California Personal Injury lawyer
In California, personal injury law provides a means of compensation for persons who are injured by the actions of another, whether those actions are intentional or the result of negligence. A wide range of accidents are covered by personal injury law, including motor vehicle collisions, slip and falls, defective products, animal attacks, unsafe conditions on another person’s property, assault and battery, wrongful death, etc. If you or a loved one has been injured by the actions of another you are entitled to compensation under the law. However, a personal injury claim is often a complex and frustrating experienced and it is essential to retain skilled legal representation. At the Spencer Law Firm, our experienced personal injury lawyers will aggressively fight for your rights and help you secure the maximum amount of compensation possible for your damages.
What Should You Do After A Personal Injury?
The following is a checklist to follow after you or a loved one has been injured. It is important to document details of the incident in order to protect your rights in future legal proceedings.
- Get immediate medical attention: seek prompt medical help for your injuries. Tell the attending physician as many details as possible about the incident so that important medical information is documented.
- Call the police in cases of intentional acts: if you have been assaulted or intentionally harmed by another, call local law enforcement immediately and file a police report.
- Preserve evidence: write down the names, addresses and phone numbers of any witnesses. Record vehicle and driver information if injured in a motor vehicle accident. Take photos of the accident scene from different angles (including anything that contributed to the accident, such as an object you tripped over, etc.). If a defective product was involved, keep it in a safe place and do not alter it in any way.
- Document your injuries and treatment: take photos of all external injuries, such as bruising, cuts, chipped teeth, etc. Keep written records of all your appointments with health care providers concerning your injury, the treatments you received, medication taken, time off of work, changes in your lifestyle, pain and suffering you experienced, and all expenses associated with the injury.
- Contact an attorney: it is very important to talk to an experienced personal injury lawyer as soon as you can after the incident. It is also essential that you do not speak to insurance agents prior to consulting with a personal injury lawyer.
Who Is Responsible For Your Injuries?
Liability for injuries depends upon what type of personal injury claim is involved. The three types of personal injury claims are:
- Negligence claims are the most common. A person who acts negligently does not intend to cause injury, but his or her liability is the result of careless or thoughtless action as compared to how a reasonable person would act under the same circumstances. For example, a grocery store owner who knows or should have known of a spilled item in an isle that causes a customer to slip and fall is liable if it was not cleaned-up in a timely manner. Individuals with specialized training or knowledge (such as doctors, lawyers, engineers, pilots, etc.) are covered by a special area of law called malpractice, and their actions are compared to how reasonable professionals in the same field would act.
- Strict liability claims are also know as “liability without fault” because negligence does not have to be shown. The most common strict liability claim involves defective products. When a defective product causes injury, there are several potential responsible parties, such as the manufacturer, distributor, retailer or installer of the product. In another example, owners or handlers of animals are also strictly liable for the injuries caused by bites or attacks in some circumstances.
- Intentional wrongs are claims that require an intent by someone to do physical harm to the victim, such as assault and battery or sexual abuse. In addition to filing criminal charges, the victim may also bring a civil lawsuit against the perpetrator.
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There are many other potential parties responsible for injuries depending upon the circumstances. To list a few examples, a property owner may be liable for failing to make the property safe for tenants, customers, guests, the public, etc. A local or state government entity may be liable if an injury occurred on public property (e.g. improperly maintained roads could cause an automobile accident), and an employer can be liable for the actions of an employee who causes injuries to a third party.
California Personal Injury Lawyer
If you or a loved one has been injured by the negligent, or intentional, actions of another person (or entity), it is essential that you contact an attorney as soon as possible.