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How Can I Obtain Compensation from a Public Entity in California When I’m Injured Due to Unsafe Road Conditions?

Being injured as a passenger in a single-vehicle accident can be a scary time. You may have suffered extensive, permanent or perhaps even life-altering injuries. You probably have medical bills and have lost time at work. In fact, you may never be able to return to your old job again. However, the driver of your vehicle may have little personal wealth and only minimal insurance coverage. Does that mean that your situation is hopeless? Not necessarily. Depending on the facts surrounding your accident, there may be others who owed you a duty of care and failed to meet it, leading to the injuries you suffered. Proving that may allow you to expand the range of defendants who owe you compensation. To get that full recovery you deserve, give yourself a leg up by retaining a skilled San Mateo injury attorney.

An example of this type of scenario took place in Southern California, and was reported by the Long Beach Post. F.V. was a passenger of a vehicle that was approaching an intersection in Long Beach. The intersection included a ramp and, as the driver navigated the tight turn on the ramp, he hopped the curb and eventually slammed into large landscaping boulders located in the median near the intersection. The accident caused F.V. to suffer serious spinal injuries causing quadriplegia, as well as massive brain damage, according to the report.

Giving these facts a quick glance, you might think that the injured man’s only path for compensation would be suing the driver and the driver’s auto insurance company. F.V.’s attorneys saw something more. F.V. brought an action against the City of Long Beach. That claim asserted that one cause of the accident was the unsafe road conditions that the city created by placing large boulders on the median near the on-ramp.

Two different methods for proving the defendant’s ‘knowledge’

In order to win a case like this, there are several things you need to prove. One of the most important things that you have to show is that the city had what the law calls “knowledge.” Don’t be deceived by the term “knowledge” here. While you can meet your burden of proof by showing that the city actually knew about the dangerous road conditions but did nothing to address them, that is not the only way you can clear this evidentiary hurdle. In civil liability law, there are two types of knowledge. There’s “actual knowledge,” which is the circumstance described above. There is also, however, something called “constructive knowledge.” That means that, if the city reasonable should have known about the road’s hazardous condition, then the law will consider it to have knowledge of that danger, whether it actually knew or not.

There are lots of ways you can work to prove this requirement of constructive knowledge. You may use numerous past reported accidents at that location. You may be able to discover complaints made to the city about the area’s dangerousness. You also may be able to discover city records showing that municipal officials contemplated addressing the problem area, but that no corrective action ever occurred.

These are just a few examples.

In other words, there may be many possible routes to getting you to the endpoint you seek. To choose the most effective path, rely on the experienced San Mateo personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Galine, Frye, Fitting & Frangos. Our attorneys have been helping injured people for many years. To set up a free consultation with one of our experienced attorneys, contact us at 650-345-8484 or through our website.

Car Accident

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    I retained Ilya Frangos of Galine, Frye, Fitting & Frangos on a business litigation matter involving a frivolous lawsuit filed in federal court. Ilya guided me through the case and helped make sure that I understood the process… He always took the time to answer all my questions and helped put my mind at ease. I would highly recommend him and this firm!

    Agatha

    I called Mr Frye after my wife had passed away… John listened to my case over the phone, after aggreeing to represent me, handled everything from there… I have already recommended Mr Frye to a friend for help with a similiar case and would without reserve recommend him to anybody. He came highly recommended as an expert in these type cases, and I believe he demonstrated this personally.

    Jerry

    Chantel Fitting is as good as it gets. If you have been injured, need help and cant get what you know you deserve from one of the big insurance companies, then you have got to call Chantel. She will fight for you like it was her that was hurt… She cares. Call her. You wont be sorry you did.

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    A great experience. Excellent law firm which treats their client’s with the utmost respect. Very knowledgeable and made me fell extremely secure when handling my personal injury claim. Would highly recommend Galine, Frye, Fitting & Frangos to handle your next case.

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    I was fortunate enough to have been represented and retained by this law firm for my injuries sustained by an under insured motorist. I must say Chantel Fitting and Illya Frangos went above and beyond trying to resolve my case… I would highly recommend this law firm and stop shopping around if you are looking for the best, as this is as good as it gets.

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