According to statistics from the Office of Traffic Safety, Encinitas saw 274 people injured or killed in car accidents in 2016. Car accidents are an unfortunate reality on our roads, leaving behind wrecked vehicles and injured motorists.
If you’ve been in an accident, you probably are curious about what kind of compensation you can receive. At our firm, an Encinitas car accident attorney can meet with injured motorists just like you to pursue compensation from the driver at fault for the collision.
Causes of Car Accidents
Many car accidents are caused by driver error—mistakes that happen because a driver is either careless or because he takes unacceptable risks. For example, we see accidents caused by:
When a driver is careless or reckless, he can be held legally responsible for the accident. In other words, the driver is “at fault,” and injured victims can receive compensation for their injuries.
In other circumstances, a car accident might be caused by a dangerous road, such as a gigantic pothole, uneven pavement, or construction debris. In these situations, the entity responsible for the road is to blame, which is usually the government or, if the accident happened in a parking lot, the owner of the parking lot.
Finally, a defect in the vehicle sometimes causes a crash. For example, brakes might fail, which makes the vehicle unmanageable. When defects cause accidents, the manufacturer and others can be held liable.
Compensation for a Car Accident
Car accidents are traumatic events that can cause fractures, cuts or lacerations, burns, back injuries, and traumatic brain injuries. These injuries often require thousands of dollars to treat, and many victims can end up missing work and losing out on needed income.
Fortunately, you can make a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company. Our Encinitas car accident attorney can pursue compensation to cover your losses, such as:
- Medical expenses to treat your injuries, including ambulance costs, surgery, doctor visits, rehabilitation, therapy, and prescription drugs.
- Lost income, if your injuries kept you out of work.
- Damage to your vehicle. Your car might need repairs or be replaced.
- Pain and suffering, including the physical and mental pain from the accident, reduction in the quality of life, and depression.
It is hard to estimate how much your injuries might be worth since there is no “average” settlement that most people can expect to receive. Instead, meet with an experienced Encinitas car accident attorney who can review your situation and use their experience to identify how much compensation might be available.
Sometimes, you might have contributed to your accident by making a mistake of your own. For example, someone might have been speeding through an intersection, but you didn’t use your turn signal before making a left-hand turn. Or someone was speeding but you moved to pass and didn’t check your mirrors, so you ended up pulling directly in front of them.
In these types of cases, you can’t really say you are 100% blameless. Instead, your own actions have contributed to both the accident and your injuries. In legal language, we would say your contributory negligence was a factor in the crash.
Fortunately, California law allows you to bring a claim for compensation so long as someone else was at least 1% responsible for your injuries. This is often the case. So long as you can point to some error another driver made, then you should be able to bring a claim.
One downside is that the amount of compensation you receive will be reduced by your proportion of fault. So if you were 50% responsible for the accident and your injuries were worth $80,000, then you would only receive $40,000. If you were 75% responsible for the same accident, then you would receive $20,000.
Speak with an Encinitas Car Accident Attorney Today
Car accidents cause a lot of damage on our roads, and those injured should take necessary steps to protect their rights. At El Dabe Ritter Trial Lawyers, we have aggressively represented countless clients in car accident cases, and our results are impressive. If you need legal representation, please call us as soon as possible.
We offer a free consultation to those who reach out. California law restricts your ability to bring a lawsuit if you wait too long, so please do not delay.