Drivers in Los Angeles and the surrounding Southern California area are no stranger to car accidents. From congested city streets to major freeways like the I-5, I-10, and I-110, crashes bring traffic to a standstill every day.
Some of these accidents are relatively minor. Others, however, can turn the victims’ lives upside down.
If you have been injured in a car accident, experienced personal injury attorney Kate Harvey-Lee can help. California Truck Law has extensive experience serving clients in auto accident claims, and we can pursue full and fair compensation on your behalf.
Please call (213) 214-1234 today for a free review of your case. Our Los Angeles car accident lawyer serves clients throughout Greater L.A. and nearby areas of California.
Is It Worth Getting a Lawyer for a Car Accident?
Car accident victims are often unsure how to proceed after a crash. Two of the biggest points of uncertainty are: (1). Do I need to seek medical attention? and (2). Should I hire an attorney?
Generally, the answer to both of these questions is “Yes.” You should go to the emergency room as soon as possible after the accident – even if paramedics treat and release you at the scene. Emergency rooms have the equipment and resources to perform a more thorough evaluation, and doctors in an E.R. setting can provide more comprehensive care.
Your health should be your first priority after a car accident. The next important step is protecting your legal rights.
If you or a loved one sustained serious personal injury in a car accident, it is in your best interest to talk to a lawyer ASAP.
Common Causes of Car Accidents in Los Angeles
Heavy traffic is a daily part of life in Los Angeles and the entire Southern California area. It is impossible to know exactly what the driver of another vehicle is thinking or doing behind the wheel. With this in mind, it is in every driver’s best interest to stay alert, drive defensively, wear a seatbelt, and take other steps to make every trip collision-free.
Unfortunately, your best efforts to stay safe on the road can be undermined by the careless actions of another driver. Some of the most common causes of car accidents we see in and around Los Angeles and the entire Southern California region include:
- Distracted driving: One of the leading causes of distracted driving is cell phone use, especially texting. However, other activities – such as talking on the phone, eating, drinking, talking to passengers, and playing the radio loud – can also distract drivers and increase the risk of a car accident. Another potential distraction is looking away from the road at an accident site (rubbernecking), which can in turn lead to a separate collision.
- Speeding: Driving faster than the speed limit reduces control of the vehicle and makes it more difficult to stop. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, excess speed is a factor in more than one-quarter of vehicle accident fatalities.
- Reckless driving: Speeding and distracted driving are not the only careless acts a driver may commit behind the wheel. Reckless driving can take a variety of different forms, from failure to look over the shoulder when changing lanes to ignoring traffic signals, other vehicles, and pedestrians when navigating an intersection.
- Aggressive driving: Also known as road rage, aggressive behavior behind the wheel can end in tragedy. Aggressive drivers may weave in and out of traffic, tailgate other vehicles, or (in the most extreme cases) try to run another driver off the road.
- Driving while fatigued: Drowsy or fatigued driving is a commonly overlooked factor in car accidents. Lack of sleep has similar effects to alcohol use. Tired drivers have increased reaction times, poor judgment, and may even fall asleep at the wheel and cause an accident..
- Drunk and impaired driving: Abusing alcohol and drugs before getting behind the wheel is a serious offense. In addition to the criminal charges that can stem from drunk driving, impaired drivers may be liable for damages stemming from accidents they cause.
The cause of some accidents is relatively easy to determine. However, not all accidents are so cut-and-dried, and even police reports can sometimes miss critical causes of a car wreck. Thorough investigation of the crash may show that the negligence or wrongdoing of more than one party was a factor. There may be causes involving the roadway design or a mechanical failure of a vehicle.
For example, in accidents involving tractor-trailers, company records may reveal that the driver was unqualified and/or that the truck was improperly maintained. If this is the case, the trucking company and other third parties may be responsible.
At California Truck Law, our car accident attorney carefully collects all relevant evidence and closely examines all of the facts to determine how the crash occurred and who is at fault. Establishing these key aspects of your claim is crucial for recovering full and fair compensation.
Common Injuries in Car Accidents
Multiple factors contribute to the seriousness of an accident. Speed, the angle of impact, the difference in size and weight between the vehicles, and many other elements can affect the damage to the car and the harm suffered by the occupants.
Potential injuries in a car accident include:
- Traumatic brain injury
- Spinal cord injury
- Bone fractures
- Lacerations resulting in blood loss
- Internal bleeding and organ damage
- Amputation injuries
If you suffer any of these injuries in a car wreck, you should receive medical attention as soon as possible. After getting the treatment you need, you should contact a car accident attorney promptly.
Most accident victims are unaware of how serious their injuries may be and the long-term effects they may face. You do not want to forgo medical care and run the risk of serious complications. You also don’t want to settle for less than your case is worth.
Car Accident Compensation
The damages you may be able to recover after a car accident are contingent on the specific losses you incur. A car accident lawyer can assess the evidence to determine how much compensation you may be entitled to in your case.
You may be able to recover compensation for the following losses in a car accident claim:
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Loss of earning capacity
- Medical-related travel, home and vehicle modifications, assistive devices, and other expenses you pay out of pocket
- Pain and suffering
- Disfigurement and scarring
- Loss of enjoyment of life
If your loved one died in an auto accident, you and your family may be entitled to compensation in a wrongful death claim. Wrongful death damages may include:
- Funeral and burial expenses
- Loss of economic support, including anticipated income, benefits, etc., as well as the value of the household services and support supplied by your loved one
- Medical expenses for treatment provided prior to death
- Loss of the love, care, comfort, society, companionship, guidance, and emotional support of your loved one
Punitive damages may also be awarded in personal injury and wrongful death claims involving car accidents. These damages do not compensate you directly for your losses. Instead, the court has the discretion to award punitive damages in cases where the defendant’s actions are deemed egregious or in reckless disregard of the safety of others.
Contact a Los Angeles Car Accident Attorney Today
Attorney Kate Harvey-Lee has extensive experience serving the victims of vehicle accidents. Whether you were injured in a collision with another car, a semi-truck, or any other type of vehicle, our car accident lawyer can build a strong case on your behalf and pursue full and fair compensation for your injuries and losses.
Ms. Harvey-Lee has been designated as a SuperLawyer® Rising Star since 2005 and as a SuperLawyer® since 2014. She has been named to The Best Lawyers in America® since 2013, and is featured in the Top 100 Trial Lawyers list released by National Trial Lawyers. When you choose California Truck Law, you will have an attorney on your side who is compassionate, professional, and committed to providing the highest quality of legal service.
Please call California Truck Law at (213) 214-1234 today for a complimentary case evaluation. Our car accident lawyer serves clients throughout California, including Los Angeles and all of Southern California.