Personal Injury Lawyers in Rancho Cucamonga, CA
Car accidents can happen in the blink of an eye. One minute you’re driving along, listening to the radio, and the next you’re spinning out of control trying to figure out what just happened. In 2020, there were over 3,000 reported motor vehicle-related fatalities reported in the state of California, with passenger vehicles accounting for the majority of them.
Since the rate of auto accidents is higher in dense, populated urban areas, Rancho Cucamonga has started to rank on this list.
With an average of 175,000 residents, those living in Rancho Cucamonga need to be extra cautious of car accident risks. Furthermore, they need to know what to do in the event of an unexpected car accident. If you were injured in a car accident, contact a car accident lawyer today. We can help you pursue rightful compensation for your losses.
Common Causes of Car Accidents in Rancho Cucamonga
When it comes to automobile accidents in Rancho Cucamonga, CA, driver error is one of the main causes. Driver error can include everything from deciding to speed through a yellow light before it turns red, to ignoring local traffic laws and speed limits that put other drivers in harm’s way. In all cases, driver error is usually the result of making the wrong decision after recognizing the danger of a situation.
The most common causes of accidents in Rancho Cucamonga include:
- Distracted driving – This includes picking up the phone to answer a call, browsing social media, or sending a text message. Or, it could be adjusting the radio station, talking with other passengers, or playing a game. In recent years, especially in California, operators of self-driving cars have been in severe accidents due to playing a game on their phones instead of watching the road.
- Drunk driving – Though it’s illegal to drink and drive in the state of California (and everywhere else around the continental U.S.), alcohol impairs your judgment, making it easier for otherwise responsible drivers to get behind the wheel. Approximately 35% of all car accident deaths in California are attributed to alcohol consumption. The tragic thing about drunk driving accidents is that they are completely preventable.
- Road rage – Common examples of road rage include weaving in and out of traffic, following another vehicle too closely, ramming another vehicle on the road, passing them on the left, or blocking vehicles from changing lanes.
- Speeding – Different roads in Rancho Cucamonga have different speed limits, so any driver who exceeds the posted speed limit is another common cause of auto accidents.
In these situations, drivers can identify the dangers involved, but if they fail to make the right call, they put themselves and every other driver on the road near them at risk of a car accident. While human error accounts for a huge portion of car collisions, there are many other causes that contribute to such car crashes.
Other reasons to account for Rancho Cucamonga accidents include:
- Teenage drivers who may not possess the skill and awareness of road hazards or how to avoid a collision.
- Poor weather such as the sudden onset of heavy rain may hinder a driver’s visibility and reaction time.
- Improperly maintained roads that have broken or missing traffic signs, potholes, or other imperfections.
- Dangerous construction zones that aren’t properly marked.
- Faulty auto repair or vehicle inspections.
Steps to Take After a Rancho Cucamonga Car Accident
The first few moments after a car accident can leave you puzzled as you try to figure out what just happened. While this is understandable, you should also bookmark this page for a list of steps you should take to make sure your rights are protected if you decide to pursue legal action:
1. If you can, pull off somewhere safe. If this isn’t possible due to the damage to either your vehicle or yourself, put your hazards on, call 911, and stay in your vehicle.
2. Tell the police officer what happened and document everything you can. When the police arrive, they will ask for an account of what happened. Give them as much detail as possible, including what the other driver did and any relevant info that could help determine fault such as how fast everyone was traveling, if they made any attempt to brake, existing road hazards, what time it happened, and where. Also, take photos of your vehicle damage and injuries. Also, write down the names and contact info of any witnesses and the name of where your vehicle is being towed, if applicable. Document the make, color, and model of the other vehicle involved in the accident, as well.
3. Swap contact info with the other driver(s) involved. Be sure to get their name, email address, phone number, and insurance information. If the police arrive at the accident scene, they will get this information in the police report, as well.
4. Seek medical attention. In most cases, the paramedics will arrive on the scene when law enforcement does. If you choose not to go to the hospital right away, try to go within the first 24 hours after the accident. The adrenaline one feels after a car accident may mask serious injuries, so seeking medical attention is the best way to ensure you’re not significantly hurt. These medical records will also be used to determine the value of your car accident claim later on. Remember, many car accident injuries take time to appear so keep an eye on them, regardless of whether or not you go to the hospital immediately following the accident.
Liability for a Rancho Cucamonga Car Accident
California is an at-fault car accident state, which means that the driver who caused the accident will also be responsible for paying the victim’s compensatory damages. Keep in mind that who is liable for a California car accident will vary on the details of the accident itself, so it's very possible that liability could be split between two parties. An example of this would be one driver looking down at their cell phone while another crashes into them because they ran a red light. In this situation, both drivers will still be able to collect damages for their loss as outlined under California’s comparative negligence laws, despite them both playing a part in the cause of the accident.
In many car accident cases, when it comes to determining liability for a car accident, proof can be found in a violation of state traffic laws. For example, if another driver ran a red light and T-Boned you while traversing an intersection, they would likely be held liable since running a red light is against the law under California Vehicle Code Section 21453 VC.
Two definitive ways to prove fault in a car accident are through the police report and eyewitness testimony. Once created, a police report will document the details of the accident, including who was involved and what happened. The same applies to eyewitness testimony which can confirm how the events unfolded. If you don’t have eyewitness testimony, don’t worry. Car accident lawyers in Rancho Cucamonga, CA have access to accident reconstruction experts who will utilize their expertise to piece together how the accident occurred, how fast each driver was traveling, and other factors that led to the accident. They will be able to reconstruct the accident scene to help support your claims of what happened.
Common Car Accident Injuries
Personal injuries associated with auto accidents vary depending on the severity of the accident, however, the most common include:
In severe automobile accidents, some drivers and passengers may suffer from herniated discs, organ damage, internal bleeding, and even paralysis. Some car accident victims may even suffer burn injuries. After a car accident, it’s not uncommon for some vehicles to leak gas. If not properly treated at the scene, this can lead to a vehicle fire and cause significant burn injuries and permanent scarring or disfigurement.
How Much is My Rancho Cucamonga Personal Injury Case Worth?
The value of your personal injury case depends on the details of your case. Simply put, some accidents and subsequent injuries are going to be much worse than others, so the amount of money you receive for your claim will vary on these factors, as well as several others.
To calculate the value of your car accident claim, your Rancho Cucamonga car accident attorney will analyze several pieces of evidence, starting with your medical bills and expenses. After seeking medical treatment for your car accident injuries, be sure to keep a copy of your co-pays receipts and out-of-pocket payments for ER visits, prescriptions, follow-up visits, rehabilitative care, and, if you took an ambulance from the accident scene to the hospital, a copy of your bill. These records can be used to calculate the value of your accident claim. But this is just part of it.
If your vehicle was totaled, keep a record of how much the insurance company valued it. You should also document the cost of any items that were damaged in the accident, such as work equipment or other valuables. If the vehicle wasn’t totaled, keep receipts for vehicle repair and what was done on it.
Or, if you were working at the time of the accident, you’ll want to get your pay stubs to calculate your lost wages and earning capacity if you’re unable to return to work now or in the future. These are all known as economic damages, however, you may be able to recover compensation for your non-economic losses, as well as the emotional stress or fear of driving you developed from the accident. Co-pay receipts from therapy appointments or doctor’s notes can all be used to help determine fair monetary compensation.
A Rancho Cucamonga car accident lawyer from our law firm will help you determine the value of your personal injury case
Benefits of Hiring an Attorney After a Car Accident
There are many reasons to hire an experienced lawyer after an auto accident, with the biggest reason being that this is probably the first time you’ve ever been involved in something like this.
Lawyers have a firm grip on the law, so they will be able to determine not only if you have a case worth pursuing, but whether it falls within the statute of limitations. In California, injured victims have two years from the date the accident occurred to file a legal compensation claim.
In addition to knowing when to file a claim, your lawyer can also estimate how much your claim is worth since they have likely seen and represented clients with these types of injuries before. While each case is different, this can give you a ballpark estimate of what your case is worth if and when you decide to move forward with legal representation. A personal injury attorney can recover higher compensation than someone unfamiliar with personal injury law.
Another benefit of hiring a lawyer is that they’re familiar with the games insurance companies play. Insurance companies are designed to focus on their bottom line, not your well-being after the accident – and they know how to take advantage of you. If your car is damaged and you’re out of work, they know you’ll be more likely to accept a low insurance offer. Unless you work in the legal industry yourself, chances are you might not know how the insurance company operates. Sometimes, the first time you hear this is after speaking with a Rancho Cucamonga car accident attorney. These are just a few of the benefits speaking with an experienced personal injury attorney has when it comes to protecting your rights.
Why Choose Sierra Accident Lawyers Over Other Law Offices?
The experienced team at Sierra Accident Lawyers has years of experience handling complex car accident claims, including rollover accidents, rear-end accidents, multi-vehicle crashes, and accidents caused by drunk, distracted, and reckless drivers. A car accident lawyer can also help you file a claim even if the driver who injured you is uninsured or underinsured.
Our law firm works on a contingency basis, which means that you don’t pay unless we win. Best of all, our law firm has access to the best medical providers in California, and you’ll need to confirm the extent of your injuries. Our resources and unparalleled experience have earned us the reputation of having a winning track record. When you need the services of the best car accident lawyers in California, call Sierra Accident Lawyers.
Get a Top-Rated Rancho Cucamonga Car Accident Lawyer
Were you injured in a car accident in Rancho Cucamonga? Dealing with a car accident can be an overwhelming and frightening process without an auto accident attorney. One minute you’re driving and within the blink of an eye your car is totaled and you have serious injuries. Let an experienced car accident lawyer ease the burden off your shoulders. We have a winning track record of helping car accident victims in the greater Rancho Cucamonga area.
A Rancho Cucamonga car accident lawyer will work to maximize your compensation award while you’re on the road to recovery. Call us at 909-942-7632 or fill out our online contact form to get started. Contact our law firm for a free consultation today.