You cannot drive for too long in Atlanta without encountering a long highway backup caused by a traffic accident. While they are an inconvenience to other drivers, the victims of traffic accidents pay a much larger price. The Atlanta car accident attorneys of The Angell Law Firm know all too well the consequences of a serious traffic accident. Whether your accident was caused by another driver, a commercial vehicle, or even a defective automobile component, our firm has the experience to litigate your accident injury case.Car Accidents Are a Leading Cause of Injury
Although car accidents may be common, they can be caused by a number of factors. A drunk or distracted driver increases the likelihood of an accident. And although only two percent of accidents are head-on collisions, they account for 10 percent of auto accident fatalities.
Victims of car accidents that are the result of someone else’s negligence can bring a lawsuit to recover compensatory and, in some cases, punitive damages. Negligence lawsuits are contingent on the plaintiff proving the following basic elements: That the defendant owed a duty to the plaintiff to exercise due care, the defendant breached that duty, and the plaintiff was injured as a result of the defendant’s actions. In this context, all drivers owe a duty to other users of the road to drive safely, or to exercise reasonable care, and can be held liable for damages if they act carelessly, perhaps by texting and driving, and cause an accident as a result.
Under Georgia law, a two year statute of limitations generally applies in personal injury cases, meaning that accident victims must bring their claims within this amount of time after an accident. As such, it is critical to consult an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible after a car wreck. Also, even though a defendant may try to argue that a victim’s own negligence contributed to the accident, the plaintiff can still recover damages if he or she was less than 50% responsible.Truck Accidents Are Complicated
With more than 10.9 million trucks registered in the United States, it is no surprise that truck accidents occur every day. Accidents involving trucks may appear similar to car accidents, but they are complicated by several factors that make hiring a knowledgeable attorney vital. First, the trucking industry is regulated by complex laws that impose strict standards on trucking companies and drivers. Second, truck accidents will almost always involve insurance companies that are determined not to pay, and an attorney willing to take on insurance companies will be a valuable asset. Third, with the truck driver, the trucking company, and the insurance company all being potential defendants, determining who is liable for the plaintiffs injury requires the knowledge of an experienced attorney.
Most truck accident cases will involve negligence on the part of some party. But determining which party is responsible for what is a complicated process. Truck accidents may be caused by fatigue, negligent maintenance practices, negligent hiring practices, improper operating procedures, or countless other factors. If you have been injured in a truck accident, you need an attorney who understands the importance of promptly and thoroughly investigating the cause, as well as preserving all relevant evidence as soon as possible.Sue the Drunk Driver that Caused Your Injuries
In 2008, more than one out of every four auto accident fatalities — 28 percent — involved an alcohol impaired driver, according to the Georgia Governor’s Office of Highway Safety.
Driving drunk is inexcusable, and victims of DUI accidents have a legal right to take legal action against the drunk drivers that caused their injuries. A person injured by a drunk driver will usually sue the driver for negligence as a result of his choice to endanger other motorists by driving drunk. These plaintiffs can collect compensatory and punitive damages.
Alcohol-related car accidents are one of the few kinds of cases in Georgia in which punitive damages are not capped at $250,000. This gives victims of drunk drivers — or their families in the event of a wrongful death lawsuit — the ability to seek damages that will punish the defendant and discourage others from making the same deadly decisions.Drivers May Not Be the Only Cause of Injuries
Although it may be easy to dismiss an accident that does not involve another negligent driver as bad luck, there are often causes of an accident that are not readily apparent. For instance, dangerous roads cause accidents from the north Georgia mountains to the city streets of Atlanta. Improper maintenance may cause road conditions that cause drivers to lose control. Dangerously designed roads may cause two lanes to merge without warning. Victims of accidents caused by defective or dangerous roads have several options, including filing a negligence lawsuit against the government responsible for maintaining the road or the contractor who built it.
Other single-vehicle accidents may be caused by a number of factors, such as a defective automobile component. Injuries sustained in a truly unavoidable accident may be aggravated by a defective seat belt or safety system. Such accidents may expose the vehicle, tire, or other manufacturer to a products liability lawsuit in which the plaintiff may seek compensatory and punitive damages. Products liability lawsuits are another type of case in which punitive damages are not capped in Georgia.Protect Your Rights
No matter the cause of your car accident, the Atlanta traffic accident lawyers at The Angell Law Firm can help determine who might hold liability for your injuries. If you have been injured anywhere in Georgia in a vehicle traffic accident, call (770) 217-4954 or email us to schedule a free and confidential consultation.