If you were taking a cab in Augusta, Georgia, and got into an accident, you may be feeling both angry and frustrated. You may be angry because your life has been severely affected by something that wasn’t your fault.
Also, you may be frustrated because you don’t know when, or if, you will get any compensation for your injuries. Meanwhile, you are confronting medical bills, an inability to work, and a long and difficult recovery process. You need to talk to a taxicab accident lawyer in Augusta from John Foy & Associates.
Who Is Liable in My Augusta Taxicab Accident?
Depending on the way your accident happened, there are several parties that might be liable. In general, liability in any car accident depends on who was negligent, or not as careful as they should reasonably be expected to be.
Because you are a passenger, you will almost never be liable. However, one of the following may be responsible:
- The driver of the cab. Cab drivers have a reputation for driving aggressively to get where they’re going faster. If your driver was overly aggressive or broke traffic laws, the driver may be liable.
- The taxicab company. Cab companies have a responsibility to make sure they are hiring good drivers, and to supervise those drivers and provide them with any needed training. If the cab company fails to do this, it can be held liable.
- Another driver. If another driver’s negligence caused the accident, the driver may be liable.
- The City of Augusta. The city regulates the taxi industry operating in the city and is responsible for inspecting taxis to make sure they are properly maintained. But if a taxi is not inspected thoroughly and allowed to remain on the road when it isn’t safe, the city may bear responsibility.
As a passenger, you are entitled to recover the full cost of your injuries. To ensure you get a fair settlement, our taxicab accident lawyers in Augusta are ready to help you out.
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Proving Responsibility in a Taxicab Accident
One or more of these parties may be responsible for your injuries after a taxicab accident. Proving who was responsible is one of the first tasks of any personal injury lawyer. Before you can sue someone, you have to sue the right person!
Our investigative team of Augusta taxicab accident attorneys will help ferret out which parties to target with your claim and the evidence to prove it. With so many possible parties in a taxicab accident, it’s important to get this right.
How Are Taxicab Accidents Different from Other Types of Car Accidents?
The rules about negligence and who caused an accident are the same for taxicab accidents as for any other type of vehicle accident in Augusta-Richmond County. But when a taxi driver causes an accident, the accident becomes more complicated because it can be hard to determine whether anyone else might also be liable.
For example, to hold the taxi company liable, investigation is needed into what the cab company did in hiring and supervising the driver. Even if the cab company appears to have failed in its duties, cab companies often try to dodge liability by claiming the driver is an independent contractor and not an employee.
The problem with this is that cab drivers themselves are not required to carry any more insurance than an ordinary driver, and if the cab company doesn’t bear any responsibility it can be hard to get a full financial recovery for serious injuries.
If the city is potentially at fault, there are additional issues to contend with. All of this makes it especially important to work with a lawyer if you have been injured in a taxi accident.
What Are Some Common Causes of Taxi Accidents?
For the most part, taxi drivers are careful and follow traffic laws. But some engage in risky maneuvers because they’re in a hurry to get where they’re going. And that can put you at risk. Some common causes of taxi accidents include:
- Aggressive lane changing
- Being distracted by a GPS or other distraction
- Improper maintenance of the cab
- Running stop signs or other traffic signals
- Inadequate driver training
No matter what the cause of your accident, we always recommend you do three things at the scene. First, get medical attention if necessary. Second, call the police so that you will have a police report to support any claim you might make for your injuries. Third, get the name and license number of the cab driver and the name of the cab company.
How Much Money Can I Recover in a Taxicab Accident Claim?
As a passenger, you can recover the full cost of your injuries. This means far more than just getting your medical bills paid, though that is certainly part of it. You can also recover money to make up for time you had to miss from work after the accident. These costs are known as “special damages,” and they are usually proven through medical bills, receipts and pay stubs.
The amount you receive for special damages will depend on the type of injuries you have, the cost of treatment, how long you are expected to be out of work, and how much money you make.
If you were seriously hurt, your entire life may have become a battle with pain, mobility issues, disfiguring scars, or a brain injury. The local courts know these issues take a heavy toll, and that’s why “general damages” or “pain and suffering” damages are available to help accident victims cope with the non-financial impact of an accident.
Once those damages are calculated, the severity of the accident and your injuries come into play. Insurance companies typically calculate general damages by multiplying your special damages by a number from 1 to 5, depending on how serious your accident was.
ALL insurance companies will try to pay you as little as possible. They may question your injuries, minimize how bad the accident was, or try to skate out of responsibility altogether. This is why you need to have a taxicab accident lawyer in Augusta protecting your interests and working to get you the best recovery possible.
How Long do I Have to File a Taxi Accident Claim in Georgia?
It’s tempting to wait until all your injuries come to light before filing a claim. However, waiting too long will jeopardize your case. Per Ga. Code § 9-3-33, you have two years after your injury to file a claim before you breach Georgia’s statute of limitations and lose your right to compensation.
Also, your lawyer knows how bad the aftermath of an accident can be. Based on prior experience and expert testimony, your lawyer will estimate how much the future costs of your injuries will be and add that into your claim.
In some instances, the deadline is much shorter than two years, especially if the wreck involved the City of Augusta. In this case, the deadline may be mere weeks. Thus, do not hesitate to reach out to a lawyer as soon as possible to put a stop on the clock.
Talk to an Augusta Taxicab Accident Lawyer
At John Foy & Associates, our goal is to get you paid. We never charge a fee unless we put money in your hands. Let us give you a free consultation to go over the facts about your accident and help you plan your next steps. Call our Augusta taxicab accident lawyers or fill out the form to your right and get your FREE consultation today.