Personal Injury Laws that California Residents Need to Understand
When it comes to personal injury, there are a few fundamental laws in California that every resident should be aware of. These laws can impact the outcome of a personal injury case, and understanding them can help you get the best possible results.
A personal injury attorney is a lawyer who represents people who have been injured in an accident. If you’ve been in an accident, you may be able to file a personal injury claim to recover damages.
Many types of accidents can lead to a personal injury claim, including car accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, slip and fall accidents, and more. No matter what type of accident you’ve been in, a few fundamental laws will always apply to your case. These laws are designed to protect accident victims and help them receive their compensation.
It is advisable to understand personal injury claims, how insurance companies operate, and how the legal system works to make an informed decision about your case. These are some of the laws you need to know:
1-Statute of limitations
In California, the statute of limitations for most personal injury claims is two years from the date of the accident. You have two years to file a lawsuit against the person or entity responsible for your injuries.
California follows a comparative negligence law when it comes to personal injury claims. This means that if you are found to be even partially at fault for the accident, you can still recover damages, but your percentage of fault will reduce your award.
For example, if you are awarded $100,000 in damages but are found to be 20% at fault for the accident, you would only receive $80,000.
There are two types of damages that you can recover in a personal injury case: economic and non-economic.
Economic damages include medical bills, lost wages, and property damage. Noneconomic damages include pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of life.
In California, all drivers are required to carry liability insurance. If you are injured in an accident, the at-fault driver’s insurance should cover your damages.
Suppose the at-fault driver does not have insurance or does not have enough insurance to cover your damages. In that case, you may be able to file a claim against your own insurance company under your uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage.
5-Filing a lawsuit
If you decide to file a personal injury lawsuit, it will be filed in civil court. This means that a judge or jury will decide the case, and the burden of proof will be on you to show that the other party is liable for your injuries. You will need to prove that the other party was negligent, which means that they failed to use reasonable care, and this failure resulted in your injuries.
Most personal injury cases are settled out of court. This means that the parties involved agreed on the number of damages to be paid, and the case is resolved without going to trial.
These are just a few laws you should be aware of if you have been injured in an accident. If you have questions about your specific case, it is best to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney.
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