file a car accident lawsuit in california

How Do I File A Car Accident Lawsuit in California?

You may be asking yourself, “How do I file a car accident lawsuit in California? How am I going to pay bills if I can’t work? Can I sue since this wasn’t my fault? How long does it take to get a settlement?”

Like any other state, auto accidents can be a nightmare experience in California but unfortunately, they do happen when we least expect them. For that reason, it is always recommended to keep yourself updated with the options you have in case you get in an accident.

When a car accident occurs, several outcomes are possible;

  • You could suffer injuries,
  • You could cause injuries to others,
  • You could have your properties damaged, or
  • You could hurt other people’s properties

Whatever the outcome is, it is always an excellent move to file the issue so that justice can be administered. And supposing you are the one who suffered losses due to other drivers or road users’ negligence, you can file a vehicle accident claim by following the procedure below.

The Procedure for Filing a Car Accident Lawsuit in California

First of All, Ensure You Are Safe

If you didn’t sustain serious injuries, you should first strive to remove your vehicle from the road to the roadside or any other secure place not too far from the accident scene. Then grab your phone and call an emergency service (usually 911) for an ambulance or police officer.

Once the police show up, give them all your details. These include

  • Your identification document
  • Your insurance details
  • Your vehicle’s registration number, etc.

After this, talk to the police officers giving them the auto collision report. This is an honest and detailed description of what you saw when the accident occurred. In other words, you are explaining to them what caused the accident.

NOTE: This information is susceptible and should only be disclosed to the police. At all costs, you should avoid sharing such information with other individuals, especially those involved in the accident. Doing so may inconvenience you later when trying to seek compensation.

Gather all the Necessary Details

After you are done with the officers, talk to other parties involved in the accident and request their crucial information. For example, collect their;

  • Names,
  • Phone numbers,
  • License plate, and
  • Insurance information, etc.

Although the police officers on the scene will supposedly do this, you should not rely on them and leave the scene without these details – your lawyers will need the details.

The last but most important details you should collect include the police officers;

  • Name,
  • Agency, and
  • Badge number, etc.
  • Seek Medical Attention

Regardless of whether you feel injured or not, the first destination you stop at after leaving the accident scene is your nearest hospital. Your doctor will do a thorough assessment to determine whether you were injured.

The medical report you will get will be critical at some point later.

Consult Your Attorney

At this point, you have all the details in place. Before proceeding further, it would be a recommendable move to speak to your attorney. Let him/she know everything that happened, and they will see how they can help.

While consulting the attorney, be as honest as you can and provide to them all the details you gathered at the accident scene plus your doctor’s report.

If you don’t have a personal attorney, don’t worry. There are very many law firms offering free consultation. Try them out and see which law firm understands your conditions the best. However, be cautious not to expose all the details as you interview the different law firms to find the best.

Consult Your Insurance Company

Regardless of whether you were the one responsible for the accident or not, you should consult your insurance company as soon as possible. They will demand to know what happened and decide the action to take.

It’s important to consult them almost immediately so they can offer you help with things such as medical coverage in case you are hurt. The company will assess your claim and, depending on their findings, can take charge of the case.

If they take charge of the case, they will consult the other parties’ insurance companies to see if a settlement can be made. If an amicable decision is not reached, they can file a claim.

Filing the Case

If you have an insurance company, filing a claim may be significantly easier since they might come into your defense through their lawyer. However, if you weren’t issued, you must use your attorney or hire a reputable one to help you file the case.

When Should You File A Car A Claim?

The statute of limitation in California requires you to file your vehicle accident claim within two years from the mishap. That when you are using a private party. But if you a filling a claim due to an accident caused by a government entity, you have a duration of up to six months, and the government should give you feedback within 45 days.

If a car accident happens, now you know a little more about how to file a car accident in California. But don’t just keep quiet – nobody will take care of your losses. You should take action by calling the number on this page to be connected to an attorney in your area who will fight for you!

If you are looking for a auto accident lawyer in Woodland Hills, California, or anywhere else in California for a California car accident that wasn’t your fault, call (818) 657-8039 now for your consultation

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