Every driver is obligated to ensure the safety of other road users, which is why s/he needs to be fully attentive while driving. Any moment that a driver stops looking at the road, they can be said to be distracted. Most drivers underrate the dangers that distracted driving poses. It’s a common occurrence to see another motorist scrolling through radio stations or texting. In truth, distracted driving is fatal.
If you or somebody close to you has been involved in a distracted driving accident, it’s important that you protect your rights. Hiring a Smyrna distracted driving accident lawyer can significantly improve the chances of a successful outcome.
Jamie Ballard Law can help you file a car accident case in Smyrna. We will conduct our own investigations to determine who’s legally responsible and proceed with negotiations/litigation. We don’t see why you should bear the financial burden for the negligent actions of another party. We are experienced in handling distracted driving cases and can provide you with legal guidance as well as defend your rights.
To book a no-cost and non-obligatory consultation, contact us at 571-331-2381 TODAY!
What Is Distracted Driving?
In Georgia, it’s against the law for drivers to operate a vehicle while distracted. Regardless of if the cause is other passengers, operating your handheld device, or drinking/eating while behind the wheel, distracted driving is among the top causes of car accidents. According to the NHTSA, distracted driving results in thousands of fatalities each year.
Distracted driving can be described as any activity that removes your concentration from operating a car. Types of distracted driving include:
These distractions are any scenario, event, or undertaking that makes an individual stop looking at the road. Examples include:
- Texting (reading messages/emails)
- Viewing a video/film on an electronic device
- Checking on your little one behind the car or other passengers
- Checking the navigation such as the map or GPS
These distractions happen when an individual removes their hands from the wheel and isn’t in total control of the car. Visual and manual distractions often overlap (known as combination distractions), particularly when it comes to smartphones. Examples include:
- Picking up a phone call
- Writing messages/emails
- Drinking and/or eating
- Scrolling through the radio system
- Giving something over to another passenger
- Grooming (applying makeup, shaving, etc.)
These distractions are mental and entail an individual’s mind drifting off to another thought, which ultimately leads to loss of concentration on the road. Examples include:
- Fixating on stressful or emotional situations
- Getting lost in conversation with another passenger
- Disciplining or assisting a little one
- Talking on-call
Many actions mix all three types of distractions. Nevertheless, even a single form of distraction is enough for things to get catastrophic. Those microseconds spent engaging in any of the aforementioned actions can significantly increase the likelihood of a crash.
Laws Regarding Distracted Driving in Georgia
Aiming to prevent emailing/texting while driving, Georgia is among a dozen other states that have adopted strict laws against distracted driving. The law governing distracted driving in this state is called Georgia’s hands-free law, and it officially came into effect as of 1st July 2018. Here’s what all motorists in Georgia must know regarding this law:
- A driver cannot have a cell phone or any electronic device in contact with their body. This is exclusive of headphones, earpieces, and Bluetooth devices.
- Motorists are prohibited from writing, sending, or reading any text messages while operating a vehicle. This is exclusive of voice-to-text technology.
- Drivers are barred from viewing videos on any device (apart from GPS) while they’re behind the wheel. Recording videos is also prohibited.
- Streaming music is permissible provided that the driver doesn’t lay a hand on their device while driving. Changes should be made before getting behind the wheel.
Distracted Driving in Smyrna is classified as a misdemeanor and is punished by fines.
- 1st offense ($50)
- 2nd offense ($100)
- 3rd and following offenses ($150)
Damages Awarded from a Distracted Driving Accident Claim in Georgia
Per Georgia Statutes, motorists have a legal responsibility to other road users and shouldn’t undertake any activities that divert their attention from driving safely. Distracted driving is a show of negligent conduct. If this negligence resulted in an accident, then the distracted driver could be held liable for your accident-related damages. Victims stand to recover;
These are losses from the accident that can be given a monetary value. E.g.; lost wages, medicare costs, loss of earning ability, vehicle repairs, funeral costs, etc.
These are non-quantifiable and intangible damages caused by the accident. E.g.; pain and suffering, loss of consortium, emotional trauma, etc.
These are hardly ever given in auto accidents, but where it’s found the at-fault behaved in egregiously or recklessly, they can be awarded. They are meant to function as a deterrent to other unruly motorists.
Consult with a distracted driving attorney right away about seeking reimbursement for injuries and damages suffered. A professional attorney will get pertinent and actionable evidence that guarantees you’ll get all the damages owed to you or a loved one.
How Long Do I Have to File a Claim in Georgia?
If you want your claim against the distracted driver in Smyrna to be successful in civil court, it’s in your interest not to delay filing a lawsuit. The statute of limitation in the state of Georgia for personal injury lawsuits is two years following the distracted driving accident date.
This means that if you fail to submit your claim within this timespan, you essentially lose your rights to pursue compensation as the case is considered to be void. This duration isn’t as long as you may presume, so ensure you’ve called your attorney right away following the accident. An attorney will make sure that all the requisite paperwork is submitted before deadlines.
Why Do I Need a Lawyer?
Getting involved in an auto accident can completely uproot your life and change certain aspects of your life completely. You may need months of mental and physical rehabilitation, lack earning capability, lost income, and a host of other problems. If you’ve sustained an injury due to a distracted driver, you should think about enlisting a Smyrna distracted driving attorney.
Our team at Jamie Ballard Law can assist will every aspect of your personal injury case from beginning to end. We will:
- Conduct an independent investigation. This includes obtaining relevant evidence associated with the claim like police reports, medical documents, and witness statements.
- Determine responsible parties and file a claim.
- Lead the negotiations with insurance companies.
- If negotiations don’t bear fruit, we head to trial
We will ensure you’re updated with the happenings of your case and won’t charge you anything until we successfully win the case.
Consult With a Smyrna Distracted Driving Accident Lawyer Right Away!
If you are a victim of a distracted driving accident, it’s crucial that you get the best legal counsel right away as you could have grounds to file a personal injury claim. You can pursue financial restitution for your losses from the at-fault motorist’s insurer. If you want to get the best outcome from the legal proceedings, you should enlist a professional Smyrna distracted driving accident attorney at Jamie Ballard Law.
Jamie Ballard is conversant and skilled in this field of the law and knows exactly how to deal with insurance companies. She will build an airtight injury claim and ensure you get your deserved compensation. To begin proceedings, reach out to us at 571-331-2381 to get a complimentary and no-risk case evaluation.