Most Los Angeles drivers have to get on the freeway on a regular basis. Cars travel at very high speeds on the highway, and not everyone is paying attention or taking care to minimize the risk to others. Some people drive drunk, and others text while driving. When two vehicles are traveling at high speeds and collide, the resulting highway accident can result in catastrophic injuries to one or both drivers. At Sharifi Firm, our Los Angeles car accident attorneys can help injured people pursue compensation from an at-fault driver.Seeking Damages from a Negligent Driver
In most cases, highway accidents are caused by negligence. To prove negligence in a civil suit for damages, you would need to prove that the other driver owed you a duty of care, the other driver breached that duty, the breach was the proximate cause of your accident, and you incurred damages. In California, all drivers owe a duty to others on the road to use reasonable care while operating their cars. A breach of that duty may occur if a driver is texting, drunk, fatigued, applying makeup, or doing other activities that take their attention away from the task of driving on the highway.
A common type of highway accident is a rear-end collision. This can happen, for example, if a driver is speeding on the highway and not leaving enough distance between his car and the car in front of him, and the front car comes to a sudden stop. In such cases, the rear driver may slam into the front car, causing serious injuries not only to the driver, but also anybody in the rear seats. The basic rule of the road is that a driver should maintain enough distance to be able to stop safely if there is a sudden stop in traffic.
In California, the doctrine of comparative negligence may come into play in a highway accident. The defendant's attorney may raise this principle if he or she is being blamed for the full extent of the harm. If comparative negligence is raised, the jury will determine the total damages, as well as the relative percentage of the parties' fault for the accident. For example, in a rear-end collision case, the jury may determine the total damages are $100,000. But if the victim is found 50 percent responsible for an accident, he or she can only recover up to $50,000 from the other driver.
Sometimes drivers allow others to drive their cars. In that case, the owner of the car may be held responsible for an accident, not just the driver. Under California Vehicle Code Section 17150, an accident victim can try to hold a car owner liable under the doctrine of permissive use. This applies when the victim suffers injuries as a result of a negligent act by someone driving the car with the owner's permission. There are certain limits to the damages that can be awarded under this doctrine.Consult a Los Angeles Attorney for a Motor Vehicle Accident Claim
The damages in highway accident cases tend to be substantial, due to the greater degree of force that happens in crashes at higher speeds. If you are injured in a highway accident because of another person's negligence, you likely will have both medical and financial concerns. You may be wondering whether you will be able to fully recover physically and whether you can afford to take time off work to rest. At Sharifi Firm, our motor vehicle collision lawyers may be able to help Los Angeles residents and others in Southern California seek compensation. Our tenacious advocates represent clients in cities such as San Bernardino, Temecula, Riverside, and Rancho Cucamonga. For a free, no-obligation consultation, contact us at (866) 422-7222 or via our online form.