When Should You Get a Lawyer for a Car Crash in California

Car accidents are one of the leading causes of preventable death in the US, and a cause of concern for Orange County residents. One in three car crashes in the US involve drunk driving and speeding, and more than 2 million people are injured in car accidents per year. California is a beautiful place to live with nice weather and entraining locations, it also has its downsides.

The Golden State has one of the worst driving safety rates in the US, so if you plan to visit or decide to live there it’s recommended you stay informed about driver’s safety and when is the right time to call a lawyer.

When to call a lawyer?

The statute of limitations to file a lawsuit in California is two years from the date of the accident, and the legal representation needs to come from a lawyer who has jurisdiction to practice law in this state. Even if you live out of state, you’ll still need to hire a lawyer residing in California. It’s good to be informed of some of the top intersections with the most accidents including Costa Mesa, Santa Ana, Huntington Beach, and others.

For example, if you suffered a car accident in Costa Mesa, regardless of how severe it was, almost everyone involved has to deal with insurance companies and claims. For serious injuries or fatal crashes, a Costa Mesa personal injury lawyer is needed to help you file a rightful personal injury claim. The claim is important to get compensation for the injuries sustained from the accident. Also, drivers in CA are required to have PIP (Personal Injury Protection) coverage, and the victim of the accident must file an insurance claim to receive compensation.

California car accident laws

As someone who drives a motor vehicle, you must get familiarized with California car accident laws. California has a variety of laws that apply in case of a car crash, and the laws determine when a lawsuit must be filed, how insurance claims are handled, and what damages are available. There are a few state law requirements motorists involved in a crash should follow including stopping at the scene of the accident, checking if anyone is injured, offering aid to injured people, and exchanging information with the other drivers.

California vehicle codes require the driver of the vehicle involved in a car crash or their representative, to make a written report about the accident to the California Highway Patrol or the police department if the accident resulted in injury or death within 24 hours. If a law enforcement officer was present at the scene, they will prepare the written report so you won’t have to file a separate one. Another code requires anyone involved in a car crash to report an accident to the DMV within 10 days if it involved the death of a person, injury, or property damage.

Common causes of accidents

Most car collisions are caused by either reckless behavior or negligence of one of the parties. Speeding and drunk driving are among the most common causes of accidents in California. The reason for speeding may be because many people work two or more jobs, or they have to juggle work, family, and social activities in 24 hours. This is why many motorists go over the speed limit, to be able to get where they need to go on time. Note that the speed limit is 65 MPH on highways, and 55 MPH on two-lane highways.

Impaired driving, meaning driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs is among the most dangerous causes of accidents in the world. In the state of California, it is illegal for people over the age of 21 to operate a vehicle with a BAC (Blood Alcohol Consumption) level of 0.8% or higher. Distracted driving, for example, has become a leading cause of accidents in other countries, too. When driving, the attention should be on the road instead of your passengers or mobile phone. Also, sleep-deprived people find it difficult to concentrate on the road, and often get into car accidents.

In closing

Although not all car accidents require the services of a lawyer, it’s good to be informed and consult with one if you’ve never experienced such situations. Also, if you are regularly on the road, you should keep up with the latest news about road conditions and other things that might interfere with your safety while driving. Although reducing car crash deaths has been one of the greatest public health achievements for the US, there are still over 32.000 people killed each year from motor vehicle accidents.


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