San Diego Personal Injury Lawyer
What to Know Before Hiring a San Diego Personal Injury Lawyer for Your Car Accident Case
More than six million car accidents and other traffic related road accidents occur in the U.S. every year. Most of these accidents are caused by the reckless or negligent behavior of some drivers. It is disappointing when a person has to suffer due to someone else’s fault. The law allows persons injured in such accidents to claim compensation from the at-fault party or their insurance company. Most accident cases are classified under the Tort Law. Tort is a type of civil law, not criminal law. It is a way of holding someone legally responsible for losses caused by their negligence or carelessness.
The process of fighting for compensation from the negligent party is long and complicated. To ensure that the entire claim process is handled professionally, it is imperative to hire the services of an experienced La Mesa personal injury attorney. A competent personal injury lawyer can offer the necessary legal counsel and support to fight for the rightful compensation. Here are important details you need to know before hiring a san diego personal injury lawyer for your car accident case.
What to Do Immediately Following an Accident
If you are involved in a serious car accident, the first thing you should, if you are able, is to call 911 for police and medical help. When everyone is out of damage, gather and write down as much information about the incident as you can. Afterwards you need to call a El Cajon injury attorney. This information should include:
- Names, contact information, driver’s license numbers and insurance information for the drivers
- Whether the other driver appeared to be under the influence of drugs or alcohol, the affects you noted, and any witnesses to those effects.
- Names and contact information for all passengers and witnesses.
- Date, time and location of the accident
- Contact information for the police at the scene
Gather as much information for the claims investigation as possible.
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Who to Contact After an Auto Accident
The law of the state where the incident occurred determines what report must be made after an auto accident. Typically, reports should be filed with the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), your insurance company and the police.
- The Police: If the accident causes personal injuries or property, damage exceeds $750; you should report the incident to the police.
- Your insurance company: Most insurance companies require their policyholders to report a car accident promptly. The time limit can be very short, and failure to report the incident within the set timeframe may result in denial of coverage. Ensure you check your insurance policy to see what notice requirements apply to you. Make sure to consult with your Chula Vista car personal injury lawyer before you given a written statement.
- Department of Motor Vehicles: In California, every driver involved in an accident that results in personal injury or property damages exceeding $750 should file an SR-1 form. The report must be submitted within 5 to 10 days after the accident. If you fail to file the report, your driver’s license may be confiscated, regardless of fault.
Determining Fault for a Car Accident in San Diego
While differences in law have a significant impact on what happens after an auto accident, nothing has a bigger impact than determining who was at fault. In some cases, the fault is very straightforward, and everyone is aware that one of the drivers broke the rules, and should be held liable for the accident. In other instances, it is not clear who is at fault. To prove liable in an auto accident case you should hire a strong National City injury attorney, there are three things that the injured victim must prove:
A breach of duty: The injured victim must prove that the defendant was negligent in fulfilling the duty of care. Since the duty is to exercise a reasonable amount of care when operating the motor vehicle, the reasonable person is used to determine whether a breach exists in car accidents.
A legal duty was owned: It is the duty all drivers owe other drivers on the road. It requires the driver to operate their vehicle with a reasonable standard of care.
The breach of duty caused the damages or injuries: It is not enough for the other driver to have been negligent. That alone will not make them liable for the damages of injuries. The other driver’s negligent actions had to have been the direct or proximate cause of the incident.
Shared Fault in Car Accident Cases
If the injured person shares some amount of blame for causing the car accident, it can affect the total compensation they will receive, but consult with your San Marcos personal injury attorney to find out. In some instances, the injured person may not be able to recover anything at all from the negligent party, if the claimant is also deemed at fault for the accident. The effects that a shared fault will have will depend on the rules of the state. In California, you can recover compensation from the at-fault party, regardless of the degree of your fault. However, the compensation you will be awarded will be reduced by the percentage of the fault.
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Statute of Limitations for Car Accident Cases in California
A statute of limitations is the time frame for filing a suit. There are different time limits for different kinds of cases. The time frame for filing a lawsuit over an auto accident in California is two years for a personal injury lawsuit and three years for a property damage case. These limits start to run after the accident, not after filing an insurance claim. It is advisable to ensure that any insurance claim is filed well before these deadlines expire. If the car accident involved the government in any way, the plaintiff and Encinitas injury lawyer must follow a different set of rules when filing their claim. Those rules require you to get their paperwork your paperwork in pretty quickly.
Importance of Having Auto Insurance Coverage
In California, the law requires every driver and vehicle owner to have insurance or other proof of financial responsibility. You must carry written evidence of financial responsibility wherever you drive. Often that evidence takes the form of an auto insurance card provided by your insurance carrier. However, if the name of the insurance company and the policy number are contained in the DMV’s registration records, you can write your insurance name and the auto insurance policy number on the back of your vehicle registration. If you are involved in an accident and cannot provide a proof of financial responsibility, your driver’s license can be canceled for up to four years which is why you need an experienced Vista personal injury lawyer.
The Primary Roles of a Qualified San Diego Accident Lawyer
Considering the immense recuperative and physical challenges that many victims of personal injury face, it can be difficult for them to go to court to fight for their rights. With the constant pain and suffering that accompany severe body injuries, it should come as no surprise that recovering accident victims may prefer to mend rather than file a lawsuit. A proficient Carlsbad personal injury lawyer know the trepidation that accident victims face, and are committed to helping them fight for their rightful compensation. Regardless of the cause of the cause of the accident, the attorneys can ensure that entire claim process and legal proceedings are handled professionally. Here are the top six roles a qualified San Diego personal injury lawyer
Reviewing the Case
During the initial stages of a personal injury claim, the Escondido injury lawyer will study the details of the case to determine the fault of the other party. For a car accident, the lawyer will try to establish whether the other driver was driving under the influence, failed to obey traffic rules, was distracted by a cell phone or failed to pay close attention to the surrounding. In this stage, it is essential that the injured victim give their attorney all the relevant details of the accident. The details should include any information collected at the scene of the crash, such as names, driver’s license numbers, and car insurance carriers of the other driver, the location of the accident, date and time of the accident among other important details.
Gathering Enough Evidence
To receive compensation in personal injury cases, the injured victim must provide sufficient evidence that shows that the negligent behaviors of the other party caused the accident. An experienced accident lawyer knows the kind of evidence that is needed to prove the fault of the opposite party. They will help the claimant get a good police report and workplace report. The lawyer will make sure that the medical report indicates clearly the nature and extent of the injuries. If there are any witnesses, the lawyer will arrange for meetings to prepare them for the hearing.
Determining the Extent of the Damages
An experienced San Diego wrongful death attorney can help the injured victims family determine the amount of losses caused by the accident. The attorney will work closely with other professional to ascertain the extent of these damages. They will first calculate the total amount of loss incurred and then determine the amount of compensation the injured victim should receive. The accident attorney will ensure that the injured victim is compensated for both economic and non-economic losses. Examples of economic losses include missed checks or lost income, medical expenses and loss of future earning abilities. Non-economic losses include pain and suffering and emotional distress caused by the accident.
Handling Discussions with the Insurance Companies
In most cases, the at-fault party’s insurance company will contact the injured person immediately after the mishap to negotiate a settlement. Note that insurance companies are more concerned about the profitability of their business rather than offering the injured party, the rightful compensation. Thus, it is advisable that one should not accept a settlement without the knowledge of their lawyer. An experienced Oceanside injury lawyer has handled multiple discussions with different insurance companies. They will utilize their unique negotiation skills into convincing the insurance firm to offer their client a full compensation.
Filing a Court Case
If negotiations are unsuccessful, the lawyer will file a court case. A qualified personal injury lawyer knows all the rules and regulations involved when filing for accidents lawsuits. They have handled multiple injury cases before successfully. They will handle all the paperwork and documentation in the filing process on behalf of their client. The attorney will make sure that all the necessary documents are forwarded to the right judicial system representatives. This will help to avoid delays on the day of the hearing.
Representation in Court
A highly skilled San Diego bicycle accident lawyer will offer you an excellent representation in court. The attorney will present the available evidence correctly and prove that the other party caused the accident, and therefore, should pay for all the losses incurred. The lawyer will also answer all the questions on your behalf and keep you informed on the progress of your case. Note that an experienced accident attorney has in-depth of the California personal injury law. In addition, they know the tricks and tactics involved when fighting for an injury lawsuit. The lawyer will utilize these professional skills to ensure that you are adequately compensated.
Personal Injury Law Firm
The outcome of an accident case will largely depend on the lawyer you choose. Before choosing your personal injury t lawyer, consider their education and experience levels. A highly educated and experienced lawyer can offer you a zealous court representation. The attorney has developed professional tricks and tactics that can be vital in improving the outcome of the case. Second, consider the lawyer’s commitment to your case. Commitment refers to the amount of time the attorney is willing to dedicate to your case. Choose a lawyer who is ready to spend a reasonable amount of their time in your case.
Third, look for a San Diego motorcycle accident lawyer who has excellent listening and communication skills. A competent personal injury attorney should be able to express their views professionally and fluently in court. Fourth, consider the location of the lawyer. It is important to choose an attorney you can easily access when you need them. Other key factors to take into account when choosing an experienced personal injury lawyer include certifications, confidence, licenses and previous records. With a good understanding of the above factors, you will certainly have an easy time choosing a personal injury attorney for your car accident case.
Accidents can happen anywhere at any time. If you are involved in an accident that was due to someone else’s negligence, contact a competent San Diego personal injury lawyer to help you fight for the rightful compensation. If you are ever attacked by a dog or animal then it is best to have a consultation with a San Diego dob bite lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your legal options.
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