Car accidents are a leading cause of death and injury throughout the United States each year. Every state faces unique challenges when it comes to motor vehicle accidents and their resulting damages. California is notorious as one of the worst states for driving for several reasons, including a very high rate of uninsured drivers and surging traffic accident rates over the past several years.
If you drive in the Los Angeles area, reviewing recently published accident statistics can make you more aware of the risks you face on the roads in the area. Accidents may happen unexpectedly, but regardless of how an accident occurs, the victim must know their options for legal recourse that can help them recover. Amendt Law is a team of experienced attorneys who have helped many past clients secure appropriate compensation for car accident damages, and we can put this experience to work in your accident case.
2022 was one of the deadliest years for traffic fatalities in Los Angeles, with 312 people dying in fatal crashes in the city. This was the highest yearly death toll for vehicle crashes in 20 years, a 5% increase from 2021’s fatal accident total and a 30% increase from 2020’s fatal vehicle accident rate. In 2021, there were more than 40,000 vehicle crashes reported in Los Angeles County alone, making the area one of the most dangerous for drivers throughout the state.
Accident data from various government sources and independent organizations can help drivers understand the risks they face on the road. These reports can also help drivers know the behaviors that would be most likely to result in them incurring liability for other drivers’ damages. While you cannot always predict how other motorists will behave around you in Los Angeles, you can uphold your own duty of care to drive responsibly, so you do not incur liability for someone else’s damages.
All Los Angeles drivers must be aware of the most common causes of motor vehicle accidents so they can lower their risk of causing one. According to the most recent accident data from various sources, a few of the most common causes of motor vehicle crashes in Los Angeles include:
No matter how a motor vehicle accident happens, the at-fault driver will face civil liability for any damages they cause as well as potential criminal prosecution. Therefore, determining the cause of your recent accident will be an important first step in securing the compensation you need to recover your losses.
Any car accident has the potential to cause one or more serious injuries. A few of the most commonly reported car accident injuries in the Los Angeles area include broken bones, facial and dental injuries, and injuries to the internal organs. In addition, drivers are likely to suffer many minor cuts, scrapes, and bruises from a crash, even at low to moderate speeds.
Soft tissue injuries can also occur from any car accident. A soft tissue injury is any injury to the muscle, ligaments, or tendons of the body. For example, whiplash is very likely whenever a crash occurs, and this condition is characterized by damage to the soft tissues in the neck, shoulders, and upper back.
Catastrophic injuries are likely to occur whenever a car accident occurs at high speed. Traumatic brain injury is the most commonly cited fatal injury in Los Angeles and throughout the state. This type of injury occurs whenever crash impact forces damage the victim’s brain. While some people who suffer traumatic brain injuries are able to make nearly full recoveries, others are not as fortunate and suffer a host of medical complications from these incidents. They can also develop permanent disabilities.
State law requires every driver to have auto insurance, but the state has the highest rate of uninsured and underinsured drivers in the country. When another driver has caused an accident with your vehicle, you can file a claim against their insurance, but if they do not have insurance, you will need to proceed directly to a personal injury claim if you want to hold them accountable for the damages they caused.
An experienced Los Angeles car accident attorney can help an injured driver file an insurance claim and maximize their claim settlement. While all insurance companies are legally required to handle claims in good faith, every claim they pay to settle diminishes profits. Unfortunately, this encourages some insurance company representatives to engage in unethical tactics to coerce injured claimants into accepting the lowest settlement offers possible. They will also look for any justifications to deny claims entirely, often leaving claimants wondering how they can secure the compensation they are rightfully owed.
When a car accident victim has experienced legal counsel on their side, they are far less likely to encounter any bad faith handling of their insurance claim. The right attorney can help a client file their demand letter to an at-fault driver’s insurance company, review the at-fault driver’s insurance policy, and ensure that their client receives the fairest possible settlement from the insurer.
Whether you could not file an insurance claim against an uninsured driver or your claim did not yield full compensation for your damages, you may need to prepare for a personal injury case against the defendant. Under state law, the plaintiff in a personal injury case can seek compensation from the defendant for:
Thousands of accidents occur in Los Angeles County each year, many of them resulting in serious injuries and some resulting in fatalities. If you experienced an accident and you know that another driver is to blame, the team at Amendt Law is ready to assist you in your recovery efforts.
A: The fatal vehicle accident rate in the state is relatively close to the national average, but Los Angeles is one of the most dangerous areas for driving due to the sheer number of motorists on the road at any given time. Over the past few years, traffic accidents and fatalities have surged in Los Angeles and across Los Angeles County. Therefore, all drivers in the area and anyone visiting Los Angeles for business or pleasure should use caution at all times and drive defensively to lower their risk of experiencing an accident.
A: It is impossible for any driver to accurately anticipate the actions of other drivers around them at all times. As a result, even the most experienced and cautious drivers can suffer tremendous injuries in accidents that occur unexpectedly. While you may not be able to do anything to reduce the risk of another driver causing an accident with you, you can take steps to reduce your own risk of causing an accident. Regular vehicle maintenance, defensive driving, and careful attention behind the wheel are just a few ways you can reduce the chances of facing liability for another driver’s damages.
A: California uses the fault system for resolving car accident cases, meaning the driver at fault for a crash assumes liability for all the resulting damages. All drivers are required by state law to have auto insurance that provides bodily injury liability coverage and property damage liability coverage. Therefore, if another driver hits you, you can file a claim against their auto insurance policy to seek compensation for the losses they inflicted. However, if this is not enough to fully repay your damages, you would need to file a personal injury claim against the at-fault driver.
A: If you have recently lost a member of your family in a fatal car accident caused by a specific driver, State law allows you to pursue a wrongful death claim against the at-fault driver. This type of civil suit is similar to a personal injury claim in several ways, but it will require the assistance of an experienced wrongful death attorney if you want to reach the best possible outcome as swiftly as possible.
A: While no law requires you to hire legal counsel after a car accident in Los Angeles, doing so will significantly improve the results you reach in all of the recovery efforts you pursue. Your attorney can help file your auto insurance claim and maximize your claim payout, and if this is not sufficient to fully cover your losses, you will need their help to file a personal injury claim against the at-fault driver. Reliable legal counsel is an invaluable asset for any injured driver in Los Angeles.
Amendt Law has helped many Los Angeles area drivers overcome the damages inflicted by others. Whether your recent accident occurred because of negligence behind the wheel or any form of intentional misconduct, it is crucial that you have an experienced car accident lawyer so you can reach the best outcome possible in your recovery efforts. Contact Amendt Law today and schedule a consultation with our team to learn more about the professional legal services we provide.