Canoga Park Car Accident Injury Attorney
As with the rest of Southern California, you really have to drive your car to get anywhere in Canoga Park. Sure, there are busses and you can ride your bike if it’s close enough but let’s face it-- it’s a car-centric community and traffic accidents are quite common. You learned this the hard way after going to the local drive-through for cheeseburgers. Your car filled the heavenly smell of fresh fries as you sipped your Coke and made your way back home. And then, suddenly, you were rear-ended—hard—by someone who you would later discover was typing out a text message at the time.
Your car can be fixed but you’re not so sure about your head and neck, as you suffered severe whiplash upon impact and additional injuries from the deployment of your airbag. It could have been much worse but now you’re wondering how you’ll cover your daily expenses and get through this. After getting the medical attention you need, it’s important to contact a top Canoga Park car accident lawyer at Walch Law to set up your obligation-free consultation immediately. We are here to help make sure you get back on your feet and take all our cases on a contingency fee basis.
The following is a primer on car accident claims, including how fault is determined, the meaning of negligence, how an attorney can help, and more.Who’s at Fault for Your Canoga Park Car Accident?
The term liability pertains to a party’s legal responsibility for causing another party’s injuries. If you’re liable, then it means you must financially compensate them for their losses, which may include medical expenses, lost wages, disfigurement, and more. Carelessness (or negligence) is the most common way fault is established; but someone’s recklessness, intentional actions, or liability as a product manufacturer or seller also may apply in certain situations.
There are four general types of fault for automobile accidents:
- Negligence (general carelessness)
- Recklessness (the person knew or should have known their actions could injure others)
- Intent (they intended to cause harm)
- Strict liability (a party is responsible for injuries regardless of intent or carelessness, such as automobile manufacturers)
As we stated earlier, negligence is by far the most common type of liability for injuries, including your accident. The driver who hit you owed you a duty of care (or legal responsibility) to drive in a reasonable manner. By texting while driving, the at-fault party breached his duty of care. It’s also a misdemeanor in California, so the driver likely will have a criminal manner to resolve as well. Most injury claims are settled out of court and rarely go to trial but you’ll still need to firmly establish liability in order to have leverage during settlement negotiations.
The legal elements of a negligence case you’re Canoga Park car accident lawyer will need to prove are:
- Defendant (at-fault driver) owed a duty of care to the plaintiff (injured party)
- Defendant breached that duty
- Plaintiff’s injuries were in fact caused by this breach
- Defendant’s actions were the proximate cause of the injury(ies), which means the plaintiff wouldn’t have suffered those injuries if not for the defendant’s breach
- Plaintiff has suffered actual damages, such as bodily injury and lost wages
While most rear-end collisions are fairly straightforward in terms of who’s at fault, every case is a little different and some may require professional counsel. This is even more crucial when there are serious injuries. Keep in mind that the at-fault party’s insurance company may try to offer a quick settlement before you’ve had a chance to fully assess your injuries. However, it may be inadequate.Overview of Car Accident Damages
When someone is determined to be liable for your injuries, they’re required to financially compensate you for any losses you’ve suffered as a result (the term damages, therefore, refers to these monetary claims). Since injuries can have a ripple effect throughout various facets of one’s life, it’s important to get a complete picture of how your life will be altered by the injuries when determining damages.
Damages you may claim for car accident injuries may include (but are not limited to) the following:
- Medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Permanent disability
- Pain and suffering
- Diminished future earning potential
- Loss of consortium (intimacy and affection)
You never know when a careless driver will plow into the back of your car and ruin your day. Property damage is one thing but the hope is that you don’t suffer serious injuries. If you are injured by a negligent attorney, you’ll want to file a claim for losses. Call the Law Offices of Gary K. Walch, a Law Corporation and learn more about the next steps for putting your life back together. We have over 45 years of experience helping car accident victims in Canoga Park and the surrounding areas win their car accident cases and get the most for their injuries and would love to help you too. We are ready to get started as soon as you call us so don’t delay.