What You Need To Know About Personal Injury Claims in California
I am proud to serve as a Personal Injury attorney because it allows me to help people who have been the victim of negligence recover damages due to them for a personal injury. Helping individuals and families recover and move on with their lives is a passion of mine.
There are certain things you should know about personal injury claims in California, which is the focus of this week’s blog. Please call my office to discuss your claim. In the meantime, I offer the following information about how fault is established in an injury claim and the steps you should take to help your case and protect your rights.
Establishing Fault in Personal Injury Cases
Most accidents are the result of carelessness, and legal liability is generally determined based on whether someone or some entity was careless or “negligent” in such a way as to cause injury: Consider the following examples:
- If a someone causes an accident while working for someone else, the employer may also be legally responsible for the accident;
- If an accident occurs on property that is poorly maintained or dangerous, the owner of the property may be held liable even if they did not create the original property problems. They have a responsibility to maintain property in a safe condition.
- If an accident is caused by a defective product, the manufacturer and seller of the product are most likely both liable, even if the victim is unsure which entity was negligent in creating or allowing the product to be used;
- If a personal injury victim is where he or she was not supposed to be, or in a location where the chance of injury was known, the person who caused the accident may not be held legally responsible.
- If a personal injury victim was also careless or negligent, this may reduce the amount of compensation by the extent that such negligence was responsible for the accident. This is known as “comparative negligence.”
First Steps After an Injury
If you are the victim of carelessness or negligence that results in an injury, there are some important things to remember as your first course of action:
- Document as much as possible details of the injury and what caused it. This might include where you were, what you were doing, who else was present, what conditions existed at the time of the accident, what you saw and felt, etc. The more information you can document, the better. Also, the sooner you can document details the more you are likely to remember and the more accurate your description will be.
- In the days following your injury, document details about any pain or discomfort you are feeling and any medical treatments you received. Be sure to include details on any pain and discomfort, sleep loss, impacts to employment and any other problems you have experienced due to the injury.
- Document any economic impacts you have experienced due to the injury such as any time missed from work, social and/or education opportunities missed.
- Document any conversations you have had regarding the incident. This could include conversations with witnesses, conversations with your insurance provider and medical staff.
- You may want to return to the scene to take photographs to help document location and any mitigating factors.
How Much Is My Personal Injury Case Worth?
There are a variety of compensatory damages available to victims of personal injury that is caused by the carelessness or negligence of others. Some of the most common types of compensation include:
- Medical treatment – for care received and future costs of treatment associated with the injury.
- Income – for loss of wages due to the accident.
- Property loss – for vehicles, clothing or other items damaged as a result of the accident.
- Pain & suffering – for pain and serious discomfort associated with the accident.
My office can help you determine who was at fault for your injury and whether compensatory damages are available. Please contact my office today if you have been the victim of a personal injury due to the negligence of others.
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