A rear-end accident case may present many wrinkles. You may have been hit by multiple other vehicles. The driver who hit you may have been speeding, driving while distracted, or driving while impaired. The person who hit you may have been on the job when the crash occurred. Any of these details can impact how best to proceed with your case and get you appropriate compensation.
To make sure that you have all your details covered, make sure you have skilled representation from a knowledgeable Santa Barbara car accident lawyer.
Sometimes, you can identify a lot of possible legal issues just from a few lines of factual information.
For example, take this injury accident from here in Santa Barbara. According to a noozhawk.com report, the woman injured in the crash was traveling southbound on Highway 101 near the State Street offramp shortly before 2:30 p.m. when another driver rear-ended her "at high speed," according to the Santa Barbara City Fire Department.
The report also said the accident included a total of three vehicles and that the injured woman was taken by ambulance to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital.
A few things jump out from these reported facts.
For example, the news report tells us that the injured woman was rear-ended. That points toward a high probability that she was not liable for her injuries. Most of the time, the rear driver in a rear-end crash is legally responsible for the accident. The law in California requires all drivers to maintain control of their vehicles at all times. That means, among other things, not going too fast for the present conditions and not following too closely. Frequently, unless the front driver was impaired or braked/stopped in an open travel lane for no reasonable reason, the law will deem the rear driver to have followed too closely or failed to stop in time.
Secondly, the article says that the rear driver hit the woman at a "high speed." This raises multiple possibilities. Potentially, the rear driver was speeding. Alternatively, the rear driver may have failed to slow down appropriately because he/she was distracted.
How Proper Legal Representation Helps
These scenarios are circumstances where having the right legal team handling your case can be invaluable. For one thing, your legal team can investigate the crash scene and get the photographic and other evidence needed for accident experts to draw conclusions, such as how fast the rear driver was going. Potentially, your legal team can also obtain the rear driver's cell phone records to determine if he/she was texting or otherwise using the phone at the time of the crash.
If the rear driver was cited for speeding or for driving while distracted, proof of that citation may help, as well. California law recognizes something called "negligence per se." What you need to know about this "legalese" phrase is that, if you present proof of a citation and you qualify to use it, it simplifies your burden of proof and allows the jury to presume that the driver you sued was driving negligently.
Lastly, the report says that there were three vehicles. This raises the possibility of two drivers' liability (and your entitlement to receive compensation from both of them.) Again, a prompt investigation and scientific analysis of the crash scene evidence can help you immensely in identifying whether one driver or multiple drivers were responsible for your injuries.
If you've endured injuries as a result of someone else's negligent driving, you need a legal team that can get to the bottom of your case and then get you the compensation the law says you deserve.
Count on the helpful Santa Barbara personal injury attorneys at the law firm of Galine, Frye, Fitting & Frangos, LLP to be that team.
Contact us at 805-617-1365 or through our website to get a free case consultation.
GALINE, FRYE, FITTING & FRANGOS, LLP - SANTA BARBARA OFFICE
Thank you so much for all of your legal help on my case. I’ve really enjoyed working with you and your professional team including Lisa and Mavis. I also appreciate your efforts in reaching a settlement on my behalf. I will definitely refer my clients and friends to your firm they are in need of legal representation in the future. Regards.- ADRIAN C.