Los Angeles Car Accident Attorneys
Car Accidents in California
Los Angeles is indisputably a driving city. Notorious for heavy traffic and, unfortunately, high overall accident rates, L.A. saw approximately 54,000 motor vehicle collisions in 2019 alone, according to data from the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD). While this figure represents a slight decrease in accidents from the previous year, LAPD notes that there were more traffic-related fatalities in 2019 than 2018, with a total of 236 deaths. Most concerning, data show a 32% increase in motor vehicle collision deaths in Los Angeles over the past five years.
If you were injured in a car accident or lost a loved one in a fatal wreck, you are likely wondering what comes next. How will you pay for the necessary medical expenses and, in some cases, ongoing care? How can you make up for lost wages or income? Who is responsible for your pain and suffering?
At Bral & Associates, we are fierce advocates for victims of car accidents in Los Angeles and throughout Southern California. Since our firm’s founding in 1997, we have successfully represented thousands of injured clients, recovering more than $10 million for victims of negligence. We are ready to answer your questions, address your concerns, and provide you with the personalized legal guidance you need.
Contact us online or call (855) 951-2215 24/7 to schedule a free, private consultation with one of our Los Angeles car accident attorneys.
What to Do If You Were Involved in a Car Accident
Chances are, if you were injured in an auto accident, you have already sought medical attention. However, if you have not yet visited a doctor after an accident, now is the time to do so. Even if you believe that you were not injured or that your injuries are minor and will heal on their own, it is absolutely critical that you see a professional who can properly diagnose your injuries and recommend any necessary treatment.
Additionally, if possible, it’s important to gather some crucial evidence at the scene of the accident, as this can greatly help with your claim. If you can, take pictures of your vehicle, your injuries, and the general accident scene. If there were any witnesses, write down their names, phone numbers, and other relevant contact information, as well as a brief statement of what they saw. It’s also important that you exchange contact information with the other driver, including insurance information, and contact local police to file an accident report.
In the days and weeks following the accident, make sure to take the following steps:
- Attend all doctors’ appointments and follow all doctors’ orders
- Report the accident to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) within 10 days if the accident resulted in injury or property damage in excess of $750
- Inform your own auto insurance company of the accident as soon as possible
- Refrain from speaking to anyone from the other motorist’s insurance company
- Do not post about the accident on social media or make any statements regarding the accident to others until you have spoken to an attorney
- Contact a Los Angeles car accident lawyer for a free consultation
When you reach out to Bral & Associates, we can inform you of your various options and begin immediately preparing your case and protecting your rights. It’s important that you act quickly, as you only have two years to file a car accident claim in the state of California. However, the sooner you file your claim, the better your chances of maximizing your recovery.
Types of Car Accidents
Some of the most common car accidents that take place include:
- Rear-Impact Collisions: In the event that you hit another person from behind or are hit from behind, you have been involved in a rear-impact (or rear-end) incident. Most frequently this occurs because an individual could not or did not brake in time. Nearly 30% of all car accidents in the U.S. are rear-impact accidents. When a rear-impact collision happens, the motorist in the back is often liable because laws mandate that an individual must drive a safe distance away from the motor vehicle in front of him or her.
- Side-Impact Collisions: If you are hit on the side of your motor vehicle, you have suffered a side-impact crash. Side-impact accidents can happen when you “T-bone” another car, meaning the front of your motor vehicle hits the side of another. You can also sideswipe a car by bumping into its side while changing lanes. Nearly 29% of all U.S. car accidents are side-impact collisions. Indicating fault frequently becomes an issue here; it can be challenging to know which motorist was in the wrong. A good car crash attorney can help you obtain photographic evidence of the scene or seek the services of a specialist in accident reconstruction to act as your witness and to help you establish the fault of the other party.
- Head-On Collision: If you hit another vehicle front first, or if you hit a non-moving object with the front of your car, you have been involved in a head-on crash. Head-on collisions often happen when a driver falls asleep or is not paying attention and moves directly into oncoming traffic. Additionally, head-on accidents can occur when a motorist is under the influence of drugs or alcohol, gets on to a highway or a one-way street going the wrong way, or loses control of their vehicle and skids into an oncoming lane. These incidents account for 2% of all U.S. car accidents. The vehicle driver who was going the wrong way or who was inebriated, distracted, or fatigued is usually at fault.
- Rollovers: If your vehicle flips over in any way or lands on its side, you were involved in a rollover. Taller autos, like SUVs and pickup trucks, are more likely to experience rollovers than smaller sized cars. Nearly 2% of all motor vehicle accidents in the U.S. are rollovers. In a few rollover incidents, you may be able to hold the company of the vehicle responsible for a defective vehicle design.
- Runoffs: These accidents usually involve just one car running off the road. This could take place when a person is not really paying attention or swerves to steer clear of another motor vehicle or animal on the road. Runoffs account for 16% of all U.S. car accidents. If you run off the road, you generally have nobody to blame but yourself—unless another vehicle unlawfully got in your way or there was a problem with the road itself.
Determining Fault in a Car Accident
Fault is one of the biggest—if not THE most essential element—in any car crash claim. The individual at fault is the person whose negligence brought on the crash, and that is the individual who generally must pay for the harm caused by his or her neglect. If the conditions surrounding your crash make it clear that one individual was clearly at fault, your claim is likely to be more straightforward. If, however, liability is not entirely clear or if there is shared fault, then fault is apportioned between the people involved as determined by California’s rule of pure comparative negligence. When multiple parties are liable for an accident, it is the insurer’s turn to decide the comparable percentages of fault of the involved parties.
If you or a loved one was in a crash, one of the primary issues you will need to establish is who was at fault for the crash. This determination will fluctuate based on the condition you are in and your state’s laws on negligence. The degree of disregard of each element in a crash will determine who was at fault and who will be accountable for any accident injuries or wrongful death claims.
Normally, a state will pay attention to one of the following carelessness theories, which an accident attorney can explain further:
- Comparative disregard
- Genuine comparative wrong doing
- Proportional comparative fault
Pure Comparative Negligence in California
Because California follows a rule of pure comparative negligence, you are able to recover compensation for your damages even if you were as much as 99% at fault for an accident. As long as you can prove that another person or party shared some degree of liability, you can file a car accident claim. However, your total recovery will be reduced by whatever percentage of fault you are determined to have.
How Bral & Associates Can Help
Our practice is centered on helping innocent victims hold negligent parties accountable. When a fellow motorist or some other party acts carelessly, recklessly, or outside of the law, you have the right to seek financial compensation for your losses, including medical bills, lost wages, future lost earnings, pain and suffering, emotional distress, and more. But filing a personal injury claim can be difficult, complicated, and time-consuming. Our attorneys are here to guide you through the process and handle the legal aspects of your case so that you can focus on your physical recovery.
At Bral & Associates, we know that no two situations are exactly alike. We prioritize personalized legal services tailored to each client’s unique circumstances. We will take the time to listen to your story and really understand your goals before devising an individual legal strategy aimed at achieving the best possible outcome and maximizing your recovery.
Contact Our Los Angeles Firm for a Free Consultation
If you or someone you love was involved in a car accident, contact the Los Angeles car accident lawyers at Bral & Associates right away to get started with a free consultation. We are available to meet with you at any time of day, any day of the week, including weekends. Get in touch with us right away to learn how our firm can fight for you.
Call our office at (855) 951-2215 or contact us online now!
I don't know where I would be if had not chosen you guys.- Chelsea C.
I hope I don't get hurt again but I would choose them again if I do.- Marcus M.
Their knowledge of the law will assure you "The Winning of Your Case."- A. E.
I trust him 100%.- Joel R.
My go-to lawyers from this point forward.- Anthony R.
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