First, you should consult with an expert. You need a Georgia distracted driving accident lawyer who regularly handles distracted driver cases. Trying to prove the other driver was distracted can be difficult for the average person who doesn’t have a background in investigations. Your attorney will have a team of investigators who regularly do this type of work and know how a driver might try to hide their distractions. Additionally, the other driver may deny that they were even at fault in the accident, let alone distracted, and their insurance company will likely back them up. An experienced lawyer can help you deal with this situation as well.
Types of Evidence That Prove Distracted Driving
Several types of evidence are used in car accidents in general and distracted driving cases in particular. Your car accident lawyer and their investigative team will thoroughly search for and examine any available evidence, which may include:
A Police Report
This is the typical starting point for a car accident investigation. Sometimes the police report is beneficial, especially if the other driver was ticketed for distracted driving. But in other cases, the report may be inconclusive. This is usually due to a lack of evidence – the police arrive, take statements from both drivers, examine the vehicles, and look around for witnesses. If there are none, they will probably be left with two conflicting stories about what happened (unless the other driver simply admits they were distracted and at fault). Other accidents or emergency situations may require the officers’ attention, so in many cases, the investigation ends with an inconclusive report and no citations. While this is not ideal, it’s not the end of your case, either. Your lawyer can pick up where the police left off investigating the accident.
As noted in the last section, it can be hard to find witnesses after an accident. Sometimes people who saw what happened may have moved on because they needed to get home or get to work, etc. Or they may have been in a traffic situation where it wasn’t safe to stop their car and get out. In some cases, witnesses may think they have nothing to contribute if they didn’t see the accident, but they might have noticed essential details before the crash.
Witnesses can be found in your own car, as well. If you have a passenger, they may be able to share their perspective, although it’s possible they didn’t see all the same things you did. Sometimes a passenger looks in a different direction than the driver, so they may not notice the other motorist texting or using their phone. On the other hand, a passenger can sometimes see these things while you have your eyes on the road. Often we will interview passengers to see if they remember any additional details since the crash happened.
If there were no passengers, our investigative team will return to the accident scene and knock on doors, seeking additional witnesses or other kinds of evidence.
Photos or Videos
We always recommend taking pictures and videos after a car accident, if possible. Try to get pictures of the damage from all angles.
A video is also a useful tool, especially if you’ve managed to capture the accident itself. But it isn’t safe to record with your phone while driving, and it’s also illegal under the Georgia Hands-Free Law. However, continuously running dash cams are allowed and provide a good source of evidence if you’re ever in an accident, whether or not the other driver was distracted.
If you didn’t have a dashcam running at the time of the crash, that might not be the only option for video evidence. Our investigative team can seek out videos from nearby cameras when canvassing the neighborhood. Frequently we’re able to get video from doorbell cameras or surveillance cameras installed at local businesses. We may even be able to find other motorists whose dashcams recorded the crash – even if they didn’t see what happened. Remember that people often erase videos to free up storage, so the sooner we get to work on your case, the better our chances of finding this evidence.
The other driver is probably not going to hand over their phone records willingly, but after filing a lawsuit, your attorney will be able to subpoena these records from the phone service provider. Often these can be used to show the driver was using their phone at the time of the crash.
Social Media Posts
Our investigators will track down the at-fault motorist’s social media pages and check to see if they posted, commented on, or liked anything at the time of the accident.
What If the Other Driver Thinks the Accident Was Your Fault?
This is very common, and their insurance carrier may think so too. It’s helpful to understand that proving the other driver was distracted doesn’t necessarily mean proving they were at fault, or even primarily at fault. This distinction is important because of Georgia’s modified comparative negligence doctrine, which acknowledges that sometimes both drivers contribute to an accident. Georgia has a 50 percent rule, which states that a party that is less than 50 percent at fault can collect damages from the party that is 50 percent or more at fault. The amount of damages awarded is then reduced by the less-responsible party’s percentage of fault.
In practical terms, this means that if you were 20 percent at fault for the accident (despite the other driver’s distractions), you would lose 20 percent of the damages awarded. As you can imagine, insurance companies are happy to blame you so they can either avoid paying your claim entirely or pay a smaller amount – either way, they save money! Meanwhile, the other driver will probably tell the insurance company the accident was your fault because they don’t want their insurance rates to go up. It can be very frustrating for an injured person to realize they’re being blamed for an accident caused by a distracted driver!
How the CEO Lawyer Personal Injury Law Firm Can Help
While dealing with rejected insurance claims and distracted drivers who won’t admit fault can be upsetting, it doesn’t have to be your problem to solve. In fact, it’s not a good idea to try to argue with the insurance company yourself. Insurance adjusters are experts on insurance law and will use every trick in the book to avoid paying you. Talking to them can make things worse, as insurance companies usually record every call (you will likely hear a brief announcement about “recording for quality control purposes” in between elevator music selections). Anything you say in your own defense may be misinterpreted and held up as proof that you were at fault, at least partially.
The other possibility is that the insurance company will recognize their client was at fault and that there is no way to blame you. That sounds like an improvement, but it introduces a new problem: The lowball offer. If the insurance adjuster realizes they can’t get out of paying your claim, they may try to reduce the company’s liability by offering you a much smaller amount than your claim is worth. Once you accept, they don’t have to pay you another dime, even if you later realize you have more accident-related expenses. For this reason, we advise you to seek a lawyer’s counsel before accepting any offer from an insurance company.
The CEO Lawyer Personal Injury Law Firm is always here to help people injured by distracted or otherwise negligent drivers. If you’re seeking compensation for your damages, considering an insurance company’s offer, or simply want another opinion on your case, please contact us for a free consultation. We’ll review your options and help you estimate how much your damages might be worth. If we take your case, you won’t owe us anything until we win or settle it.
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Frequently Asked Questions
After a personal injury, you're bound to have legal questions. The CEO Lawyer Ali Awad can provide you with answers to these questions, just as he's given answers to his millions of curious social media followers. Take a look at some of the most common personal injury law questions for general information, and then reach out to one of our seasoned attorneys for specific guidance on your case!
To quickly resolve matters following an accident, insurance companies will offer you less than you deserve in compensation for your injuries. Many victims feel pressured to accept these offers as the bills begin to pile up, but that is rarely a good idea. The insurance company is looking to protect its bottom line; and will offer injured victims less than they deserve. An experienced personal injury attorney understands how to negotiate with the insurance company and can look out for your best interests by getting you the compensation you deserve after an injury. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, it is important to avoid negotiating or providing recorded statements to the insurance company without first seeking help from a qualified personal injury attorney.
Do You Have a Personal Injury Case?
The best way to determine if you have a personal injury case is to speak with a knowledgeable attorney. Our legal professionals have the expertise to evaluate your case and determine a strong legal strategy so that you can obtain the greatest amount of compensation possible under the law. We will enlist investigators, assistants, and other specialists to collect accident reports, speak with witnesses to your accident, and put together a plan. While you focus on your physical recovery, we will remain committed to fighting for the compensation that you deserve.
Georgia's Personal Injury & Accident Firm
Accident victims have a limited time to file a personal injury lawsuit. This time period is referred to as the statute of limitations, and in Atlanta, it lasts only two years. This means that if you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, you have only two years to pursue a personal injury suit. If you wait too long to reach out to an experienced attorney, you might be forever barred from seeking the compensation you deserve.
What to Expect From Your Initial Consultation With a Personal Injury Attorney?
During your initial consultation with CEO Lawyer team, we will go over the important details of your personal injury accident, which include the nature and extent of your injuries, how your injuries have impacted your ability to earn a paycheck, the cost of your medical treatment, and whether further medical treatment will be required. We will answer any questions you might have, as well, in regards to our experience, our track record of success, and what to expect from the legal process.
Many personal injury victims wonder if they will be able to afford the legal fees required to pursue a lawsuit. CEO Lawyer injury and accident attorneys will not ask for any type of upfront fee unless we are successful in obtaining compensation for you. That means that if you have been harmed in a motor vehicle accident, slip and fall accident, defective product accident, or any other type of personal injury accident, you can absolutely afford to contact our law office today for assistance. In fact, you cannot afford to wait. Reach out today.
We understand that some accident victims might have already obtained the assistance of an attorney but may be dissatisfied with the services provided. We are standing by and prepared to help you change legal representation, regardless of where you are in the process.
Speak to an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney Today
If you or a loved one has been injured in any type of personal injury accident, you should not hesitate to speak with the experienced attorneys at CEO Lawyer personal injury law firm. Call, email, or fill out our online contact form today so that we can begin helping you pursue the compensation you deserve.