Head-on collisions can be horrific accidents with tragic results. The impact can lead to severe injuries and considerable property damage.
Many families have turned to Atlanta car accident attorneys like John Foy and Associates to understand their legal options post such tragedies. As experienced Atlanta personal injury lawyers, we’ve seen our share of injuries from head-on collisions. We’ve been a client-oriented law firm in Atlanta for more than 20 years, only serving clients injured due to someone else’s negligence.
What to Do After a Head-On Collision
If you or a loved one has been injured in a head-on collision in Atlanta, there are some steps you can take to ensure your safety and help your chances of getting a good settlement.
After an Atlanta car accident, you should:
- Report the accident immediately to the Atlanta police department. Their report will be a vital record for future proceedings.
- Exchange information with the other driver, including insurance details and car license numbers.
- If there are witnesses, take their names and telephone numbers.
- Use your smartphone to take photos of details about the road, including road information.
- If anyone is injured, call an ambulance. If you were too injured in the crash to gather information, our seasoned investigators could investigate the accident by returning to the scene and poring through police and insurance reports.
- Seek medical treatment and call a personal injury attorney.
- Do not sign papers from your or the other driver’s insurance company until you have consulted an attorney.
- Do not give an insurance adjuster or agent a recorded statement without talking to an attorney first. As tempting as it is to be forthcoming, you can only hurt yourself.
You only have one chance to recover damages from an accident. Don’t squander that chance by being in a hurry. You may not even know the extent of your injuries for a while. Head-on collisions damage the brain and spine, which are often not immediately apparent injuries. For comprehensive guidance on your case, it’s wise to consult with personal injury lawyers in Atlanta to ensure you’re adequately represented and protected.
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The Most Common Causes of Head-On Car Accidents
Head-on car accidents typically occur due to various reasons that lead to one vehicle inadvertently entering the path of an oncoming vehicle.
The following table illustrates some of the most common causes of head-on car accidents, explains each cause, and the potential impact it can have:
|Cause of Head-On Collision
|This typically occurs when a driver unintentionally drifts into the oncoming lane or swerves around a curve too sharply.
|Can lead to head-on collisions even at low speeds, often resulting in severe injuries or fatalities.
|Over-Recovery Around a Curve
|This happens when a driver, in attempting to correct their path around a curve, inadvertently ends up in the oncoming lane.
|This miscalculation can cause a head-on collision, which can be catastrophic irrespective of the speed at which the vehicles are traveling.
|Alcohol Consumption and Excessive Speed
|These two factors significantly contribute to head-on collisions, impairing driver judgment and reaction times.
|These factors increase the likelihood and severity of head-on collisions, often resulting in significant damage and potential loss of life. If alcohol was a factor in your case, you could be eligible for more damages.
|This includes any activity that diverts attention from driving, such as talking or texting on your phone, eating and drinking, or using a navigation system.
|Distracted driving is a significant cause of head-on collisions and can result in serious injuries or fatalities. It is a growing problem with the increased use of technology while driving.
Contrary to popular belief, one car attempting to overtake another is not usually the typical cause for these accident types. Talk to a drunk driving accident lawyer in Atlanta to discuss you or your loved one’s head-on collision and learn your options.
Typical Injuries in a Head-On Crash
Typical injuries from a head-on collision accident include:
- Whiplash and other neck injuries: According to the Mayo Clinic, symptoms sometimes don’t become apparent for 24 hours after impact and can include stiffness, neck pain, headaches, and fatigue.
- Brain and head injuries: Your head is thrown back and forth in a head-on collision, making it vulnerable to traumatic brain injuries.
- Internal damage: The liver, spleen, kidneys, and stomach can be injured.
- Spinal cord injuries: These injuries can range from minor to full paralysis. As your head-on car accident lawyers, we can prove how your spinal cord injury changed your life.
- Chest injuries: The chest and ribs can be bruised or broken from the impact of the seat belt and airbag.
- Foot and leg injuries: Feet and legs often absorb an impact, and knees, especially, can hit the dashboard in a collision.
- Cuts and Lacerations: Shattered glass and metal can cause serious cuts, leading to significant blood loss.
- Psychological Trauma: Besides physical injuries, a person involved in a head-on collision may suffer from psychological trauma, including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, and depression.
The more severe your injuries, the more you’ll likely pay for treatment. Head-on collisions tend to result in more severe injuries than other car accidents. Therefore, having a head-on collision lawyer in Atlanta to help with your personal injury claim could be crucial to keeping financially afloat.
Damages Available in a Head-On Crash Claim
Personal injury claims seek payment for damages that someone else caused. Those can include:
- Medical expenses
- Income and wages for the time you can’t work because of the accident
- Pain and suffering
- Property damage
- In some cases, if the other driver is under the influence and negligent, such as drunk or distracted driving, the courts will award punitive damages (damages meant to punish the other driver).
Remember, your Atlanta head-on collision attorney should never take money upfront, no matter whom you hire. Instead, any attorney fees should come out of the settlement after a successful case.
What Is the Average Settlement for a Head-On Collision?
There is no “average” settlement amount you can use to understand how much you can get from your car accident claim. That’s because every crash is different, and everyone is affected differently by their injuries.
In general, claims like yours are decided by the specific damages from the accident. The negligent party (or, in most cases, their insurance company) is responsible for paying for the aftermath. This can range from thousands of dollars to millions.
It is worth noting that head-on collisions usually yield higher settlements than other car accident claims. That’s because head-on collisions cause more damage than other crashes to your vehicle and you.
How Are Injuries in a Head-On Collision Different from Those of Other Automobile Accidents?
Injuries in head-on collisions can be quite severe because of the physics of the crash. Drivers and passengers are generally thrown forward.
In the best-case scenario, the car occupants are wearing seat belts and thrown into airbags, which might cause cracked ribs and other broken bones. In the worst case, drivers and passengers not seat belted can fly through the windshield onto the road.
Should I Accept the First Compensation Offer?
No, you should not accept the first offer from the insurance company. They often want to make a lowball offer, giving you much less than you’re owed. After a car accident, you shouldn’t sign anything or give the insurance company any information they don’t need until you talk to a lawyer.
Our head-on collision lawyers in Atlanta are experts in negotiating with the insurance company. It’s important to have someone who can defend you from predatory insurance adjusters and keep them from taking advantage of you.
If the insurance company does not agree to fair compensation, we are ready to take your case to court. Thus, we can continue fighting for financial recovery through a personal injury lawsuit against the liable party.
Who Is At Fault If Two Drivers Hit Each Other?
The most obvious signal of fault is one driver veering into the wrong lane and hitting another car going in the proper direction. However, don’t try to figure out the fault on your own. There can be multiple factors in head-on collisions.
Call a personal injury attorney at our law firm for a free consultation, and let our seasoned investigators sift through the evidence. Our Atlanta head-on collision lawyers have years of experience and have accident reconstruction experts on call to find out what happened in your crash.
Should I Contact a Lawyer for a Car Accident that Was My Fault?
If you were involved in a car accident that was your fault, contacting a personal injury attorney could be beneficial. Even though you might believe you’re fully liable, the circumstances surrounding the accident could be complex, and there could be factors you haven’t considered.
An Atlanta experienced attorney can help you understand your legal obligations and rights.
We’ve been in the personal injury field for over 20 years, focusing solely on these cases. This level of specialization means we’re well-equipped to advise and guide you. Always discuss your case with an attorney before deciding on your next steps.
If the Other Driver Says I Am at Fault, does This Matter?
Do not argue with the at-fault driver. Instead, exchange information and remain cordial. Several factors determine fault and will be detailed in the police report and the insurance company report.
According to the Official Code of Georgia Annotated (OCGA) §51-12-33, you can recover for a case even if you are partially at fault. This is called comparative negligence. Our attorneys can help determine your percentage of fault. There may even be a liable third party; for example, you may have been driving on a defective roadway.
What Is the Time Limit for Filing a Claim in a Head-On Crash?
In Georgia, the statute of limitations (or time allowed for pursuing a case) is generally two years after the accident. However, under certain conditions, the statute can be tolled.
However, starting as soon as possible is especially important in a head-on collision. First, you need medical care, and we can help point you in the right direction even if you can’t afford it. Second, evidence grows “cold,” and witnesses disappear. Therefore, the sooner we get started, the better.
Talk to a Head-On Collision Attorney in Atlanta Today
The Atlanta head-on collision lawyers at John Foy & Associates are part of a large, well-established personal injury firm in Atlanta. We’ve helped people injured through another’s negligence recover millions of dollars for two decades.
We’ve seen our share of auto accidents throughout the years. Our reputation for being ethical and vigilant is well-known throughout the insurance industry.
We’ll handle all the legal details if a John Foy & Associates attorney represents you. Call or contact us online; someone will be available to talk to you 24/7.