Hawthorne Car Accident Lawyer

Hawthorne Car Accident Lawyer
Douglas D. Shaffer - Personal Injury Lawyer - Manhattan Beach, CA

Hawthorne Car Accident Attorney

Car accidents happen for many reasons every day in the Hawthorne, California, area. While some car accidents are easily resolved between the drivers involved and entail minimal damage, others are more destructive and leave victims with life-changing injuries and exorbitant economic losses. If you have recently experienced a car accident in the Hawthorne area due to the negligence or illegal misconduct of another driver, you need legal counsel you can trust to help you recover as fully as state law allows.

Compassionate Legal Counsel for Victims of Car Accidents in Hawthorne

Shaffer Law is a team of experienced personal injury attorneys in Hawthorne offering compassionate and client-focused legal counsel to victims of car accidents. Our firm has successfully represented many past clients in some of the most challenging vehicle accident claims and has the professional experience you need on your side to recover as fully as possible from your recent accident.

Hawthorne Car Accident Lawyer

Proving Liability for Your Car Accident in Hawthorne

Before you can obtain any type of compensation for the losses you suffered in your recent car accident, you must prove exactly how the accident happened and identify the at-fault driver. A few of the most commonly reported causes of car accidents that generate contentious insurance claims and personal injury proceedings in California include:

  • Distracted driving, which is the most commonly reported form of negligence behind the wheel and the leading cause of accidents throughout the country each year.
  • Speeding, which significantly increases the risk of an accident resulting in catastrophic or fatal injuries.
  • Drunk and drugged driving. Driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol or drugs is illegal, with penalties that include driver’s license suspension, fines, and jail time. In addition, penalties increase substantially when a defendant has caused bodily injury or death with their intoxicated driving.
  • Reckless driving, which can also lead to serious criminal penalties for the at-fault driver.
  • Moving violations, such as failing to navigate an intersection, failing to merge onto a highway correctly, performing an illegal turn, or running through a red light or stop sign.
  • Vehicle malfunctions, which may implicate manufacturers as liable for any resulting damages under the state’s product liability laws.

This is not an exhaustive list of all the ways a car accident might happen in Hawthorne. Ultimately, if you suspect that any other party bears liability for the accident you recently experienced, it is crucial to have legal counsel to guide you through the difficult recovery efforts you must attempt to secure the compensation you legally deserve.

Recovery From a Hawthorne Car Accident

Every driver is required to have auto insurance that meets the state’s minimum coverage requirements for bodily injury and property damage liability coverage. However, California has one of the highest rates of uninsured and underinsured drivers in the country, so the driver who hit you may not have insurance at all. It’s also possible for your damages to exceed the scope of coverage available when an at-fault driver does have insurance.

Your Hawthorne car accident lawyer can guide you through the process of filing your claim against the at-fault driver’s insurance policy. First, they can draft a demand letter on your behalf and verify that the insurer has handled your claim in good faith. Once you receive a settlement check, your attorney can then move to build your personal injury claim against the at-fault driver to secure compensation for any losses not covered by insurance.

When you have grounds to file a personal injury case, state law allows you to seek compensation for the following:

  • Any medical care you require for the treatment of your injuries and rehabilitation. You have the right to hold the defendant accountable for both immediate and future medical expenses you face because of their actions.
  • Lost income and lost earning potential. Whether you are forced out of work for weeks, months, or permanently due to a severe injury, your Hawthorne car accident lawyer can help you hold the at-fault driver accountable for the income you are unable to earn after your accident.
  • Property damage. Your attorney can help to ensure you receive appropriate compensation for the repair or replacement of your vehicle along with any other property lost in your accident.
  • Pain and suffering. State law does not limit the amount of pain and suffering compensation you can seek from the driver who caused your accident. If you suffered any catastrophic injury resulting in permanent disability, your pain and suffering compensation could be the largest part of your total case award.

Having experienced legal counsel on your side is the best asset you can have when you intend to maximize your compensation for a car accident.

Comparative Fault in a Car Accident Case

If you intend to file any type of personal injury claim but have concerns as to whether you are partially at fault for your damages, it is vital to understand how California’s pure comparative negligence law works. Under this statute, a plaintiff can still recover compensation for their damages even if they bear partial responsibility for causing those damages. However, they will lose a portion of their total compensation to reflect their shared fault.

To determine the amount the plaintiff must lose to account for their comparative negligence, the judge handling their case will assign a fault percentage to each party to reflect each party’s level of responsibility for causing the damages in question. There is no fault percentage that bars plaintiff recovery under the pure comparative negligence rule. For example, if they bear 10% fault, they lose 10% of their case award and still recover the remaining 90% of their total damages. If they bear 90% fault, they would still be entitled to recover the remaining 10% of their total damages.

Regardless of whether you anticipate bearing liability for your accident, you have the best chance of maximizing your final case award when you have experienced legal counsel representing you. Your attorney can help you effectively leverage available evidence to minimize your fault percentage if you do bear partial liability for your accident. Shaffer Law can assist you in gathering the evidence and witness testimony you may need to firmly prove fault for your accident and to maximize your total compensation.

Car Accident Lawyer FAQs

Q: How Much of a Settlement Should I Expect for a Car Accident in California?

A: On average, car accident victims obtain roughly 1.5 times their total economic damages when they pursue legal recourse against the drivers who caused their accidents. This accounts for direct repayment of their economic losses along with reasonable compensation for their pain and suffering. A Hawthorne car accident attorney can provide an estimate of the total case award you should expect if you succeed with your car accident claim.

Q: When Should You Hire a Hawthorne Car Accident Lawyer?

A: Your recovery efforts from a car accident are likely to entail an auto insurance claim filed by a personal injury suit, and it is best to have legal counsel you can trust for both of these processes. After receiving the medical care, you should reach out to a Hawthorne car accident attorney you can trust to negotiate an insurance claim settlement on your behalf and guide you through the personal injury case filing process. The sooner you hire an attorney, the better your chances are of maximizing your final case award.

Q: What Percentage Do Most Personal Injury Lawyers Take?

A: Most attorneys with personal injury practices charge contingency fees for such cases. This means there is no upfront fee or ongoing costs for the client, and they only pay a legal fee to their attorney after they win their case. The attorney takes a portion of their client’s final case award as their fee, and every attorney has a different contingency fee policy. Most contingency fees are 25% to 40% of the total case award.

Q: Is It Worth Hiring a Hawthorne Car Accident Attorney?

A: Investing in reliable legal counsel you can trust will make a tremendous difference in the quality of your overall recovery after a serious car accident. Your attorney will help you calculate the full scope of economic losses you incurred and hold the defendant accountable for your pain and suffering. In addition, while you may be worried about the potential cost of your legal representation, the right attorney can easily make up for the cost of hiring them through the quality of the final case award they obtain on your behalf.

Q: How Long Does a Car Accident Claim Take in Hawthorne?

A: The time required to complete your recovery efforts after a serious accident in the Hawthorne area depends on whether the defendant accepts responsibility for their actions and the scope of the damages they caused. When you have an experienced Hawthorne car accident attorney representing you, they can streamline your recovery efforts dramatically, both in terms of your auto insurance claim and a subsequent personal injury case against the at-fault driver.

Shaffer Law has years of professional experience representing car accident victims in the Hawthorne area and surrounding communities. We believe in client-focused legal representation, taking time to address each of our client’s unique individual needs and concerns as we guide them through their recovery efforts. If you are ready to learn how our firm can empower your recovery efforts, contact us today to schedule your free consultation with a Hawthorne car accident attorney.

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