Being involved in an accident caused by another party allows you to file a lawsuit for financial recovery of your missed wages, medical costs, and property damage. In these situations, your car accident lawyer will help you secure the compensation you deserve.
However, you may wonder what happens if you are at fault for the accident. For example, you may have been distracted by a text message, drowsy, or even speeding.
If you were responsible for a car accident, feeling confused and scared is not uncommon.
While this may happen, there is good news. At the Law Offices of Matthew C. Hines, our accident attorney and legal team can help you. Even if you believe you caused the accident, it’s smart to schedule a consultation to ensure you secure the best possible outcome for your case.
What to Do if You Believe You Are at Fault for a Car Accident in Georgia
If you think you caused a collision, you should try to remain calm. You need to take several steps right after a car accident, regardless of who is at fault.
It’s important never to leave the scene of an accident before the police arrive. This is especially the case if you believe you are at least partly responsible for it. If you do leave, you may face criminal charges and fines. It’s important to remember that if you leave the scene of an accident prematurely, this is a violation of Georgia law and will result in more serious penalties.
The next step is to contact medical help if anyone is injured – including yourself or your passengers. If the accident results in significant property damage (that’s estimated to be $500 or more), it is recommended that you contact the authorities or 911 to report the incident. Even if you are involved in a minor accident, you need to exchange contact information with the other parties involved.
Tips for Interactions with Other Drivers After a Georgia Car Accident
Before the police arrive at the scene, it’s best to keep conversations with other drivers to a minimum. If the other driver is angry or aggressive, try to remain calm and take steps to de-escalate the situation, if possible. Make sure never to admit fault or apologize.
If you think you caused the accident, you may feel pressured to say you are sorry. However, this isn’t a good idea. You should never say something that could be taken as you accepting blame for the accident. While you should be polite, you should also say as little as possible.
After being involved or causing an accident, you should also make sure to avoid:
- Saying what you were doing before the accident occurred.
- Discuss what you believe caused the incident.
- Talk about who is at fault or caused the accident.
- Apologize in any way or imply that you are responsible.
- Ask the other driver questions about if they are to blame for the accident.
After helping anyone who is injured and trading contact information with the other drivers involved, you don’t need to discuss anything else. You should wait until the authorities or medical professionals (ambulance) arrive at the scene.
When the authorities arrive, make sure you give them your contact information and a basic statement about what happened. You should never provide a statement or make a comment that suggests you are at fault for the accident. For example, don’t include details such as “I felt sleepy and side-swiped the other vehicle.”
Collect Evidence Related to the Accident
Once you have exchanged contact information with the other driver and given a basic statement to the authorities, you need to collect evidence from the scene. It’s best to document the circumstances of the accident, and it can be helpful to your auto accident attorney. This is especially the case if the evidence shows the other driver may have been partly at-fault for the accident.
If possible, try to collect the following evidence related to the accident:
- Contact information of all parties involved
- Contact information from witnesses to the accident
- Documentation of any CCTV or security cameras
- Videos and pictures of the crash location
After collecting evidence, you must contact a reputable car accident attorney immediately. Consulting with a legal professional is essential, even if you think or know that you are responsible for the accident.
The Comparative Fault Rule in Georgia
You may wonder why you need to contact a car wreck attorney if you believe you are responsible. The answer is that you may be able to receive monetary compensation even if you are partly at fault.
Georgia is one of the few states where car accident claims are handled under a modified comparative fault rule. This means that if you are less than 50% responsible for the collision, you can see financial compensation for your injuries and damages.
Even if you think you are completely at fault for the accident, you should never say this to anyone. Instead, talk to an experienced injury attorney to determine if you are eligible for compensation.
Contact an Accident Injury Lawyer for Help with Your Car Accident Case
If you are involved in a car accident in Georgia, make sure to use the tips here to protect yourself and your rights to potential compensation. Hiring our experienced attorneys at the Law Offices of Matthew C. Hines will ensure that you have quality representation to help with your situation, even if you are partly to blame for the accident.
The first step is to get in touch with our experienced legal team to schedule a free initial consultation. We are here to help with your accident claim.