There are many different ways to be injured in a car accident. Different types of car accidents present different legal issues. Injury victims need to work with a skilled car accident claim lawyer who has experience handling your specific type of accident case.
The experienced car crash attorneys at our award-winning law firm have helped many injury victims across California get the compensation they deserve for their injuries and losses. Learn more about different types of car accidents and injury claims and how an injury lawyer can protect your important legal rights.
Distracted driving has quickly become one of the most serious public health risks facing road users across the United States. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that over three thousand victims died due to distracted drivers in 2019. While texting and driving is a major cause of distraction, it is not the only risky behavior that leads to road deaths. Drivers can also be distracted by navigation programs, built-in entertainment systems, food and drink, pets, children, and many other things.
Anything that diverts a driver’s attention from the road increases the risk of an accident dramatically. Drivers must take personal responsibility for choosing to eliminate all distractions in the vehicle. Put your cell phone out of reach, and make use of its “do not disturb while driving” functions. Program your navigation program for your destination before putting the vehicle in motion.
Settle your pets or children before leaving so they are less likely to need your help while on the road. Parents should enforce rules that prevent their teen drivers from allowing themselves to be distracted, and passengers should speak up when a driver is operating their vehicle safely.
When accidents do occur due to distracted driving, it is important to hold these drivers accountable for their negligence. Doing so discourages the driver from engaging in dangerous driving behaviors in the future. It also sends a message to other drivers and lets them know that distracted driving has consequences.
Filing an insurance claim against a negligent driver protects your legal right to receive compensation for your injuries and losses. It also provides financial consequences to that driver to deter them from becoming distracted while driving in the future.
Some accidents are not any driver’s fault. Sometimes, vehicles have mechanical issues that result in accidents a driver cannot avoid, and the driver is therefore not legally at fault (“liable”) for causing the accident. Liability for equipment malfunctions can fall on a third party that was not even at the accident scene.
If, for example, a mechanic worked on your car and claimed that your braking system was safe, the mechanic might be liable for an accident that occurred when your brakes failed outside of their shop. Another common defendant in these cases is the company that manufactured the defective vehicle.
Companies that sell consumer products in the United States (including vehicles) must make them safe. When they are not, the company can be held liable for injuries caused by the defect. This accountability is why car companies voluntarily pay for costly recalls.
Often, it is cheaper to pay for repairs instead of paying injury claims for thousands of accidents caused by defective vehicles. It is not always clear exactly which company is liable for a mechanical malfunction that causes an accident. The uncertainty is why it is important to hire an injury lawyer who knows how to hire experts and prove complicated technical issues.
Truck accidents cause some of the most serious injuries of all traffic accidents, in large part because a heavy truck generates more force in a collision. The more force generated in a collision, the more serious a victim’s injuries are likely to be. A victim in a smaller vehicle or not inside a vehicle is at a serious disadvantage when struck by a heavy truck, which is why many truck accident injuries are fatal.
Even if a victim can survive a truck accident, the accident could leave them with catastrophic injuries that require a lifetime of care. Lost wages, in-home nursing care, medical treatment, and modifications to the home to make it accessible are all subject to compensation in a personal injury claim. An experienced truck accident lawyer will know how to prove the value of these future expenses to ensure that you receive fair compensation for them.
Car accidents also result in serious injuries when the victim is not inside a vehicle. Bicyclists and pedestrians can suffer serious injuries in a collision because a motor vehicle’s steel frame does not protect them.
By design, these frames crumple and absorb the impact of a collision, diverting the impact’s force away from the vehicle’s occupants and reducing the severity of their injuries. Bicyclists and pedestrians are also not protected by airbags or seat belts, which further reduce the risk of injury in a car accident.
Often a bicycle rider is only protected from the force of a violent collision by a helmet. Pedestrians do not even have this protection. Experienced bike accident lawyers and pedestrian injury attorneys understand the unique injuries that are likely to occur when a victim is not inside a vehicle.
Uber and Lyft have become incredibly popular all across California. These rideshare services allow for affordable and convenient travel, but as with any form of travel, they come with the risk of injury. New legal issues arise when a third party (such as a rideshare company) is involved in the injury claim process.
Even worse, these circumstances can jeopardize an injury victim’s legal rights. The more parties involved in a case often means there are more opportunities for the defendants to shift blame to one another, resulting in an injury victim left without compensation.
Rideshare services have also created new legal issues that injury cases must address. Are drivers employees of the organization or independent contractors? What does Uber’s commercial insurance policy cover? How is liability split between a third party and an Uber driver when both are partly at fault for an accident?
Courts have not yet settled these questions. They, too, can result in an injury victim left without the compensation that they legally deserve, especially if that victim does not have their attorney to protect this right. Arash Khorsandi’s team of experienced injury lawyers at Arash Law have handled many different accident cases involving Lyft and Uber. We will be sure that you have access to all the sources of compensation you are legally entitled to pay for your injuries and losses.
Unfortunately, not all car accident victims can survive their injuries. A resultant death does not mean that a negligent driver does not have to pay for the damage that they cause. The victim’s surviving family members (or legal heirs) have the right to file a wrongful death claim against the negligent driver.
Individuals can also file wrongful death claims against third parties (such as a rideshare service or manufacturer of defective brakes) who are liable for the accident. These are difficult cases for family members to pursue.
They must relive the accident, and their losses, and their grief. They must talk about these losses to strangers in depositions and at trial. It can take months or even years to resolve a case. All of this can take a very real emotional toll.
It is, however, important to hold negligent drivers accountable for their actions. It is especially important to have accountability in serious cases where negligence resulted in unnecessary death. It can be difficult to pursue a wrongful death claim, but it also provides some small sense of closure for grieving family members. It also keeps the roads of California safer for everyone who uses them.
Our client was driving with his wife and son on a two-lane highway when a drunk driver crossed the double yellow lines, causing a head-on collision that claimed the life of a loving wife and mother.– Arash Khorsandi
A hit-and-run accident is a crime. The California Vehicle Code requires a driver to stop at the scene of an accident, even if it only involved property damage, and no one was injured. If a driver strikes you but does not stop, you are the victim of a crime. The driver is open to prosecution.
In addition to any criminal court charges, it is also important to hold these drivers accountable in civil court. All negligent drivers must be held accountable for the damage they cause, especially those who try to get out of this responsibility by running away.
You might wonder how your lawyer can find a hit-and-run driver to hold them accountable. The first step is to report the driver to law enforcement. Call 911 right away to report the hit and run accident. The sooner police can begin looking for the driver, the better chances they have of catching them.
Give them all the information you have: what the car looked like, the car’s direction of heading, and any passengers or unusual objects in the vehicle. Any description can help the police find the person who was responsible for hitting you. Even if they cannot find the driver, you might be entitled to compensation under your own auto insurance policy. Uninsured motorist coverage, medical payments, and other optional coverage can pay a policyholder for injuries caused by a hit-and-run driver.
Do not assume that you have no compensation options just because the police could not find the person who hit you. Always consult with your personal injury lawyer to be sure that someone on your side is investigating your legal right to compensation.
Drunk driving is also a crime, and victims are entitled to justice through the criminal court system. A victim advocate who works for the prosecutor’s office may approach you.
This person will help guide you through the criminal court process, advise you about your legal rights, and help connect you with the prosecutor working on your case. Criminal prosecutions are an important step in deterring drunk driving on the roads of California.
When victims help prosecutors by testifying, the case is stronger, and it is easier to process the case through the court system. It is important to understand the difference between your legal rights in the criminal court system and your legal rights in the civil court system. A criminal case’s goal is not to ensure injury victims receive compensation for losses caused by a drunk driver. The goal is to get a criminal conviction against the driver so that the state can impose consequences such as jail time and fines.
To receive compensation for their injuries, a drunk driving victim must usually file a civil claim against the drunk driver, which often begins with your injury lawyer opening a claim with the drunk driver’s insurance company. Your attorney will negotiate the claim’s value, and if the insurance company makes a fair settlement offer, the case can come to a resolution quickly. Your attorney might have to file a lawsuit against the drunk driver if their insurance company refuses to make a fair settlement offer.
The case might progress to trial, but this is not very common in drunk driving cases. Since the victim’s attorney could introduce evidence of the driver’s intoxication at trial and make it difficult to defend the case, the insurance company’s lawyers are generally wise enough not to let a drunk driving case go before a jury.
You don’t have to spend hours searching online for “car accident attorneys near me”. The best auto accident attorneys in California are right here. Our skilled car crash lawyers have decades of experience, and we have collected over 400 million dollars for clients across the state. We serve clients in San Francisco, Riverside, San Jose, San Diego, Sacramento, Sherman Oaks, and throughout California. Call (888) 488-1391 to schedule your free consultation to our California car accident lawyers. Trust our experienced legal team to protect your legal rights so you can focus on recovery from your injuries.