If you’ve been injured in a car accident, you may be unable to work, making it impossible to pay for everyday necessities, as well as your high medical bills. You’ve decided that you’d like to make a claim to recover compensation for your losses, but can you do so if you’re partially at fault for the accident? You’ll be happy to hear that our Los Angeles car accident attorney says yes. With the help of an experienced lawyer, you can still recover damages.
How Does California’s Comparative Negligence Law Work?
The comparative negligence law applies to an accident when both drivers are partially at fault, making them both responsible for related damages. The jury allocates a percentage of fault to each driver, making the plaintiff and defendant each responsible for paying that percentage of damages to the opposing party.
What Is Pure Comparative Negligence?
When determining fault in a car accident, California operates under the idea of pure comparative negligence, which means you are allowed to seek out damages from the other driver, even if you were mostly at fault. For example, if the jury decides that you were 75 percent at fault for the accident, you can still recover 25 percent of your complete compensation.
Pure comparative negligence allows an at-fault party to recover as little as 1 percent of their compensation for an accident, as opposed to modified comparative negligence where there is a cap on the amount the at-fault party can be awarded. The modified system is used in 33 other states, which usually have a cap set at 50 percent of the total cost of damages.
Should You Hire a Lawyer?
In many accident claims, the defendant’s attorney will try to claim comparative negligence to lower the amount that their client has to pay. If their insurance carrier is able to somehow convince the jury that you were partially at fault for the collision, the defendant may get away with paying you less than you deserve. In extreme cases, they may pay you nothing at all.
It’s common to receive a settlement offer that is less than you need to cover expenses. Our lawyers believe that you deserve the full amount of compensation based on your fault percentage. By hiring a Los Angeles car accident attorney, you’ll be doing everything in your power to challenge the claims of the opposing party so you don’t have to settle for less than you’re entitled to.
Our lawyers will gather important physical evidence, as well as photos, videos, medical documents, and cell phone records that may help your case by conducting a thorough investigation of your accident. We’ll obtain a copy of the police report and interview eyewitnesses to prove the other driver was also at fault. We can also find you expert witnesses to provide testimony through accident reconstruction and other means to assist your case.
Car accidents are a common occurrence in Los Angeles, with driver negligence being the number one cause. At Compass Law Group, PC, it’s our belief that you are entitled to recover the necessary damages to cover your losses. No one should become financially insolvent due to an accident. If you’ve been involved in a California collision, especially if you are partially at fault, contact a Los Angeles car accident attorney at Compass Law Group today to discuss your legal options.