Many people go through it. It’s scary and may be completely out of your control. Getting into a car accident is unfortunately far too common. Many times it is the other driver who is at fault for the accident. Now you have to deal with the aftermath, whether it’s injuries you may have sustained or damage to your car. You now have financial obligations. It’s essential to know the minimum liability coverage that California has in place. You should also know how to prove the other driver was negligent as well as different kinds of damages you may be entitled to.
California has a minimum liability car insurance requirement, it dictates the minimum amount of liability insurance coverage a driver must have. The injury or death of any person involved in an accident is set at $15,000. If there is an injury or death of more than one person, then you must have $30,000 in coverage. For property damage, you must have $5,000 in coverage. It’s important to know that this liability doesn’t apply to your personal injuries or vehicle damage caused by the accident. You may need additional insurance as well, not just the minimum liability coverage.
To prove the other driver was at fault for the accident, you must prove that they were negligent. You must first prove that they owed you a duty. With car accidents, this duty is to use reasonable care when dealing with anyone they encounter on the road. This includes other drivers and pedestrians as well. You must prove the other driver breached this duty by being careless or negligent. An example of this would be if the other driver was speeding and they ran into you causing the accident. They were being negligent by not following the speed limit. You have to prove that their actions directly caused you to sustain injuries (if applicable). This can be proven by bringing a medical expert who can speak on behalf of your injuries in court. You must also prove that you are entitled to damages. The damages you may be entitled to are described in the next section.
The main types of damages you may be entitled to are compensatory and punitive damages. Compensatory damages are easier to calculate and are damages meant to help you with the costs you now face because of the accident. These damages can include medical expenses, lost wages, the cost of vehicle damage, or permanent disability. You may also be compensated for punitive damages. These damages are used to punish the at-fault driver for wrongdoing. They are used in accidents that were caused by the other driver’s negligence. In order to receive punitive damages, the other driver has to be operating in a way that is reckless, malicious, or fraudulent. For example, if the other driver was drinking and driving and caused the accident, you may be awarded punitive damages.
Getting into a car accident is one scary experience. Your whole life is now changed. It’s incredibly unfair when the accident was caused by another driver’s negligence. You want someone who can handle your case and is an expert in car accident law. The Law Offices of Howard Craig Kornberg will fight for you to get proper compensation and justice. Schedule a free consultation today using this contact form or call us at 310-997-0904 for a free initial consultation.