When people are involved in motor vehicle accidents and suffer injuries, they are right to immediately wonder how much financial compensation they can recover from a negligent party. If the person suffering injuries was not wearing their seatbelt at the time of a collision, then they are also right to wonder how that might impact their ability to recover compensation.
The truth is that any person involved in a motor vehicle accident will have the right to file a claim for their injuries, but most claims are going to be third-party claims with insurance companies that will be investigated and scrutinized. When an insurance company concludes that a person was not wearing a seatbelt at the time of an accident, they may try to minimize their settlement offer or even deny the claim completely. For this reason, you should always speak with an Atlanta car accident lawyer after a crash.
How Car Accident Claims Get Handled
An insurance company may not always deny a car accident claim involving a person who was not wearing a seatbelt. In some cases, the insurer may simply attempt to settle the case for far less than it is actually worth.
It will be important for any person who believes that their failure to wear a seatbelt might jeopardize their injury claim to quickly contact an experienced personal injury lawyer so they can have somebody on their side to guide them through the claims process and ensure that an insurance company does not take advantage of them. A skilled attorney will be able to negotiate for a fair and full settlement to your case even if you were not wearing a seatbelt.
Understanding Comparative Negligence
Comparative negligence is the legal defense that allows a liable party to reduce the amount of damages based on the negligence of the injured party. Comparative negligence plays an important role in determining damages in many personal injury cases because a victim’s percentage of negligence contributing to their accident will also be the percentage by which their award is reduced.
This means that a person who is awarded $100,000 but is found to have been 20 percent at fault would see their award reduced by $20,000 and only recover $80,000. The seatbelt defense refers to a commonly asserted defense by insurance companies that a person should not recover any damages for a car accident when they did not wear the seatbelt because regardless of the cause of the accident, the cause of the injuries was the failure to wear a seatbelt. Fortunately, an attorney can make sure you receive the compensation you deserve.
Call Us Today to Speak with an Atlanta Car Accident Lawyer
Did you recently suffer serious injuries or was your loved one killed in a car accident in which you were not wearing a seatbelt? Do not think that you have no ability to recover anything in your case because Slappey & Sadd will be able to help you recover what you need and deserve for your injuries.
Our firm understands how stressful and challenging cases can become when there are seatbelt concerns but we have helped people overcome these types of obstacles before. Call our office or contact us online to take advantage of a free consultation with a car accident lawyer.