Every day, car accidents prevalently occur on California streets and highways. Indeed, the California Highway Patrol has noted that more than 220,000 individuals were injured on state roads in a single year, with an additional 3,100 fatalities as a result of traffic-related accidents.
The injuries resulting from a California car accident can vary, but what remains constant is car accident victims face loss of income from missing workdays, compounding medical debt, and even permanent disabilities. Moreover, families who have tragically lost a loved one are not only left to grieve but are also forced to suffer from financial hardship.
Since determining fault in a California car accident case can be complicated, it is important to contact an experienced personal injury attorney if you, or someone you care about, have been hurt. Call Law Offices of Haig B. Kazandjian at (800) 576-4620.
Identifying Fault in California
Although a majority of the time police may correctly determine fault in their report, there are times when a police officer’s fault assessment is incorrect. Perhaps one of the most common situations in which a law enforcement officer may improperly determine fault is when one or more of the accident victims is unable to speak for themselves. This could be because they are too injured to speak, is taken away by an ambulance, or has tragically passed away as a result of the collision. In such cases, a police officer may only get one version of the facts.
Every California car accident case is centered on the legal theory of negligence. If the court finds that one party’s negligence caused the accident that resulted in harm, that party will be found at fault and liable. Negligence happens when a party fails to act within the degree of reasonable care that is expected of them under the particular set of facts.
For example, every driver in California and across the nation owes a legal duty to drive his or her vehicle in a reasonably safe manner in order to prevent injuries to others. Some common examples of negligence include driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, distracted driving, violating traffic laws, and aggressive driving.
What Is Comparative Fault?
California is a “comparative fault” state, which is sometimes referred to as “comparative negligence.” This means that someone who is injured in a California car accident may still recover monetary compensation even if he or she is found to be partially at fault by a court for causing the accident that resulted in his or her injuries.
Under the comparative fault rule, a portion of the injured victim’s damages can be covered by the other negligent party. A jury will determine what percentage of fault an injured-plaintiff had in causing the accident and contributing to his or her injuries. The damage award is then reduced by the injured-plaintiff’s percentage of fault.
What To Do After A Car Accident
If you've been in a car accident in California, there are important steps you need to take to protect yourself and your legal rights. At Law Offices of Haig B. Kazandjian, our Glendale car accident attorneys are dedicated to helping victims of car accidents get the compensation they deserve.
Here's what to do when you get in a car accident:
- Call 911: The first step is to call 911 and request medical assistance if necessary.
- Exchange information: Get information from the other driver(s) involved in the accident. Be sure to get their contact info (name, address, phone, email, etc.), insurance information, license plates, VINs, and driver’s license numbers. If you cannot find the owner of the damaged car, leave a note with the names and addresses of those involved in the accident.
- Collect information from passengers and witnesses as well: name and contact information (name, address, phone number, etc.)
- Take pictures: Take pictures of the accident scene, the vehicles involved, and any injuries sustained.
- File a police report: Report the accident to the police and get a copy of the police report.
- Seek medical attention: Even if you feel fine, it's important to seek medical attention as soon as possible. Some injuries may not be immediately apparent.
- Contact car accident lawyers in Glendale at Law Offices of Haig B. Kazandjian: Our experienced attorneys can help you navigate the legal process and fight for your rights. We offer a free initial consultation, and you are charged nothing until we win.
- Don't speak to insurance companies: Insurance companies may try to contact you for a statement. It's important to remember that their goal is to minimize the amount they have to pay. Don't speak to them until you've spoken to our attorneys.
Call a Glendale Car Accident Lawyer at (800) 576-4620
By following these steps and working with our skilled Glendale car accident lawyers, you can increase your chances of receiving fair compensation for your injuries, medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. Don't hesitate to contact us for a free consultation.
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