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When someone gets hit by a driver who ran a red light, it’s pretty clear who was at fault. The same goes for drunk driving accidents or distracted driving accidents caused by texting while driving.

But what happens in a multi-car pileup? Who takes the blame when multiple vehicles are involved in a collision?

Like most accidents, multi-car pileups are governed by the law of negligence. This means that liability is determined by the facts, not by some hard and fast rule.

Generally speaking, fault will be attributed to the driver or drivers who failed to exercise reasonable care when operating their vehicles. The results will be different in every case.

Determining liability is an extremely difficult task, as each driver will often give a different account of the accident. Atlanta auto accident lawyers will usually work with law enforcement, insurance companies and accident reconstructionists to sort out the truth.

Who Pays for the Damage?

At trial, the jury will determine what role each party played in causing the accident. It will assign a percentage of fault to each driver responsible for causing the accident. Each driver will then pay a pro-rated share of the verdict based on his or her fault percentage.

Unlike some states, Georgia does not follow the rule of “joint and several liability.” This means that in Georgia car accidents, one driver cannot be forced to pay for another driver’s share of the liability.

In some cases, the injured person may share some of the blame for causing the accident. Georgia law will allow that person to recover from other negligent parties, but only if the injured person was less than 50 percent at fault.

Multi-car accidents present complex legal issues. If you’ve been injured in a multi-car pileup, contact an experienced Georgia car wreck attorney who can help you understand your options.