CORONAVIRUS UPDATE: What We Are Doing to Protect Our Clients

Chico Car Accident and Personal Injury Lawyer


Chico is known as a cultural, educational, and economic center of the northern Sacramento Valley. It is home to California State University, Chico, and is also home to the beautiful Bidwell Park, one of the country's largest city parks.  Even though the greater Chico area is home to nearly 100,000 residents, Chico has the ability to maintain that small-town feel and a real sense of community.

Motor Vehicle Accidents and Injuries in Chico

State Route 99 runs right through Chico, and as a major highway, it is not surprising that Chico residents are involved in a fair share of serious accidents while traveling on Highway 99. While some of these accidents involve only personal motor vehicles, other devastating accidents have included trucks, big rigs, other commercial vehicles, and sometimes even motorcycles.

Other motor vehicle accidents also occur often at some of the City’s busier intersections like 20th and Park Avenue, or Ninth and Maine. The intersection that has earned notoriety in the cycling community: East First Avenue and Oleander.

Top Causes of Motor Vehicle Collisions and Injuries

Auto accidents can result in serious injury or death. Some common causes of vehicular crashes include:

  • Another driver was inattentive to their surroundings. Oftentimes this is the case when someone is talking on their cell phone or texting while driving.
  • Someone was drunk or under the influence of drugs when they lost control of their vehicle or couldn’t properly operate their vehicle.
  • Another driver was exhausted yet still decided to get behind the wheel.
  • Someone else was driving too fast or inappropriately changing lanes during inclement weather.
  • Another motorist ran a red light or stoplight at the intersection. The other motorist was driving above the speed limit.
  • Your vehicle or the vehicle of another driver got a flat tire which caused the car to swerve out of control.

This list is not meant to be exhaustive, but it gives you an idea of what might have been or may be the cause of your accident. No matter what causes your accident, it is important to contact an experienced personal injury lawyer as soon as possible if you were seriously injured.

Serious injuries may include broken bones and fractures, traumatic brain and spine injuries, burns, cuts and lacerations, and even cases where the accident resulted in a death.

Other Types of Serious Personal Injury Cases

Our Chico law firm also handles catastrophic personal injury cases arising from:

  • Dog bites and other animal bites
  • Farming accidents
  • Cycling accidents
  • Pedestrian accidents
  • Sports and recreational accidents
  • All-terrain vehicle accidents
  • Slip and fall accidents
  • Accidents that result in wrongful death
  • Accidents that were caused by a dangerous or defective product
Why is Your Office in Sacramento?

We decided to take Chico cases and handle them from our Sacramento office because we know that there aren’t many Chico personal injury lawyers who can deal with a serious personal injury case.  Many personal injury lawyers in Chico either don’t have the experience or the resources necessary to handle a large personal injury case.  Sadly, poor economic times caused many good lawyers to move out of the area.

We have practiced exclusively in personal injury law since 1982. We have a long record of successful case settlements and verdicts.  We only take serious personal injury cases, like those where the client has suffered fractures, broken bones, head and brain trauma, or wrongful death. Clients come to Sacramento to meet with us out of a strong desire to work with a qualified and experienced personal injury lawyer who knows how to navigate through the injury claim process.

Can I Afford An Experienced Personal Injury Attorney?

If we’ve discussed your case and decide that it is a good case and that we are a good fit for each other, we will take your case on a contingency fee basis, meaning we don’t get paid until your case is won.

Contingency fee agreements are usually the norm with most personal injury lawyers, but realize that personal injury lawsuits can get expensive, with experts and investigations, and most personal injury lawyers don’t have the financial resources to prepare a big personal injury case and have the time necessary to bring it to trial.

On the other hand, our office has the financial resources and time to tackle a serious personal injury case and bring it to trial, so you don’t have to worry about any out-of-pocket expenses.

Our Sacramento office is about ninety miles from Chico, which is a little over an hour-and-a-half away.  If you have suffered serious and devastating injuries in an accident because of another’s negligent actions, and we think you are a good fit, we will pay for your gas from Chico to Sacramento and put you up in a hotel, so you don’t have a long ride both ways the same day.

The Personal “Personal Injury Lawyer”

We're known as the “personal” personal injury lawyer. We take the time to get to know you personally. This helps me to understand how your severe injuries have affected your life. It’s important for us to meet your family and friends. This way, we can better understand how your injuries have impacted the lives of those you support and hold dear.

We handle serious personal injury and wrongful death cases only. If your case does not involve these types of losses, we still want you to call us as we can likely help you locate an attorney who can help you with less serious injury cases.

Even if you decide not to select us as your Chico personal injury lawyer, please watch this video we've created on how to choose the right personal injury lawyer.

While choosing an injury lawyer is not easy, here are a few things you should keep in mind when selecting an accident attorney to handle your case:

  • Has the attorney made you feel as though he or she really cares about you, your case, and the serious injuries you have suffered? Or, do they sit on the other side of a high desk, looking down and speaking down to you?
  • Does the attorney practice only personal injury law? If the Chico auto accident attorney also takes criminal and family law cases, he or she may be a jack-of-all-trades and master of none.
  • Does the Chico car accident lawyer have trial experience? Can you verify this through client reviews and a long track record of high settlements and verdicts?
  • How does the lawyer’s office look? Is it decorated and furnished nicely? Do the Chico personal injury attorney and the staff members greet you with warmth and professionalism?
Chico Car Accident FAQ

Should I call you first if I’ve been in an auto accident in Chico?

If you have been seriously injured in an auto accident, it’s probably a good idea to call 911 first and then seek medical attention right away. Worry about yourself and others involved in the accident before worrying about retaining a lawyer. 

Even if you aren’t seriously injured in an auto accident. However, you believe you or another involved needs assistance, you may still want to call the Chico Police Department Dispatch Center, available 24 hours a day, at (530) 897-4900.

I live ninety miles away. Why should I hire you?

If you have been involved in an accident that has left you seriously injured, you don’t want just any lawyer handling your case. We have been handling personal injury cases since 1982, and we have a proven track record of success with our clients’ cases. 

While Chico is about ninety miles from Sacramento, and it is a long way to travel, especially for those who have sustained serious injuries, we can ensure you that by choosing me to represent you, you will receive the support and advocacy of a personable, dedicated team of people who will work tirelessly to obtain the results you deserve in your personal injury case.

Car Accident and Personal Injury Lawyers in Chico

I’m Ed Smith, a Chico personal injury attorney. If you or a loved one has suffered an injury after a motor vehicle accident in Chico or anywhere else in Butte County, call us at (530) 392-9400 or (800) 404-5400 for free, friendly case advice.

Read client reviews of our personal injury law firm on AvvoYelp, Google.

We're a member of the Million Dollar Forum and the National Association of Distinguished Counsel.

If you would like to learn more about the cases we've handled, go to our Verdicts and Settlements page.

Editor’s Note: This page has been updated for accuracy and relevancy [cha 3.26.21]

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Client Reviews
"Me and my wife; had a car accident. We were amazed how easy, professional, friendly attorney Ed Smith is along with his staff. Everybody is amazing. Thank you so much, we are very impressed!" Alex & Dinah M.
"Ed Smith and his office team took on a difficult personal injury case on my behalf and for the passenger in my car. Ed is a top- notch attorney. His staff couldn't have been more helpful and kind. No need to look elsewhere. I give Ed Smith my highest recommendation." Beverly
"Ed and Robert have been taking great care of my husband and I for the past 5+ years. They are always there when you have a problem and a quick resolution! Even when the issues have nothing to do with them. They are willing to help ease the pain off your shoulders. They are as good as it gets! Thank you again for everything." Annie T.
"Very professional. Great team, staff and service all around. Mr Smith was very honest, straight forward with his advice. He gives the word "attorney" an honest reputation. I will seek his council anytime, and would recommend him at the drop of a dime." Jeremy M.
"I would highly recommend Ed Smith to any friends or family in need of a personal injury attorney. Ed, and his staff, are very caring on top of being very experienced in this field. The staff always keeps you informed of the status of your case and they are always easy to reach by phone." Shannon D.
"Edward Smith law offices provide competent, thorough, and personable help for victims of personal injury. When you first meet the staff you know you contacted the right office. This law office treats clients like people. I recommend this office to anyone seeking representation regarding personal injury." David M.