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Atlanta Personal Injury Law Blog

What are the hidden costs of a DUI?

If you get a DUI in Georgia, you are immediately hit with penalties. You will probably be arrested and spend at least the night in jail. You may lose your license, too. Once you go to court, you may have to spend more time in jail and you will probably be fined, along with having to pay court costs. Later, you may need to pay fees to get your license back. However, despite all these costs, there is another cost many people fail to think about. According to NerdWallet, the main hidden cost of a DUI is the jump in your insurance rates.

A DUI charge can double your insurance costs. This rise in price will haunt you for years, too. As long as the DUI stays on your driving record, it will influence your rates. Insurance can be costly even without adverse information on your driving record, but a DUI is taken very seriously because of its potential for costly damage and liabilities.

Riding your motorcycle safely

Whether you are a new motorcycle owner or an experienced rider, the experience of traveling Georgia roads in the open air is both exhilarating and exciting. Taking into account the unique risks you face as a motorcyclist can help you drive safer and avoid potential dangers that could cause severe injury. At Green & Delan LLC, we are experienced in dealing with motorcycle accidents.

Geico has several helpful suggestions that are both basic and simple, but incredibly important to implement in your efforts to stay safe. These include the following:

  • Always be aware of your surroundings and scan the area around you for potential dangers.
  • Be educated and take advantage of opportunities to complete safety courses. Practicing maneuvers designed to keep you safe in a dangerous situation can help you be better prepared if an unfortunate situation occurs.
  • Follow traffic laws at all times even if it may seem inconvenient or unnecessary. Never make the mistake of thinking you can go faster or escape harm because you are on a motorcycle.
  • Always wear proper safety gear including a helmet, gloves, long pants, boots and googles among other things. Dressing the right way can help you escape serious injury if you are ever involved in an accident.
  • Be alert and well-rested whenever you are planning to ride your motorcycle. Never get on your bike when you are under the influence.
  • Take proper care of your motorcycle and ensure that regular maintenance is performed as needed. When you come across a malfunctioning component, see that it is repaired right away so it does not pose a threat to your safety.

Why is correct car seat installation important?

As a parent, you know the importance of putting your child in a car seat every time he or she rides in a vehicle. However, what you may not realize is that incorrectly installing the car seat or putting your child into the seat wrong could put your child at risk or even increase the risk for injuries in a crash. That is why it is essential for you and all parents in Georgia to learn about proper installation and use of car seats before using them.

When a car seat is properly installed and your child is properly secured into the seat, it acts as a restraint system that cushions and protects the child in the event of an accident. According to US News and World Report, the top mistake made when installing car seats is not tightening them up. This means both not tightening the seat belt that is holding it in the vehicle and not tightening the harness on your child. A loose seat could fly about the interior of the vehicle in a high impact situation. If the harness is not secure, it could injure your child or allow him or her to slip out of the seat.

Do I have to wear a helmet to ride in Georgia?

Motorcycles are very vulnerable on Georgia roadways. Being much smaller than other vehicles on the road, they can be easily overlooked. When accidents happen, motorcyclists are at a high risk for serious injuries. That is why the state has enacted helmet laws. If you ride a motorcycle in the state of Georgia, you must wear a helmet, according to Consumer Reports. Unlike many other states, there is not an age limit on the helmet requirements. Regardless of how old you are or how long you have had your motorcycle license, you must wear a helmet to legally ride your bike on public roads.

If you do not wear a helmet, you may be ticketed by law enforcement. Even worse, not wearing a helmet exposes you to an extreme risk of a serious head injury or even death if you are involved in an accident. It has been shown that states with mandatory helmet laws have lower rates of injuries and deaths due to motorcycle accidents.  Furthermore, a helmet is around 67 percent effective at preventing a brain injury in the event of a crash.

What can I do when a family member dies in a car accident?

When a loved one dies in car accident in Georgia, it may hard for you to come to terms with the situation. Whether they were the breadwinner or a contributing member of the family, the pain and hardship that often follows in circumstances like yours can be hard for you and your loved ones to manage. You may even feel overwhelmed and confused about how what you should do next. 

There are things you can do to help you and your family move on. According to FindLaw, you and certain family members may qualify to file a wrongful death claim for compensation against the responsible party. 

Be careful what you say during a DUI stop

It can happen to anyone — you've been at dinner with friends and thought you were careful counting your drinks. You leave the party, confident that you're sober enough to drive, but several blocks later you see the blue lights flashing in your rearview mirror. Are you sure you know how to behave during a DUI stop? What if the police officer asks you questions and you don't know how to answer?

A DUI stop is a difficult situation to handle, no matter how it occurs. However, it is important to understand the officer's job during the stop, as well as how to protect your own rights throughout the interaction. How you conduct yourself may have major implications on the strength of your defense, should you receive DUI charges.

How do drug charges affect college financial aid?

Everyone in Georgia makes a mistake at one point or another. Sometimes your mistakes may be bigger than other people's. If you have a drug charge on your record, it could pose serious trouble for you when it comes to getting financial aid for college.

US News and World Report notes the date of your conviction is important in figuring out if your financial aid eligibility will be affected. In addition, the type of charge has an impact. If you are charged with drug trafficking of any kind, then you will not be eligible for federal aid benefits. However, if you were convicted of other type of charges, such as possession, your eligibility is only affected if the conviction happened when you were receiving aid. So, if you were not convicted until you were out of school on summer break, then it will not affect your aid eligibility.

What are the penalties for underage drinking?

Underage drinking in Georgia is a dangerous activity. Any teen who drinks, attempts to purchase or buys the substance can be charged as a minor in possession (MIP). Many teens who are over the age of 18 and under the age of 21 feel that they are grown enough to drink and hang out with their friends. They do not realize that their bodies are still developing and not capable of handling alcohol like older adults. They are also less likely to drink responsibly. 

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, each year, 90 percent of "teenage alcohol consumption is done by binge drinking." Consuming excessive amounts of alcohol in a short amount of time can lead to poisoning and death. There are also many health risks associated with the activity. Some of the effects are short term, such as vomiting, fainting, trouble breathing. The long-term effects of repeated underage binge drinking include liver problems, brain damage and heart disease. Intoxicated teens are more likely to act belligerently, exhibit poor judgment and engage in reckless and dangerous behaviors, such as driving while intoxicated. 

Child injuries and car accidents

Many people do not think much about children and car accidents in Atlanta until they are involved one. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, emergency rooms treat approximately 150 young car accident victims every hour. Many other kids sustain life-threatening injuries or die in those accidents. 

Today’s vehicles are equipped with features that enhance safety and reduce the risk of accidents and injuries. Car and booster seats also help to shield children from the impact of motor vehicle collisions. When those safety features fail and children are not properly secured in their seats, the risk of severe injuries and death from car accidents increase significantly. 

Slip-and-fall accidents at school

Now that autumn is almost here in Atlanta, one issue that parents should take some time to think about is slip-and-fall accidents that happen in school. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, each year, hospitals treat almost 2.8 million children for nonfatal fall injuries. Not all children are fortunate enough to survive their accidents. Some slip-and-fall incidents that happen in school zones result in brain trauma and death. 

No one sends their children off to school with the expectation of them getting hurt. Many parents carefully screen educational facilities before they enroll their kids. The staff take measures to ensure the safety of their students and prevent accidents. However, not all fall accidents are avoidable. Parents should take some time to learn about common issues that can occur and put their children at risk of being hurt in slip-and-fall incidents. 

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