Available Damages if a Driver Hits You While Texting and Driving
In the State of California, a distracted driver who has caused an auto accident can be held liable for the injuries and damages caused. In California’s fast-paced world, it is common to see drivers using their phones while driving, despite the fact that it’s against the law.If a driver using a cellphone while driving has hit you, there are a few actions you should consider taking immediately after the incident. Taking proactive measures will help to protect your rights and will also help you in the event that the case becomes complicated in the future. Furthermore, it is always good practice to seek the legal expertise of a car accident attorney who has experience in handling personal injury cases involving motor vehicle collisions. A skillful attorney will always represent your rights and fight for the compensation you deserve following an auto accident.
Important Steps to Take Following an Accident Involving a Distracted Driver
As previously mentioned, there are factors you should consider taking immediately after an auto accident involving a distracted driver, as taking careful precautions will help to protect your rights.
Step #1: Obtain the Appropriate Medical Treatment - Getting medical treatment in the aftermath of an accident should always be your number one priority. Receiving treatment for an injury will not only help the injury from getting worse, it will also help you establish a medical record, which is vital for personal injury claims.
Step #2: Obtain Eyewitness’ Contact Information - Many auto accidents will involve he-said, she-said arguments and it is important to obtain the testimony of witnesses who can corroborate your version of events. Memories can fade quickly so documenting the witnesses and their stories early is crucial.
Step #3: File a Police Report - Usually, when a major auto accident happens, a police officer will be called to the scene. This officer will write down facts of the case but you can also ask to have your version of events put in the report. It is important to note, however, that an officer may or may not respond to the scene of your accident. In either case, you should file a police report independently in a station or department near thre scene of the accident. This further supplements documents that can validate the events that occurred as well as your claim overall.
Step #4: Obtain the Support of a Qualified Attorney to Represent Your Case - When it comes to accidents involving distracted drivers, it is easy to see why there will be many disputes about how the accident was caused. Many distracted drivers will fail to recognize their errors and if you have been injured because of the accident, you will need to defend your rights. A specialized personal injury attorney will investigate the facts of the case and ensure that your rights are protected in a court of law.
Types of Damages Available in an Auto Accident Claim
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, over 23,000 people lose their lives in auto accidents across the nation every year. An additional 2.8 million people sustain bodily injuries and approximately 10% of all auto accident victims become disabled. In most cases, auto accidents are the result of another’s driver’s negligence, such as driving at excessive speeds or running a stop sign. In other cases, however, determining fault for an auto accident can be much more complex. Nonetheless, as complex as an auto accident may seem, damages may be recovered through a personal injury claim.
If you have recently suffered injuries as a result of an auto accident caused by someone else’s negligence, California law protects your right to file a personal injury claim. Here, we will discuss the types of damages that may be recovered and what you can do to protect your rights.
Available Damages in a Car Accident Case
Depending on the circumstances surrounding the accident, the monetary damages available will vary from case to case. Some of the most common types of damages include the following:
Medical Expenses - Following an accident that left you with injuries, any medical costs you accrued may be recovered. This can include any hospital, ambulance or emergency room costs. It can also include the cost of medical devices needed and future medical expenses as well.
Emotional Distress and Pain and Suffering - It may be possible to recover damages for the pain and discomfort associated with the injury as well as disfigurement and disability. Moreover, by filing a claim, it may be possible to recover damages associated with the emotional trauma endured as a result of the accident. This can include loss of dignity, anxiety, grief, humiliation, embarrassment, loss of quality of life, and PTSD. Depending on the case, it may be possible to recover damages resulting from mental suffering and emotional distress even if no physical injuries are present.
Loss of Income and Loss of Earning Capacity - It is possible to recover damages for the income you’ve lost for the time you’ve missed off work as a result of your injuries.Loss of earning capacity damages may also be recovered if the ability to return to work has been impaired.
Property Damage – You are also entitled to have the damages to your vehicle repaired, if repairable or conversely, the fair market value of your vehicle if it has been deemed a total loss. In addition, if you have lost valuables at the time of the accident, this may be recoverable.
Other Losses - In addition to the aforementioned economic expenses, it may be possible to recover damages for other forms of economic harm associated with the accident. For example, any reasonable out-of-pocket expenses may also be recovered.
After a Car Accident, Defend Your Right to Compensation and Speak to a Qualified Personal Injury Attorney
Filing a personal injury claim against an at-fault driver and his or her auto insurance company is not an easy or simple task. In many cases, the insurance company will vigorously challenge the claims made by the victim, often paying the least amount possible or not paying at all. If you or someone you know was injured in an auto accident, consult the legal guidance of a skilled attorney at RM Law Group who can defend your right to the compensation you deserve.