negligence state, you would not be entitled to collect any damages for your accident. In a state that applies comparative negligence in car accidents, such as Georgia, you would still be entitled to compensation. Your compensation would be reduced in direct proportionate to your fault. So, your 10,000 dollars worth of damages would be reduced by the same 20 percent for which you were at fault. In the end, you would be entitled to recover 8,000 dollars. It is important to remember that you would not be entitled to recover anything in Georgia if you were at fault for 51 percent or more of the accident. Comparative negligence and dividing up the liability for a car accident can become extremely complicated, an experienced car accident attorney is vital to make sure that you are not held at fault for an unfair percentage of the accident. Being held at fault for more than your fair share of the blame can cost you thousands of dollars and could even eliminate your recovery entirely.

Contact An Experienced Car Accident Attorney In Georgia

All car accidents can be extremely frustrating, it only gets more frustrating when the other party tries to blame you for the accident. After any car accident you should seek the professional assistance of an experienced Atlanta attorney. At The Angell Law Firm we have 20 years of trial experience successfully protecting the rights of our clients, and we understand the principle of comparative negligence in car accidents. Call our office at (770) 217-4954 or contact us online to set up a free case evaluation.

Client Reviews
After my car wreck I wanted to make sure I had the best counsel to take on my case, I’m glad I picked The Angell Law Firm! Any question or concerns I had where always promptly answered, I will definitely recommend them.
I was in a real tight spot a few months back and Bryce not only answered his own phone, but he treated me like a real person and not just a way to make more money. He settled my case and helped me in my time of need. He's earned my trust and my business for life. Jerry Amerson
The Angell Law Firm helped me when I got hurt in a car accident in Atlanta. Bryce Angell was very responsive and always kept me informed about the status of me case. He was very easy to talk to and made me feel like I was important rather than just another number like other law firms. Gloria
Mr. Angell is a guy who is very easy to talk to and is very knowledgeable. As soon as you talk to him, you like him. He helped my family through a tough time and I will never forget him for that. He was our guardian Angell! Stephen
Bryce Angell is a great attorney in Atlanta. He helped me when I was injured in a car accident on highway 85. He walked me through the process step by step and made sense of it all for me. The Angell Law Firm was always responsive and always took, or returned my call quickly. If you need a lawyer in Atlanta, call Bryce Angell. Gloria K.