A head-on collision happens when a vehicle fails to maintain its lane, enters another vehicle’s lane, and collides with that vehicle front-end to front-end. These accidents can be devastating, and individuals often face life-altering injuries and medical expenses. If you were involved in a head-on collision, an experienced attorney may be able to help. Contact an Atlanta head-on collision lawyer to see how you could receive compensation for your injuries.
Potential Injuries Due to Head-On Car Crashes
Head-on collisions can be the most serious accidents because the momentum and inertia involved are at their greatest. The momentum of two vehicles traveling at high speeds in directly opposing directions increases the severity of the crash, which increases the likelihood of significant injuries. Vehicles are equipped with crumple zones and technology designed to minimize the forces involved in collisions, but it is impossible to create a vehicle that completely prevents injury.
Vehicle intrusions into the passenger compartment frequently occur in head-on collisions. When the intrusion is on the driver’s side, there are often broken femurs where the legs are crushed. The femur is sometimes pushed into the back of a hip socket and the acetabulum bone and blows out the back of the hip.
Head injuries are common when there is a secondary collision in which the person’s head hits one of the posts of the vehicle door, the steering wheel, or the top of the car.
Fault assigned by an insurance company is legally irrelevant. It is practically relevant to the extent that it dictates how much the insurance company offers in terms of the settlement. An insurance company’s assessment of fault is unilaterally done by the insurance company itself. It is usually influenced by the facts, witness statements, and evidence, but sometimes it is chosen arbitrarily with no rhyme or reason.
Legal fault is determined in different ways. It is ultimately in the context of an injury caused by a wreck. In a civil claim, legal fault is usually decided by a jury rather than a judge. When a car wreck happens, investigating officers can file charges if they believe that someone violated a motor vehicle code or Georgia rule of the road. If the solicitor or district attorney pursues those charges, a jury trial takes place. The accused driver has the right to hire an Atlanta head-on collision lawyer and have a jury trial to determine whether criminal charges should be filed.
Usually, when someone is at fault and they are given a citation in an accident, they may be able to resolve that short of trial by paying a fine or pleading guilty or not guilty. When someone causes a wreck and is charged with a citation and they plead guilty; that guilty plea is an admission that is admissible in a civil case if someone was injured because of that person’s violation of a rule of the road.
Role of Police
If the person who received a citation pleads nolo contendere or not guilty, it is not per se admissible that the person was given a citation. The police officer can come to trial in a civil case and testify about what they observed at the scene. The police officer can testify whether the at-fault driver made an admission against interests. For example, if that person claims the accident was their fault at the scene, that admission against interests to the investigating officer is admissible. It is an exception to the hearsay rule.
The officer can also come to the civil trial and testify about evidence they observed at the scene when there is evidence that suggests the at-fault driver or the other driver was at fault. For example, when skid marks show the vehicle left its lane of travel and moved into the opposing lane, that could be evidence that the driver did not maintain their lane and caused a collision. Juries can assess fault to either party or both parties. Depending on the facts, juries can say it is 100 percent the defendant’s fault, 100 percent the plaintiff’s fault, or the percentage is split between the two.
Following Up with a Doctor after a Collision
It is important for people to follow up with their doctors because it is the best way to heal. If a doctor suggests that a person needs to follow up with additional treatment, that advice should be followed. Injury victims who continue to suffer pain, symptoms, and limitations should receive treatment to recover. It is also important that the issues are documented by an objective medical professional.
Many times, clients are legitimately injured and suffer significant symptoms, but they try to tough it out or use home remedies, home therapies, and over-the-counter medicines to get better. That is not as effective as going to see a medical professional. In fact, when someone has symptoms and physical limitations, it is important that a medical care provider evaluates the symptoms to create an objective measure and documentation. If the symptoms continue, there is a record that quantifies the significance of those symptoms. This is especially important in a head-on collision because these collisions involve more significant injuries than a slow-impact rear-end accident, for example.
How Atlanta Attorneys Approach Head-On Collision Cases
One of the first steps an attorney takes in a head-on collision case is meeting with the injured person and anyone else in the vehicle at the time of the accident. The attorney obtains their versions of the event and identifies the significance of their injuries. The attorney contacts any witnesses and secures recorded statements. They send letters to the at-fault party to make sure that evidence is preserved. When the attorney is quickly brought into the case, they visit the scene of the accident to collect evidence and take photographs.
If you were injured in a head-on collision, call an Atlanta head-on collision lawyer today. A seasoned attorney could fight on your behalf to help you recover compensation for your injuries.