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Before selecting the best car accident attorney in San Diego to handle your claim, consider the following:
Statistics indicate that the average driver will be involved in three or four auto accidents during his or her lifetime. Nearly 30 percent of all crashes nationwide result in at least one injury or fatality. As such, the odds suggest that every motorist will eventually be involved in a collision. It’s also possible that a motorist will be injured in such an incident. Most people do not plan for such a circumstance and need to hire a competent San Diego auto accident attorney to help them navigate the process.
As such the best way to protect yourself aside from driving responsibly and maintaining proper insurance coverage, is to contact an accident lawyer near you immediately after a crash. Gomez Trial Attorneys is a team of lawyers that has been fighting for injured clients successfully for more than a decade.
Below is an overview of the issues relating to San Diego car accidents. If you have been harmed by an at fault driver, contact an attorney from Gomez Trial Attorneys to schedule a free consultation as soon as possible.
According to the California Office of Traffic Safety, more than 19,000 San Diego traffic accidents occurred in 2014 that resulted in at least one injury or fatality. This total includes car wrecks involving all types of vehicles, including pedestrians. Specifically, the following number of injuries and fatal crashes occurred across the county during that calendar year:
More than 22 percent of these crashes were speed-related in nature. More than 11 percent of these accidents involved alcohol. What this all means is that every year, thousands of people are wrongfully injured in San Diego car accidents. These people all need help in some way whether it’s paying medical bills or recovering lost wages due to being absent at work caused by the accident. The accident injury lawyers at Gomez Trial Attorneys can help and have done so over the years for countless injured clients by getting them the compensation they deserve.
Every part of the body is vulnerable in an auto accident. While lives are saved and injuries are minimized when people wear seatbelts, our accident injury attorneys have represented clients with a variety or different ailments. However, some car accident injuries tend to be more common than others. Examples of these common injuries include:
There are other types of auto accident injuries that can have long term effects on car accident victims. These injuries are emotional/psychological in nature. Every type of injury that is inflicted on a person by a negligent or reckless driver should be included in any pursuit of a financial recovery. Our car accident lawyers at Gomez Trial Attorneys will fully understand how to quantify your pain and suffering from a crash.
Yes. California Vehicle Codes require that you report all accidents with injuries or fatalities. Contact the local police department if you’re in an accident in San Diego. If your accident occurs on the highway, you must report it to the California Highway Patrol. If an SDPD or CHP officer does not come to the scene to take your report, you must still comply with these reporting responsibilities:
If you have been injured in a car accident, the first thing you should do immediately after your car accident is move yourself into a safe position, preferably to the side of the road. As you wait for the police to arrive, you should avoid discussing the specifics of the accident with the other party. Doing so could harm your position later as you attempt to recover damages. If you feel it’s appropriate, simply exchange contact and insurance information with the other motorist.
When the police arrive, provide your identification, insurance information and registration to the officer. Provide a factual description of how you saw the accident unfold. It’s likely that the police officer will record the names of witnesses, but once again you should not assume that this is occurring. Take names down yourself as you may need them later. Finally, get the name of the police officer who has reported to the scene.
The first place you should go after your automobile accident is to the nearest medical facility in order to obtain a full evaluation. Even if you do not feel as though you are seriously injured, you should always take this step because there are many serious injuries that can occur that do not immediately present themselves. You will also need a record of your injuries later in the recovery process.
Finally, contact an experienced auto accident attorney to assist you with opening a personal injury claim with your insurance company. Remember, you should not speak to any insurance adjuster or sign any settlement offers from insurance companies, particularly those that represent the other driver. Instead, contact an experienced auto accident attorney who understands how to deal with insurance companies. Doing so will help you avoid making mistakes and focus on your medical treatment from what was a traumatic experience.
Many auto accidents are not clear-cut in terms of who is at fault and who is not. With some crashes, both parties are partially at fault; however, you still need to protect your legal rights. You should hire a car accident lawyer to help you determine who is considered at fault for the auto accident.
California law explicitly accounts for this type of a situation by way of a legal doctrine known as comparative negligence, or comparative fault. California is a “pure” comparative negligence jurisdiction. This means a plaintiff that files a California personal injury lawsuit against a driver can recover damages even if he or she was more than 50 percent at fault.
For instance, if a car accident causes the plaintiff to suffer $100,000 in damages, he or she can still file the lawsuit even if that motorist is deemed to have been 55 percent at fault. If the plaintiff’s claim is successful, he or she will have that recovery reduced by the amount of fault assigned to that party. In this case, the successful plaintiff would recover $45,000. Therefore, you should still contact car accident attorney at Gomez Trial Attorneys after a crash even if you’re not sure who caused it.
According to the Insurance Information Institute, an estimated 15 percent of motorists in California may not carry auto insurance. Further, some drivers carry minimum coverage that may not be sufficient to compensate you fully for your injuries. Therefore, it is possible that you may be injured in a car accident by someone who does not have coverage or has insufficient insurance coverage. This is why it is very important to purchase uninsured motorist coverage as part of your own insurance policy. In the event you are injured in an auto accident and the at fault driver has inadequate insurance coverage, you would be able to pursue a personal injury claim against your own insurance company.
San Diego is the perfect place to live, work, and play. The weather is sunny and warm, and the coast is a beautiful backdrop for the city’s arts, entertainment, and outdoor fun. Even the freeways are scenic and a pleasure to navigate, unless a morning rush-hour accident takes you by surprise.
Traffic jams, accidents, and injuries are an everyday fact of life in San Diego. The California Office of Traffic Safety recorded 9,476 accident-related injuries and deaths in San Diego during 2016. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) data shows that 231 fatalities took place in San Diego County during 2017.
If you or a family member was injured in one of the city’s many recent auto accidents, our car accident attorneys can help you understand your legal rights. In the meantime, we’ve prepared this FAQ to provide you with some important information.
Yes. You should report your claim to your insurance agent or company for several reasons.
Uninsured motorist (UM) coverage pays your injury claim when the driver who caused your injury doesn’t have liability insurance. Underinsured motorist (UIM) coverage pays when the other driver has liability coverage, but his or her coverage is less than the amount necessary to compensate you for your harm.
UM and UIM coverages are not mandatory in California, but an insurance company must offer them to you. If you do not want UM or UIM coverage, you must sign a waiver.
Auto policies generally include a broad uninsured driver definition:
When you make an UM or UIM claim, your insurance carrier fills the liability insurer’s role. The claim department investigates the accident, analyzes the liability, evaluates your injuries, and settles your claim. Just as you would with the other driver’s liability carrier, you must provide documentation for your injuries and negotiate your injury claim. You must also cooperate with your insurer and provide whatever documentation it requests.
Yes. Consult a personal injury lawyer who has experience handling car accident cases, especially:
When a driver leaves the accident scene without providing his or her personal and insurance information, it’s a crime under California Vehicle Codes. The court prosecutes hit-and-run drivers and penalizes them with fines and/or imprisonment. If the accident involves injuries, the penalties are harsher. When a hit-and-run driver injures you, you may file a liability claim against your own insurance company if you have uninsured motorist coverage.
Any driver involved in an accident must provide identification and insurance information when you request it. If you neglect to obtain the information at the accident scene, the Department of Motor Vehicles provides verification when you send in a Financial Responsibility Request Form.
Do one of the following:
Of course, if you’re recovering from serious injuries, the last thing you need to do is deal with paperwork. These are things your car accident lawyer can do for you.
Yes. California Vehicle Codes require that you report all accidents with injuries or fatalities. Contact the local police department if you’re in an accident in San Diego. If your accident occurs on the highway, you must report it to the California Highway Patrol. If an SDPD or CHP officer doesn’t come to the scene to take your report, you must still comply with these reporting responsibilities:
For property damage-only accidents:
With an estimated population of about 1.5 million people, San Diego is the second-largest city in California and the eighth-largest city in America. The California Department of Motor Vehicles estimates that as of December 2018, 2,992,754 cars, trucks, trailers, and motorcycles were registered in San Diego County. Traffic problems are a natural consequence of so many residents with so many vehicles.
Accidents occur for many reasons. Triggering events the NHTSA calls risky driving behaviors caused or contributed to the serious crashes that injured or killed 9,476 people.
Yes. Consult a lawyer for your car accident who has experience handling car accident cases, especially:
Gomez Trial Attorneys were voted the #1 personal injury attorneys in San Diego. We examine every case before we take it on, and we work to quantify the amount of damages that should be recovered. Once we have determined the range of damages that should be recovered, our attorneys derive a plan to aggressively obtain the recovery of those damages. If we can recover by way of a settlement that’s in the best interest of our client, we will do so. However, if we need to proceed to trial to protect the rights of our clients, we will not hesitate to do so. Contact the car accident lawyers at Gomez Trial Attorneys to schedule a free initial consultation if you have been injured in a crash. Injured in an accident? Get a real trial lawyer. Get Gomez.
We also serve all of San Diego County: Del Mar, Chula vista, Coronado, El Cajon, Escondido, Imperial Beach, Lemon Grove, National City, Oceanside, Poway, Oceanside, San Marcos, Solana Beach, and Vista.
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
“This is the best law firm in San Diego for a reason. I was lucky to have my case picked up by the Gomez Trial Attorneys after I was struck by a car while crossing the street. This was an unexplainably painful time in my life, and, as a 22 year old college student, I did not know what to do. I met Max Halpern, who is the lawyer that represented my case, a week later. Even though I did not know at the time, I could not have been in better hands.
I kept on with my studies, daily life, and physical and mental recovery as Max silently worked hard at my case. All though out my experience, Max kept in constant contact, updating and informing me of everything I needed to know. then one day it was over and Max had won big.
I do not know if it is appropriate to share details of a settlement but I will say that this team took the ugliest, hardest, most painful experience of my life and turned it into something boundlessly positive.
I believe my life is better now for having been represented by Gomez Trial Attorneys and I will walk away from this chapter of my life forever grateful. These people are the living definition of excellence.”
Review by: Bubba E.
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