In Atlanta, aggressive driving is responsible for an untold number of wrecks in and around the city every year. In fact, aggressive driving is common across the country. Last year, 104 million drivers admitted tailgating, while 49 million drivers cut other drivers off. Eight million drivers got out of their cars to confront other drivers, and six million drivers bumped or rammed another vehicle on purpose.
Clearly, these types of aggressive behaviors can easily lead to car wrecks. If you’re injured in a wreck caused by an aggressive driver, your Atlanta car accident lawyer can help you determine what kind of compensation you are owed.
At Rafi Law Firm, we’ve seen the devastation these drivers cause, and we know how to help injured victims. Mike Rafi has helped recover over $45 million on behalf of his clients. Call us at 404-800-1156 or fill out our convenient online form to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with an Atlanta car accident lawyer today.
What Is Aggressive Driving?
According to the American Automobile Association (AAA), aggressive driving can be defined as “any unsafe driving behavior, performed deliberately and with ill intention or disregard for safety.”
Examples of aggressive driving behaviors include:
- Speeding in heavy traffic
- Cutting in front of another driver and then slowing down
- Running red lights
- Weaving in and out of traffic
- Changing lanes without signaling
- Blocking cars attempting to pass or change lanes
- Using headlights or brakes to ‘punish’ other drivers
In some cases, aggressive driving can lead to road rage. This is a much more dangerous scenario in which a driver commits an act of violence against someone else on the road. While aggressive driving is typically punishable by a traffic ticket, road rage can be a criminal offense.
Compensation After an Aggressive Driving Accident
Like all personal injury cases, you may be owed money if someone else is responsible for your losses. Typically, compensation is divided into two categories: economic (special) and noneconomic (general) damages.
Economic or special damages are real money you lost. They are unique to each case. For instance, you could be in the same type of accident as someone else, but have vastly different medical bills and other losses. Economic damages can include past and future medical bills, lost wages, rehabilitation costs, and more.
Noneconomic (general) damages are those that can’t easily be assigned a monetary value. They are considered “general” because they apply to most personal injury cases. They include pain and suffering, loss of consortium, disability, and more.
Punitive damages are intended to punish the person who caused the wreck if their behavior goes beyond what’s expected in society. Under Georgia Code 51-12-5.1, punitive damages (also called vindictive or exemplary damages) can be awarded if the other driver’s actions “showed willful misconduct, malice, fraud, wantonness, oppression, or that entire want of care which would raise the presumption of conscious indifference to consequences.” Aggressive driving and road rage often fall into these categories.
If your Atlanta car accident lawyer can prove with clear and convincing evidence that the other driver acted in a way defined by Georgia law, punitive damages may be assessed. Under that same law, if the other driver acted with the specific intent to cause harm, there is no limit to the amount of punitive damages that may be assessed.
However, if your lawyer can’t prove there was actual intent to cause harm, punitive damages are capped at $250,000.
Hire an Atlanta Car Accident Lawyer After an Aggressive Driving Accident
After an accident with an aggressive driver, it’s their insurance company that will be responsible for paying your compensation. The insurance company will have a team of lawyers on their side to make sure they can limit the amount of compensation they pay out. The rare exception is when the other driver isn’t insured, in which case the driver is held liable.
Without an experienced car accident attorney by your side, getting the compensation you deserve can be very difficult. After all, the insurance company will argue that their client wasn’t responsible for the accident, and therefore they aren’t liable for your losses.
Your lawyer can conduct an investigation, determine how much you may be owed, and take on the insurance company to make sure you get it. They can negotiate with the insurance company to get the compensation you deserve out of court or take on the company inside the courtroom to fight for your money.
Call us at 404-800-1156 or fill out our convenient online form to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with an Atlanta car accident lawyer today.