Have you recently been injured in a Santa Monica car accident? Contact Citywide Law Group today to learn about the benefits of filing a personal injury claim for damages. Our experienced Santa Monica car accident attorneys understand how important a settlement or award can be when you’re dealing with an unexpected injury.
The money you receive can go a long way to help with your physical, emotional, and financial recovery. We have been fighting to help injured clients just like you for nearly two decades, and we are confident that we can help you, too. Call us today to request a free consultation and learn more.
Santa Monica Car Accident Statistics
California’s roads are more crowded than ever before. Many attribute the congestion to the thriving economy. A bustling economy means more jobs, which means that more people are commuting to work. The thriving economy also means that people have some disposable income, which encourages traveling and sightseeing. While busy roads are great for the state’s bottom line, they can also be incredibly dangerous. The number of fatal car accidents in California has been steadily rising over the past few years. Santa Monica is no exception.
In 2015, there were 825 car accidents in Santa Monica resulting in injury or death. This was an increase of 8 percent from the number of accidents in 2014. Early reports indicate that the number will be even higher for 2016. Car accidents in Santa Monica are also more likely to involve other types of vehicles and pedestrians. In 2015, nearly 10 percent of all injury-causing accidents involved pedestrians, while motorcyclists accounted for an additional 7 percent of accidents. A whopping 13 percent of these accidents involved bicyclists.
Causes of Santa Monica Car Accidents
The thriving economy is one explanation for the rise in car accidents in and around Santa Monica. However, congested roadways are not the primary cause of these accidents. Car accidents happen when something goes wrong. Driver error, malfunctioning equipment, or hazardous weather conditions can all be contributing factors in a crash. Some of the most commonly reported causes of car accidents in Santa Monica include:
- Texting and driving
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Fatigued driving
- Aggressive driving
- Failure to signal
- Failure to yield
- Limited visibility of pedestrians and bicyclists
- Dangerous road conditions, and
- Defective cars.
Why Should I Hire a Santa Monica Car Accident Attorney?
You’re filing a personal injury claim because you want to recover compensation from the person who is responsible for your car accident injury. If you want to make the most of your claim and maximize the compensation you receive, you should hire an experienced attorney to handle your case. Here’s why.
You’ve Got a Lot On Your Plate
Car accident injuries can be extremely painful and demand a long road to recovery. You may be overwhelmed with the physical pain of your injury, worn down from the constant treatment, and stressed out about your current financial situation. You need to focus your time and energy on yourself. Hiring an attorney to handle your case gives you the time and space necessary to accomplish this.
Level the Playing Field
When you decide to file a claim you’ll likely be going up against the negligent party’s insurance company. This company will be represented by an attorney who will know how to manipulate a stressful situation and convince you to accept a lowball offer. Hiring an attorney removes any advantage the insurance company once had and puts you on a level playing field. Your attorney will know which tactics the insurer will try to use and be able to stay one step ahead. If the insurance company is represented by a legal professional, you should be, too.
Valuing the Claim Can Be Tough
How much is your car accident claim worth? Unless you want to rely on an insurance company’s evaluation, it will be important to have your own analysis done. Hiring an attorney will help to make sure that your claim is valued properly and that you are fairly compensated for your injuries.
Liability for Car Accidents in Santa Monica
In California, anyone who contributes to the cause of a car accident can be held financially responsible for injuries. If more than one person is at-fault, each will be held responsible to the degree they caused the accident. Car accidents can happen for many reasons and, as a result, there can be many different potentially liable parties.
Drivers: Drivers on the road have a duty to obey local traffic laws and drive with caution. Breaching this obligation can be very dangerous. When a driver displays unsafe driving behaviors they can be held financially responsible for injuries that result.
Employers: Employers have an obligation to make sure that their employees drive safely. Employers must also make sure that any company cars are properly maintained and inspected. If you’re injured by someone who is on the clock you may be able to hold their employer accountable.
Manufacturers: Companies that put cars out on the road can be held strictly liable for any injuries caused by dangerous defects. If a company designed, manufactured, or sold a defective car, and that defect caused an injury or death, that company may be financially responsible.
Government: Dangerous road conditions put everyone at risk. If the government knew (or should have known) about a dangerous road condition, but failed to take corrective action, it may be liable for damages.
In California, you can recover damages even if you are also partially responsible for your injuries. Any compensation must simply be reduced by your own degree of fault. So, if you are 25 percent at-fault for your injuries, any damages you can recover must be reduced by 25 percent.
Statute of Limitations for Santa Monica Car Accident Cases
If you or someone you know has been injured in a Santa Monica car accident you may be entitled to compensation. However, you have a limited amount of time to file a personal injury claim. California requires injured accident victims to file a claim for damages within two years of the date of an accident. If you do not file your claim before the statute of limitations expires you will be prevented from getting the money you need.
There are very limited exceptions to this regulation. The statute of limitations may be tolled if:
- You don’t discover your injury right away
- You are under the age of 18 at the time of the accident, or
- The defendant is in jail or cannot be found.
Experienced Santa Monica Car Accident Attorney
At Citywide Law Group, we are ready to help you fight for the money you need and deserve after a Santa Monica car accident. Our attorneys have over 17 years of experience handling complex car accident claims. During this time, we have recovered millions in life-changing compensation for our clients. We understand how important this money can be after an accident, which is why we fight aggressively to maximize any award you receive. Call us today to request a free consultation with our Santa Monica car accident attorneys. We will review your case, determine the best strategy for your case, and answer any questions you have.