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Atlanta Car Accident Claim: How Seat Belt Use May be a Determining Factor in Your Settlement

Seat belt use can have an impact on the outcome of your Atlanta car accident claim because a wearing a seat belt may have left you uninjured. For a better understanding of this and help with your case if you were seriously injured, contact an accident attorney as soon as possible.

Seat Belt Laws in Georgia

There are 2 types of laws across the nation when it comes to seat belts. One is primary seat belt laws, in which a vehicle can be pulled over by a police officer for violating mandatory seat belt laws. In other words, no other traffic offense has to have been committed in order to be ticketed.

The other type of law pertaining to seat belts is secondary seat belt laws. Ticketing drivers for not wearing a seat belt can only be done if there is another traffic citation given. However, this does not apply to the state of Georgia.

The state of Georgia has primary seat belt laws, in which children between the ages of 8 and 17 must wear a seat belt, no matter where in the vehicle they are sitting, front or back. For those older than 18, it only applies to sitting in the front of a vehicle.

Impact Seat Belt Use Can Have on Your Atlanta Car Accident Claim
 
The importance of following the law cannot be understated. This is true for several reasons, one of which is the way it could impact your accident claim.

When you are trying to prove that another driver was negligent in an accident, you don’t want any responsibility to fall on your shoulders. This is because the state of Georgia follows the comparative fault system – 50% rule.

In order to recover damages, you must be 49% or less at fault. More than this percentage of fault can prevent you from receiving any compensation.

Let’s say you were struck from behind because the other vehicle was following too closely. If it caused you to suffer a severe head injury, but you were found not to be wearing your seat belt, it may be determined that your injuries wouldn’t have been as serious had you been buckled up.

This will put some of the fault on you. The more responsibility you are found to have, the more at risk you are of losing the ability to recover any compensation for the medical expenses and other financial losses you may have suffered.

After You Have Been Injured in an Atlanta Car Accident, Call a Lawyer

When you or someone you love has sustained serious injuries caused by someone else’s negligence in an Atlanta accident, you should know what your rights are. The Law Offices of Shane Smith can provide you with valuable tips on how to protect your case, free of charge, including: 10 Mistakes That Can Ruin Your Georgia Wreck Case and Property Damage Guide for Georgia. Contact our offices at 1-770-HURT-999 (1-770-487-8999).

Shane Smith
Advocate for the Seriously Injured in Georgia