Car Accident Attorney
Southern California is known for its heavy traffic. Tens of thousands of people are killed in car accidents in this region every year. Car crashes have become such a common occurrence that nobody blinks an eye when one happens. Our Sherman Oaks car accident attorney is here to help you or a loved one that has been involved in a car accident.
However, car accidents can be catastrophic. Those who survive often see their lives turned upside down for a long time. They may amass hundreds of thousands of dollars in medical bills. They may be unable to work for a long time. Some suffer long-term or even lifelong injuries such as amputations, paralysis, mobility issues, and more.
Car accidents can be complex. Don’t trust your insurance company to take care of you. Lowball offers are common. Instead, seek legal help from the trusted Sherman Oaks car accident attorneys at Oaks Law Firm. You shouldn’t have to suffer due to someone else’s negligent behavior. We’ll help make things right so you can recover and move on with your life.
Types of Car Accidents
Car accidents are hardly ever the same. There are many types that can be categorized into the following:
This is the most common type of car accident. A rear-end car accident occurs when a vehicle crashes into the vehicle in front of it. This is often caused by tailgating, speeding, and distracted driving. These auto accidents often cause injuries to the neck, such as whiplash.
Also known as a T-bone crash, the front of a vehicle hits the side of another. These crashes usually happen when one vehicle has run a stop sign or red light. The injuries are often more severe.
This car crash happens when two vehicles going in the same direction but parallel to each other collide. A sideswipe crash may occur when a driver tries to change lanes but fails to look to see if there are any vehicles next to them. A distracted driver may also drift into an adjacent lane and cause a crash.
This kind of car accident occurs when a vehicle flips over onto its roof or side. Rollovers are often caused by hitting curbs at high speeds or taking a sharp turn while speeding. SUVs have a high center of gravity and therefore face the highest risk.
Head-on crashes are some of the deadliest car accidents because of the high speeds and impact involved. They occur when the fronts of two vehicles collide with each other. These accidents are often caused by a vehicle passing unsafely or drifting into the path of an oncoming vehicle. They may also happen on highways when a driver is traveling in the wrong direction due to intoxication, fatigue, or confusion.
Hit and run accident.
This type of crash occurs when a person fails to stop at the scene of a car accident. This is a crime that can lead to misdemeanor or felony charges if someone is injured in the crash. Those involved in a car accident must stop, exchange information, and wait for the police to arrive and file a report.
Causes of Car Accidents
Almost all car accidents can be prevented. However, drivers often cause accidents by being negligent in the following ways:
Driving requires a lot of focus, but many drivers tend to multitask. They may drive while texting, reading, eating, grooming, or dealing with pets or passengers. These are dangerous activities that take a person’s eyes off the road and their hands off the wheel and can cause serious accidents.
Consuming drugs or alcohol before driving can cause intoxication. An intoxicated driver lacks judgment, vision, and experiences decreased reaction times. Even just one or two drinks can make a driver more likely to engage in reckless driving and cause accidents. Drunk driving can lead to severe injuries.
As the saying goes, speed kills. When a motorist is going beyond the speed limit, it will take them longer to slow down. It can also cause loss of control and make a car accident more likely to happen. When a crash does occur, the increased speed causes more damage and makes it more severe.
We lead busy lives, and many people drive even when they shouldn’t be on the road. Surprisingly, drowsy driving is just as bad as driving while intoxicated. Both are dangerous, so if you are having trouble keeping your eyes open while behind the wheel, get off the road as soon as possible. You don’t want to fall asleep and cause a car accident.
It’s a lot easier to drive on a sunny day than it is to drive in the ice, rain, or snow. These conditions can make roads slippery, causing multi-vehicle pileups. If you must drive in poor weather, slow down and be extra alert.
Why You Need Car Accident Lawyers
When you contact Oaks Law Firm, you get a caring team of legal professionals who can guide you through the process of filing a car accident claim. Our auto accident attorneys can assist you with the following:
- Filing the required paperwork in a timely manner.
- Locate appropriate physicians and medical care facilities.
- Help you obtain compensation to pay for medical expenses, property damage, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages.
- Determine liability and hold guilty parties accountable for their actions.
- Negotiating with the insurance company or other party to get a fair compensation.
- Take your car accident case to court and help you prepare for litigation.
What is Your Car Accident Claim Worth?
Car accident victims have high expenses following a crash. Few people have $10,000 sitting in their bank account to pay for everything out of pocket, such as:
- Car repairs. Your car could be totaled or need extensive body work done so that you can drive it again.
- Medical expenses. You probably went to the hospital after the crash. Your medical bills include prescription medication, wheelchairs, doctor’s visits, rehab, and surgery. Given medical care inflation over the past decade, it’s not unusual to incur more than $10,000 for even a minor injury. And someone with a moderate injury could need much more.
- Lost income. Painful bodily injuries keep people out of work against their will. We have seen many clients struggle financially because they cannot work for months, and few have a nest egg to tide them over. In fact, they probably were living paycheck to paycheck.
We can also negotiate so that you receive compensation for non-economic damages like:
- Physical pain
- Loss of enjoyment of life
No settlement can give you your old body back. But it at least provides a measure of comfort for dealing with the pain and reduction in your quality of life. Let us review the facts to determine what is a reasonable settlement offer. We can then negotiate aggressively with the defendant and their insurance company.
California Insurance Laws
Most settlements are paid with insurance policies. California requires that all people buy liability insurance to register their vehicles with the state. As of 2023, the minimum liability insurance is:
- $15,000 per person injured or killed in a crash
- $30,000 for two or more people injured or killed in a crash
- $5,000 for property damage
If someone strikes and injures you, then you can submit a claim to their liability insurer. Unfortunately, a large number of drivers in California do not have liability coverage. Some estimates show that close to 17% of drivers are uninsured. They failed to pay their premiums, so the coverage has lapsed. That means you can’t submit a claim on their coverage since it is no longer in effect.
Helpfully, California requires that insurers offer uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage when you buy a liability policy from them. Unless you rejected it, you should have this coverage, probably with limits equal to your liability coverage. You can use uninsured motorist coverage if you are hit by an uninsured driver or are the victim of a hit-and-run. This policy might be the only source of compensation unless the driver is found, so we recommend not rejecting this coverage when you buy liability coverage.
You can also use the underinsured motorist portion if you have losses that exceed the other driver’s policy. For example, a driver with minimum coverage could have struck you in the intersection. You suffer $30,000 in bodily injury damages. Because your losses exceed the driver’s coverage, you can then turn to your underinsured motorist policy. What happens if you have no insurance? You can sue for damages. But if you are one of the thousands of uninsured drivers, you might not receive any compensation for pain and suffering, even if the other driver is 100% at fault. This is California’s “no pay, no play” law, which penalizes those who drive without necessary liability coverage.
Contact a Sherman Oaks Car Accident Attorney Today
Unfortunately, with so many vehicles on the road, car accidents have become a common occurrence. Distractions caused by smartphones have increased the number of car accidents and fatalities even more.
After a car accident, you need an experienced personal injury law firm on your side. That’s where Oaks Law Firm comes in. Our car accident lawyer can guide you through all aspects of your case. From our Sherman Oaks office, we help victims of truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, construction accidents, and brain injury accidents to name a few in Van Nuys, Encino, North Hollywood, and all surrounding areas. We can settle your case outside of court or prepare you for litigation. To schedule a free consultation, call (877) 539-5366 or fill out the online form. There is no fee unless you win your case.
CALL TODAY! (877) 539-5366
Recovering the Damages You Deserve
If someone else is to blame for your injuries, you have the right to seek compensation for the full amount of damages you've suffered. These damages can include medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, as well as pain and suffering. You must bring forth your claim within one year of the accident date. Not filing your case within one year will bar you from recovery.