Frequently Asked Questions | Law Offices Of Steve Gimblin
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Frequently Asked Questions

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Chico Car accident lawyer

Personal Injury FAQs

When you’ve been involved in an accident of any kind, it can be overwhelming, and you might be unsure of what to do next. Our personal injury FAQs aim to help you with answers to some of the most common questions you may have in this situation.

You can contact our skilled personal injury lawyers at any time, but meanwhile, here are the answers to questions you likely have.

What does “personal injury” mean?

When you have been harmed by an individual or entity because of a careless, purposefully wrong act, you may be able to file a personal injury claim.

Personal injuries can range from a physical injury sustained in a road accident to mental anguish brought on by someone defaming or maligning you.

Some examples of a personal injury case are:

  • Car accidents
  • Truck accident
  • Uber or Lyft accidents
  • Slip and fall accidents
  • Wrongful death
  • Motorbike accidents

Keep in mind that these are only a handful of examples and you may be entitled to file a personal injury claim in other cases, too. Consult an experienced personal injury attorney to understand whether you have a case or not.

Is there a time limit for filing a personal injury claim or lawsuit?

The deadlines for bringing legal action in each state are known as statutes of limitations. You have a limited amount of time to file a lawsuit before you lose your ability to pursue a claim

The California statute of limitations varies according to the kind of personal injury case. The statute of limitations for most personal injuries is two years from the time the injury occurred, however, there are a few exceptions.

These exceptions could mean you have a longer time limit but could also mean you have a shorter time limit such as 6 months. Contact your personal injury lawyer immediately to avoid missing the deadline to file a claim.

How will the insurance provider assess car damage?

Vehicle damage is typically inspected by a competent adjuster or appraiser. After conducting the initial inspection, the adjuster or appraiser drafts an estimate. The shop will get in touch with the insurer to request authorization for any additional repair costs if additional damage is discovered during the repairs.

Remember that the insurance company might dispatch an adjuster to evaluate the new damages. Instead, the business might request that you share competitive repair estimates if the destruction is relatively minor.

Remember, once you are happy with the final assessment and repair facility, it’s your duty to authorize and allow the business to repair your car.

What is a comparative fault and how does it affect my case?

In California, the fault system is comparative. This implies that if the claimant was in any way responsible for the damages, the amount of the compensation would be diminished in proportion to their share of the blame.

For example, the courts decide that the claimant was 20% at fault and the accused was 80% at fault for the injury. In this case, the claimant would be given an award that is 20% lower than what the actual damages would have been.

The insurance company has made a settlement offer but I’m not sure if the compensation is fair. What should I do?

Insurance providers frequently make ridiculously low settlement offers in an effort to persuade the injured person to accept a sum that is far below what they actually require. You’ll require money after a severe injury to pay for medical treatment and time away from work. Never, however, consent to the insurance company’s initial offer before consulting a personal injury lawyer. This is due to various factors.

First off, an attorney might be able to help you get much more money. Additionally, you might not immediately be aware of the scope of your needs. Making sure you receive the sum you require and deserve is important because accepting a settlement typically means giving up the right to later seek additional compensation from the insurance provider.

How much compensation am I entitled to in a personal injury case?

Unfortunately, without first having you discuss your situation with a lawyer, it is impossible to determine the exact value of your case. The value of your claim will depend on the circumstances surrounding your case, including the severity of your injuries and the expense of your medical care.

It also depends on whether you required time off work, whether you became disabled, whether you experienced mental health problems (like PTSD) as a result of the incident, and more.

What can I receive as compensation in a personal injury claim?

The only available remedy in a case involving personal injury is money.

When you register a personal injury claim, a portion of your claim will include a demand for “damages,” or the money the defendant must pay you if you prevail. Depending upon the amount you’ve lost, your lawyer can assist you in determining how much compensation you must demand.

Making the plaintiff “whole” is the cornerstone of personal injury law. It aims to put you back in the place you would have been in if the disaster hadn’t occurred. The court accomplishes this by granting financial compensation for any costs related to the injury.

Damages can be economic or non-economic. You may also be able to claim punitive damages depending on the specifics of your case. Your personal injury attorney will be able to help you understand the full scope of your claims.

What are punitive damages?

Punitive damages are meant to hold a defendant accountable for particularly offensive actions. Owing to the judicial system’s lack of a criminal court’s emphasis on punitive action, these are unusual. A company that caused the harm is typically held accountable for punitive damages.

In addition to being a punishment, it’s also meant to be a disincentive to that business and others so they won’t behave in such a manner going forward.

The claimant must show that the defendant acted with malice, oppression, or fraud in order to be awarded punitive damages in California. Your personal injury attorney can help you with this if your case qualifies for punitive damages.

Truck Accidents FAQs

Being involved in a truck accident is stressful enough without the complications of dealing with legal and insurance matters. Our truck accidents FAQs aim to help you with answers to some of the most common questions you may have in such a situation.

You can contact our skilled truck accident lawyers at any time to seek help with your case. In the meantime, here are the answers to questions you likely have.

Who is at fault if the accident is caused by a truck hitting a car?

It can be challenging to determine who is at fault in truck accidents. Here are a few questions to think about when figuring out the fault:

  • Who was in the driver’s seat?
  • Was the trucker going too fast?
  • Did the driver disregard a stop sign or a light?
  • Was the turn made by the driver unlawful?
  • Did the weather play a role in the accident?
  • Has the accident occurred on a road with poor conditions?

These and other questions can assist in identifying the problem. A knowledgeable California truck accident lawyer can offer expert analysis of the collision and assist in determining who is most likely to be at fault.

How is a truck accident different from a car accident?

Although all vehicle collisions can be classified as “accidents,” the intensity of the accidents and the injuries that result from them can vary greatly. Given the size and speed differences between cars and trucks, crashes involving trucks typically result in rollovers, underride collisions, multi-vehicle pileups, and a greater risk of severe injuries.

Do I need to file a police report immediately if I’m involved in a truck accident?

Yes. Heavy truck accidents can be extremely serious. You will have a formal accident report with all the details if you have a police officer look into your accident. Accident reports from the police can be important sources of proof after an incident. These reports are frequently used by insurance companies to decide on whether or what amount of compensation to give accident victims.

However, before you call the police, you must ensure that you and everyone else involved in the accident are safe. If anyone needs medical attention, call emergency services first.

I’m not able to reach the trucking company since my accident. What can I do?

After a truck accident, finding trucking companies can often be challenging. Even if you are aware of the trucking company’s contact details like its phone number or email address, it’s possible they are trying to dodge your emails or calls. Please get in touch with our law firm right away if the trucking company brings any resistance. We know where to find them and how to prosecute them for their crimes.

The trucking company offered a settlement to me. Should I take it?

Before accepting any compensation for your truck accident, you should always speak with a lawyer. What initially appears to be a fair offer may not even be adequate to compensate for the true costs of your truck crash. For this reason, it’s wise to consult with legal counsel before you sign or consent to accept a settlement agreement. Accepting a settlement offer frequently means giving up the chance to pursue additional compensation for your accident in the future.

The money offered to me by the insurance company does not cover all my damages. Can I negotiate for a higher amount?

Yes. Insurance companies and trucking firms do not want crash victims to realize that they possess the right to ask for more compensation following their accident. Rather, they anticipate that accident victims will accept the first financial settlement they are given. But in fact, after your truck accident, you can — and should — negotiate for more money. This is due to the fact that most truck accidents end up costing much more than most people anticipate.

An individual may be financially affected by a truck accident for years or even their entire life. Don’t gamble away your future. Contact us now to negotiate the full compensation you deserve. We can negotiate on your behalf to make sure you receive the money you require to rebuild your life.

What kind of damages can I claim in case I’ve been in a truck accident?

If you were hurt in a traffic collision but weren’t at fault for it (or were only partly responsible), you have the right to sue for damages under the law. If you are not able to work until your full recovery, your claim may also include reimbursement for the costs of your medical care, testing, physiotherapy, and rehabilitation. You can also claim compensation for lost wages and diminished earning potential in case you are permanently or temporarily disabled.

You may also file a claim for compensation if you have experienced suffering and pain (physical or psychological). A claim is also possible in case of deformities, inconvenience, loss of consortium, or a deteriorated marital relationship. Punitive damages may also be sought if you can demonstrate that the truck driver’s employer engaged in blatant negligence.

I was not physically hurt in the truck accident. Do I still need to see a doctor?

Yes. It’s possible that you have a serious injury and are unaware of it until a doctor examines you. Never attempt a diagnosis on your own. Let the experts handle it. Even though an EMT or another person at the site of the collision said you were fine, make a follow-up consultation with your physician. A traumatic brain injury (TBI) or whiplash can sometimes take several days to manifest itself.

Car Accidents FAQs

When you’ve been involved in a car accident, it can be overwhelming, and you might be unsure of what to do next. Our car accidents FAQs aim to help you with answers to some of the most common questions you may have in this situation.

You can contact our skilled car accident lawyers at any time, but meanwhile, here are the answers to questions you likely have.

What’s the process after filing a claim with my insurance company?

Your insurance provider will get in touch with you to get more specific information about the loss and might even ask for a recorded or written statement. Sometimes it is possible to ask for an investigation under oath. Other motorists and witnesses could also be approached as a result of the investigation. You must present proof of your loss if you have a claim for uninsured motorist coverage or medical payments.

The insurance company hasn’t contacted me. What should I do?

Once you notify the company of your losses, a claim representative ought to get in touch with you as soon as is reasonable. The insurance company may not get in touch with you for up to 15 days, though, depending on the situation. Contact your insurance agent or provider for help if you don’t hear back from anyone. Call the Department of Insurance if they are unresponsive or if you think there has been an excessive delay in the resolution of your claim.

How will the insurance provider assess car damage?

Vehicle damage is typically inspected by a competent adjuster or appraiser. After conducting the initial inspection, the adjuster or appraiser drafts an estimate. The shop will get in touch with the insurer to request authorization for any additional repair costs if additional damage is discovered during the repairs. Remember that the insurance company might dispatch an adjuster to evaluate the new damages. Instead, the business might request that you share competitive repair estimates if the destruction is relatively minor. Remember, once you are happy with the final assessment and repair facility, it’s your duty to authorize and allow the business to repair your car.

Do I have the right to refuse to give a statement to an insurance provider?

Yes, you always have the right to decline to provide any information to the rival insurance provider. You might feel under pressure from the insurance agent to give a testimony, but you have every right to decline. You should speak with a reliable vehicle accident lawyer who can work to safeguard your best interest and help you achieve maximum compensation. This is because anything you say can and will be leveraged against you.

Who can I file a claim against in case of a car accident?

You have the legal right to file a lawsuit against EVERY party concerned. If more than one person or entity caused your losses, you can bring a lawsuit against each of them. For example, if you got hurt in a taxi collision, you can sue the company that employed the driver as well as the cab driver for negligence. Depending on the specifics of your accident, you might have a claim against the administration, the maker of your car, or other parties. To identify the responsible parties in your case, speak with an attorney.

Who is held responsible if my car accident happened due to bad roads?

Bad road conditions involve things like holes, eroded streets, missing street signs, handrails, building zones, slippery roads, an absence of street lights, and just generally bad construction. The organization in charge of maintaining the location in question is typically held responsible for the accident in vehicle accident cases involving poor road conditions. However, for your claim to be successful, that agency must have had “reasonable” time to find the poor road conditions and sufficient time to think about fixing them. There are also numerous other legal concerns. For instance, the time limit differs for injury claims brought against public bodies.

During your initial consultation, your vehicle accident attorney will go over all of these legal matters with you.

What does the term “comparative negligence” imply while assessing who is responsible for a car accident?

California accepts the concept of comparative negligence. The jurors will compare your actions with the defendant’s actions. This is done to establish who is responsible for the accident if you were involved in a collision while also being negligent in how you drove the car.

Therefore, even if you share some of the blame for the accident, you may still be entitled to compensation. But only if you can demonstrate that the defendant’s actions played a “substantial” role in its development. If you are found to be partially at fault, your financial recovery is diminished in proportion to your degree of fault.

Is it necessary to see a doctor after an accident even if I feel fine?

You should see a doctor as soon as you can, even though you feel fine. We’ve dealt with a lot of cases involving crash victims who initially believed they were fine but later discovered they had internal injuries that took some time to manifest. Your health must come first, and the best way to know for sure that you are healthy is to visit a doctor and have an examination.

It also aids in preserving your legal rights to seek medical attention right away. An insurance provider might contend that the injuries were sustained after the accident if you wait too long. They might also claim that since you put off undergoing treatment, you are partially accountable for your medical expenses.

What does “attorney-client privilege” mean in a car accident case?

According to the concept of attorney-client privilege, whatever legal details you share with your lawyer are strictly confidential, and the lawyer is not allowed to divulge them to anyone else. Your car accident lawyer is legally required to preserve all of your data confidentially, with a few limited exceptions unless you authorize the release of the information related to your case. Your lawyer can advise you of the legal exceptions to this privilege and how your information will be used in such cases.

Motorcycle Accidents FAQs

It can be stressful and difficult to know what to do after an accident, so let us help. Our motorcycle accident FAQs are here to assist you by offering solutions to a few of the most frequent questions you might have in this situation.

You can contact our experienced motorcycle accident lawyers at any time, but meanwhile, here are the answers to questions you most probably have.

Aren’t motorcyclists always blamed for road accidents?

Although there are numerous myths about motorcycle riders being rash drivers, insurance companies are aware that motorcycle accidents are frequently the fault of passenger vehicles. Additionally, drivers of cars and trucks frequently fail to watch out for motorbikes when switching lanes or turning, making them far more vulnerable to accidents involving these vehicles.

In any case, California’s comparative negligence law may allow you to receive financial compensation even if you contributed to your accident in some way. Depending on how at fault you were in the accident, the court may limit the amount of damages you are able to recover.

The first offer from the insurance provider seems reasonable. Should I accept it?

Once you report an accident, insurance providers might make a prompt settlement offer to pay your claims. Before you have a chance to learn more about the benefits you may gain from bringing a personal injury lawsuit, this is occasionally done to secure a release. It’s especially true when the amount of your claims could be significantly high.

Before accepting a settlement, consult with an experienced personal injury attorney to get a free assessment of your claims. You will learn what you stand to gain from working with a knowledgeable motorcycle accident lawyer to pursue compensation after an accident.

How does California’s lane splitting law affect my case?

Accidents can result from lane splitting due to the following reasons:

  • Two or more cars are moving in the immediate vicinity of the motorcycle.
  • Being so near the vehicles limits the motorcyclist’s maneuvering skills.
  • In stopped or slow-moving traffic, motorcycle riders frequently pass without the attention of car drivers.

Everybody has a different opinion on lane splitting. Due to this, it may be challenging to recover damages after a lane-splitting accident. A police officer’s or judge’s opinion regarding whether something is right/wrong can influence the outcome of a lawsuit, even in states like California, where doing so is not prohibited.

Do I have the right to refuse to give a statement to an insurance provider?

Yes, you always have the option to refuse to give the competing insurance provider any information. The insurance agent may put pressure on you to testify, however, you have all the rights to refuse. Consult with a reputable car accident attorney who can protect your interests and work to get you the most money possible. This is due to the fact that anything you say will be used against you.

How much is my motorcycle accident case worth?

The value of your case will depend on the type and severity of your injuries or loss of life, and how the accident has affected your life. For instance, whether you can work now or how much time you have missed at work. It also depends on other factors like the psychological strain the tragedy has had on you.

Our lawyers put together an estimate for your case in collaboration with you, your team of doctors, and other experts, and then we relentlessly pursue it.

Why do I need to retain my helmet after I was involved in a motorcycle accident?

Following a motorcycle accident, legal liability, injury extent, and injury cause are frequently disputed in court. To evaluate these claims, motorcycle accident attorneys frequently consult with an accident re-constructionist and a medical professional.

These experts can better understand how the accident happened and how it injured the motorcycle rider by seeing signs of damage to your helmet. Never throw away your helmet after a collision; keep it for this purpose even if it is broken or partially destroyed.

An experienced motorcycle attorney can help you deal with these situations and explain everything you need to know.

What does “comparative negligence” mean in terms of determining who is to blame for a motorcycle accident?

State law in California is based on comparative fault. This means that in a personal injury claim, the judge may decide that both the plaintiff and the defendant share some of the blame for the mishap. A final percentage of fault will be assigned to each party, and that amount will be deducted from the plaintiff’s award.

You can determine who might be at fault by asking the following questions:

  • Did you take any actions that contributed to the collision?
  • Did you engage in any behavior that contributed to the harm you sustained in the collision?

Excessive speed or an inoperative headlight, taillight, or brake light in a motorcycle case, particularly if the collision occurred at night, are frequent examples of comparative negligence.

How long will my motorcycle accident case take?

Numerous factors determine how long your motorbike accident case will last. It takes into account things like the extent and nature of your injuries or death. Furthermore, it depends on how clearly the fault is assigned and who is at fault. Or, to put it another way, will there be a significant amount of back and forth regarding responsibility? The timeline is also affected by whether the case is settled before trial or not.

Will my compensation be affected if my insurance covers my medical expenses and I get paid leaves from work?

Whether you paid for your medical care out of your wallet or your medical insurance covered it is irrelevant to any potential monetary recovery if you were hurt in a motorcycle accident. It’s the same even if your missed work was compensated by sick leave or paid vacation days.

However, your personal health insurance provider might ask you to reimburse them from your settlement partially or fully for the amount they spent on your collision-related injuries.

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