California has the largest population of any U.S. state and consistently tops the charts for car accidents and fatal accident rates. Orange County, CA includes many of the largest metropolitan areas of California, and you may wonder which city in Orange County has the most car accidents. The answer is Anaheim, the most densely populated city in Orange County. Each year, Anaheim consistently reports more car accidents than any other city in California.
Chris and Frank are experienced personal injury attorneys providing legal counsel to clients throughout Orange County, and our team has handled many car accident claims that originated in Anaheim, CA. While Anaheim is a popular tourism destination and a staple of the California economy, the risk of having a car accident is significantly higher in Anaheim than in any other city in Orange County. If you experience a car accident in Anaheim, it’s crucial to know the best first steps to take to ensure the fullest recovery possible under California state law.
First Steps After a Car Accident in Orange County
After experiencing a car accident, your priority must always be your own health and safety and that of your passengers. After the accident, take a moment to check yourself and your passengers for injuries before attempting to exit the vehicle. If you are seriously injured, call 911 if you are able to do so and remain where you are until paramedics arrive. If you feel well enough to move around, do so carefully so as to not aggravate any injuries you may have sustained. Check on the other driver and call the police to report the crash.
Reporting the accident is crucial. California state law demands drivers to contact the police to report any accident that causes death, injury, or property damage estimated over $500. Once you call the police to report your accident, take photos of your injuries and the scene of the crash. These could help you substantiate a future insurance claim or hold the other driver accountable in a personal injury claim if they caused your accident but dispute liability.
Even if you are allowed to leave the accident scene after the crash and believe you only suffered minor injuries, you should take the time to see a doctor as soon as possible. Your doctor can help you determine whether you sustained any injuries that are not immediately noticeable and rule out life-threatening conditions. Your doctor can then provide you with a report that details the treatment you received and their prognosis for your condition. Once you have this medical report and a copy of the police report for the accident, you are ready to start working toward your recovery.
Dealing With Insurance Companies After a Car Accident
Auto insurance is typically the first step toward recovery after a car accident in Orange County. California state law requires all licensed drivers to carry auto insurance that meets the state’s minimum coverage requirements:
- Your auto insurance policy must provide at least $15,000 in bodily injury liability coverage for a single person.
- The policy must also provide at least $30,000 in bodily injury liability coverage for a total accident.
- The policy must also provide at least $5,000 in property damage liability coverage.
These minimum requirements may seem generous, but it is crucial to understand that a serious car accident that results in damages may easily eclipse these minimum coverage requirements. While not mandatory, the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) strongly recommends drivers also purchase underinsured/uninsured motorist coverage. While the minimum coverage elements come into play if you cause an accident, underinsured/uninsured coverage protects you if another driver causes an accident with your vehicle and does not have enough coverage to pay for your damages.
While filing an insurance claim may sound straightforward, the reality is that it is never pleasant or easy to deal with most insurance companies. These organizations exist to turn a profit, and paying out on claims loses money for them, so they generally try anything and everything they can to reduce or deny claims whenever possible. Having an experienced attorney on your side when you file an auto insurance claim will significantly reduce the chances of experiencing any undue pushback against your claim. If you believe an insurer has engaged in any bad faith tactics in the handling of your claim, your attorney can help you address these issues too.
How Can an Attorney Help?
Insurance is only the first step in recovering your losses after a car accident. While an attorney could provide valuable assistance during the insurance claim process, if you suffered severe injuries and substantial economic losses, it is very likely that you will need to pursue additional legal action beyond your insurance claim. Even if fault for your car accident in Orange County seems perfectly clear, it is always best to have legal counsel on your side as you begin a civil claim.
Proving fault for your car accident is crucial if you want to succeed with your personal injury claim. You and your attorney will need to identify the defendant or defendants responsible for causing your accident, prove the accident resulted because of their negligence, and provide a complete accounting of your resulting damages.
Chris and Frank are a team of experienced Orange County personal injury attorneys who have years of experience assisting clients with complex car accident claims. A car accident is capable of causing devastating injuries that demand expensive medical treatment and cause tremendous pain. These injuries often require substantial recovery time, during which you may be unable to work and earn income for your family. When you account for these compounded financial losses, it’s easy to feel uncertain and distressed about the situation. Hiring the right attorney can help you approach this situation confidently, allowing you and your family to focus on recovery with peace of mind knowing your case is in trustworthy hands.
If you are ready to take legal action after a car accident in Orange County, Chris and Frank can help. Contact us today to schedule a consultation with our team and learn more about the legal services we can provide after a car accident in Anaheim.