Almost 39.5 million people in America seek medical attention each year for accident-related injuries. Out of that number, 29.4 million people are rushed to emergency rooms due to severe injuries. Death related cases are about 169,936. This report was collected from the National Center for Health statistics. According to this report, personal injuries have become the third leading cause of death in the United States, behind cancer and heart disease.
Therefore, if you are among this number and another party is to blame for the injuries, you have the legal right to seek compensation for your injuries, and in fact, you should. The best way to go about this is by seeking the services of a highly skilled Irvine personal injury attorney. Get in touch with The Crockett Law Group and learn of your legal options. Schedule a free consultation with a professional by calling our Irvine personal injury firm at (800) 900-9393. Our initial consultation service is free.
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What Makes a Good Personal Injury Case?
Excellent personal injury litigation is made up of three essential vital elements, which are:
- A clear and well-proven liability
- A serious injury
- The offender’s coverage
However, this does not mean that all the boxes must align or ticked to have a satisfying outcome in a personal injury litigation case. It will merely affect the amount you will get as compensation in personal injury litigation.
For example, let’s assume that a driver hit you on the 405 freeway, and the at-fault driver admits complete fault for the accident. In this case, liability is clear. Also, let’s assume that you sustained severe brain injuries because of your head hitting against the window. In this case, you have a severe injury. Now, let’s assume that the at-fault driver is unemployed, and his insurance policy limit for bodily injury is $15,000. In this case, the compensation amount is going to be limited.
Clear and Well Proven Liability
Clear liability is a situation where fault for the accident cannot be disputed and can be clearly proven. A good example is when a person has run a red light and then apologizes for causing an accident. Or when a person is caught on camera for performing a ‘California Roll’ through a stop sign. Liability in this situation is very clear and can be easily proven.
This is highly important to have a clear liability in California because it is a ‘Comparative Fault’ state. In other words, it simply means that fault is assigned in percentage form, and the amount of compensation you will get depends on the fault percentage assigned for the accident. For example, if you were found to be 20% at-fault for the accident, then the amount of compensation will reduce by the same 20%. To get the maximum value: the other party must be found to be 100% at fault.
The truth is that without an injury(s), you will not have a personal injury case. Also, the more serious the injuries are, the more value you will receive in your case.
For example, assuming that someone was involved in a serious car accident in Irvine, CA, caused by doing a car roll several times, but luckily, all parties walk away with just a few scratches, but no serious injuries. In such a scenario, the victim will get little to no compensation.
On the other hand, by applying the same example, but in this case, the accident results in just minor rear-end accidents that demands $2,000 in property damage. In this case, the victim is most definitely going to receive compensation because they have a better and solid case.
The Offender’s Coverage
The deeper the offender’s pocket is, the more you will be able to recover. In other words, the better their insurance cover is, the more you are more likely to get. It is important to note that a majority of personal injury claims go through the offender’s insurance carrier. As such, if the offender cannot be located or is not insured, then a victim’s chances of receiving compensation reduces. The good news is that people with assets that need protection have insurance.
On the other hand, the at-fault party may only have purchased a minimum insurance cover. Furthermore, they may not even have any assets that are worth protecting; otherwise, they would have taken a larger insurance cover. In such a situation, the amount collected is limited.
"If you ever need a personal injury lawyer, Kevin is your guy! He was extremely personable, professional, responsive, and willing to jump through hoops for us. I cannot recommend him enough. My husband is active duty military, and Kevin was extremely accommodating to working the systems of Tricare and the Marine Corps. He was incredibly honest, and always gave it to me straight (which I admire highly, especially in an attorney). Kevin has been so considerate, and he will really go the extra mile for you. I told Kevin this, but I will say it here too; I would give Kevin and this firm 100 stars if I could!”
Can You Claim Injury Compensation if You Were At-Fault?
Remember, California is purely a comparative fault state. What does this mean? Well, it simply means that you can seek compensation for your injuries, even if you were 99% at-fault for the accident. However, you cannot seek compensation if you were 100% at-fault for the accident. Comparative fault works this way: a percentage of fault is assigned based on the roles both parties played in the accident. As such, the fault is assigned in percentage, which will affect compensation based on that assigned percentage.
For example, let’s assume you were injured in a truck accident in Irvine, in which you were assigned 10% to be at-fault. If your claim value is $200,000, then you will instead receive $180,000. Compensation figures accurately reflect the damages you sustained as a result of a third party’s carelessness.
Unlike California, which follows a pure comparative fault system, some states follow a pure contributory fault system like the District of Columbia, Alabama, Maryland, North Carolina, and Virginia. In these states, a person will not get anything or collect compensation if they were found to be 10% (using the above example) at fault for the accident. In fact, a person will be barred from collecting any damage. This is harsh compared to the system California follows.
What Is the Process in a Personal Injury Case?
Are you intending to move forward with your personal injury claim, but wondering what the process will look like ahead? Well, worry not because you will have a trained, experienced, and skilled attorney by your side. Let’s look at an overview of a standard or normal personal injury claim from the time of seeking legal service. The process begins with:
- Medical Treatment
- Claim Investigations
- Reviewing Obtained Medical Reports
- Sending a Demand Package
- Settlement Negotiations
- Filing a Lawsuit
- Medical Bills Negotiation
What Is the Cost of Hiring a Personal Injury Lawyer in Irvine?
Irvine personal injury attorneys work on a contingency fee basis. This is an arrangement where a lawyer will only get paid when they win you the case. This also means that if they fail, they do not get paid. As such, payment is agreed based on the percentage of the total settlement amount. Remember, the percentage agreed upon varies greatly depending on the case. It is wise to ask this questing during your initial free consultation.
A majority of personal injury lawyers near Irvine have a contingency agreement system where they will take 1/3 of the total recovered amount. If your compensation claim has to go to a court of law, then the percentage will increase to probably 40%.
For example, let us assume that your medical bills cost you $15,000, pain and suffering valued at $10,000, lost wages valued at $10,000; with this, the total amount comes to $35,000. Hypothetically, a personal injury attorney will take $10,000 for the settlement as fees. The amount will go up to about $12,000 if the claim leads to litigation.
In a nutshell, the contingency fee arrangement is very different from other forms of lawyer fee payments, such as retainer fee arrangement like in divorce lawyers. A retainer fee agreement is an arrangement where the lawyer is paid upfront for the services or retain their services. This payment agreement often contains an attorney’s hourly rate. On the other hand, a personal injury lawyer is not paid an hourly rate.
“I come from a family of personal injury lawyers. You name a set of facts and chances are one of us has probably seen it before. That kind of experience is invaluable and isn’t something you'll find at most personal injury law firms.”
Attorney Kevin Crockett
Contact an Irvine Injury Attorney at the Crockett Law Group
We place the interest of our clients ahead of everything else, especially those treated unfairly by an insurance company. Our personal injury lawyers will handle your injury claim from the beginning to the end, to the best of their ability. Our personal injury lawyers at Crockett Law Group are trained, experienced, and highly skilled in dealing with all types of personal injury claims.
Do not waste time; contact us immediately if you are a victim of an injury caused by another person. To reach our lawyers, call (800) 900-9393 for your free initial consultation.