Stockton Car Accident Lawyers
A car accident can cause you enormous stress, even if you do not suffer serious injuries. Trying to determine who will pay for your injuries and medical treatment—and when—can be highly frustrating. Moreover, most accident victims find that the at-fault party’s insurance company will not help them.
Despite what these insurance companies often say in their radio, television, and internet advertisements, they are not interested in helping you recover the fair monetary damages you deserve.
You have legal rights if you sustained injuries in a Stockton auto accident that resulted from someone else’s careless or reckless behavior. First, you can pursue a personal injury claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company. Next, you should retain an experienced Stockton car accident attorney to assist you during every step of the claims filing and litigation process.
The experienced Stockton car accident lawyers at Silva Injury Law, Inc. understand the significant frustration that car accident victims often must deal with. We can be by your side every step of the way, aggressively fighting for you and helping you get the compensation you need in your car accident claim or lawsuit. Please contact our office directly for a free case evaluation and legal consultation.
How Do Stockton Car Accidents Happen?
Vehicle crashes are one of the leading causes of death for people between the ages of one and 54 in the United States. Even if victims survive, they can have lifelong challenges, physically, mentally, and financially.
Car accidents can happen for many different reasons, but in most instances, they occur because of the negligence of other drivers. Some of the most common causes of Stockton car accidents are below.
Operating a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs
Drivers must drive safely and carefully at all times and refrain from drinking and driving. When a Stockton passenger vehicle driver has a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of at least 0.08 percent, they are legally intoxicated and may be subject to arrest for DUI.
Drunk drivers often have difficulty maintaining control over their vehicles and may also experience delayed reflexes and reaction time. Consequently, they cannot always stop their cars in time to avoid collisions. Operating a vehicle while under the influence of prescription or non-prescription drugs is also a recipe for disaster. A drugged driver may likewise experience limited concentration and other impairments that prevent them from operating their vehicle safely and carefully.
Car crashes may also happen when drivers pay more attention to electronic devices, like smartphones or GPS navigation systems, than the road itself. When a driver takes their eyes off the road for a split second, that may be sufficient time for them to miss seeing another vehicle or a pedestrian nearby. While distracted driving involves more than texting, the rise of this technology significantly increased the risks of distraction on the road.
Traffic law violations
Car accidents may also occur when drivers speed and violate other California traffic laws. When a driver significantly exceeds the speed limit, they can quickly lose control over their car—especially when they drive too fast for the current weather or traffic conditions. Moreover, if they follow another vehicle too closely, they may be unable to stop in time if a sudden traffic back-up happens.
Failing to yield the right-of-way to other cars at the appropriate times is another common cause of Stockton traffic accidents. For example, when a driver runs a red light, yield sign, or stop sign, they may negligently cause their vehicle to broadside an oncoming vehicle on an adjacent roadway.
Fatigued driving is another common cause of Stockton car accidents. When drivers fail to get enough sleep or drive for hours without taking any breaks, they may become tired while on the road.
Fatigued drivers often experience limited reflexes and concentration, delaying their reaction time in an emergency. Moreover, when a drowsy driver falls asleep at the wheel, they might lose control of their vehicle and cause a massive, multi-vehicle pile-up.
Fatigued driving is unfortunately too common with commercial truck drivers since trucking companies often incentivize their drivers financially to drive long hours on end without taking breaks.
Finally, some car accidents happen when people drive recklessly and carelessly. Reckless and careless driving can involve tailgating other vehicles, aggressively weaving in and out of traffic when conditions are busy, or failing to use turn signals when switching lanes on a multi-lane road or turning onto another road.
If you sustained injuries in a car accident that resulted from one of these types of driver negligence, you have legal rights and options to consider. The knowledgeable Stockton car accident attorneys at Silva Injury Law, Inc. can review your options and explain them in easy-to-understand terms. We can also help you decide on the best course of action for your case to pursue and recover the highest monetary compensation available.
What Types Of Injuries Do Accident Victims Suffer In A Stockton Car Crash?
In a severe and forceful car collision, drivers and passengers may suffer various injuries that require prompt medical treatment. In some instances, these injuries are relatively minor, while at other times, they are significant injuries that require ongoing care, including surgeries and physical therapy. Some injuries are also permanent, so they are unlikely to improve over time.
The injuries that a car crash victim suffers will depend upon the speeds of the involved vehicles, the force of the collision, and the accident victim’s bodily movements at the time of the crash. For example, the force of some car crashes makes an accident victim’s body move forward and backward abruptly, causing them to suffer a soft tissue injury to their neck or back.
At other times, the accident victim may strike their head or another body part on something in the vehicle, like the window, door, steering wheel, or headrest. If the accident victim strikes their head on the steering wheel or headrest during a car crash, they may suffer a concussion or traumatic brain injury.
Other common injuries that car crash victims suffer include:
- Soft tissue injuries
- Herniated discs
- Whiplash injuries
- Bone fractures
- Rib fractures
- Spinal cord injuries
- Burn injuries
- Disfigurement injuries
- Puncture wounds
If you believe you suffered injuries in a recent car accident, the most critical step you can take is to seek prompt medical treatment at a hospital emergency room. Symptoms of many injuries, like soft tissue contusions and concussions, do not always appear immediately. In fact, it may take several days, or even weeks, for a car accident injury to manifest itself fully.
By seeking early medical intervention in your case, you ensure that your injuries do not worsen. You also show the insurance company that your injuries are severe and warrant high monetary compensation.
When you seek prompt medical treatment in an emergency room, the treating doctor can diagnose your condition after ordering imaging studies, like X-rays and MRIs. The doctor can also make recommendations for future care in the event your symptoms worsen over time.
While you focus on getting better, the skilled Stockton car accident lawyers at Silva Injury Law, Inc. can begin pursuing the monetary compensation you need. We can start gathering your medical treatment records, copies of the police report, witness statements, other pertinent documents, and submit them to the insurance company for review.
Potential Monetary Damages You Could Recover For Your Injuries
If you can satisfy the duty, breach, causation, and damage elements of your car accident claim, you can recover monetary damages for your injuries. Since every car accident scenario is different, not all accident victims can recover the same types and amounts of damages. Instead, these damages are highly case-specific.
In general, the more serious your injuries and the more extensive (and expensive) your medical treatment, the higher the monetary compensation you may recover in your claim or lawsuit. Likewise, accident victims who suffered permanent injuries in their car crashes are more likely to recover serious monetary damages than car crash victims who suffered relatively minor injuries.
First, an accident victim can pursue economic damages. These damages cover all related medical expenses, including surgical procedures, hospitalizations, doctor visits, and physical therapy. Suppose a medical provider determines that the car accident victim may need to undergo some future medical procedure or treatment. In that case, those anticipated expenses can be a part of a monetary damage award.
In addition, accident victims can recover monetary damages for their lost income if they miss time from work. To prove lost wages to the insurance company, you will likely need to supply the insurance company with documentation that shows the number of days you missed from work and the amount of monetary compensation you lost.
Likewise, if your injuries were so severe that you can no longer continue in the same line of work, and you had to switch jobs and take a sizable pay cut, you can pursue a claim for loss of earning capacity.
In addition to these economic damages, car crash victims may be eligible to recover various non-economic damages.
These damages compensate accident victims for their:
- Emotional anguish
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of life enjoyment
- Loss of spousal companionship
- Loss of the ability to use a body part
In cases where a car accident victim suffered fatal injuries, their surviving family members might be eligible to bring a claim for wrongful death. As part of a wrongful death claim, the claimant can recover various types of monetary damages, including compensation for the deceased individual’s pain and suffering up until the time of their death, loss of future earnings, and loss of the deceased family member’s companionship, comfort, and care.
Finally, accident victims can recover punitive damages in a car accident case if the responsible driver operated their vehicle in a particularly egregious or reckless manner, such as while intoxicated or under the influence of drugs. The purpose of a punitive damage award is to punish the at-fault driver and to discourage other drivers from operating their vehicles carelessly and recklessly.
At Silva Injury Law, Inc., our legal team makes it a top priority to maximize the monetary compensation you recover in your case through settlement or litigation. We will be on your side, assisting you every step of the way in your dealings with the at-fault driver’s insurance company. If necessary, we can also help you litigate your case through the court system.
How Do You Prove Fault In A Stockton Car Accident Case?
To recover monetary damages in your case, you must prove that the other driver caused your accident. Specifically, you must show that the other driver violated their legal duty of care, typically by engaging in reckless or careless driving and/or violating a traffic law.
In addition, you must show that the other driver’s negligent actions or inactions were both the actual and foreseeable cause of your traffic accident. Finally, you must demonstrate that you suffered injuries in the accident which directly resulted from the accident.
What Is The Statute Of Limitations For Car Accident Cases In Stockton?
Absent few exceptions, the statute of limitations for car accident cases in California gives you two years from the accident to file a suit. If you fail to file a lawsuit within that deadline, you waive your right to recover any monetary compensation for your injuries. Therefore, you must file your lawsuit well within the statutory period.
At Silva Injury Law, Inc., we know the statute of limitations deadline and can help you file a lawsuit promptly in your car accident case. We can then set about helping you recover the fair monetary damages you deserve for your accident-related injuries.
Call A Stockton Car Accident Attorney Today
Next to seeking prompt medical treatment after your accident, retaining a skilled personal injury lawyer to represent you in your car accident claim is one of the most important steps you can take. You want a lawyer on your side who has significant experience settling car accident claims and litigating them and taking them to trial.
At Silva Injury Law, Inc., our Stockton personal injury lawyers have a strong track record of success when it comes to successfully settling and litigating car accident claims. We can handle all negotiations with the insurance company on your behalf and, if necessary, take your case to trial or binding arbitration for a favorable result.