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You might assume an injury from a car accident would be immediately apparent and have symptoms you notice right away. While this could certainly be the case, some injuries result in delayed pain that victims do not notice until hours after the collision. Even a catastrophic injury, such as trauma to the brain, can have delayed symptoms such as headaches and dizziness. Learn how to protect your rights if you experience delayed pain after a car accident in California.
Delayed pain after a car accident can occur for many different reasons. The first is the amount of adrenaline coursing through the average victim’s veins after a motor vehicle crash. Adrenaline has pain-masking qualities that can make it more difficult for a victim to recognize pain, discomfort, numbness or tingling. The second is the type of injury. Some injuries naturally take longer to present pain and other symptoms, such as a slow bleed in the brain that does not cause immediate symptoms. Several common car accident injuries may have delayed pain.
The possibility of delayed pain is why it is important to see a doctor immediately after a car accident even if you feel uninjured. Your brain may be blocking or ignoring pain signals to try to keep you safe under stress. Common delayed symptoms include headaches, dizziness, neck stiffness, back pain, numbness and abdominal pain. While you may not register the pain from a car accident injury right away, a doctor can use tests and evaluations to diagnose you. A prompt injury diagnosis can lead to a better prognosis for recovery, especially with a catastrophic injury.
You can still file a claim if you experience delayed pain hours or even days after an auto accident in California. The longer you wait, however, the more difficult it will be to obtain benefits from an auto insurance company. The insurance company may use the delayed diagnosis against you, such as to argue that the injury was pre-existing or came from something other than the car accident. The insurance company may also have a deadline for filing new car accident claims, which you might have missed if you did not notice your pain right away. You may need a Orange County car accident attorney to help you with your case.
A lawyer can help you prove your injury and its connection with the car accident despite a delayed diagnosis. Your lawyer can use medical documents, x-rays, diagnostic reports and medical experts to establish your injury type and severity. Then, your lawyer can take steps to connect your personal injury with the car accident, such as providing evidence in the form of eyewitness statements, expert testimony and medical documentation. Hiring a car accident lawyer can improve your odds of obtaining fair compensation for an injury that was not diagnosed on the day of the auto accident. You can take certain steps on your own, however, to also strengthen your case.
Never tell a police officer at the scene of a car accident that you feel fine or do not have any injuries. You may have injuries with delayed pain. Tell the police officer you wish to see a doctor before answering questions about injuries. Apply the same rule to conversations with insurance companies and their claims adjusters. Do not assume you are uninjured until you have seen a doctor for a checkup. Go to a hospital immediately after any type of car accident in California to check for hidden injuries. Then, contact a car accident attorney for assistance with the claims process.Read More
A dog bite injury claim is difficult to litigate in California. You will need to have at least a basic understanding of California’s dog bite laws to determine who is liable for your losses. A dog attack claim can be even trickier to navigate if the dog bit you while under the control of a pet sitter. In general, a dog sitter can be held liable for a dog attack in California.
Unlike many states, California does not use a one-bite injury rule for dog attack claims. Instead, it uses a strict liability doctrine. California Civil Code Section 3342 states that the owner of a dog will be liable for any of a dog bite victim’s damages, whether or not the owner was negligent in failing to prevent the attack. In a one-bite state, on the other hand, a dog bite victim will need to prove that the pet owner knew or reasonably should have known of the dog’s violent propensity due to a previous attack.
In California, you generally will not need to prove the pet owner’s negligence to hold him or her liable for your dog bite injuries and related medical costs. The animal’s owner will be strictly liable regardless of his or her contributions to the attack. Note, however, that if a dog injured you by something other than a bite, such as by jumping on you, the strict liability rule will not apply. You would need to prove the dog owner’s negligence in this scenario.
Although the language of California’s dog bite law uses the word “owner,” anyone with physical control of or responsibility for the pet at the time of the attack absorbs liability for a victim’s injuries. Accepting physical control or supervision of someone else’s pet means accepting the responsibility if an injury occurs. Under California’s strict liability law, the argument that the pet sitter was not aware of the dog’s vicious propensities is not a usable defense during a dog bite claim.
In general, you will be able to hold a pet sitter liable for a dog attack in California. If the attack occurred under a pet sitter or dog walker’s supervision, that person will assume financial responsibility for your injuries and related losses. These may include the costs of an emergency room visit, stitches, an IV, a rabies shot and follow-up care. In a severe dog bite injury case, it may also cover the costs of surgery or permanent scarring and disfigurement. The pet sitter may also owe you for any property damage repairs, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
A special rule called the vicarious liability doctrine will apply to cases involving a pet sitter under the age of 18 in California. The rule of vicarious liability states that the parent of a minor child will absorb liability on behalf of the child. If the pet sitter at the time of your dog attack was under the age of 18, his or her parent or legal guardian will pay for your damages.
If the pet sitter was part of a company that offers professional pet sitting, dog boarding or walking services, it may be possible to hold the company liable instead of the individual sitter, depending on the circumstances. To hold a company liable, the pet sitter would have to be an employee, not an independent contractor. Companies are only vicariously liable for the actions of their employees, not contractors. If the contractor has business insurance as a dog sitting professional, his or her insurance policy will cover your losses.
California dog attack claims can be confusing. For more information about pet sitter liability for a dog attack in California, contact a Orange County dog bite lawyer near you.Read More
A bad accident will do more than just injure a victim physically. The average accident survivor also suffers emotional distress, such as post-traumatic stress disorder or mental anguish. Emotional distress is an intangible loss during a personal injury claim. In California, the civil justice system permits an injured victim to demand compensation for intangible as well as tangible damages. Finding out if you qualify for damages for emotional distress can help you seek a fair amount of compensation during your claim.
The two main categories of damages available in a personal injury claim in California are compensatory and punitive. The courts break compensatory damages down into economic and noneconomic damages. Economic damages are the most common type sought during an injury claim. They refer to the tangible losses that are specific to the victim and the accident, such as medical costs, future health care needs, losses of income, property repairs and travel expenses.
Noneconomic damages are intangible and general in the sense that an average person would have them under the same or similar circumstances. Noneconomic damages include emotional distress, physical pain and suffering, fright, inconvenience, grief, mental anguish, psychological trauma, lost quality of life, diminished enjoyment of life, and loss of consortium. Noneconomic damages are available in most California personal injury claims. They are more common in serious and catastrophic injury cases, however.
The courts generally award noneconomic damages along with economic damages, not on their own. Pain and suffering represents only a portion of the overall damages awarded. Depending on the state where you live, however, it may be possible to obtain compensation for only emotional distress without having a physical injury.
In California, you can file a claim for emotional distress without a physical injury if you can prove the defendant intentionally inflicted the harm in question. You will need proof that the defendant intentionally or recklessly caused your emotional distress or mental anguish through an outrageous act or egregious wrongdoing. In general, you cannot recover for only emotional distress during an ordinary negligence claim. You will need proof of a physical injury in this scenario.
If you wish to seek damages for emotional distress during a personal injury claim in California, you or your Orange County personal injury lawyer will need to calculate a reasonable amount to claim. It can be difficult to calculate a pain and suffering award, as its value does not come from medical bills or receipts. Instead, your lawyer will need to prove your pain and suffering through other types of evidence.
It is a jury’s job to award damages for emotional distress during a personal injury lawsuit. A jury will typically use the Multiplier Method to do so, although it does not have to use any particular equation to valuate pain and suffering. The Multiplier Method takes a number from one to five – chosen based on the severity of the injury – and multiplies it by the total amount of the plaintiff’s economic damages. If you have $100,000 in economic damages and a multiplier of three, for example, you would recover $300,000 in pain and suffering damages.
Calculating emotional distress comes down to how significantly the accident and injury impacted your mental and emotional health. If your injuries were catastrophic, for example, you may be eligible for greater pain and suffering damages due to permanent disabilities and lost quality of life. A lawyer can fight for maximum compensation for emotional distress during a personal injury case in California on your behalf. Contact an attorney for assistance with your emotional distress claim.Read More
Vehicle accidents occur all the time throughout California. In most cases, these crashes involve two vehicles, but there are times when multi-vehicle collisions occur. Anytime a vehicle accident involves more than two vehicles, determining liability can become incredibly difficult. Often, an investigation uncovers that multiple drivers were negligent in causing the incident. Here, we want to discuss how liability is determined after a multi-vehicle accident in California.
In most cases, the driver who initiated the first impact in a collision is going to be the person at fault. However, that will not always be the case. There are other instances in which other drivers or even public agencies or companies could share fault for a collision. The key to determining fault is to show which party or parties were negligent.
There are various types of collisions that occur that can involve multiple vehicles. This includes rear-end collisions, side-impact collisions, and head-on collisions.
In some cases, there may be more than one party at fault in a multi-car crash in California. When this occurs, even parties who are partially at fault can recover compensation for their losses. That is because California operates under a “pure comparative negligence” system in which injured parties can recover compensation even if they are up to 99% at fault for the incident. However, the total amount of compensation a person receives will be reduced based on their percentage of fault.
For example, suppose Driver B rear-ends Driver A who stopped to let a pedestrian cross the road. Driver C strikes Driver B from behind because Driver B came to a sudden halt after striking Driver A. In this scenario, it may be determined that Driver B was at fault for striking Driver A. Driver C may also share fault for their part of the collision, though perhaps not complete fault. In this scenario, Driver C may be found to be 50% at fault for their part of the collision.
Multi-vehicle collisions can be incredibly complicated when it comes to securing compensation. You should work with a skilled Orange County car accident attorney who can help obtain evidence and determine fault so that you receive all compensation you are entitled to.Read More
Semi-truck accidents often result in severe injuries for victims. These incidents can be incredibly scary, and the aftermath of the crash will be chaotic and confusing. Any person injured due to the careless or negligent actions of a truck driver or trucking company may be able to recover compensation for their injuries and other losses. However, there are various steps that victims need to take in the immediate aftermath of a crash, as well as in the weeks that follow, in order to help ensure they receive maximum compensation.
The steps that you take in the aftermath of a tractor-trailer collision will play a significant role in the amount of money you receive in a settlement with insurance carriers or through a personal injury lawsuit against the alleged negligent party.
Bicycling is an incredibly popular activity in California. Regardless of whether or not a person is a recreational bicycle rider or if they use their bicycle as their primary method of transportation each day, the fact remains that bicyclists face a higher risk of injury in the event of a collision occurs. According to the California Office of Traffic Safety, there were 155 bicyclist fatalities and more than 11,000 bicyclist injuries during the latest reporting year across the state. Here, we want to discuss what you need to do in the aftermath of being involved in a bicycle crash in California.
The aftermath of a bicycle collision can be chaotic, but the steps that you take can affect the outcome of any insurance settlement or lawsuit resulting from the incident.
A bicycle crash can be a scary experience, but the steps that you take in the immediate aftermath of the incident, as well as the days and weeks that follow, will determine how successful your insurance settlement or potential lawsuit will be.Read More
Wrongful death cases arise anytime somebody loses a loved one due to the careless, negligent, or intentional actions of somebody else. Losing a loved one is incredibly difficult, and family members are often left wondering what steps to take moving forward. Wrongful death claims are a way for grieving family members to gain some closure and receive compensation from the alleged negligent party. Here, we want to discuss the various types of damages that could be recovered by surviving family members in these cases.
Wrongful death damages are intended to provide compensation to the heirs of the deceased for the value of what they could have reasonably expected to receive should their love one not passed away. These damages can include both economic and non-economic losses.
Economic damages in a California wrongful death case can include:
There is no limit to the amount of economic damages that can be awarded in a wrongful death claim in this state.
Non-economic damages in a California wrongful death case revolve around providing compensation for the loss of the deceased’s:
There is no set amount of non-economic damages that are awarded in a wrongful death claim in this state. A jury is allowed to award any amount that is reasonable based on the evidence provided. It should be noted that, in California, non-economic damages cannot include compensation for the heirs’ pain and suffering or sorrow caused by the loss of their loved one.
In California, wrongful death lawsuits and survival actions are two different claims, though they are often combined together. Wrongful death claims are designed to compensate a deceased’s surviving family members for their losses. However, a survival action is designed to compensate the deceased person’s estate for the following:
Survival actions are complicated in California, but they can include punitive damages, which are not available in a wrongful death claim.
Family members in California need to be aware that there is a time limit in place for them to file these claims against the alleged negligent party. The wrongful death statute of limitations in this state is two years from the date of death. This means that family members or the estate of the deceased have a two-year window with which to file a wrongful death claim in California. Failing to file a claim within this statutory timeframe will likely result in the family members or the estate being unable to recover any compensation for the loss.
If your loved one has passed away due to another’s negligence, contact us today to speak with an Orange County wrongful death attorney.Read More
Anytime a person sustains an injury caused by the careless or negligent actions of another individual, business, or entity, they should be entitled to compensation for what happened to them. Most personal injury claims are resolved through insurance carrier settlements, but that is not always the case. Sometimes, a personal injury lawsuit needs to be filed against the alleged negligent party. However, injury victims need to be aware that there is a time limit called the statute of limitations that dictates how long they have to file these claims.
Every state is responsible for setting a time limit for how long victims have to file civil personal injury lawsuits. When we turn to the California Code of Civil Procedure section 335.1, we can see that the state’s personal injury statute of limitations is two years from the date an injury occurs. This means that any injury victim will have a two-year window with which to file a lawsuit against the person or entity who allegedly caused the injury.
If a personal injury victim fails to file a civil lawsuit against the alleged negligent party in their case within the required time frame, they will likely lose the ability to recover any compensation at all. The court will almost certainly dismiss the case. Regardless of how significant their injuries may be, and regardless of how clear the other party’s liability is, the time will have passed to recover the compensation the victim is entitled to.
There are various reasons why an injury victim may miss a deadline to file a case. Often, this occurs because the injury victim simply was not aware that there was a statute of limitations for personal injury claims in California. It is strongly suggested that any person injured by the careless or negligent actions of others seek immediate legal assistance. A skilled Orange County personal injury attorney will be able to offer a free consultation for your case, and they will likely make you aware of any time limits pertaining to your case.
There are very few exceptions to the California statute of limitations. In some circumstances, the statute of limitations “clock” may be delayed or paused, which can extend the two-year deadline mentioned above. These delays or pauses can occur under the following circumstances:
California personal injury claims can arise in a variety of ways, including the following:
This is not an exhaustive list of the ways injuries occur in this state, and victims should seek assistance from a skilled Orange County injury lawyer as soon as possible so they can get started on their claim.Read More
Riding a motorcycle can be an exhilarating experience, but this activity also comes with risks. Motorcyclists have very little protection if they are involved in an accident, and it is not uncommon for a motorcycle crash to lead to severe injuries. According to the California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS), nearly 14,000 motorcyclists were injured during the latest reporting year of data we have available for the state. That same year, 488 motorcyclists lost their lives in traffic accidents. Here, we want to discuss some of the most common injuries that motorcyclists sustain in California.
There are a significant number of injuries that motorcyclists can suffer from in the event a collision occurs. The severity of these injuries usually revolves around the speed of all parties involved at the time of the collision, as well as what type of protective gear the motorcyclist is wearing. Some of the most common injuries motorcyclists sustain include the following:
Victims of motorcycle accidents must seek medical care as soon as possible so they can be treated for their injuries. Any person who sustains an injury caused by the careless or negligent actions of another individual should be entitled to receive compensation for what happened. Speak to an Orange County motorcycle accident lawyer to review your case for free.Read More
Getting into a vehicle accident can be a scary and traumatic experience for those involved. Unfortunately, accidents can also lead to various types of injuries, including neck pain. Neck and back injuries in the aftermath of vehicle accidents can be complicated to diagnose, often because the signs and symptoms of these injuries may not appear until hours or days after the crash occurs. It is crucial that all vehicle crash victims seek medical assistance so they can be evaluated and treated for any injuries, even those they may not be aware of right away. Here, we want to discuss the common causes of neck pain after a vehicle accident.
Whiplash is one of the most common injuries a person can experience in the aftermath of a vehicle accident. Whiplash occurs anytime a person’s head and neck is jerked back and forth rapidly due to some sort of outside force. Whiplash injuries must be taken seriously, and victims often require rest in order to make a recovery. Sometimes, whiplash victims need to use a neck brace. Some of the most common symptoms of whiplash include the following:
However, while some people may assume they only have a mild case of whiplash after a vehicle accident, some of the common neck aches and pains can be early signs of a more serious injury.
The spine, shoulders, and head are all other areas of the body commonly injured in a car accident. Injuries to any of these areas can result in neck pain. Some of the most common injuries that can affect the neck in the aftermath of a vehicle accident include the following:
If you’ve been injured in an auto accident, speak with an Orange County car accident lawyer for legal assistance.Read More