If you got hurt in a car accident caused by a distracted driver, you should contact the dedicated attorneys at Jonathan R. Brockman, P.C. to help you recover the full compensation you’re owed. We have the experience, resources, and skills to navigate the most complex circumstances and build a sound legal case on your behalf. When you hire us, we’ll handle every aspect of your case and fight tenaciously for the justice you deserve.
At Jonathan R. Brockman, P.C., we know just how overwhelming a serious car accident can be. We’ll guide you through the complicated legal process in order to pursue the maximum financial award. Our Fayetteville distracted driving accident lawyers care about our clients. We’ll be by your side through every step of the case, and you’ll always be a priority for us.
We provide reliable, compassionate, and honest legal services. To set up a free consultation with our award-winning car accident team, call (770) 205-2231 or fill out our online form.
The Reason Distracted Driving Accidents Occur
Distracted driving includes any activity that takes a driver’s attention away from the task of driving. When someone isn’t paying attention to the road ahead, there’s an increased risk that a car accident will happen. Distracted driving is dangerous and often leads to severe injuries and fatalities.
Three types of distractions generally occur behind the wheel: visual, manual, and cognitive.
Manual distractions involve a driver taking one or both hands off the wheel to do something else. When that happens, they’re no longer in complete control of their vehicle. Things can change in a split second, and if they don’t have their hands on the wheel, they won’t be able to safely maneuver away from a hazard.
The most common manual distractions include:
- Sending a text or email
- Manually making or answering a call on a cell phone
- Changing the radio
Visual distractions cause drivers to look at something other than the road in front of them while driving their car. Examples of this type of distraction include:
- Looking at a passenger during a conversation
- Referring to a map or GPS for directions
- Staring at their appearance in a mirror
- Watching a video on an electronic device
- Reading an email, text, or other content
Cognitive distractions redirect a driver’s focus and attention to something other than driving. Cognitive distractions may be combined with manual or visual distractions.
Common examples include:
- Focusing on a conversation with a passenger or someone on the phone
- Reading a street sign
- Mentally preparing for a job interview, school presentation, or another important event
- Feeling angry, sad, irritated, or other strong emotion
- Singing along to the radio
- Caring for a child or pet
Car Accidents Can Result in Severe Injuries
Any type of car crash can cause physical harm and property damage. When it’s the result of a distracted driver, the aftermath can be worse. Usually, distracted drivers are exhibiting other dangerous behaviors simultaneously, such as:
- Speeding or driving too fast for conditions
- Failing to check blind spots
- Running red lights and stop signs
- Weaving in and out of traffic
- Failing to use turn signals
- Slowing down or speeding up suddenly
These actions increase the risk of injury to occupants of other vehicles. Even if you take certain safety precautions, it’s difficult to protect yourself from the impact of another car completely. When you collide with another vehicle, you could sustain any of the following injuries:
- Traumatic brain injury
- Spinal cord injury
- Broken bones
- Crush injury
- Loss of limb or amputation injury
- Psychological trauma, such as PTSD
Any of the injuries listed above could lead to long-term issues. If you damage your spinal cord, you might require ongoing physical therapy and pain management. A traumatic brain injury could result in permanent disability. Psychological trauma could cause the need for therapy sessions or anti-anxiety medication. If you’re struggling because of a distracted driver, you deserve to hold them accountable for their actions.
The Do’s and Don’ts of Car Accidents
Most people go into a state of shock after a car accident. They’re not sure how to handle it or what steps to take next. What you do and say after colliding with a distracted driver could impact the outcome of your case. Follow the steps below to protect your rights and ensure you’re able to recover the maximum compensation available.
- Call 911 and report the accident. Wait for law enforcement to arrive and perform their investigation. When it becomes available, you can request a copy of the traffic crash report.
- If you can walk around, take pictures of the crash scene, including debris in the road, damage to the vehicles, and other relevant details.
- Ask the at-fault driver for their name, contact information, and auto insurance details.
- Speak with anyone who saw what happened and get their names and phone numbers.
- Immediately after leaving the accident site, seek medical attention for an evaluation of your injuries. Follow the doctor’s orders for necessary follow-up appointments and continue to treat your injuries until you’re released from care.
- Take your car to a repair shop for a damage estimate.
- Keep copies of everything associated with your distracted driving accident, such as medical records, insurance company letters, and prescriptions.
- Hire a Fayetteville distracted driving accident lawyer to fight for full compensation.
Besides following the steps listed above, there are also some things you should never do after a car accident caused by a distracted driver. Any of these actions could have a negative impact on the amount of your financial award from an insurance claim or lawsuit.
- Don’t admit any fault for the accident to the investigating officer or anyone else. Under Georgia’s modified comparative fault rule your compensation decreases proportionately to your percentage of shared blame.
- Don’t sign any forms that the at-fault driver’s insurance company sends to you without having an attorney review them first. They may forward a waiver relinquishing your rights to the maximum settlement available.
- Don’t stop treating your injuries until your doctor says you made a full recovery or places you at maximum medical improvement (MMI), which means your injury won’t improve with further medical intervention.
- Don’t throw out any evidence. Sufficient evidence is necessary to prove the other driver caused the accident and should be liable for any resulting expenses.
- Don’t leave the scene without reporting the crash. It’s a state law to report all car accidents that result in injury, fatality, or at least $500 in property damage.
- Don’t talk to the insurance companies about your claims. Let your Fayetteville distracted driving accident lawyer handle that for you. We will communicate with other parties, submit evidence, complete forms, and negotiate a settlement on your behalf.
Georgia Car Accident Laws
When it comes to auto insurance, Georgia follows a traditional fault system. That means the at-fault driver is automatically liable for the injured party’s damages (losses associated with an accident). To pursue compensation, you can file a claim with their auto insurance company.
All motorists must hold auto insurance with minimum liability limits. Those limits cover damages related to bodily injury and vehicle damage. The minimum required limit is $25,000, which might not be enough if you sustained a severe injury.
If a liability claim isn’t enough to compensate for your damages, you can supplement your remaining damages with your UM insurance. Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage provides reimbursement to car accident victims if the liable driver doesn’t have insurance or their coverage isn’t high enough. You can use it to pay for your medical care and other expenses associated with your injury.
Types of Damages in a Distracted Driving Accident Case
There are three types of damages you could pursue if a distracted driver caused your accident and injuries.
Economic damages compensate injured parties for their expenses, such as:
- Medical bills
- Out of pocket costs
- Car repairs
- Lost wages
- Lost earning capacity
Non-economic damages compensate injured parties for their intangible losses, such as:
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Disability or disfigurement
- Diminished quality of life
Punitive damages don’t compensate accident victims. Instead, they serve as a punishment against the driver for their careless actions. Unlike economic and non-economic damages, which are available in an insurance claim and lawsuit, punitive damages are only available in a lawsuit under special circumstances.
If you can provide clear and convincing evidence that the at-fault driver displayed acts of fraud, willful misconduct, malice, wantonness, oppression, or indifference towards consequences, a jury might determine you deserve a financial award.
Contact a Dedicated Fayetteville Distracted Driving Accident Lawyer Today
At Jonathan R. Brockman, P.C., our Fayetteville car accident attorneys believe in providing our clients with excellent customer service. When you hire us, you can depend on personalized attention and open communication. We’ll be there for you throughout your entire case and help you navigate the complex legal road.
We’ll be happy to meet with you for a free consultation. You can discuss the details of your car accident so we can determine the legal options available. If you choose to have us represent you, we’ll take your case on contingency. That means you won’t have to pay upfront fees or costs. We don’t expect payment unless we win a financial award.
If you or a loved one was the victim of a distracted driving car accident in Fayetteville, call us today at (770) 205-2231. We’ll help you get through this devastating ordeal and seek the justice and compensation you deserve.