Morada Car Accident and Personal Injury Lawyer
Morada is a census-designated place in San Joaquin County, and just under 3,800 residents call it home. Located along Highway 99 just north of Stockton, this makes it ideal for those commuting to Sacramento or the Bay Area for work. While it is a small town, Morada still sees its fair share of accidents.
When an incident is caused by the negligence of another, the injured party may be able to file a claim for personal injury to recover resulting losses.What Are Personal Injury Claims?
A personal injury is generally defined as the emotional, mental, or physical harm caused by the negligence of another. Our law office represents those seriously injured in various accidents including:
- Bicycle Collisions
- Car Accidents
- Dog Bites
- Motorcycle Crashes
- Pedestrian Accidents
- Premises Liability
- Products Liability
- Slip and Fall Accidents
- Traumatic Brain Injuries
- Trucking Collisions
- Wrongful Death
To recover compensation in a personal injury case, negligence must be proven on the part of another party or entity. Evidence of negligence to show liability must fall into the following four categories:
- Duty of Care: Evidence must prove that the negligent party owed a legal duty to an injured person.
- Breach of Duty: The personal injury lawsuit must show that the responsible individual breached that duty of care. In other words, the at-fault party breached reasonable standards for safety and failed to provide them to prevent foreseeable trauma to the other individual.
- Causation: The injured person must prove that the breach of duty caused their injuries.
- Damages: The injured person must demonstrate with documentation and evidence of personal injury damages to be able to request compensation. This accounting should include the emotional, physical and financial loss caused by the trauma suffered.
Damages in a personal injury claim are intended to offset losses suffered by a person injured in an accident. There are two types, economic and noneconomic. Economic damages provide reimbursement for expenses incurred as a result of an injury while noneconomic damages refer to the intangible harms caused by a car wreck. These include:
- Emotional Distress: After a severe car wreck, an injured person may experience emotional distress, which can present through the forms of humiliation, anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Evidence must be provided to prove the extent of emotional trauma to recover this damage.
- Loss of Consortium: When a debilitating injury causes damage to the marriage, the spouse of the injured party may be able to be compensated for the deprivation of assistance, care, comfort, love, moral support, protection, and society. The inability to have children and the loss of enjoyment of sexual relations may also be considered for compensation.
- Lost Wages: The time a person is forced to take off from work to recover from an injury or receive medical treatment may be claimed. This also includes reimbursement of sick time or vacation time used for rehabilitation. Evidence supporting the loss of pay, such as income statements before and after the accident or testimony from the employer must be presented for compensation.
- Loss of Earning Capacity: If a person is permanently disabled or unable to return to work due to the injury, then the loss of earning potential may be recovered. This can be supported by expert testimony from a vocational rehabilitation specialist. The expert will assess the medical limitations of the injured individual, conduct dexterity and cognitive tests, and evaluate the various employment requirements.
- Out of Pocket Expenses: These are not considered medical bills. Instead, they deal with reasonable and necessary expenses an injured person would have to make to heal or function appropriately. These include the costs of over-the-counter or prescription medication, and medical appliances such as wheelchairs, crutches, or walkers. Expenses for renovating a home to accommodate an injury or disability such as a ramp entrance may be compensated. The cost of travel to and from medical treatments may also be reimbursed.
- Pain and Suffering: No law dictates the amount of pain and suffering received in a personal injury claim. Instead, it is based upon factors such as the severity of the trauma, the amount of pain experienced, the period of recovery, and how the injury disrupted the injured person’s life. Since most of these factors are subjective, it can make it difficult to equate this type of damage.
- Property Damage: If personal property was damaged in an accident, the injured person might be eligible to collect compensation for the costs to repair or replace it. For instance, someone who was injured in a bicycle accident may be reimbursed for damage to his or her bike, glasses, or clothing. Cost estimates or receipts for each damaged item must be provided for reimbursement.
- Punitive Damages: These are rarely awarded in cases of negligence. However, an injured person may be able to recover punitive damages from the negligent party for acts of fraud, oppression, or malice. For instance, punitive damages may be recovered for car accident cases involving drunk driving.
California applies a system of comparative fault when assessing claims for personal injury. If an injured person shares partial liability in an accident, any compensation that is awarded would be reduced by the percentage of negligence apportioned to them. Insurance companies often use an injured person’s unfamiliarity with these situations to their advantage to diminish and devalue claims. If there is a disagreement with the insurance company regarding the assessment of liability in an accident, an injured person should consult with an experienced Morada personal injury attorney to discuss their legal options.Is There a Time Limit on Personal Injury Claims?
In California, a time limit is set on a person’s right to file a claim for damages. This is known as the statute of limitations. For personal injury and wrongful death, a claim must be filed within two years from the time of loss. In cases of government negligence, the statute is shortened to 180 days or 6 months from the date of the accident. If an injured person is unsure how long they have to file, an experienced Morada auto accident attorney can help by reviewing the details of the case and ensure the claim is filed within the deadline.How to Find the Right Lawyer
Having the right Morada car accident lawyer to represent your case can be the difference between securing a favorable recovery or suffering financial hardships following a collision. You want to retain a lawyer who practices personal injury law exclusively and has a proven history of successful verdicts and settlements. You also want to work with an attorney that you feel comfortable discussing the details of your claim with and has the resources to take your case to court, if necessary. To decide whether an attorney is a good fit for you, you can browse reviews of their practice on Avvo, Google, and Yelp. The following video also contains useful suggestions on what to look for in an injury lawyer.What Happens if I Can’t Afford a Morada Personal Injury Lawyer?
Legal fees can be daunting. However, most injury lawyers handle cases on a contingency basis. This means an injured individual can focus on recovering from their injuries without worrying about paying upfront fees to hire an injury attorney. A fee will only be required if a successful outcome is obtained in the case.Morada Car Accident and Personal Injury Lawyer
I’m Ed Smith, a Morada car accident and personal injury lawyer. Being injured in an accident is devastating, regardless of the circumstances. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident caused by the fault of someone else, I am here to provide you free, friendly case advice. Please feel free to contact me anytime at (209) 227-1931 or toll-free at (800) 404-5400.
Image Source: By "Aleksejs Bergmanis" via Pexels
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Editor’s Note: This page has been updated for accuracy and relevancy [cha 12.23.19]