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Who Is at Fault for a Left-Turn Accident in Georgia?

In Georgia, a driver who makes an illegal left turn is typically at fault for a left-turn accident. If the driver violates someone else’s right of way while turning left, they can be responsible for a crash and any related injuries. However, the left-turning driver is not always to blame. If you’re recovering from a collision, an experienced attorney at Kevin A. Adamson, P.C. can investigate your case to determine liability and seek compensation for you. Contact us today for a free consultation.

What Are Georgia’s Laws Regarding Left-Hand Turns?

  • When Georgia drivers turn left into roads, alleys, driveways, or intersections, they must yield to approaching vehicles within the intersection or close enough to represent an immediate hazard.
  • When a driver prepares to turn left, they must approach the turn in the furthest left-hand lane. If multiple turning lanes exist, they must exit the intersection in the same lane they entered to turn left. Changing lanes after entering an intersection is not allowed under state law.
  • When a driver intends to make a left-hand turn, they must signal continuously to alert other road users approaching them from behind or in the opposite direction.
  • When a central, two-way lane allows traffic from either direction to turn left, drivers must enter no more than 300 feet from where they intend to turn if they have to cross multiple traffic lanes.

Who Can Be Held Liable in a Georgia Left-Hand Turn Accident?

A driver who makes an illegal left turn or turns left ahead of someone with the right of way can be liable for a car crash. Drivers turning left must account for the distances and speeds of other cars traveling toward them and pay attention to relevant traffic signs or signals. If they cause accidents, injured victims can seek compensation by filing a personal injury claim.

Common types of driver negligence in left-turn accidents include:

  • Ignoring pedestrians in crosswalks
  • Misjudging the speed of oncoming traffic
  • Speeding ahead of oncoming cars while turning left
  • Failing to check for crossing bicyclists or motorcyclists
  • Distracted driving
  • Failing to use appropriate turn signals or provide adequate warnings before turning
  • Changing lanes or turning into the wrong lane during a left turn
  • Running red lights to speed in front of oncoming drivers

Are There Instances Where the Left Turn Driver Is Not at Fault?

Many people mistakenly assume the left-turning driver is always at fault. However, there are times when another driver could be liable for a left-turn accident. For instance, another road user might be responsible if they violated a traffic law or did something careless to endanger others.

Here are some examples of when someone other than the left-turning driver could be liable for an accident:

  • An oncoming driver is under the influence of alcohol or drugs when the left-turning driver attempts a lawful turn.
  • A mechanical issue causes a left-turning vehicle to stall in the middle of the road, but an oncoming motorist misses it because they are texting while driving.
  • The oncoming driver is under the influence of drugs or alcohol when the crash occurs.
  • The other motorist runs a red light or a stop sign, fails to yield the right of way to a driver preparing to turn left, or breaks some other traffic law.
  • A traffic light malfunctions due to lack of maintenance, confusing both drivers and leading to a collision.

An experienced lawyer can evaluate the facts of the case to ensure that every liable party is held accountable for their role in causing the wreck.

What Damages Can Be Recovered in a Left-Hand Turn Accident?

The compensation you can recover from a left-turn accident claim will depend on the circumstances. Generally, the more severe your injuries, the higher the monetary value of your claim. However, insurance companies don’t like paying out large sums. Often, they aim to save money by favoring evidence that reduces their liability, shifting the blame to accident victims, and creating frustrating delays.

If you get hurt in a left-turn accident, you should let an experienced attorney represent you. Your car accident lawyer will stand up to the insurance company and demand fair compensation. All of these negotiations can take place without you. That way, you can focus on recuperating from your injuries.

A successful insurance claim or lawsuit could provide you with financial compensation for losses like:

  • Lost income
  • Lost earning capacity
  • Out-of-pocket expenses
  • Physical therapy, hospital stays, ambulance services, and other medical expenses
  • Mental anguish
  • Services you can no longer perform, such as childcare or housekeeping
  • Pain and suffering
  • Vehicle repair or replacement costs

In Georgia, you have two years from the date of an accident to pursue compensation for your injuries. However, there are certain scenarios where the deadline could be shorter or longer. Speaking with a lawyer is crucial to learn the time limits that apply to your case.

Contact a Georgia Car Accident Lawyer

The legal team at Kevin A. Adamson, P.C. has nearly 40 years of combined experience representing injured clients in Georgia. We know what it takes to get our clients the best results possible. When you hire our team, you can count on us to provide compassionate service and personalized attention every step of the way.

Contact us today if you suffered injuries in a left-hand turn accident due to someone else’s negligence.  Our personal injury lawyers are available 24/7 to answer your questions.