Stockton Car Accident and Personal Injury Lawyer
Stockton is home to more than 300,000 people and has several life-blood highways passing through it, including State Route 99, State Route 4, and Interstate 5. These highways allow millions of vehicles every day to travel up and down the west coast and from Stockton to San Francisco and back. With so many cars on the road, accidents are inevitable.Car Accidents in Stockton
On average there is a fatal auto accident in Stockton once every few weeks. In late February of 2016, a 31-year-old man was killed when his vehicle crashed into a tree on Robert Road. One month before that, in January, a 53-year-old man was killed on Farmington Road while riding his bicycle in an apparent hit-and-run. And in early October 2015, a 16-year-old boy was killed in another hit-and-run on Highway 4 in East Stockton. Nonfatal accidents are even more common, causing countless injuries, and millions of dollars in damage to personal property.
After a vehicle accident in Stockton, injured individuals and their families often need resources and support. No matter how drastic or severe the collision, it's difficult to recover from the injuries while also dealing with medical bills, damaged property, and insurance claims. Fatal accidents are even more of a burden on families and loved ones as they deal with these problems while coping with their loss.
A car accident lawyer who is familiar with Stockton is a huge benefit in each and every case, especially when it comes to dealing with auto insurance companies.Stockton Personal Injury Lawyer
Selecting a Stockton injury lawyer is not an easy task. There are thousands of personal injury attorneys and auto accident attorneys in California, many of whom offer to accept cases in Stockton.
A few things for you to consider:
- Select an attorney that cares about you, your family, and your needs.
- Choose a lawyer that practices personal injury law exclusively
- Make sure the lawyer has a history of taking cases to trial if necessary.
- Pick an attorney with a proven history of high verdicts and settlements.
For more tips on selecting an attorney to represent you, read Tips to finding a great personal injury lawyer, or watch the video I made on YouTube.We Handle All Types of Personal Injuries
My law firm handles all types of personal injury claims, especially auto accidents involving cars, trucks, motorcycles, and SUVs. We also represent clients in Stockton involved in:
- bicycle accidents
- farm accidents
- motorcycle accidents
- pedestrian accidents
- truck accidents
- brain injuries
- dog bites
- wrongful death
We work for you and your case to get the best outcome for you possible. My firm is known as the "personal" personal injury law firm because we take the time to get to know you, your background, your hopes and your dreams. We take satisfaction in helping you and your family find positives in what could otherwise be a medical, emotional and economic disaster. That said, here is a little more information about us.
- I have been handling ONLY personal injury cases since 1982.
- I believe in a holistic approach to personal injury cases.
- Our staff is like a family here.
- I am a member of Consumer Attorney's of California, The Million Dollar Advocates, The Brain Injury Association of California as well as the Capital City Trial Lawyers Association.
- You can see our ratings on Yelp and Avvo.
- I've written several books on personal injury law including The Ultimate California Auto Injury Handbook and The California Motorcycle Accident Handbook.
- Here are some of our past verdicts and settlements.
- To see all of our testimonials, please go to our testimonials page.
Stockton has always had a deep resonance in my heart. When I attended Law School, I worked almost full time at my first legal job as a law clerk at the Stockton County Counsel's Office.
I was lucky to have some great attorney's there who took me under their wing and taught me Trial Law. Mike Garrison, who later became a San Joaquin County judge taught me much. Pat Friedrich was another great Stockton Lawyer who tutored me.
I worked several years in the San Joaquin County Counsel's Office and learned the ins and outs of San Joaquin County from experts. That knowledge has served me well as my legal career progressed.
I've worked many cases in Stockton with the world-famous mediator, Dan Quinn. I've handled every kind of personal injury case imaginable in San Joaquin County, from cases involving drunken boaters in the Delta to chain collisions in the fog on I5.
I also fell in love with a Stockton girl who forever changed my life. I really do love Stockton and Stocktonians.
I love to eat at the Market Tavern or the Abby Trappist Pub and drive down to visit often. Yes, my office is located in Sacramento some 45 minutes away but if you come up here and tell me about your case. I'll give you straight advice that other, less experienced lawyers can't offer, and I'd never invite you to visit me up here without buying you lunch! I like to talk while I eat, that's how I learned to do it in Brooklyn.Stockton FAQs
When should I call a Stockton personal injury lawyer after a car accident?
It is best to call an experienced personal injury lawyer almost immediately. While you will need immediate medical care, it’s best to consult an experienced lawyer first because most doctors are biased and do work for the insurance industry. You want a doctor who is fully in your corner and will help you get well. An experienced personal injury lawyer will know doctors who may have a bias. The at-fault driver will have likely notified his or her insurance company about the accident right after it had happened. Their insurance company will try to contact you to get a statement about the accident and any injuries you may have sustained. It’s crucial that you don’t make a statement until you have consulted with an attorney. The insurance company is not looking out for your best interest. They don’t care about your injuries, they only care about protecting their profits by settling with you for as little as possible. You will need an attorney on your side to handle the negotiations with the insurance company, so you don’t end up accepting a low settlement that barely covers all your medical expenses. The second reason why you should call a lawyer right away is because of the statute of limitations. In California, you have two years from the accident date to file a claim against the at-fault party. If it involves a governmental entity, local, state, or federal, you only have six months. If you don’t file a claim within that time frame, you will be barred forever from being brought to court and will miss your chance of recovering the compensation that you deserve.
How do I choose the right Stockton personal injury attorney for my case?
It can sometimes be difficult to tell if someone is a good personal injury lawyer. However, here are some tips to help you find the right lawyer for your case. First, check the attorney’s ratings and reviews on third-party sites like Google, Yelp, and Avvo. Check the ratings but really read what the reviews are saying. Learning how an attorney was able to assist former clients will help you understand how he or she can serve you. You should also look into client testimonials. Reviewing former client testimonials will give you insights into the skills and knowledge of the attorney and his or her staff. Next, look to see if the attorney is dedicated to his or her selected field. You do not want a lawyer who is a Jack-of-all-trades. The lawyer you select should not be doing DUI and criminal defense or real estate. Finally, look at the lawyer’s past verdict and settlements. You want someone with the capability to obtain a large verdict or settlement if you are seriously injured.
Should I admit fault in a car accident?
No, don't admit fault in an accident, not even partial fault. You may not be aware of all the factors or circumstances that may have occurred in the short time leading up to the accident. For example, if the other driver was later found texting and driving right before the accident but you had already admitted fault, it may be more challenging to file a claim against the other driver to get a fair settlement. The best thing to do is to provide a true statement to the police but don't assume what has caused the accident.Stockton Car Accident and Personal Injury Attorney
I'm Ed Smith, a Stockton Car Accident and Personal Injury Lawyer. I have been serving the people of Stockton, California since 1982. If you or a loved one has been involved in a car accident or sustained a personal injury, contact our office right away for free, friendly advice at 209-227-1931 or 800.404.5400.
See a list of our previous verdicts and settlements.
If you need a personal injury lawyer, who knows Stockton, loves Stockton, please give me a call.
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Editor’s Note: This page has been updated for accuracy and relevancy [cha 3.4.20]