Like anywhere else in America, San Luis Obispo, California, sees its fair share of car accidents. San Luis Obispo alone reported 470 car accidents within city limits in 2019, with 173 accidents resulting in injuries and three resulting in fatalities.
A car accident can leave you with severe injuries that require costly surgeries and extensive rehabilitation. If another driver caused your car accident in San Luis Obispo, they might be financially liable for your damages.
Contact a San Luis Obispo car accident lawyer at Frederick Law Firm today to learn how to seek financial compensation from the at-fault party.
Common Injuries After an Accident
Injuries in a car accident can range from barely noticeable to life-threatening. Some examples of injuries commonly suffered in a car accident include:
- Internal injuries,
- Broken bones,
- Sprain and dislocations,
- Traumatic brain injuries,
- Spinal cord injuries,
- Road rash,
- Whiplash, and
If you suffer injuries in a car accident, you should seek medical attention as soon as possible. Even if you think your injuries are minor, or even if you think you didn’t suffer any injuries, you should still be examined by a medical professional. The medical report and other documentation collected during the medical evaluation can provide valuable proof of your injuries. In many cases, receiving medical attention will require going to an emergency room. Emergency room visits can easily result in thousands of dollars in medical bills. A San Luis Obispo auto accident lawyer can help you recover these medical expenses and other costs.
Cost of a San Luis Obispo Car Accident
A car accident can result in other financial expenses beyond your medical bills. The City of San Luis Obispo calculates the direct economic impact of car accidents on accident victims by adding up several factors, including the following:
- Medical expenses,
- Vehicle repair costs,
- Lost wages, and
- Loss of future earning capacity.
In 2018, the comprehensive cost of a fatal crash in San Luis Obispo was approximately $4,666,401 and rose to $4,751,887 in 2019. For a disabling injury crash, the comprehensive cost was $267,722 in 2018 and $272,627 in 2019. The comprehensive cost of a vehicle accident that causes a non-incapacitating injury was $98,342 in 2018 and $100,143 in 2019.
As you can see, a car accident can inflict devastating financial damage. Frederick Law Firm can help you hold the at-fault party responsible for the losses they caused you.
How Do I Prove the Other Driver Owes Me Compensation After a Car Accident?
To recover compensation in a car accident claim, you need to prove the opposing party was negligent and that their negligence caused your injuries. You must establish four elements to show a driver was negligent: (1) duty of care, (2) breach of duty, (3) causation, and (4) harm.
Every driver owes a duty of care to others on the road to operate their vehicle in a reasonably prudent manner. Drivers owe this duty to other drivers on the road, bicyclists, and pedestrians. Because all drivers owe this duty of care, showing that a driver owed another driver a duty of care is typically straightforward.
A driver breaches their duty when they fail to act in a reasonably prudent manner. A driver can breach their duty of care in many ways. Some of the most common ways a driver breaches their duty of care include the following:
- Driving recklessly,
- Texting while driving,
- Taking a video while driving,
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or
- Disobeying traffic signs and signals.
Next, you must prove the at-fault driver’s breach caused the accident that resulted in your injuries. That usually requires showing that your injuries would not have occurred if the at-fault driver had not breached their duty of care. The other party may try to prove external factors like a third driver or weather conditions caused your injuries. A car accident attorney in San Luis Obispo, CA, can locate and present evidence to show that the at-fault driver caused your injuries so that you have a better chance of recovering compensation.
Finally, you must prove you suffered financial harm due to the at-fault driver’s negligence. As discussed above, you may incur significant financial losses because of your accident. When you bring a car accident claim, you can seek compensation for a variety of losses, including medical expenses, repair costs, and lost wages. Be sure to keep records of your medical bills, pharmacy receipts, repair invoices, and pay stubs to prove your losses. You cannot recover compensation in a car accident claim if you did not suffer any losses because of the accident.
What If I Am Partially At-Fault for My Car Accident?
California follows the rule of pure comparative negligence in car accident claims. That means even if you were partially at fault for the car accident, you can still bring a personal injury claim against the at-fault party to recover compensation for your losses. However, your recovery is reduced by your percentage of fault. For example, if the judge finds you 25% at fault for the accident and awards you $100,000, you will receive only $75,000 in compensation. A car accident attorney in San Luis Obispo, CA, can develop a strategy to help reduce the amount of fault attributed to you.
Contact a San Luis Obispo Car Accident Attorney at Frederick Law Firm Today
If you’ve suffered injuries in a car accident, you’re probably facing medical bills, repair costs, and lost time from work. You have a right to hold the driver responsible for your losses accountable, and Frederick Law Firm can help. Our founding attorney Jacqueline Vitti Frederick has over 30 years of experience advocating for victims injured in car crashes.
We can thoroughly investigate your accident, gather evidence, and fight for your best interest at the negotiating table and in the courtroom. If you or a loved one suffered injuries in a car accident, reach out to a San Luis Obispo auto accident lawyer at Frederick Law Firm today.