HUNTINGTON BEACH CAR ACCIDENT LAWYER
A data by the State-Wide Integrated Traffic Reports System (SWITRS) mentions two dangerous streets of Huntington Beach, Orange County, that are prone to car accidents. Beach Blvd Street reported 3752 car accidents in 4 years, from 2015 to 2019, and Edinger Avenue reported 1346 accidents. Both streets are located by a bustling shopping market and experience heavy traffic daily.
Car accidents happen every so often in Huntington Beach city. Finding yourself injured in a car accident can be overwhelming, and you may not know what to do next. A car accident personal injury lawyer works to investigate the accident, determine faults, and gather evidence to help you claim a deserving amount of compensation from the defendant’s insurance company. In California, the success rate of a fair settlement for car accidents is 61%, according to data provided by the US Bureau of Justice Statistics.
This blog post will walk you through everything you need to know about what to do after being involved in a car accident and the role of a car accident lawyer.
Do I Need a Lawyer for a Car Accident Claim in Huntington Beach?
Having an accident attorney to guide you through your injury case can be rewarding in many ways. You may not be familiar with everything that goes into a personal injury case. Insurance companies do not miss the chance to take advantage of your naivety. They may implicitly present policies to put you in a position to believe them and offer you much less than you deserve.
A car accident lawyer has years of experience in handling similar cases. We suggest consulting with one as soon as you have received medical treatment for your injury. They will review your case by analyzing the accident and your injuries to conclude whether you can pursue your injury case independently or if you need to hire a lawyer. When independently representing yourself, you still need to have a professional car accident lawyer in the loop with every conversation with the insurance company. They will review it and help you prevent any errors or misunderstandings from happening. While if your case requires legal assistance in representation, your lawyer will educate you on your legal rights, do all the paperwork for you, gather evidence, investigate, negotiate with insurance companies and represent you in court if necessary.
What to Do After a Car Accident in Huntington Beach?
- At the scene of the accident.
If you sustained mild injuries that still allow you to get up and walk around, there are certain things you can do that will benefit you later while filing the personal injury claim. First, you can click pictures of the accident on your phone to show the damage. Second, get contacts of the people gathered around. If they saw the accident, they are the witnesses, and their testimony will back your case.
- Seek medical treatment.
If you attained a severe injury in the accident needing emergency attention, paramedics may have been called, and your treatment may have already started. If you can still get up but suffer physical pain or bleeding, you can call 911 for an ambulance or ask someone else to do it. If the injury is milder, check it with a doctor immediately or as soon as possible. If you do not feel any pain, it is still important to go for a routine check-up to prevent any injuries from showing up in the future. Seeking medical treatment is the first and most important step when you are involved in an accident.
Your doctor will prepare a medical report and write a doctor’s note that defines and describes your injuries and the treatment you are receiving. These are important and concrete evidence that your lawyer will properly document to show to the insurance company or court.
- Call authorities to report the accident.
In Huntington Beach City, CA, an accident that involves an injury must be reported within 24 hours to the police or the California Highway Patrol (CHP) according to the Vehicle Code CVC § 20008. Similarly, it should be reported to the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) within 5 days per the Vehicle Code CVC § 16000.
If paramedics appeared at the scene of the accident, that means 911 was called, and the accident has been reported. It comes under the responsibility of any witnesses or physically able party to call the authorities. If you were directly taken to the hospital, we recommend reporting the accident after your injuries are cared for to ensure that the report has been made. All reports are vital pieces of evidence of the accident.
- Consult/hire a car accident lawyer.
After the medical treatment, the defendant’s insurance company will start swarming you with calls and emails. If they haven’t reached out yet, you will eventually have to call them to claim your personal injury. At this point, if you say one thing wrong or unclear, they may hold it against you later to put you down in the case.
It is extremely important to consult with a Huntington Beach car accident lawyer before your first conversation with the insurance company. A lawyer will examine your case and injuries to help you understand the situation, your legal rights, and the insurance policies associated with your situation. They will then help you determine a fair and deserving claim for the injuries you sustained. They will also help you decide whether you need an attorney’s representation or you can proceed with the case independently.
A lawyer will help gather evidence and bring in experts to assess your situation to build a stronger case. They will investigate the accident; if multiple parties were involved, they will determine the faults based on California’s pure comparative negligence rule. They will then conduct all the required paperwork and documentation and take it to the insurance company for negotiation.
Common Causes of Car Accidents in Huntington Beach
Huntington Beach experiences many causes of accidents. We often observe accidents caused by speeding or intoxicated driving on the freeway around and to the city. At the same time, busy traffic areas are prone to collisions. Here is a list of the most common causes of car accidents:
- Over speeding
- Under speeding
- Head-on collision
- Rear-end collision
- Texting while driving
- Distracted driving
- Drunk driving
- Intoxicated driving
- Driving under prescription
- Sleeplessness, tiredness, and fatigue
What Are Common Car Accident Injuries in Huntington Beach, CA?
The severity of an accidental injury depends on the impact force, the weight of the vehicle, and the driver/passenger’s position. We have listed down some of the most common car accident injuries that we have witnessed and worked with in the past:
- Head injuries
- Brain injuries or brain damage
- Whiplash injuries
- Injury to the shoulder
- Broken bones
- Spinal injuries
- Internal injuries
How Might a Lawyer Be Able to Assist You?
By now, you may have understood that you must consider reaching out to a car accident lawyer if you were involved or injured in an auto accident. Let us explain how a personal injury attorney can help in every stage of your case.
Collect and Analyze Evidence
Along with the medical and police reports, you need more evidence to support your claim. A car accident lawyer will help you access nearby CCTV footage that may have captured the accident. They will contact the witnesses and take their testimony without missing any important detail during the questioning or interviews. They will also bring in accident experts or road engineers to evaluate the footage, the damage or the injuries to have a professional opinion on what may have caused the accident.
With all the evidence, they will now analyze the facts to understand how the accident really happened and what caused your injuries. This will also help determine the fault sharing.
On average, an individual has to deal with a personal injury case one or two times in life. There may never have been a reason to learn about the laws or policies. Suddenly, the pressure to grasp several laws and policies after a car accident can be overwhelming.
Your attorney is responsible for educating you about your legal rights and what you deserve based on your injury and the accident. They will run down everything you deserve by the law after being injured by someone else’s fault. They will communicate how the insurance company determines the amount so you can identify whether it has been determined correctly or not. They will also brief you on everything you need to expect as you proceed and give you a heads-up on what the state may grant you based on the evidence.
Insurance companies are expert negotiators who have been doing it for years. They have their rhetorics all figured out and can easily understand your weak points to take advantage of. Often, victims fall for their traps and go home with an unfair settlement agreement.
A Huntington Beach car accident lawyer, CA, will talk with the insurance company and identify when they wrongly determine your settlement amount. They do this multiple times a day and have the expertise to stand up and fight for fair compensation based on what you deserve.
Let’s say they offer compensation of $20,000 for your car accident. It might seem like a lot, and you may happily accept it. But in reality, based on the type of accident, the level of guilt of the at-fault party, and the severity of your injury, your injury compensation amounts to $100,000.
An accident lawyer will help you maximize the amount. They will leave no loopholes for the insurance company to poke into and ensure that the determination has been done correctly, catering to your legal rights.
Handle Insurance Companies
Your accident attorney will handle everything with the insurance companies, from paperwork to phone calls. They will fill out all the necessary documents on your behalf to prevent any mistakes. They will also do all the talking via phone, email, or in-person meetings with them to avoid any form of miscommunication.
Suggest Next Steps
It is the responsibility of a car accident lawyer to guide you through everything to come in your injury case. As all evidence has been gathered, they will brief you on the settlement and negotiation process and possible outcomes. If the negotiation is unsatisfactory, they will suggest your options, whether you want to settle the case or proceed by filing a lawsuit. They have your best interest in mind and advise what benefits you. If they feel filing a lawsuit is feasible and will help you gain more, they will suggest it accordingly. But if there is less hope of increasing the compensation based on the evidence at hand, they may also suggest concluding the case.
How Much is Car Accident Case Worth / Compensation For Accident Victim?
Economic damages are compensation for direct expenses that resulted from the accident, and you had to cover them out of your pocket. It includes medical bills, medication payments, physical therapy, lost wages, property repair costs, etc. The defendant’s insurance company is required to compensate you for the economic damages you suffered based on the division of fault.
Non-economic damages refer to the priceless and immeasurable loss that the accident caused you, like pain, suffering, temporary or permanent withholdment of physical needs, degradation of the quality of life, etc. These losses cannot amount to a certain price. But as per the law, they are balanced out by extra compensation instead.
To calculate the non-economic damage, the price of the economic damage compensation is multiplied by a number between 1.5 and 5; more loss results in a higher multiplication number. For example, if your economic damage amounts to $10,000 for a whiplash injury. The multiplication number may be more for severe or long-lasting injuries. Let’s say it is 3 in this example. Then, your non-economic damages will amount to $10,000 by 3, equal to $30,000.
Punitive damage compensation is more of a punishment than a replacement for a certain type of loss. If the defendant is guilty of intentional tort, i.e., they intended to hurt someone, or they chose to be negligent and disregarded your safety in a preventable situation, the court charges them with punitive damage compensation. It depends on the level or scale of the tort or negligence.
How to Handle Uninsured and Underinsured Motorists in Huntington Beach, California?
It is considered a traffic offense to drive a car without insurance. According to California’s ‘No pay no play’ law, uninsured drivers are not eligible for non-economic damage compensation from a personal injury car accident.
If your defendant is uninsured or underinsured, there is no different approach on your end. You are still liable and deserving of compensation for your sufferings. If the defendant has no insurance, they must pay the amount out of their pocket, which can financially strain them.
Contact Top-Rated Car Accident Lawyer Near Me
The most important step after you have been in a car accident in Huntington Beach City is to contact a car accident lawyer. At Nordean Law, we have expert car accident lawyers who have stood up for injury victims for years. We believe everyone deserves a fair settlement after suffering from someone else’s fault. We are a team of aggressive lawyers with access to extensive resources and connections to experts in different fields to build a stronger and overpowering case.
If you were involved or injured in a car accident at Huntington Beach, we will give in our fullest to agree upon a fair compensation amount. If you have experience being a victim of an insurance company’s unfair tactics, we will ensure you are held accountable and receive the justice you deserve.
While the state allows you to represent yourself independently for a personal injury claim, not consulting with an attorney would be a mistake. You may fall into the persuading traps of professional insurance companies, obligating you to agree upon an amount much lesser than what you deserve. When you work with a Huntington Beach car accident lawyer, they treat your case as their own. Therefore, it is their duty to get you out of the unfortunate situation with fair compensation. From reviewing your case, educating you about your rights, helping you gather evidence and negotiating with the defendant’s insurance company, you will be assured your case is in good hands. Contact us today for a free consultation.
FAQs About Car Accidents In Huntington Beach, CA
What is the average settlement for a car accident in California?
How much do accident lawyers charge in California?
What Happens When There Is No Settlement Agreement?
What if The Accident was Partly My Fault?
What Should I Do Immediately Following a Car Accident?
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