Articles Posted in Car Accidents

In most cases, the parties involved in a car accident remain at the scene, exchange contact and insurance information, and wait for the police to arrive. In some cases, however, the at-fault driver flees the scene. These people are usually fleeing the scene because they don’t have insurance, but it may be because they are undocumented immigrants or they have a warrant out for their arrest. In some cases, the driver may be intoxicated, confused (if the driver is elderly), or simply panicked. Whatever the reason, hit-and-run accidents can be very complicated if you’re injured.  

What to Do First

If you’re reading this, you have hopefully already given whatever details you to have to the police regarding the driver and the vehicle. If you haven’t, you should contact the police as soon as possible, file a report, and cooperate fully with their investigation. You should also report the accident to your insurance company. More importantly, you should get checked out by your doctor.  

The safety technology found in modern cars is simply amazing. Thanks to seat belts, airbags, and crumple-zones that absorb the force of an accident, people now walk away from car accidents that used to result in certain death. Despite these safety features, car accidents can still result in very serious injuries that are not always readily apparent. These injuries can be especially serious when they involve the head and neck.  

If you’ve been in a car accident, the first thing for you to do is see your doctor, even if you feel fine. Your doctor can give you a thorough examination and explain the symptoms you need to watch out for. You may need to take a few days off of work, but the most important thing is that you focus on your health.

Recognizing Whiplash

According to the CDC, 29 Americans die every day in alcohol-related car accidents. From 2003-2012, almost 4,000 Georgians were killed. And while death is certainly the worst-case scenario, these statistics don’t account for the horrific injuries that can change the victim’s life forever.  

If you or your family has suffered as a result of an alcohol-related accident, you need to understand who you may have a claim against. The intoxicated driver is obviously at fault, but what happens if he is killed or doesn’t have the financial means to make you whole? There were others who could have taken action to prevent this accident but did not. Should they be held accountable for your suffering?  

The Georgia Dram Shop Act

If you’ve never been in a car accident, you may be surprised at how quickly the insurance companies spring into action. It’s important to understand, however, that the insurance companies involved have different roles to play and different motivations. Your insurance company is working on your behalf because you pay your premiums and they are under contract.  The other driver’s insurance company, on the other hand, represents the interests of the other driver. Even if the other driver has admitted that the accident was his fault, the insurance company then wants to make sure that it pays no more than it absolutely has to in paying your claim.

As a result, the other insurance company is going to want to settle the claim as quickly as possible. That may sound very appealing, but understand that a settlement is going to require you to waive any other claims, whether you are aware of them or not. For example, if you later discover that you have nerve damage as a result of the accident, you won’t be able to bring a claim against them if you’ve already entered a settlement agreement. For these reasons and others we’ll get into below, it’s very important to understand how to talk to the other driver’s insurance company.

First Things First……..

In our previous post, we discussed a scenario where you and your family were in a car accident caused by a drunk driver. As is often the case, the other driver winds up being charged with DUI. People sometimes get confused as to what that means for them if they are injured, and so we discussed some of the principal differences between the criminal case and a claim for your personal injuries. Here is a brief summary of the points we discussed:

  • The criminal case against the driver is brought by the government, based on the fact that he broke the law. He will face possible jail time and fines, as well as other penalties.  
  • A personal injury lawsuit is based on the victim’s claim for damages arising from the accident, such as medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, and pain and suffering.  

Here is an unfortunately all-too-common scenario: you’re driving home late one night from a family get-together. Suddenly, while coming around a turn, a car appears in your lane coming right at you. You try to swerve, but it’s too late, and the other vehicle hits you head on. Your vehicle is totaled. Your family is a bit shaken-up but seems to otherwise be ok. It’s immediately obvious that the other driver is severely intoxicated. When police arrive on the scene, he’s mostly incoherent. The police report indicates that there was a strong odor of alcohol emanating from the vehicle, he admitted to having several drinks, and could not perform any of the field sobriety tests. As a result, you’re not surprised to learn that the other driver is being prosecuted for DUI.  

A few days pass and you discover that even though you have insurance, you’re going to have to pay out of pocket in order to replace your car. In addition, you have a lot of stiffness in your upper body. Your husband has intermittent pain in his neck, and one of your children is complaining about severe, recurring headaches. What do you do?

Isn’t all of this being handled in the criminal case? Over the next couple of posts, we’ll be discussing how the criminal case and a claim for personal injury are related.  

Rear-end collisions are some of the most common car accidents on our roadways. They can happen when you are stopped at an intersection or in stop-and-go traffic. And even though they are quite common, that doesn’t mean that they are nothing to worry about. Despite the safety features found in modern vehicles, the injuries caused by rear-end collisions can be very serious. In this post, we want to sensitize our readers to some of the important issues that arise with these accidents.  

Your Injuries May Not Present Themselves Right Away

People who have been in car accidents often report that they felt fine immediately afterward. However, the next day, or even several days later, they often start to experience various symptoms such as the following:

Despite the fact that drunk driving rates have been steadily declining over the years, drunk driving remains one of the leading causes of motor vehicle deaths in the U.S. Car accidents are always traumatic events, but this is especially so with drunk driving accidents – it’s hard to believe that someone would be so reckless as to get behind the wheel while under the influence of drugs or alcohol. It’s one thing to endanger your own health and safety, but unfortunately, drunk driving usually results in the death or injury of an innocent person. If you or a loved one has been involved in an accident with a drunk driver, you should consider talking with a lawyer in order to understand your rights and protect your future.  

Who Do You Sue?  

The most obvious answer to this question is that you sue the intoxicated driver who caused the accident. Almost all car accidents involve negligence, but in a drunk driving case, you’re alleging that the driver was negligent by driving while intoxicated. Therefore, you are asking the court to hold that person liable for your injuries and other losses.  

The moments surrounding a car accident are often described as a blur. It can be incredibly difficult to sort out what happened, let alone know what to do. Thankfully, emergency responders and oftentimes, kind strangers, are there to help and keep us safe.  

Many people don’t realize that the days and weeks following the accident can be a critical time, even if they thought they were “fine.” Because every case is different, it can sometimes be difficult to say what you should do. After a car accident, actions can sometimes be as detrimental as doing nothing. Here are five things you should not do after your accident.  

1.) Do not give lengthy statements to the other driver’s insurance company. Limit your comments to confirm the date and location of the accident, your personal information (name, address, phone number), and insurance and vehicle information. Do not say things like “I’m fine” or that you aren’t injured. Anything you say to the insurance company employees could later be used against you.

You’ve been in a car accident but declined to get in the ambulance. You felt fine, maybe a bit stiff or sore, but you had no broken bones and you weren’t bleeding. Now, several days later, you’re still hurting and even have some new pains. Maybe you’re wondering if these new pains are related to the accident or maybe you slept wrong. But what if this pain is the result of your car accident, and could be signaling something more serious?

Thanks to modern vehicle safety features, people don’t suffer gruesome injuries as often as they used to, but the forces involved in a car accident can be tremendous. Because your body is moving at the same speed as the vehicle and then slamming to an abrupt stop, you can still suffer significant injuries that require medical treatment. Therefore, the first and most important thing you should do after an accident is to get checked out by your doctor, even if you don’t think you need medical attention. Your doctor can diagnose your symptoms and help ensure a full recovery.  

Soft Tissue Injuries

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