If you are a personal injury claimant or plaintiff, there are a lot of legal issues you need to know about and understand. In fact, there is so much you need to know that it can sometimes it can feel overwhelming.
That’s why, in today’s post, we are going to boil it down to just 2 important legal concepts that you should understand if you are a personal injury plaintiff.
1. In Georgia, the amount of money you will get – i.e., your damages – will depend on how much you were “at fault” for the accident.
In a personal injury action, the person responsible (“liable”) for causing the accident is the party who pays.
Each state has its own laws and rules governing how liability is determined and how money damages are calculated in a personal injury action.
Georgia follows the modified comparative negligence rule.
To decide which party involved in a car crash must pay the other for his/her damages, the court starts by calculating what those damages are. This includes property damages (i.e., repair bills), medical bills, pain and suffering, etc.
Since accidents (as opposed to intentional torts) are rarely cut-and-dried, in most cases more than one party is or could be at fault for the accident. So, after damages are determined, in Georgia, the court applies the rule of modified contributory negligence to figure out the extent to which the injured party’s (i.e., the plaintiff) actions may have contributed to the accident.
So, for example, if defendant is primarily “at fault” for the accident, but you were texting or speeding at the time, the court will take into consideration how much your actions contributed to the accident.
As long as you were 49% or less responsible for the accident, you will be able to recover for your damages in our state.
If you were 50% or more “at fault” for the accident, on the other hand, you get nothing.
Therefore, the first thing legal concept you need to be aware of in Georgia is how the modified comparative negligence rule may affect your claim. How much money you will receive will depend on how much your actions contributed to the accident.
2. You only have 2 years to file a personal injury action in Georgia.
The second important legal concept you need to be aware of is the statute of limitations.
In Georgia, you only have two years to bring your case.
The statute of limitations sets the time limits for bringing various civil actions. It is critical to be aware of this legal rule and the time limits for your case (e.g., 2 years for personal injury) because if you miss the deadline, you will be barred forever from bringing your case. There are some exceptions to this rule, but they are very few. For the most part, missing the deadline means you will never be able to recover for your injuries.
Understanding the legal concepts that will affect your personal injury action is important. You need to know and understand what steps to take when, in order to have a successful case. Which is why you should always hire experienced personal injury counsel.
Personal Injury Attorneys in Cumming, Georgia.
The personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Mark Weinstein, P.C., are here to help you. We serve clients in Atlanta, and in several counties throughout Georgia, including: Clayton County, Cobb County, Dekalb County, Douglas County, Fulton County, and Paulding County, among others. To find out how we can help you, call us at: 770-888-7707. Or you can e-mail us with inquiries at: firstname.lastname@example.org.