Mission Viejo Car Accidents Attorney
Car accidents happen every day in Mission Viejo and the surrounding communities of California. These incidents occur for many reasons, and the state upholds a fault-based set of rules for resolving vehicle accidents. This means whoever causes a car accident in Mission Viejo absorbs liability for all resulting damages.
Helping Mission Viejo, CA, Car Accident Victims Recover
California requires every driver to have an auto insurance policy that meets the state’s minimum coverage requirements, but insurance alone may not cover the damages from a serious accident. Additionally, dealing with insurance companies can be incredibly difficult, even when claims are valid and supported by evidence. It’s easy to feel isolated and uncertain in this challenging situation, and Chris and Frank can provide the responsive legal guidance you need to navigate the situation more efficiently.
The right attorney can have a tremendously positive influence on the outcome of any car accident case filed in Mission Viejo, CA. State law typically requires drivers to resolve car accident claims through auto insurance to the fullest extent possible before proceeding with civil claims for damages. Regardless of what you believe your recovery efforts may entail, you are best equipped to face all of them with an experienced attorney advising you.
Why You Need Legal Counsel After a Mission Viejo, CA, Car Accident
There is no legal requirement to hire an attorney to help you recover from a car accident but doing so significantly improves the effectiveness of your recovery efforts. An experienced personal injury attorney is likely to uncover avenues of recovery you may have overlooked. They can also help you accurately calculate both short and long-term economic losses resulting from a defendant’s negligence or misconduct.
Success with an auto insurance claim requires filing a timely demand letter to the appropriate insurance company with all necessary supporting documentation. Success with a personal injury suit requires accurate identification of the driver at fault and proof they directly caused the damages stated in the claim. Whether you intend to file an insurance claim, a personal injury claim, or both in response to your recent accident, the right attorney is an invaluable asset who can help you recover full compensation for all claimable damages.
Ultimately, hiring an experienced attorney means you will be fully prepared to meet the unique challenges your case presents. You will be able to rest with confidence as your case unfolds, with your attorney providing updates on the progress of your recovery efforts. When you choose Chris and Frank to assist you with your recovery after a recent car accident, you can expect individualized attention to the unique details of your case and personalized communication with our team throughout all your proceedings.
Common Causes of Car Accident Claims in California
Every driver faces risks like severe weather, poor visibility, driving at night, and road hazards, but when one driver’s intentional misconduct or negligence causes an accident, they are responsible for the harm they cause others. Some of the most commonly reported causes of car accidents in the Mission Viejo, CA, area that lead to personal injury suits include:
- Intoxicated driving. Driving under the influence (DUI) of drugs or alcohol is illegal in California, carrying severe penalties like heavy fines and jail time along with driver’s license suspension and more. When drunk driving results in injuries or fatalities, the driver at fault faces more severe penalties as well as civil liability for victims’ damages.
- Distracted driving. The most commonly cited cause of all motor vehicle accidents in the United States each year is distracted driving. Your Mission Viejo car accident attorney can help their client gather traffic camera footage, cell phone records, and other evidence to prove an at-fault driver was distracted at the moment of your collision.
- Speeding. Whenever a driver exceeds the speed limit, they put themselves and all other drivers nearby at risk. Speeding can dramatically reduce the time and space a driver has to slow down and stop to avoid a collision.
- Moving violations, such as failing to navigate intersections correctly, performing illegal turns, running red lights, and aggressive driving. These actions may result in criminal charges when intentional.
- Defective vehicles and parts, which may implicate manufacturers as liable for victims’ damages under California’s product liability laws.
No matter how your recent car accident occurred, you need legal counsel you can trust to help you build the foundation of a strong personal injury claim when insurance alone can’t cover your losses. When you choose Chris and Frank to represent you in your recovery efforts following any kind of vehicle accident in the Mission Viejo, CA, area, you can expect comprehensive legal advice through the insurance claim process and any subsequent civil claims you decide to pursue.
Filing an Auto Insurance Claim in California
Every California driver is legally required to have auto insurance coverage that includes:
- $5,000 or more in property damage liability coverage. This will cover the cost of repairing another driver’s vehicle after an accident the policyholder causes.
- $15,000 or more in bodily injury liability coverage. When a single person is injured in an accident caused by the policyholder, this coverage applies to the victim’s medical expenses.
- $30,000 or more in total accident liability coverage. This applies when more than one person sustains injuries in an accident caused by the policyholder and will pay for their medical expenses.
Though not strictly required by law, underinsured/uninsured motorist coverage is an invaluable addition to any California auto insurance policy due to the state’s very high rate of uninsured drivers. If you have this type of coverage, you can file a claim against your own auto insurance policy if an uninsured driver causes an accident with your vehicle.
If your recent accident resulted in serious injuries, an insurance claim alone is unlikely to fully cover your damages. Additionally, dealing with insurance companies can be unpleasant and stressful, even with seemingly minor and straightforward claims. Working with an experienced attorney is the best approach to this type of situation. Your attorney can help you file your demand letter to the insurance company and address any disputes that arise with your claim. Once you have obtained as much compensation as you can through insurance, any remaining losses can be recovered with a personal injury action and your attorney’s assistance.
Building Your Personal Injury Claim for a Mission Viejo Car Accident
When the damages you suffered from a car accident eclipse the liable driver’s insurance coverage, a personal injury suit can enable you to recover your outstanding losses. For example, an insurance claim may cover a portion of your immediate medical expenses, but if you suffered a severe injury requiring extensive long-term treatment, your personal injury claim could help you recover these losses.
To succeed with a civil claim for damages in California, the plaintiff must identify the party or parties responsible for their damages and prove the full extent of those damages. The plaintiff must be ready to present clear evidence of causation between their claimed damages and the defendant’s negligence or misconduct. The attorneys at Chris and Frank have extensive experience building comprehensive personal injury claims on behalf of our clients. We take time to learn each client’s specific needs and concerns to ensure we have the best chance of reaching the results they hope to see.
If your personal injury suit unfolds in tandem with a criminal case filed by the state against the defendant, your Mission Viejo car accident attorney will advise you as to how the state’s case may impact your own and whether you may need to participate as a witness. Egregious negligence or criminal misconduct can lead to punitive damages for the defendant, and it’s possible for restitution to be an element of their sentence in criminal court. Ultimately, every car accident claim filed in Mission Viejo will present unique challenges and opportunities to the plaintiff, so it’s crucial to find a flexible and responsive attorney with substantial experience handling cases similar to yours.
Compensation for Your Car Accident in Mission Viejo
An auto insurance claim may cover a portion of your vehicle repair costs and your medical expenses after a serious accident, but a personal injury claim can secure a more expansive recovery for all your losses. State law enables you to seek full repayment of all economic damages caused by the defendant, including medical expenses, long-term medical care costs, lost wages and lost earning capacity resulting from severe injuries. They can also seek compensation for property losses insurance won’t cover.
Beyond economic damages, a personal injury plaintiff in California has the right to recover compensation for the pain and suffering they experienced. A Mission Viejo car accident attorney will help their client determine a suitable figure to include in their claim based on the scope and severity of the injuries they suffered.
It’s important for anyone facing a civil claim for damages in California to understand the state’s pure comparative fault rule. If a plaintiff is found to be partially responsible for causing their claimed damages, the judge handling their case will assign them a fault percentage. They will then lose this percentage of their final case award. Your Mission Viejo car accident attorney can advise you as to how to best proceed with your recovery efforts when you bear partial fault for your accident.
Q: How Much Is My Mission Viejo, CA, Car Accident Claim Worth?
A: The total value of a car accident hinges on the scope and severity of the damages, including property damage, medical expenses, and the victim’s lost income. California law enables the victim to seek compensation for both immediate and long-term damages caused by a defendant’s negligence. A Mission Viejo car accident attorney is the best person to consult for an accurate estimate of your case’s potential value.
Q: How Long Does It Take to Settle a Car Accident Case in California?
A: If you can resolve your recent car accident with just an insurance claim and liability is clear, it’s possible to receive a settlement check relatively quickly with the help of an attorney. If the insurance company disputes your claim or if the driver at fault does not have insurance, these factors will increase the time it takes to obtain your settlement. A personal injury case will take longer still. If the defendant accepts liability and agrees to a settlement, this may require several weeks, and if the case progresses to litigation, it may take several months to resolve.
Q: Do I Really Need to Hire a Lawyer After a Car Accident in Mission Viejo?
A: If your recent accident did not cause any serious injuries and you think an insurance claim alone will cover your damages, you may not need to hire legal counsel to recover from your accident. However, it is possible for even a seemingly minor accident to cause serious harm, and you could have been injured worse than you initially realize. Hiring an attorney to help with your recovery efforts significantly increases the chances of maximizing all forms of compensation available to you.
Q: How Soon Should I Speak With a Mission Viejo Car Accident Attorney?
A: If the driver responsible has auto insurance, you have a limited time after your accident in which to file your claim against their policy. Additionally, you are also likely required to notify your own insurance carrier of the accident, even if you are not at fault for causing it. It is always best to speak with legal counsel before discussing an insurance claim with an insurance company representative. Address immediate medical concerns after your accident, and then reach out to a reliable attorney as soon as possible.
Q: Is It Worth Hiring a Mission Viejo Car Accident Attorney?
A: Even if you believe liability for your recent car accident is perfectly clear, the actual legal mechanisms you must navigate to hold an at-fault driver fully accountable for the damages they’ve caused are more challenging than many people expect. Hiring legal counsel makes every aspect of your claim easier to manage, and you are more likely to succeed with your recovery efforts with an attorney’s help.
The attorneys at Chris and Frank understand that any car accident has the potential to be a devastating, life-changing experience for everyone involved. If you believe another driver is responsible for a recent accident, if you were hurt by a hit-and-run driver in Mission Viejo or have other pressing legal questions after any motor vehicle accident, we can help. Contact Chris and Frank Accident Attorneys today to schedule your free consultation with a Mission Viejo car accident attorney you can trust.
Actual Client Testimonials
“This is the best firm to go to. They will fight for your rights to be compensated. I have a loved one that used them. They treat you like you are one of their own family members. I highly recommend them. To be honest I wouldn’t use any other firm.” Jeff E.
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