Understanding Georgia Car Accident Laws
Georgia has strict laws for motorists when it comes to reporting motor vehicle crashes — and not abiding by these laws can mean legal consequences. Not reporting a car accident can also put your injury claim in jeopardy, and you could be leaving the compensation you deserve on the table. Here's what you need to know.
When Should I Report a Car Accident?
Georgia laws require that a formal police report be filed for a motor vehicle crash involving the following scenarios:
- The collision resulted in deaths
- The collision resulted in injuries
- The collision caused property damage worth more than $500
Whether you think you've sustained an injury or not, it's always best to be safe than sorry. Some injury symptoms may not be immediately present. For example, some traumatic brain injury symptoms like concussions are often delayed. Fatigue, neck pain, dizziness, or loss of balance may not surface for several hours or days after a car crash.
What if I Failed to Report My Car Accident?
If you've been in a car accident that involves the situations mentioned above, failing to report your car accident in Georgia could mean a criminal court hearing, as well as fines, penalties, or suspension of a driver's license.
One of the most common reasons why someone may fail to report a car accident is if they left the scene of an accident. Leaving the scene of an accident is against the law, and if someone is severely injured, the consequences are undoubtedly harsh. Always remain at the scene of a crash, even if you think everyone involved escaped without injury.
Do I have to Report a Minor Accident?
If there were no injuries, death, or damages to the vehicles, you are not required to report an accident. However, as mentioned before, it's in your best interest to move forward with filing a police report. Filing a police report means having documentation of the accident and may be helpful if an injury from the accident is discovered later on.
Will the Insurance Carrier Require a Police Report?
The information in the police report can be helpful to your claim, so most insurance providers will ask to have a copy of it when going through the process. It can also help you remember the accident details when it comes time to file your claim.
What Other Documentation Should I Have From the Accident?
In addition to the police report, having the following documentation can be helpful when pursuing a car accident claim:
- Names and contact information of the other parties involved in the accident
- Names and contact information of witnesses to the accident
- Photos of the scene (this may include the location of the accident and vehicle or other property damage)
Georgia is an at-fault state. The opposing insurance company may attempt to get more information that could be used against you to lower your settlement or deny your claim. For this reason, it's critical to ensure you have an experienced car accident attorney assist you.
Related Article: Is Georgia an At-Fault or No-Fault State?
Injured in a Georgia Car Accident? Contact Tate Law Group, LLC For Help
If a negligent driver injured you or a loved one, you have the right to hold them accountable for their careless actions. When unsure how to proceed with a car accident claim, Tate Law Group, LLC is on your side. We're here to be your advocate and protect your right to receive compensation and support you every step of the way.