Passengers are frequently the innocent victims of Georgia car accidents. The responsible parties can include the driver of the vehicle in which you were a passenger, another driver on the road and even the manufacturer of the vehicles involved.
In 2008, Georgia experienced 1,493 traffic deaths, 115,797 injuries and 306,367 motor vehicle crashes, according to the Georgia Governor’s Office of Highway Safety. Some of the most common causes included speeding, failure to yield, tailgating, improper lane changes and driver impairment.
When negligence is to blame for your injuries, you are entitled to seek compensation from the at-fault driver or drivers. Potential damages include:
Pain and suffering
When the accident results in long-term health consequences such as traumatic brain injury, paralysis or disfigurement, you may also be entitled to compensation for loss of earning capacity, rehabilitation and loss of enjoyment of life. When the crash results in fatal injuries, loved ones can also pursue a wrongful death lawsuit.
To help ensure that you are able to pursue a claim, it is imperative that the driver of the vehicle in which you were a passenger obtains as much information about the other drivers involved in the crash, such as drivers’ license numbers, vehicle registrations and contact information. If you or the driver is able to do so, you can also help document what happened by gathering the names of witnesses and taking pictures of the accident scene.
When the negligent driver is a friend, it can be uncomfortable to pursue a personal injury claim. However, it is important to remember that the driver was responsible for keeping you safe while you were a passenger in his or her vehicle. Moreover, because the driver likely carries automobile insurance, the party responsible for providing compensation is the insurance company and not your friend.
If you or someone you love has been injured in a car accident, you must act quickly to protect your legal rights.