When you’re injured in an auto accident, you may worry that this crash will cause you to miss a lot of time at work. You may worry that your injuries will impair your ability to care for your children or meet your financial obligations. Any accident caused by someone else is frustrating, but it may be especially irritating if the driver who hit you was texting while driving. While exceptionally frustrating, clear evidence that the driver who hit you was texting at the time of the crash may be a huge help to you when it comes time to go to court and seek much-needed compensation for the harm you’ve suffered. Be sure you have an experienced San Mateo car accident attorney on your side to help you discover all the facts and then use them to your maximum benefit in court.
In Los Angeles, despite efforts by the city government, “the number of people killed in car crashes stayed stubbornly high,” according to the Los Angeles Times. One of the key contributors to that is drivers texting while driving. Drivers traveling “30, 40, 50 mph … put their head down to pick up a text or handle a call, and they move 100 yards, and they drive over someone,” LAPD Chief Michel Moore said in the Times report.
Regrettably, distracted driving isn’t just a problem in Los Angeles. In mid-March, a 20-year-old woman who was “driving northbound… and using her cellular phone” in Redding collided with another driver. According to actionnewsnow.com, the 20-year-old woman did not notice that her traffic light was red, she ran the red light and crashed into another car. The driver of that second vehicle was injured and was transported to a local hospital, according to the report.
Whether you’ve suffered minor injuries or major impairment as a result of your accident, you’ve been harmed. You’ve almost certainly required medical treatment and will probably require additional medical treatment in the future. Of course, all that costs money. You may have missed work as a result of your injuries, and may be looking at more absences in the future. That, of course, costs you income you would have earned if not for the crash. On top of those, you’ve endured pain and suffering.
The law says that you are entitled to sue and seek an award of damages for those harms. Generally, an auto accident lawsuit involves pursuing the at-fault driver and asserting a legal claim of negligence. Under California law, there are several things you have to show in order for a jury to find that the driver you’ve sued is negligent.
What negligence ‘per se’ is and how it can help you win your case
However, sometimes there’s a more effective way. California law recognizes something called negligence “per se.” Negligence per se is something you can use when the driver who hit you violated a statute or ordinance, including the Vehicle Code. The law says that, if you can prove that the defendant violated the law (or an ordinance) and that violation “was a substantial factor” in causing the harm that you suffered, then a jury must find the defendant to be negligent and liable. In other words, if you have proof that the driver who hit you was texting while driving, that proof may give you a simpler and more direct path toward winning your case. That, of course, can potentially take a substantial amount of uncertainty out of your case.
Whether you were hit by a distracted driver or someone paying perfect attention to the road, and whether your case is relying on a claim of “per se” negligence or “ordinary” negligence, you need the right legal team on your side to make sure that you’re doing everything necessary to prove your case and prove your damages. The skilled San Mateo car accident attorneys at the Law Offices of Galine, Frye, Fitting & Frangos are here to provide you with that type of representation. To set up a free consultation with one of our experienced attorneys and find out how we can help, contact us at 650-345-8484 or through our website.