Murrieta Personal Injury Law Blog
California Highway Traffic Accidents
Traffic accidents are a fact of life these days, and while many accidents are minor, all too often, they lead to severe injury or death.
How to Prove Negligence in a Company Vehicle Crash
You are driving along on an uneventful day, when suddenly it is not so uneventful after all. That is because a service truck winds up smashed into your own vehicle.
You Have Been Sideswiped on the Road: Now What?
$When a tractor-trailer loaded with bricks veered from its lane and sideswiped a nearby pickup, it led to yet another collision between two more vehicles on I-215 in Murrieta in August 2022.
Should I Take the Insurance Company’s Offer After an Accident?
You have been injured in an accident, and on top of dealing with the pain and agony of recovery, you are awash in medical bills, questions from your employer about when you will be back on the job, and unintelligible paperwork from the insurance company.
High-Speed Crashes Take Lives
No one could have imagined the tragedy of a Thursday afternoon in Los Angeles County. That is when a Mercedes careened through a red light and slammed into cross traffic, resulting in the ejection of multiple people and two vehicles consumed by flames.
Do I Need an Attorney if I Have Only Minor Injuries After an Accident?
The traffic has been unbearable of late, and, to make matters worse, now you are involved in a fender bender because another driver failed to signal and swiped your vehicle while making a lane change.
What are My Legal Options if a Loved One has Passed in an Accident?
Tragically, some accidents are so severe that the victims do not survive. Car accidents are typically caused by the negligent behaviors of another party, such as texting while driving or driving under the influence.
Why You Must Drive With Auto Insurance in CA
Like all states, California law requires all drivers to carry certain amounts of auto insurance. The purpose of auto insurance is to make sure that drivers can recover compensation when they are in an accident and sustain injuries.
No Witnesses at The Accident Scene
If you have been involved in an accident, eyewitness testimony can be very helpful to your case. Eyewitness testimony is given a lot of weight by insurance companies and juries, as they are considered objective bystanders.
When Holiday Drinking Puts Lives in Peril
It is the holiday season—a time for family and friends to gather and enjoy one another as you celebrate and give thanks for the blessings you enjoy.
Murrieta Community Mourns Teen Who Died in Single-Vehicle Crash
At around 10:50 at night on April 17, 2022, a Murrieta teenager lost control of her car, and it veered onto the sidewalk before hitting a light pole.
Why Do I Need a Personal Injury Attorney in CA?
The testimonials you see on TV commercials for personal injury law firms are usually from people who received a settlement of six figures or more after years of litigation.
In an Accident But Don’t Have Insurance?
There is never a good time for a traffic accident, but something that can make any accident even worse is being on the road with no insurance.
What if I Was Partially at Fault in an Accident?
In the moments after a car accident, your mind is flooded with financial worries. If you are injured, you worry about how much your medical bills will cost.
Whiplash Dealing With the Aftermath of Injury
Whether it is incurred in a rear-end car crash, a physical attack, a fall, or a sports injury, a neck strain or sprain can be extremely painful.
Best Options for Injury Treatment ER or Urgent Care
Most families have had a middle-of-the-night medical issue at one time or another. There is always a question as to the best place to go for treatment, an emergency room, or an urgent care center.
Most Dangerous Roads in Murrieta and Surrounding Areas
It is no secret that in every city and town, certain areas simply seem more prone to accidents than others.
What to Do if the Person Who Hit You Does Not Have a Valid Driver’s License?
As in all states throughout the country, California law requires all motorists to carry a valid driver’s license.
Why is Having Car Insurance So Important?
Many people pay their car insurance premiums every month and never really think about it. Other than being a minor annoyance, what is there to think about?
How to Prove Negligence in a CA Delivery Truck Accident Case
To prove a delivery company’s negligence in a delivery truck accident case, you must prove that the truck belonged to the company and that the driver made a mistake that caused the accident.
How Does CA Law Treat Electric Bicycles
It is legal to ride electric bicycles on public roads in California, and you do not need a special license, but in some cases, the law requires you to wear a helmet.
How to Report an Accident to Police in California
You can report a traffic accident in California to the police by flagging down a patrol car at the scene of the accident, calling 9-1-1, or filing form SR-1 with the DMV.
When Should I Get a Lawyer for My Accident?
It is not always easy to determine if you need a lawyer after a crash in California. Below, our Murrieta car accident lawyer explains when you should seek legal counsel.
What to Do if the Insurance Company’s Settlement Offer After an Accident is Not Enough
Do not sign a settlement offer letter from an insurance company if it is not enough to cover your accident-related financial losses; instead, contact a car accident lawyer to discuss your options.
Is California a No-Fault State?
California follows no-fault laws, meaning the driver that caused the accident is responsible for paying damages. Under tort law, you must prove another person was to blame, as well as the value of your losses.
What Happens if I Do Not Report a Car Accident in CA?
To protect any future claim you may file, it is important to report the accident to the police and to the DMV. Not only will doing this provide the evidence you will need when filing a claim, but it will also help you avoid the penalties associated with failing to report a crash.
Car Accident Causes Me to Miss Work
You can claim compensation after a car accident in CA, including any wages you missed after taking time off from work.
How Does Aggressive Driving Cause Accidents?
Aggressive driving puts everyone on the road around that motorist at risk
Who is Liable in a Multi Vehicle Accident?
Car accidents sometimes involve more than two vehicles and determining liability afterwards depends on the type of crash it was. Our Murrieta car accident lawyer explains how to determine which party is liable below.
Can I Sue if My Car Accident Gave Me PTSD?
If you have been involved in a car accident and think you are now suffering from PTSD, you can recover damages. Financial compensation is available not only for your physical injuries, but also for your mental injuries.
Who is at Fault in a Rear End Accident?
The law requires you to use reasonable caution when driving a motor vehicle; in legal terms, this means that you have a duty of care toward other drivers on the road to drive safely. This includes knowledge of your state’s traffic laws, which is why you must pass a written test on traffic laws before you can even get a provisional driver’s license. It also means paying attention to the other cars on the road and to road conditions, which is why you can get a traffic ticket for distracted driving.
What Should I Do if I am a Witness to an Accident?
Most car accidents do not result in civil lawsuits or criminal charges, but statements from witnesses who were not in either of the vehicles involved in the collision can still be useful to insurance companies when apportioning fault for the accident and determining appropriate settlement amounts for the parties who filed claims in connection to the accident.
What is the Most Common Cause of Highway Work Zone Crashes?
The most common types of accidents in highway work zones are the ones that involve excessive speed or rear-end collisions; approximately a third of worker fatalities in highway construction zones involve commercial motor vehicles.
Should I Document Photos of My Accident?
You probably know the things you should not do immediately after a car accident. Don’t panic. Don’t leave the scene of the accident because you could get criminal charges for hit-and-run.
Reckless Driving Can Cause Multi-Vehicle Accidents That Injure Multiple People
Assigning percentages of fault after a car accident that involves only two cars is not always simple. Unless one driver did something egregiously dangerous, such as driving at double the speed limit or driving north in a southbound lane, there are usually things that both drivers could have done differently to prevent the accident.
Common Injuries of Pedestrians Who are Hit by Cars
The vast majority of pedestrian accidents occur between individuals who are on foot and motor vehicles. These collisions have the potential to cause catastrophic injuries, due to the fact that pedestrians are so exposed and vulnerable. A pedestrian can become hurt in several ways when they are struck by a car. However, some injuries are more common than others.
What Happens if the Person Who Hit Me Has Little or No Insurance?
If you get hit by an uninsured or underinsured driver, your uninsured motorist or underinsured motorist policies may pay for your damages, if you have these types of insurance coverage, but you may still need a lawyer’s help to get the insurance companies to pay enough to cover all your accident-related expenses.
What Kind of Accidents Can Cause Spinal Cord Injuries?
Spinal cord injuries occur when the vertebrae, ligaments, or disks in the spinal cord or column become damaged. The spinal cord is a very important part of the body. It sends signals from the brain to the rest of the body. It is also one of the most fragile and so, it is susceptible to injury during many different types of accidents.
Do More Accidents Occur After the Sun Goes Down?
Most people fear air travel more than they fear car travel and perceive walking at night as more dangerous than driving at night, but the chances of injury are greater when you are in a car than walking or traveling by plane, especially if you are driving at night.
Do Truck Accidents Occur More at Night?
Truck accidents are scary anywhere and at any time; there is a reason for the chill of fear you feel when you drive near 18-wheelers on the highway. Trucks are huge, and they cannot stop as quickly as cars can. They spend much of their time on interstate highways, where the speed of traffic is higher. If you have suffered serious injuries in a truck accident, the key to collecting damages is to show that there is something that the truck driver or another party could have done to prevent the accident.
Common Injuries in Motorcycle Accidents
Motorcycle accidents are among the most obvious examples of how fragile the human body is. You might be able to bench press an impressive amount of weight at the gym or juggle two jobs and all your family responsibilities, but you are little match for fast-moving steel machines and hard pavement. The chances of a motorcyclist getting injured in a motor vehicle collision are greater than for occupants of cars.
Beware of Delayed-Onset Symptoms After a Car Accident
Headache, back pain, or abdominal pain that develops several days after a car accident could be a sign of a serious, or even life-threatening condition; therefore, it is important to get a medical examination immediately after an accident, even if you feel fine.
How Safe is the Tesla Autopilot?
If you have seen the old “Sorcerer’s Apprentice” Mickey Mouse cartoon or heard the robots’ chorus on the Alan Parson Project’s I Robot album, you are familiar with the concept that, if machines were given the ability and the opportunity to make decisions, they would act like rebellious teenagers.
Seatbelts are the Safest Safety Feature
Car enthusiasts keep track of the newest safety features that promise to make cars more error-proof. In fact, many recent models of cars contain features that alert you to cars in your blind spot, help you back out of driveways, and even brake automatically to prevent crashes.
What Are the Leading Causes of Roadway Auto Accidents?
Minor car accidents tend to result from minor mistakes, such as not noticing that there is another car behind you when you back out of a parking space or not slowing down fast enough in a line of cars parked at a red light.
Are Auto Accident Settlements Taxable in CA?
Even though some people consider it tacky, it is a lot of fun to brag about your money; if it were not, social media would be a very different experience.
What is the Riskiest Time of Year for Truck Accidents in Southern CA?
On October 3, the Internet celebrates Mean Girls Day, perhaps the most Internet-only holiday since Talk Like a Pirate Day (September 19), but in Southern California, the day is best known as the anniversary of the verdict in the O.J. Simpson murder trial.
Self-Driving Cars: Don’t Get Your Hopes Up
Self-driving technology for fully autonomous passenger vehicles is more difficult to achieve than it seems; major ridesharing companies have recently sold their autonomous driving technology development departments, even as fully self-driving commercial trucks may soon become a reality.
What are the Most Common Types of Injuries From Auto Accidents?
A popular, if cynical, piece of financial advice is “do not get injured,” or, perhaps more specifically, “don’t get hit by a car. Even an injury from which you make a full recovery within a few weeks can leave you with medical bills that would take decades to pay off, even without interest, late fees, and obnoxious phone calls from collection agencies.
What Happens if You are Injured by an Uninsured Driver?
If you get injured in a car accident where the at-fault driver did not have liability insurance, your options include filing a claim with your own uninsured motorist insurance company or filing a personal injury lawsuit against the uninsured driver.
California Makes the List for Most Dangerous States for Child Passengers
California ranked second only to Texas for the number of children injured or killed in traffic accidents between 2015 and 2018; a disproportionate number of accidents happened on rural roads.
Why Personal Injury Attorneys are Helpful
A personal injury lawyer can help you recover compensation for your medical bills and lost income by negotiating for a better settlement from the insurance companies or filing a personal injury lawsuit.
Try to Get Photos After a Car Accident
These days, almost everyone who has a car also has a cell phone that can take pictures at much higher resolutions than the consumer cameras of our childhood were able to take; plenty of people who are too young to drive also have such cameras on their phones. Even better, the pictures are ready for immediate viewing, so you can retake them within seconds if they are not clear enough.
Should I Take the Insurance Company's Offer After an Accident
It is usually a great day when someone sends you a letter in the mail, offering to pay you money, instead of a bill asking you to pay them. When that letter is a settlement offer from an insurance company about an accident in which you were injured, do not get so carried away with the idea of someone giving you money that you sign without even thinking carefully about whether the amount the insurance company is offering is enough.
Common Myths About PI Lawyers
Whether you were hurt by medical malpractice, in a slip and fall, or by any other negligent act, you can file a claim for damages. Many people choose to file a claim on their own, thinking their case is straightforward enough to do so.
Has the Risk of Malpractice Gone Up With COVID-19?
Since the start of the pandemic, healthcare workers have been the front-line heroes keeping the people of Murrieta as safe as possible. While all Californians are extremely grateful to them.
Is There a Difference Between a Wrongful Death and Med Mal Claim?
Any time a person dies as a result of medical negligence, it is a case of wrongful death. However, not all wrongful death cases are considered medical malpractice.
Should I Get a Lawyer If I Was in An Uber Accident?
In recent years, Uber and other rideshare services have become increasingly popular among those who don’t wish to drive frequently. For most.
Are Wrongful Death and Med Mal Claims the Same?
No one expects to become injured in an accident or worse, lose a loved one after they have seen a healthcare professional for a medical condition. The aftermath of these accidents is devastating.
How Employers Can Handle Work-at-Home Injury Claims
California was one of the first states to issue a stay-at-home order when the COVID-19 pandemic first hit. While the order was intended to keep everyone in the state safe, employees that work from home are still susceptible to injury.
Should I be Worried if I Was in an Accident That Was Not My Fault?
California follows tort law in the event that there is an accident between two people. The law allows accident victims to file a claim against the at-fault driver that caused the crash resulting in injuries.
Who Can Take Leave Under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act?
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, federal legislators enacted the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA).
What Constitutes a Wrongful Death?
Accidents can happen in just a moment, and sometimes they are fatal. When that is the case, surviving loved ones are left grieving the loss. In addition to their grief, family members are also left with expensive funeral and burial costs, a loss of services, and more.
Four Things to Know About PI Cases in CA
An accident can happen in an instant and when it does, it can change your life. Many accidents are preventable and are caused by the negligence, or carelessness, of another person.
The Future of Drones and PI Cases
Car accident cases are extremely complex, with several steps involved. One of the first things a personal injury lawyer will do when working on a case is conduct a thorough investigation to determine which party was at fault for the crash.
Earn Rewards for Not Driving Distracted
It has been over a decade since texting and driving was banned in California. Still, too many drivers engage in this extremely dangerous behavior and cause accidents that result in severe injuries.
Is Your Company Prepared to Deal with Allegations of Discrimination?
As a business owner, you spend the majority of your time running your business. You do not have the time for lengthy litigation that involves a discrimination claim, and you cannot afford the distraction it will become to your employees as you try to maintain daily operations.
What is the New California Law Impacting Employees and Contractors?
It was in September 2019 that Assembly Bill 5 (AB-5) was signed into law, and it came into effect on January 1, 2020.
How Long Can It Take for a TBI to Show Symptoms?
Traumatic brain injuries, commonly referred to as TBIs, are some of the most severe injuries a person can suffer in an accident.
Taking Pictures After Your Accident May be Helpful to Your Case
Motor vehicle accidents are sudden, unexpected events. While drivers often experience varying degrees of shock in the immediate aftermath, it is important to be aware that the things you do or say during this time can have a major impact on your rights when filing a claim.
Who is Responsible for My Slip and Fall Injury?
A slip and fall accident can be embarrassing if it happens in a public place. To avoid calling attention to yourself, you may be tempted to brush off the incident and downplay any injuries you suffer as a result.
Steps to Take After a Car Accident
The moments after a car accident are scary and bring on a lot of confusion. Accident victims often do not know how the crash happened or what to do next.
How Long do I Have to File an Accident Claim in CA?
Accidents happen all the time in California, and they happen in a number of different ways. Slip and fall accidents, car crashes, and medical malpractice are just a few instances in which innocent people become hurt.
Taking photos can provide important evidence in car accident claims
Motor vehicle accidents are sudden, unexpected events. While drivers often experience varying degrees of shock in the immediate aftermath, it is important to be aware that the things you do or say during this time can have a major impact on your rights when filing a claim.
Advice for reducing auto accident risk after sunset
Many California drivers are unlikely to remember the unit in driver's education class that focused on safe driving at night. The topic may have been left out altogether or passed over briefly. Failure to understand the limitations imposed on driver eyesight and cognition by darkness may be responsible for the auto accident rate being much higher after hours. The following driving tips from insurance provider State Farm can help drivers reduce their risk of car accident.
Injured California women die underrepresented in crash-tests.
Seat belts fit men and women differently. Men and women are not just different heights and weights. Men tend to gain weight in the abdominal area and women gain weight around their waists and thighs. The most frequent complaint about automotive seat belts is that they irritate drivers' necks. The seatbelt belongs over the driver's hips and under the driver's stomach. The driver sits safely at least 10 inches away from the steering wheel. Women tend to be more vulnerable than men during head-on collisions because they suffer injuries from airbags and the steering wheel.
Car accidents injure or kill 50 to 73% more California women than men annually. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), decades of research and human factors engineering goes into the creation and calibration of each male or female crash dummy. Female crash dummies are five feet tall, and they weigh 110 pounds. Becky Mueller, IIHS senior research engineer, reports that it will take at least 10 years of real accident and injury data to create more accurate crash-dummies. IIHS is waiting patiently for real accident victims' data to be collected.
California the third-worst state for senior-involved car crashes
Seniors can be unsafe behind the wheel, so it's not surprising that they contribute to many auto accidents. A study from The Senior List has ranked the 10 worst states when it comes to crashes involving seniors as well as the 10 safest states. Unfortunately, California is the third-worst state, surpassed only by Florida and Texas. After California comes Georgia, North Carolina and Pennsylvania.
As for the safest states, the top five are New Hampshire, South Dakota, Delaware, Hawaii and North Dakota. While population has a lot to do with the rankings, there are some outliers. For example, Tennessee is not among the most populous states, but it had the eighth highest number of accidents involving seniors.
Most car accidents are preventable
California residents spend a great deal of time on the state's freeways and local roads. Although driving is second nature for many adults, it's also the single most dangerous activity they engage in. There are thousands of fatal automobile accidents every year in the U.S. To stay safe, it's important that drivers understand the most common causes of car accidents.
Although universally used, the term "car accident" can be somewhat misleading. Accident implies an event that may have occurred due to unfortunate and unavoidable circumstances. While some vehicle crashes are in fact the result of occurrences that could not have been prevented by the drivers involved, insurance analysts report the majority of incidents involving injury and/or property damage on the nation's roadways are caused by the negligent driving.
Drivers may want to avoid some California roads
According to the America's Safe Drivers Report 2019, Los Angeles is one of the most dangerous places for a person to drive. The report, which was issued by Allstate, found that the 405 Freeway was among the most dangerous roads in the city. Los Angeles landed at No. 6 overall on the list.
However, LA wasn't the only California city to be included in the top 15 most dangerous for drivers. Oakland, San Francisco and Glendale all made the cut as well. Highway 880 was considered the most dangerous in Oakland, and it was also considered the most dangerous in Hayward, which was number 15 on the list. Highway 101 was the most dangerous in San Francisco. Other cities to make the most dangerous list included Baltimore, Providence and Philadelphia. Baltimore was named the most dangerous city to drive in overall.
A few common problems lead to truck crashes
Accidents involving large trucks are likely to be more severe than other traffic crashes. While the average passenger vehicle in California weighs around 4,000 pounds, a semi truck could weigh as much as 20 times more. The most common reasons behind truck crashes are driver error, equipment failure and poor truck maintenance.
Truck drivers are required to have special licenses, and they have a heightened responsibility to use care and drive safely. However, some drivers make mistakes. For example, many drive while tired, distracted or intoxicated. Despite all these potential issues, statistics indicate that most semi truck accidents are the result of an error by a passenger vehicle driver.
NHTSA estimates 1% decline in roadway fatalities in 2018
After seeing a record jump in 2015 and 2016, the number of roadway fatalities in California and the rest of the U.S. has been gradually declining. If the estimates of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration are accurate, 2018 will be the second year in a row to see a decrease, however slight it might seem.
The years 2015 and 2016 were the worst in terms of traffic fatalities since at least the 1960s, prompting many to suggest that a new era in driving had begun. There are grounds for such concerns: More drivers are, for example, letting smartphones and in-vehicle technology distract them from the road. But 2017 saw a 2% decline in traffic fatalities with 37,133 dying in motor vehicle crashes. In 2018, that number went down about 1% to 36,750.
Trucking industry may benefit from stricter drug testing
The Alliance for Driver Safety & Security has compiled data on the pre-employment drug tests of commercial truck drivers in California and the rest of the U.S., finding that many truckers who are habitual drug users are being accepted. This data is based on a survey of 3.5 million CMV drivers. In all, 301,000 truck drivers on the road today would fail if subjected to a hair analysis.
Another problem is that employers cannot submit hair test failures to the U.S. Department of Transportation's Drug and Alcohol Clearinghouse, a database said to go into effect in 2020. Employers, then, will have no way of knowing that a potential employee has failed previous tests. The reason is that the DoT only recognizes urine analyses. The Department of Health and Human Services has yet to produce guidelines for hair analyses.
Commercial fleet and driver safety highlights
The behavior of commercial vehicle drivers in California and other states can have a big impact on how safe the roads are for other motorists and truck drivers. This is why a fleet management systems provider has reviewed driving behaviors of more than 6,000 of its fleet customers. It focused on small and midsize businesses with 2 to 200 trucks.
The management systems provider considered several different factors related to commercial trucks, including average speeding events per day and mile as well as fatalities per vehicle miles traveled. Based on these criteria, the safest area for fleet drivers is within the East Coast, even with the infamous I-95 corridor and other common "problem" areas. Virginia, Washington and New Hampshire are among the states that ranked as the safest places for commercial fleet operators. The most dangerous states were in the South and Midwest with Oklahoma and Texas topping the list.
Multiple factors complicate truck accident injury claims
A crash with a big rig on a California highway can produce serious injuries among passenger vehicle occupants. The sheer size and weight of commercial trucks increase the force of impact. Although truck accident victims might apply the same personal injury laws to collect damages as car accident victims, the cases possess greater complexity.
Identifying the responsible party in a truck accident might become difficult when drivers operate trucks owned by separate companies. The cargo could possibly belong to a third party, which adds another layer of complication. When ownership and responsibility lack clarity, the assignment of liability could become contentious.
Tesla's Navigate on Autopilot feature may be flawed
California motorists may be interested in a new safety report pertaining to Tesla's automated driving features. According to testers with Consumer Reports, Tesla's updated Navigate on Autopilot feature has serious issues. A test on Model 3 showed that the semi-autonomous Autopilot feature made several mistakes. For example, the system made illegal passes and cut off approaching automobiles.
The study indicates that human drivers perform better at changing lanes than the Navigate on Autopilot feature. Plus, the Autopilot feature was responsible for other possible risks. For instance, it often failed to leave enough room between cars. The feature is not fully capable of self-direction because drivers must get involved in order to prevent possible collisions. The Autopilot feature has already failed to prevent three fatal car collisions.