Car accident damage can help determine how an accident happened and who is probably at fault. Car accident damage is more useful in some types of accidents than others, and it may not be the only factor that’s relevant in deciding who is at fault.
The damage that vehicles suffer can say a lot about an accident. It shows the point of impact, suggesting that an accident is probably a rear-end collision, a side impact collision or another type of accident. This could suggest that one driver or the other is at fault, based on a typical accident of that type. For example, rear end collisions are usually caused by the driver in the rear car. However, these are just general rules, and there may be different or additional factors involved in your accident.
Who is “at fault” in a car accident?
The driver who is at fault is the one who was not following traffic laws or driving carefully. Everyone on Georgia’s roads has a legal duty to operate their vehicles in a safe manner. When they don’t do this, they are “negligent.” Drivers don’t have to cause an accident deliberately to be at fault. All they have to do is be found negligent.
Negligent driving can take many forms, including:
- Not following traffic laws and signals
- Distracted driving
- Drunk driving
When a driver is “at fault,” their insurance company is responsible for paying all the costs of the accident. This means you can recover the cost of your medical treatment, your lost time from work and other damages, either through a settlement with the insurance company or in a car accident law suit near Atlanta.
How does vehicle damage help determine who is at fault?
Sometimes, everyone agrees on how an accident happened, and the damage to the vehicles just confirms what the drivers and witnesses are saying. Other times, you and the other driver may have different accounts of what happened. In that case, the vehicle damage may show what really happened. For example, if you have dents in your rear bumper and the front of the other driver’s car is damaged, it is likely you were rear ended.
Sometimes, the vehicle damage is one of the main ways of telling how the accident happened. This might be the case in a serious accident involving multiple cars, where the drivers can’t remember or aren’t able to explain what happened. Accident reconstruction experts may be brought in to find out how the accident happened, applying physics and engineering principles to the vehicle damage.
How can I document the vehicle damage in my accident?
The best time to create a record of what happened to your car is right after the accident, while you are still at the scene. Pull out your cell phone camera and take photos or video. Get pictures of the damage to your car, including both close-ups and overall shots. Do the same with any other vehicles involved in the accident. Finally, take photos of the general accident scene. Be sure to include pictures of anything you think might be important, including skid marks or hazards in the roadway.
Should I talk to a lawyer if I have been in an accident?
Absolutely. An insurance company will never have your best interest at heart. Their main goal is to make more money by paying out less in claims. This means the insurance company may look for ways to blame you or minimize your injuries. It will almost certainly try to get away with paying you far less than you are entitled to. Without a lawyer, you may take a settlement offer without realizing you have a right to receive much, much more.
A lawyer is on your side. A lawyer can make sure your accident is investigated thoroughly, bringing in experts to show who is at fault. A lawyer can also get you a thorough assessment of your injuries and the treatment you need. And a lawyer can negotiate with the insurance company on an equal footing, potentially getting you far more money than you would have received otherwise.
Talk to an Atlanta Car Accident Lawyer for Free
Our lawyers have devoted decades to making us one of the top personal injury law firms in Georgia. We won’t charge you at all unless we get you money. We’d like to meet with you for a free consultation to help you decide what to do next. Call us at (404) 341-6555 or fill out the form to the right to get your free consultation today.