Motor Vehicle Accidents
In 2012, 2995 people were killed and 226,544 people were injured on California's roads and highways according to the California Highway Patrol. There's almost no way to avoid riding in some type of motor vehicle in Southern California. If you are hurt in an accident involving a motorcycle, car or truck, you may be worried about how you'll pay your medical bills, and concerned about taking time off from work to rest and recover. You may be entitled to recover compensation from the person responsible for the accident. Serving victims throughout the Los Angeles area, the tenacious injury attorneys of Sharifi Firm, PLC can bring a lawsuit on your behalf and pursue the full amount of compensation available under the circumstances.Motor Vehicle Accidents in California
Some motor vehicle accidents are minor fender benders involving a few bumps and bruises and some minor property damages. However, other motor vehicle accidents can be devastating, involving paraplegia, traumatic brain injury, spinal injuries, trauma, broken bones, amputation, burns and more. In some cases, it may be necessary for the accident victim to hire a nurse or someone to perform household services, or the accident victim may need training in a new field because he or she is no longer able to do the same job.
Under California Civil Code § 1714(a), everybody is responsible for injuries caused to someone else by a lack of ordinary care or skill while managing his property or himself. In other words, every driver —whether driving a motorcycle, bicycle, car, bus, or truck—has a duty to use reasonable care when driving on California roads or performing any other task where somebody could be injured. A driver that breaches his or her duty to use reasonable care and causes an accident involving injuries to somebody else can be held responsible for those damages.
Among the compensatory damages that can be recovered in a personal injury lawsuit are general damages (non-economic damages) and special damages (economic damages). Special damages are tangible, out-of-pocket damages that could be documented such as medical bills, property damages, loss of earnings, loss of future earning capacity, nursing care, physical therapy and vocational rehabilitation. General damages, also known as noneconomic damages, are intended to compensate the victim for intangible and subjective losses such as mental anguish, loss of consortium, and pain and suffering. General damages may vary from case to case.
The purpose of these damages is to compensate the accident victim for injuries, not to punish the person who caused the accident. The goal is to put the accident victim as close as possible to his position before the accident through money damages. In some cases where the defendant's conduct is especially egregious or despicable, it may be appropriate to request punitive damages.
In California, a plaintiff can only recover punitive damages where he or she can prove by clear and convincing evidence that the defendant was guilty of malice, oppression or fraud. These are high standards, but in some cases, they may be appropriate. For example, where a defendant truck driver with a record of DUIs goes on a drunken drug-binge and gets in his truck and kills a family, it may be appropriate to request punitive damages against him and the truck company.Retain an Experienced Auto Accident Lawyer in San Bernardino
If you are injured in a car accident in the San Bernardino area, let our lawyers bring a lawsuit on your behalf to recover damages. Contact us at 1-866-422-7222 or via our online form for a free, no-obligation consultation. We also represent clients in Rancho Cucamonga, Temecula, and Riverside.