San Diego Car Accident Lawyer Providing Legal Services for Victims of Traffic Collisions
How do I choose a San Diego Car Accident LawyerIt’s important to find a lawyer you can work with. You should start by researching them online through reviews and their website. This gives you an idea of their professionalism and how their past or current clients rate their services. Don’t be afraid to schedule a free case evaluation with us to learn more about our firm before hiring us.
What does a car accident lawyer in San Diego ChargeCar accident attorneys work on a “contingency fee.” A contingency fee is a percentage of the total outcome. This means your lawyer isn’t paid until there is a settlement or jury verdict in your favor. The fees charged will vary from office to office and will depend on when the case settles or if it goes to trial. If they aren’t able to get you a settlement or win your case at trial, they won’t be paid for legal services.
Proving Fault in a San Diego Car AccidentOne of the first things that we have to do as your car accident lawyer is to prove who was at fault. This is often referred to as the “at-fault driver” or “negligent party.” This simply means that we’re trying to prove who caused the accident. If you were the sole cause of the accident, then you’re likely not entitled to compensation. But if you didn’t cause the accident or were partly at fault, you may have a claim for damages.
To prove fault or liability in a car accident, lawyers must prove the following:
- Duty. The other party owed a duty to you on the road, i.e., duty to follow traffic laws or drive reasonably for the conditions.
- Breach. The other party breached their duty. An example is breaching the duty of traffic laws by speeding. Or driving too fast for the weather conditions.
- Causation. The other party’s breach of traffic laws or unsafe driving caused the accident.
- Damages. The accident resulted in physical or mental injury.
If one of those bullet points isn’t met, then you will not be able to prove liability.The first thing we do is look at the police report taken from statements and the scene of the accident. We will also contact investigators and review images of the vehicles involved. In some cases, we hire “accident reconstructionists.” They put together a video model of how the accident occurred to prove the liability of the other party. When there is a dispute about the cause of the accident, the insurance company may contest liability. The first step would be proving that before negotiating damages. An example would be he said/she said red vs. green light. In rear-end collisions, insurance companies will usually accept fault. When this happens, the next step is negotiating damages to the injured party.
What Will a Car Accident Settlement Cover?After liability is assessed, your case is then evaluated on several different factors. This includes the extent of your injuries, medical bills (past and future), lost wages (past and future), and your pain and suffering. Many people don’t “want to sue for a million dollars.” And that’s not why we’re here. We want to get you compensated for what someone else’s negligence caused. This means that we will negotiate with the insurance company to get you compensation for:
- Medical bills. The treatment you’ve already received and possible future medical care.
- Lost wages. Missed time from work and future earning capacity.
- Pain and Suffering. Physical and mental anguish, loss of enjoyment of daily activities, stress, anxiety, depression.