February 25, 2019
What Can I Recover If I am in a Car Wreck and It is Not My Fault?
Most people know if they are involved an automobile collision caused by another driver and suffer some kind of loss as a result, they can sue the person who caused the collision. However, when I talk to people day to day, I find that many people are actually surprised to learn what they can recover. Under Georgia law, there are three kinds of “damages” you can recover for if you are involved in an automobile collision caused by another person which are called “special damages,” “general damages,” and “punitive damages.”
Special Damages, in the context of an automobile collision case, are monetary losses that are easily quantifiable. Special damages can include, but are not limited to, the cost of repairs for your vehicle (or the total value of your vehicle if it was a total loss), your medical bills, and any wages you lost as a result of the wreck.
General Damages are non-economic damages, or what you most commonly hear referred to as “pain and suffering.” A plaintiff in an automobile collision case can recover money for things such as the pain of broken bones, lacerations, bruising, and burns that are a direct result of the wreck. A plaintiff can also recover for future pain and suffering if there is proof that the injuries he or she sustained in the wreck will cause pain and discomfort in the future. Emotional stress, anxiety, depression, and loss of consortium that was a direct result of the automobile collision are also considered damages. Under Georgia law, there is no limit on the amount a jury can award a plaintiff for pain and suffering.
In certain cases, a plaintiff may be able to recover punitive damages as well. Punitive damages are money awarded to a plaintiff to punish the bad actions of a defendant, and to deter such future misconduct. One of the most common types of car accident cases in which punitive damages are awarded is when a drunk driver causes the collision.
Get sound, reliable advice and fully understand all of your options before trying to speak with insurance companies, bill collectors, and others. If you or someone you know has been involved in a car wreck, do not wait to reach out for help. Get medical attention immediately and call an experienced attorney at the DeWoskin Law Firm.