A car accident claim involves holding the negligent party liable and seeking compensation for the damages and injuries you suffered from the crash. In California, this process is significantly influenced by the state’s comparative negligence laws, which determine how much compensation is allocated when both parties share responsibility for the crash.
California operates under a pure comparative fault system. It means you can still seek compensation even if you bear the most responsibility for the accident. In other words, your contribution does not bar you from seeking compensation.
However, the amount you receive will be reduced in proportion to your degree of fault. For instance, if you are found 40% at fault, your compensation will be reduced by 40%.
Establishing each party’s negligence or contribution to the crash is crucial to the car accident settlement process. This typically involves demonstrating that the other driver breached their duty of care and contributed to or caused the accident.
Important evidence may include police reports, eyewitness testimonies, photographs of the accident scene, medical records and expert opinions if necessary. Sometimes, it is not always clear-cut to determine negligence, depending on the circumstances of the crash.
Protect your legal interests
California is an at-fault state, which means the negligent party’s insurance should cover your damages. However, insurance companies may attempt to minimize your settlement or shift blame onto you. Disputes over claims are common, and it helps to familiarize yourself with how everything works and what you can do to get the compensation you deserve.
These complexities and other potential challenges in car accident claims underscore the importance of having proper legal guidance. It will empower you to assert your rights, understand your legal options and make informed decisions during the claims process.