Traffic accidents are one of the most common causes of personal injury in the United States. Unfortunately, traffic accidents can also be fatal- causing a victim to lose their life either at the time of the accident or later due to their injuries. A traffic accident can interrupt your entire life — especially if a loved one is killed as a result of the accident.
If your loved one is involved in a fatal car accident in Athens, you need an experienced fatal car accident lawyer. Brady M. Larrison of Larrison Law Firm Auto Accident and Personal Injury Attorneys can help. He understands the rules governing personal injury including wrongful death due to a fatal car accident. He can help you get the compensation you deserve in your case.
How Many Fatal Accidents Happen in Georgia a Year?
In 2018, there was a 6% decrease in traffic accidents in Georgia, in part due to the “hands-free” cell phone law going into effect in July of that year. This was the first time in four years that there were less than 1,000 car accident fatalities in the state.
However, in 2020, more than 70 drivers were injured in a car accident every hour, which means that more than 1,700 accidents occurred daily and more than 60,000 over the entire year. Approximately 1,600 of those were fatal, which is more than 100 over the total for 2019.
While there was less traffic on the roadways due to the pandemic, many experts believe that the reasons for the increase in accidents and fatalities were due to an increase in speeding and other reckless behaviors.
Most Common Causes of Fatal Car Accidents
Most of the time, a car accident is the result of one or both of the drivers operating their vehicle in an unsafe and/or careless manner. Unfortunately, in some cases, these accidents cause a fatality.
The most common causes of fatal car accidents include:
- Negligent/reckless driving: When the driver operates their vehicle in a negligent or reckless manner.
- Distracted driving: When the driver is focused on something besides the road- even for just a second or two.
- Intoxicated driving: When the driver is under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol, impairing their ability to control the vehicle properly.
If a loved one was killed in a car accident in Athens, Larrison Law Firm can help you get compensation.
Can You File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit Against Another Driver?
Yes, if a loved one was killed in a car accident, it is possible to file a wrongful death lawsuit against the other driver. However, these lawsuits can be challenging because the victim is unable to testify in the case. This is why you need a fatal car accident lawyer on your side.
In a wrongful death lawsuit, the burden of proof lies on the surviving family member or the personal representative of the victim. The other party is not required to prove anything. In most cases, the elements that must be present to prove liability are:
- The other driver acted unreasonably by speeding, running a red light/stop sign, or another unreasonable action
- The unreasonable behavior led to the car accident
- One or more of the parties in the other vehicle were killed as a result of the accident
An experienced fatal car accident lawyer can help you file a wrongful death claim and help you meet your burden of proof.
In some cases, the insurance company may offer compensation up to the limits of the policy. On the other hand, the attorney may need to negotiate with the insurance company especially if there were multiple deaths and/or serious injuries due to the accident.
What Compensation is Available in a Wrongful Death Case?
There are several types of compensation available in wrongful death cases such as fatal car accident claims, including:
- Medical bills for treatment of injuries from the accident while the victim was alive
- Pain and suffering of the victim while still alive
- Loss of income due to victim’s death
- Loss of services, inheritance, companionship or consortium due to the victim’s death
- Funeral costs
In some situations, punitive damages may be available. These are designed to punish the defendant for gross negligence, not to compensate the plaintiff for losses.
Should You Hire a Fatal Car Accident Lawyer?
While it’s possible to handle your claim on your own, it’s best to hire a fatal car accident lawyer to handle your claim. When you represent yourself, the insurance company is more likely to give you the bare minimum. After all, their goal is to make a profit and to keep claim costs as low as possible.
A fatal car accident lawyer understands your legal rights and will fight for them to get you the compensation that you deserve.
You can hire an attorney at any time during the process, but it’s best to hire one as soon as possible after the accident. They may be able to recommend medical specialists that can substantiate your injury claims and it reduces the chance that you may make a statement to the insurance company that may detrimentally impact your case.
How Can Our Team Help with Your Fatal Car Accident Claim?
Brady M. Larrison of Larrison Law Firm Auto Accident and Personal Injury Attorneys understands the traffic laws in Georgia. He has the experience and expertise to handle your fatal car accident claim, as well as any other traffic claim you may have.
For more than a decade, he has been working with the residents of Athens, Loganville, and Monroe on personal injury and wrongful death claims including fatal car accidents. He brings a lot of experience and expertise to the table to ensure that you get the compensation you deserve from your case. Contact us for your fatal car accident claim evaluation.