Any time you get behind the wheel, you are at the mercy of the other drivers on the road. No matter how safe of a driver you may be, there is always a chance that another person may drive erratically and put you in danger by causing a wreck. Unfortunately, such accidents may be severe, even fatal or life altering. As the numbers of serious, vehicle-involved accidents have risen in Georgia in recent years, so too have the rates of fatalities and severe injuries. Here is some more information on car accidents and on the legal remedies that may be available to you if you or your family member is injured or killed at the hands of another driver.

With back-up cameras, blind spot alerts, and other new safety features common to modern vehicles, cars are probably safer than ever. Albany drivers (operators), however, can still pose a serious danger on the road. The negligent or reckless behavior of drivers is the most frequent cause of severe accidents.

Speeding is one risky behavior that is common on the roads. When you speed, it may be hard to react in time to avoid a hazard if you are approaching it too quickly. Maintaining control of your vehicle could become a challenge. Also, depending on your speed, certain safety features on your car might not be as effective as they otherwise would be. If you are in a crash while traveling at a high speed, the damage is more likely to be severe than if you were adhering to the posted speed limit.

Drunk driving is one of the most common causes of serious accidents, as alcohol impairs awareness, reaction time, and coordination. In Georgia, approximately 40 percent of serious accidents are thought to be caused by drunk or otherwise impaired drivers.

Driving while distracted can also have severe consequences. Texting while driving is increasingly common and is highly risky. Studies suggest that about 25 percent of all car accidents occur right after or during phone use. Though you may not realize it, studies also have found that a person takes their eyes off of the road for several seconds at a time when reading or writing a text message — plenty of time for a hazard to suddenly arise without the driver noticing.

Fatigued driving is another behavior that can put you and others at risk. As with driving while intoxicated, being drowsy can slow your reaction time and reduce your awareness of your surroundings. Worse, if you begin to nod off, you could drift out of your lane and collide with another vehicle.


As the result of your Albany car accident, you might suffer certain losses that can be categorized as either economic or noneconomic damages. Economic damages might include your medical bills and lost wages for the work that you missed while recovering from the accident. If you suffer permanent injuries or are no longer able to work, your damages should also include future bills and lost wages. Economic damages can be calculated fairly easily by adding up actual financial losses.

Noneconomic damages are intangible and, therefore, harder to calculate. These might include any emotional distress that you suffered as a result of the accident or any pain and suffering you experienced. Juries have a lot of discretion when assigning amounts to these damages and it is important that your attorney is able to help the jury understand how to fully compensate for pain and suffering damages.

Punitive damages may also be an option if the other driver acted particularly recklessly. These damages penalize the person at fault for their egregious behavior.


Causing an accident in Albany by engaging in any dangerous behavior may constitute negligence. This means that the driver did not act with the common sense of a responsible driver. If you are injured in a car accident because another driver was texting, for example, you will need to prove that they were texting and, therefore, negligent. You will also need to show that their distracted driving caused the accident.

Often, more than one driver in a wreck may have behaved negligently. Perhaps you were going ten miles per hour over the speed limit and could not react in time to avoid the distracted driver as they drifted into your lane. In that case, if you bring a negligence claim against the other driver, they may claim that you contributed to the accident by speeding. Many times, courts find that more than one driver was at fault for a car accident. Fortunately, you might still be able to recover partial compensation for your damages even if you were partly to blame for the accident.

In Georgia, “comparative negligence” is used to determine who gets compensation when one or more drivers was negligent. Under this principle, you may be entitled to some payment for your damages as long as you were less than 50 percent at fault for the accident. However, the court will reduce the amount of compensation that you can receive by your percentage of fault in the accident.

For example, imagine that your damages from an Albany accident totaled $100,000, perhaps in medical bills and lost wages. If the court determines that you were 49 percent to blame for the accident, you can be compensated for your damages, less 49 percent. This means you could recover 51 percent, or $51,000. However, if the court were to find that you were 55 percent to blame, you may not be able to recover at all. In that situation, you might even have to pay the other driver for part of their damages.


“Statute of limitations” is a legal term to describe the amount of time that you are allowed to bring a certain legal claim. In Georgia, you typically have two years to file a claim against another driver when you suffer injuries from an accident. However, if you are under the age of 18 or have a mental impairment, you may have a longer time to file. There may be other factors that can either reduce or extend the time that you have to bring a claim. It is smart to consult with an attorney as soon as possible following your accident to ensure that you do not miss any important deadlines.


If you suffered injuries from a car accident in Albany, Georgia, you should consult with a skilled attorney as soon as possible. The experienced attorneys at Williams Elleby Howard & Easter are here to answer your questions, explain your legal options, and work hard on your behalf to obtain compensation for your injuries, damages or losses after an Albany, Georgia car accident. Get in touch with a Williams Elleby Howard & Easter attorney by calling (833) 534-2542 or by contacting us online.