Either driver can be at fault in a T-bone accident in Georgia. T-bone accidents usually happen because one driver did not yield right of way while passing through an intersection. Investigation is often needed to prove which driver is at fault.
A T-bone accident (aka side-impact collision) happens when one car crashes head-on into the side of another car. These accidents mostly happen at intersections and involve drivers traveling perpendicular to one another, and injuries can be severe. Get help from a T-bone car accident lawyer if you have been in a collision.
Why Are T-Bone Accidents So Serious?
Car manufacturers have developed many safety features to minimize the injuries suffered in car accidents. These include improved bumpers, seat belts and driver and passenger seat airbags. If your car suffers an impact in the front or rear, there is a considerable distance between the point of impact and your body.
But if you are “T-boned,” the force of the accident hits the side of your car, where there is much less protection. Many cars do not have side airbags, and there isn’t much separating your body and the point of impact. This means that T-bone accidents are some of the most dangerous collisions of all.
T-bone accidents can cause severe and permanent injuries like traumatic brain injuries and spinal cord injuries. They can damage bones, tissues and organs, causing long hospital stays, surgeries and lasting complications. And a significant number of T-bone accidents are fatal.
Why Is It Hard to Tell Who Is at Fault in a T-Bone Accident?
Many people automatically assume that the driver who plowed into the side of another car is the one at fault, but that’s not necessarily true. In many T-bone accidents, the position of the cars is simply a matter of timing, or which car got to the center of the intersection first.
T-bone accidents are also complicated because the factors involved may not be obvious at first. For example, a T-bone collision at a traffic light may be caused by a malfunction in the light. The driver who had the right of way might have avoided the accident if she had not been texting while driving.
A driver making a legal left turn might be T-boned by a driver who was drunk and speeding. And because T-bone accidents can cause such serious injuries, the drivers themselves may have a hard time describing what happened.
How Fault Affects Your Compensation in a Georgia T-Bone Crash
In some states, sharing any of the blame for a crash can mean that you are barred from recovering compensation at all. Luckily, Georgia has a much better approach to fault and injury claims. Called the modified comparative fault model, it allows you to sue for compensation as long as you are no more than 50% at fault for your crash.
Still, any amount of fault attributed to you will reduce your potential settlement or court award. According to Georgia Code §51-12-33, the percentage of blame you share for the wreck directly lowers your compensation. For example, if you’re 10% at-fault, your eventual payout will be reduced by 10% as well.
An Georgia T-bone collision attorney can help you gather evidence to show that the other driver was primarily or entirely at fault for your accident, maximizing your claim.
What Are Some of the Ways T-Bone Accidents Can Happen?
Georgia’s right-of-way laws are designed to keep traffic moving in an orderly way and prevent accidents. When drivers don’t follow these rules, T-bone accidents can happen. For example, T-bone accidents may occur in these scenarios:
- A driver runs a red light and hits another vehicle passing through the intersection on a green
- A driver is hit while crossing the opposing lane of traffic to make a left turn at an unmarked intersection (such as into or out of a parking lot or residential street)
- A driver runs a stop sign and collides with another car traveling across the intersection
When a driver doesn’t follow traffic laws and an accident happens because of it, the driver is legally at fault. The driver might be a nice person who has never gotten a ticket in their lives, but if they are at fault, their insurance company must pay for your injuries and the damage to your car.
What to Do After a T-Bone Accident in Georgia
If you were in a T-bone accident in Georgia, and you believe it’s not your fault, talk to a car accident lawyer about it. A good car accident lawyer knows how to gather and review police reports and other evidence about your accident.
If the evidence shows you were not at fault, a lawyer can put together a solid case and show the other driver’s insurance company why its driver is legally responsible for your injuries. A lawyer puts an experienced professional on your side to fight for your rights in insurance company negotiations or a car accident lawsuit.
How Can a Georgia T-Bone Car Accident Attorney Help You?
There are many ways our law office can help you get the money you need and deserve after your t-bone car crash injury. For starters, that means gathering and preserving evidence to support your case, including:
- Medical records, lost income statements, and other data showing your total damages
- Video and photos of the accident scene
- Surveillance or traffic camera footage of the T-bone collision, if possible
- Testimony from eyewitnesses
- Testimony from expert witnesses, such as accident reconstructionists
A side-impact collision lawyer will also handle settlement negotiations with the at-fault party and insurance companies on your behalf. It is far better to have an attorney present during these negotiations, as the opposition’s goal is to pay you as little as they think they can get away with.
Talk to a Car Accident Lawyer for Free
Our lawyers are trained to help you get the money you need to pay for your injuries. We never charge you unless we get money for you. Let us give you a FREE consultation and help you get started. Call us or fill out our online contact form to get your free consultation today.