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Georgia Car Accident Compensation Laws

Auto accidents can be deadly. In 2020, car crashes were the leading cause of death and the second leading cause of emergency room visits in Georgia. That same year, Georgia had the fourth-largest number of traffic fatalities in the nation. Many of these severe car accidents resulted in injury claims.

You may not know that you aren’t automatically entitled to damages, even if the other driver caused the crash. Your personal injury lawyer must prove that the other driver was negligent. Your auto accident attorney must also demonstrate that you suffered a loss, either serious injuries or a financial loss. 

Here, we’ll explain how fault impacts your car accident claim. We will also discuss Georgia’s laws regarding compensation in car accident cases. If you still have questions about your personal injury case, contact an experienced Georgia car accident attorney.

Georgia's Car Accident Laws: Compensation and Damages

Below is a table outlining Georgia's car accident and truck accident compensation laws, followed by an in-depth explanation of the critical elements.  

Statute of Limitations

Limits on Damages


Other Limits

Modified comparative fault can prevent or limit recovery, depending on the driver's percentage of fault. (Georgia Code Title 51. Torts section 51-11-7)

Georgia's At Fault and Modified Comparative Fault Rules

Georgia is an at-fault state. Motorists who seek compensation from an at-fault driver must prove that the other party was the primary cause of the accident. Even if they were partially responsible for the crash as well, they can still collect damages.

Georgia is a modified comparative negligence state. An accident victim must be less than 50% at fault to recover compensation for car accident injuries or property damage. The judge or jury will determine each party’s level of fault. A measure of 50% or more fault bars a party from recovering. 

If you recover damages, modified comparative negligence will reduce them by your percentage of fault. For example, if the court finds you to be 20% at fault, the amount you receive will decrease by 20%.

Auto Insurance

Georgia law requires motorists to carry auto insurance liability coverage in case they are in an auto accident. Liability insurance compensates other drivers if you are determined to be the at-fault driver in an accident. 

The minimum limits of liability insurance under Georgia insurance law are as follows:

  • Bodily injury liability: $25,000 per person and $50,000 per incident
  • Property damage liability: $25,000 per incident

The victims in any motor vehicle accident can file a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company. If the at-fault party’s insurance policy doesn’t cover your damages, you can sue the driver personally in civil court. 

You are not required to carry uninsured motorist coverage in Georgia.

Types of Damages

When your Georgia car accident lawyer files your personal injury lawsuit, they must demand specific damages.

Examples of damages that result from car accidents include:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Medical bills and medical expenses
  • Vehicle repair or replacement
  • Emotional distress
  • Lost wages
  • Loss of affection or companionship
  • Wrongful death

If you're uncertain of which claims you can make, consider meeting with a personal injury attorney for legal advice and guidance.

Limits on Damages

Thanks to a 2010 Georgia Supreme Court decision, there are almost no caps on damages under Georgia law. However, Georgia limits the amount of punitive damages, which the courts use to punish a party for reprehensible conduct. 

Your attorney may demand punitive damages if a drunk driver hits you. The most they can demand is $250,000. The jury cannot award more than $250,000 to a plaintiff, no matter how egregious the at-fault driver’s behavior. 

Georgia Statute of Limitations

As with nearly all legal claims, there is a time limit for filing your case. Georgia’s statute of limitations gives you two years to sue for personal injury and four years for property damage. The clock starts on the date of the accident. 

Pending insurance claims won't delay or extend that time limit. It’s essential to consult an attorney early to evaluate your Georgia car accident case.

Get Legal Help With Your Georgia Car Accident Compensation Laws Questions

Georgia law restricts the time you have to file your car accident lawsuit. Insurance companies may drag the claims process out for months on end, so it's a good idea to speak with an experienced car accident lawyer as soon as possible after the crash.

Your auto accident attorney may be able to negotiate a settlement offer from the driver's insurance company and avoid court altogether. Worst case, they can represent you in court should you need to sue the other party.

Many personal injury attorneys offer a free consultation. Consider speaking with a car accident attorney for help achieving the best outcome possible.

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