A rear-end collision is an unexpected and terrifying event. The aftermath of a rear-end accident can be even more traumatic, as you deal with a painful recovery, try to manage day-to-day tasks, and try to understand your insurance options. How do you know you are getting a fair settlement after an accident? Will the insurance company’s check cover all of your outstanding and future expenses related to the crash?
For answers you can understand and trust, turn to the experienced Fayetteville car accident attorneys at Jonathan R. Brockman, P.C. for help. We have been helping Fayetteville car accident victims understand their rights for years. We will review your case and explain all of your legal options and what you should expect for compensation based on your circumstances. We will also aggressively negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf to make sure you are being compensated for the full and fair amount you deserve.
You shouldn’t have to struggle with the financial fallout of a rear-end accident on your own. You have legal rights and options, and a seasoned, compassionate Fayetteville attorney can help you chart a course forward.
You have limited time to take legal action. Call us today at (770) 205-8827 for a free case evaluation.
What Are Rear-End Collisions and What Are Their Causes?
A rear-end collision is any type of car accident that takes place when one driver hits the back end of another driver. This type of accident is sometimes also referred to as a “fender bender” because the fender of each vehicle typically bears the brunt of the damage. However, the term can also suggest that a rear-end type accident is minor and that injuries and property damage are not serious. That is not always the case – rear-end accidents are dangerous, and high-speed rear-end collisions can be downright deadly.
The causes of rear-end collisions are numerous, but most boil down to one simple element: The rear driver was simply not paying attention. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that almost 87 percent of all rear-end type collisions could have been prevented if the rear driver had been paying closer attention to the road and their driving situation.
Distracted driving is just one of the reasons rear-end collisions occur. These are typically the most common causes of rear-end accidents:
- Distracted driving: Distracted driving is when an individual operates a vehicle while their eyes or mind are occupied on another task. This may be reading a text, making a phone call, eating, or programming a GPS. Distracted drivers also have the tendency to be involved in higher speed rear-end accidents because their eyes or attention is not focused on the road ahead, meaning they may miss seeing a light turn red or a car stalled in front of them.
- Driving under the influence: Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is a serious offense that causes countless accidents on Georgia roads each year. In 2018, there were 21,784 DUI convictions in the state, according to the Georgia Department of Driver Services. Drivers who are impaired are more likely to be involved in high-speed rear-end accidents because they are not paying attention to the road, or their reflexes are impaired to the point where they cannot slow down in time to avoid crashing into the rear of another vehicle.
- Drowsy driving: Driving while sleepy is akin to driving while intoxicated. Lack of sleep impacts the brain and reflexes in much the same way as alcohol. Falling asleep behind the wheel, even if only for a few seconds, also means that there is an increased likelihood of a driver impacting at a higher rate of speed.
- Aggressive driving: Aggressive driving is a set of intentional and negative driving behaviors that put the safety of others on the road at risk. Common examples of aggressive driving include tailgating, speeding, unsafe lane changes, and attempting to cut off other vehicles on the road.
- Bad weather: Inclement weather conditions can also be a serious problem for drivers. However, even in poor conditions, drivers are expected to exercise safe driving behavior, such as slowing down and leaving extra room between vehicles in order to avoid rear-end accidents.
Injuries That Can Result From a Rear-End Accident
Rear-end collisions are sudden, unexpected events. Since it is usually the rear driver initiating the accident, the victim being hit may not even realize that an accident is imminent, meaning they have no way to prepare, avoid, or brace for the impact. The sudden and jarring force of the collisions can cause a wide range of injuries. High-speed rear-end accidents can be particularly severe and cause life-altering, even deadly consequences.
Some of the most common types of injuries that take place in the event of a rear-end crash include:
- Traumatic brain injury
- Facial injuries
- Head, neck, and spinal injuries
- Damage to internal organs
- Internal bleeding
- Punctured lungs
- Broken ribs
- Fractured bones
- Wrongful death
Recovery from these injuries can take weeks, even months, and cost a victim time and money, as they stay home from work to recover from their injuries. When you add in the cost of medical bills and ongoing treatment, your expenses can quickly become overwhelming.
The legal team at Jonathan R. Brockman, P.C. doesn’t want to see Fayetteville victims settle for less than what they deserve after a rear-end accident. Medical bills, property damage, and time away from work can all add up. In addition, the insurance company may try to shift the blame of the accident onto you, to minimize the amount they have to pay you.
Contact us to find out how we can help you seek full and fair compensation after an accident. We will review your circumstances and give you all the information you need to make a decision about the course of action that best fits your individual situation.
Can I Get Compensation Following a Rear-End Collision?
The short answer is yes, you may be able to recover compensation following a rear-end accident caused by another driver. However, the question as to how much compensation you may be able to receive depends on a variety of factors.
Depending on the circumstances of the accident, victims may be able to recover both economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages refer to the measurable losses that a victim incurs as a result of an accident. That may include things such as the cost of medical bills, loss of income, and property damage. These things are relatively straightforward to calculate.
Non-economic damages, on the other hand, are much harder to measure. Non-economic damages are more subjective and may include emotional distress, pain and suffering, even disfigurement. They are things that impact a victim’s mental state and the quality of their life moving forward.
Totaling the amount of damages following a rear-end accident is only step one in the process. Before a victim can collect compensation, liability for the accident must be established. Georgia follows a “modified comparative negligence” system when it comes to establishing liability and doling out compensation. The system seeks to assign liability for the accident to each driver involved and then uses that percentage to determine how much compensation a driver is entitled to.
In reality, it works like this: If a victim is involved in a rear-end accident and it’s determined that the victim was 10 percent at fault for causing the accident, then that victim gets the total amount of compensation minus 10 percent. So, if the total amount of compensation was $100,000, the victim would be entitled to collect $90,000.
The other driver, who was 90 percent responsible for the accident, would not get any compensation. That is because, under the modified comparative negligence rule, a driver found to be 50 percent or more liable for causing an accident is barred from receiving any compensation.
Whether you are pursuing an injury claim or lawsuit, it is important to hire an experienced Fayetteville car accident attorney for help. A skilled attorney will thoroughly review your case, investigate the accident, and build a solid case establishing who is truly liable for the accident. This is your best chance of receiving the maximum amount of compensation.
There are insurance companies that value profit over victims. They may attempt to use the modified comparative negligence rule to their advantage by placing a higher liability on your shoulders. This means they can pay out less and keep more money in their pockets. With solid evidence in hand, an attorney can fight to negotiate on your behalf for the full and fair compensation you deserve.
Get in Touch With an Experienced Fayetteville Car Accident Attorney
Each and every rear-end accident is unique. At Jonathan R. Brockman, P.C., we don’t use a cookie-cutter approach to helping Fayetteville victims. We listen to your unique circumstances and layout all your legal options, advising you on the best options for your specific situation. Our goal is to make sure you get the maximum amount of compensation available while ensuring that you aren’t being taken advantage of.
For more information on how we may be able to help you after a rear-end collision, call our office at (770) 205-8827 today. We offer a free case evaluation to get you started.