Why Hire A Lawyer For A Car Accident?
Hiring a car accident lawyer is critical! If you have been in a vehicle collision, it is important to speak to a West Hollywood Car Accident Lawyer as soon as possible so that you know your rights. The legal consequences for a car accident is dependent on the facts. The driver might only get a ticket citation for violating the West Hollywood traffic laws and causing the accident. But in order to recover money for the damages caused by the accident, you will have to file a civil lawsuit against the driver. The plaintiff suing to recover monetary damages must prove the defendant was liable for causing the accident.
The legal cause of action for a West Hollywood car accident is negligence. Contact a personal injury lawyer at The Sterling Firm if you or your loved one was involved in a car accident while traveling around WeHo. We will investigate your car accident and get you the money you need to put in a position before the accident.
Who is at Fault in a Car Accident
Negligence is the legal theory to pursue if you were in a car accident in WeHo. Negligence is the legal cause of action to hold a driver responsible for operating a motor vehicle in a careless or reckless manner and causing an accident. In California, the driver of a vehicle has a duty to protect pedestrians, passengers, and other drivers while operating a motor vehicle. The duty requires the driver to act as every other reasonably prudent driver and not cause an accident while driving.
Duty of a Driver in California
A driver must be reasonably careful to not cause a car accident. This includes:
- Not speeding
- Not driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Pay attention to pedestrians, other vehicles, and road hazards
- Maintain the vehicle in a safe and working order
How to Prove Negligence in a West Hollywood Car Accident
The plaintiff bears the burden to prove negligence by a preponderance of the evidence. The plaintiff must prove that it is more likely than not that:
- The defendant had a duty to act as a reasonably prudent California driver in the same or similar circumstances and not cause harm;
- The defendant breached its duty by causing the car accident;
- The car accident was the proximate cause of the plaintiff’s injuries; and
- The plaintiff in fact suffered damages for which it is entitled to recover compensation.
Car Accident Damages
An injured plaintiff is entitled to monetary compensation for the damages suffered in the car accident. A car accident lawyer will fight to get you the maximum compensation. Damages include:
- Past, current and future medical bills for the injuries related to the car accident;
- Property damage to the car; and
- Lost wages or earning capacity
What To Do After A Car Accident
Here is a checklist of things to do immediately after a car accident:
- Stay and do not leave the scene of the accident until the police arrive and tell you it is okay to leave.
- Check to see if everyone involved in the accident is safe, including all drivers, passengers, and pedestrians.
- Call the police to the scene immediately!
- Get the contact information of all drivers and any witnesses, including a photo of drivers licenses, identifications, insurance information, addresses and phone numbers, and any other additional information as possible.
- Take as many pictures as possible of the scene, vehicle damage, and injuries.
- Seek medical attention, call an ambulance, go to the emergency room, or go to your primary doctor or urgent care as soon as possible (the longer you wait to get medical attention, the more likely the opposing insurance company will allege your are not seriously injured).
- Inform the other driver’s insurance company and your own insurance company that you were in an accident.
- Get a valuation of all property damage from an automobile body shop.
- Do not discuss the facts of the incident with the other party, their insurance company or their lawyer (they will only use this information against you!).
- Do not accept any settlement offers right away immediately after the accident without consulting an attorney. This will be a “low-ball offer” just to “make you go away”! This is a tactic insurance companies use to save money and avoid lawsuits. The settlement may not be fair and cover all your damages and the compensation you are entitled to recover. Once you accept a settlement offer, you release your right to file a lawsuit and obtain additional compensation. You may be stuck paying for medical bills and other costs that you did not realize you would have.
- Hire a car accident lawyer as soon as possible!
Why Do I Need A West Hollywood Car Accident Lawyer?
Regardless of who is at fault, car accidents result in injuries and property damage. You are entitled to monetary compensation for your harm and losses. Obviously, the other party and their insurance company do not want to pay you any money for your damages. They have lawyers that will make it very difficult for you to pay your medical bills or auto repair costs. You need your own lawyer to fight for your rights!
If you’ve been in a car accident in West Hollywood, contact The Sterling Firm to speak with a West Hollywood Car Accident Lawyer. We will fight the insurance company and negotiate for the maximum compensation!