Traffic Violations or Citations That Come With Car Accidents

officer writing a traffic ticket

Traffic Violations or Citations That Come With Car Accidents

If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident in Georgia and the other driver was issued a traffic citation, you may wonder how it will affect your ability to collect compensation for your injuries.
Traffic Citation: Traffic Tickets from Car Accidents

Alternately, the police may have issued citations to both you and the other driver for contributing to a collision and you may question whether your citation precludes you from making a claim for compensation for your injuries. These are common questions after car accidents. A traffic citation by itself will not determine the outcome of a personal injury case. It is just an accusation, after all, until a court rules on it. As car accident attorneys, we review all the factors that contributed to a car accident, including whether police cited any driver afterward. An at-fault driver’s guilty plea to a traffic citation may provide an important piece of evidence to prove driver negligence and support an injured motorist’s personal injury claim. Each car accident has its own specific pattern of facts that must be analyzed.

If you have been injured in a car accident caused by another motorist in metro Atlanta, a knowledgeable car accident attorney at Millar & Mixon is available to answer your questions and explain your legal options. We have handled many car accident cases and know the answers to your questions. Call us or contact us by email to speak with an attorney free of charge.

Why Do Georgia Police Officers Write Citations After an Accident?

 

Police Write Citation After an AccidentPolice have the responsibility to investigate traffic accidents and determine if one of the drivers involved in the accident violated the law. The police interview the drivers and passengers involved in the accident and any witnesses to try to reconstruct how the accident occurred. The police may decide that one party was at fault in causing the collision and include that in the accident report. The police officer may issue a traffic citation.

 

Why Does Someone Get a Traffic Ticket After an Accident in Georgia?

A driver receives a traffic citation when the police believe that the driver has committed a moving violation such as speeding, disregarding a traffic control device or failing to yield right-of-way. The citation is a legal notice for the driver to show up in court on a specified date to answer the charge or instead plead guilty and pay a fine for the traffic violation.

Citation Definition: Traffic Tickets from Car Accidents

The court date is written on the citation. But many tickets can be cleared without having to appear in court. Many citations may be dealt with by simply signing the ticket and paying the fine online or by mailing the payment to the address listed on the citation.

Do Citations Determine Who is At Fault in Georgia?

Several different entities may make a determination of fault after a car accident.

Police Investigation Determines Who Is At Fault

A police officer may decide one driver caused an accident and issue a citation accusing the driver of a traffic violation. The driver may contest the citation in court or enter a guilty plea. If the citation is contested, the court will decide whether the driver is at fault and may issue a fine or other penalty. For the purposes of resolving insurance claims for payment of medical bills and property damages, the insurance companies for the drivers in the accident will decide who caused the accident.  Insurance company adjusters will review police accident reports, interview witnesses, review medical reports and do additional investigation to make a determination of fault. They may decide each driver had some responsibility for the accident and assign each driver a portion of the fault.

Some insurance claims are disputed. If the traffic accident involves serious or fatal injuries and there is a dispute about who is at fault, an injured person may have a legal right to file a personal injury lawsuit in Georgia. The personal injury lawyer for the person who filed the lawsuit would present evidence seeking to prove that the other driver was negligent in causing the accident and the at-fault driver or their auto insurance company owe damages.
Serious Injuries

The court will weigh the evidence presented such as testimony from the investigating police officer, witnesses and traffic reconstruction experts and determine who was at fault. The court may determine that each driver was partly responsible for an accident.

Georgia applies a comparative fault standard, allowing an injured person to receive damages as long as the injured person was less than 50 percent responsible for the accident.   For example, if a jury awards an injured motorist $100,000 in damages, but finds that the driver was 25 percent at fault, the award would be reduced by 25 percent. The injured person would be eligible to receive $75,000 in monetary damages.

Does the Georgia Court Look at a Traffic Citation as Evidence?

statements to the officer do not dictate outcome of a court case
A traffic citation is an accusation of fault. By itself, the citation is not sufficient evidence to prove a driver was negligent in a personal injury lawsuit. If a driver pleads guilty to a traffic citation, a knowledgeable Georgia car accident lawyer who understands Georgia car accident laws may obtain a certified copy of the court record and submit it as one piece of evidence of the at-fault driver’s admission of fault as part of a personal injury case.

It’s important to understand that neither a police citation nor an insurance company’s finding of fault will dictate the outcome of a court case.

What If No One Was Cited After an Accident in Georgia?

It is not unusual for police to issue no citations after an accident. The cause of the accident may be unclear. The insurance companies for the drivers involved will review
the police report and medical records and make a determination of fault.
Quote about car accident injuries

They may assign fault to one driver or both drivers. It is a good idea, and it is free of charge, to have an Atlanta car accident lawyer at Millar & Mixon review your accident so that you understand your legal options and may make an informed decision about how to proceed.

Hiring a Reputable Georgia Traffic Ticket Lawyer

If you’ve been in a car accident and you given a ticket we can possibly help with the accident/ticket. Give us a call!

Not ready to chat? Use these free resources to help you get the information you need:

Car Accident Lawyer Atlanta GA

Atlanta Car Accident FAQs

Georgia Car Accident Checklist 

Bad Faith Insurance Company in Atlanta, GA

Distracted Driving in Georgia

Types of Car Accidents in Atlanta, GA 

Why Call Millar & Mixon Law Firm, LLC? 

What Evidence Do I Need For A GA Car Accident? 

Atlanta, Georgia Car Accident Resources

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