HHJ Trial Attorneys

San Diego Car Accidents & Injury Lawyers

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San Diego Car Accident Lawyers

  • Over 750 combined Google 5-Star Reviews
  • Tens of millions won every year for our clients
  • We won’t settle for less than the maximum value for your case
  • 30 combined years of legal experience 
San Diego Personal Injury Lawyers

Trusted And Recommended

HHJ Trial Attorneys proudly serve victims who have suffered from serious injuries. HHJ is one of San Diego’s premiere personal injury law firms. We’ve obtained over ten million dollars for our clients within the last 4 years alone and have been voted the Best Litigation Firm for the last 3 years through the San Diego Union Tribune. All three partners have been voted as Super Lawyers and have received coverage from local and national news outlets.

Free Case Evaluation

Lorenza AquinoLorenza Aquino
23:47 25 Jun 24
Best office for your personal injury needs. They have the best attorneys !!!
Adriana GuevaraAdriana Guevara
23:31 19 Jun 24
This law office helped me with my fall that I had in the mall. They helped me with doctor visits and insurance. I liked how they treated me and the patience they had with my case.
Jason RuthJason Ruth
01:56 18 Jun 24
I was rear ended in an auto accident. The other driver fled the scene. My auto insurance decided they wanted to be of little help. They lied, denied me medical coverage, and strung me along for 5 months before finally totaling my vehicle. I was left in a medical/ auto limbo with no one to help since my insurance wouldn't answer my calls/ emails. It wasn’t until HHJ trial attorneys got involved that my insurance started providing the coverage they were suppose to from the start. Kamil Robinson from HHJ was there every step of the way to explain things and answer any questions no matter what time of day. First and foremost he made sure I received the medical care I needed and made sure my auto insurance held up their end of the bargain. Kamil along with Freesia Farris really helped me navigate and move past an unpleasant situation I was dealt. If it wasn’t for HHJ the outcome would have been a lot different. Thanks again Kamil and everyone at HHJ!
Orquidia MoreiraOrquidia Moreira
17:43 16 Jun 24
Best attorneys in san diego
Divina GaDivina Ga
17:23 16 Jun 24
Dave HDave H
18:31 06 Jun 24
Kamil and the team at HHJ were a pleasure to work with. He was very responsive and was always easy to get on the phone. He was really good about walking us through the process and explaining our options and next steps. They were all very professional and attentive. I would definitely use HHJ again.
Erickson GanapinErickson Ganapin
16:11 29 May 24
I recently had the pleasure of working with HHJ Trial Attorneys for a motor vehicle accident I was involved in, and I couldn't be more impressed. Adam Hepburn and his team demonstrated exceptional professionalism, expertise, and dedication throughout the entire process. They were proactive in communication, keeping me informed every step of the way, and their attention to detail ensured that my case was handled with the utmost care. I highly recommend HHJ Trial Attorneys for anyone in need of reliable and effective legal representation.
Jordan EnrightJordan Enright
14:57 08 May 24
Michael Hernandez is the real deal when it comes to holding 'the other guy' accountable. As a colleague of mine, I've seen firsthand how Michael tackles complex situations with precision, ensuring accountability and getting great results for his clients. His dedication and care for his clients are top-notch. If you need someone who will fight for you and get the job done right, Michael Hernandez is your guy.
paniz allamehpaniz allameh
21:57 22 Apr 24
I consulted with Emma for an employment issue. I was under a lot of stress and she was absolutely kind, patient and compassionate and listened to all the details of my issue. Although this was not a topic of their practice, she spent time providing me several resources that could help me and get me started. I felt cared for by her welcoming communication and not rushed even though she knew she wouldn’t be able to help or make money from my case, that didn’t prevent her from supporting me and give me recommendations. Thank you Emma 🙏
Khala BarkusKhala Barkus
19:33 25 Sep 22
Michael and his team were so great during this entire process. They helped me to get a pretty significant settlement from my case and they were never delayed in any of the processes. I am confident that had I not "fired" the first attorney that I started to work with and called HHJ trail attorneys, I would not have gotten the results that I got with HHJ. You can't go wrong with working with these guys to settle your case.
21:09 25 Aug 22
Michael and the HHJ staff were extremely helpful from the start of my case less than a year ago. From the time I had my accident, to having doctor appointments set up to the final conclusion, it couldn’t have been a smoother process from beginning to end. Michael is very detailed and organized and always has your best interest at heart. He is very responsive and is always on top of it. I didn’t have to do much other than show up to my doctor appts and respond with info that was needed. I would without a beat use Michael and his team again if needed. HHJ is the best in Southern California!
Claudia LopezClaudia Lopez
21:41 08 Jul 22
Mr. Adam Hepburn and his firm, HHJ Trial Attorneys, took on our legal case. Mr. Adam Hepburn came recommended, luckily. We can't thank Mr. Adam Hepburn and his firm for their stellar work throughout our entire legal case. If I had any questions or concerns, Mr. Adam Hepburn would quickly address my concerns either via email, cell phone or even on text. Mr. Adam Hepburn was very truthful, thoughtful when explaining the facts of my case, and extremely professional. If you're on the fence with hiring Adam Hepburn and his firm, don't be, he's the best in the field. Adam won my case! Must hire him and his firm if you need his type of services.
15:00 20 Apr 22
Michael and the team at HHJ Trial Attorneys have taken the best care of our Clients after they have being involved in road accidents. The care, attention and commitment they provide to all their clients is extraordinary as are their life enhancing results - HHJ Trial Attorneys = Best In Class.
Anne FranksAnne Franks
14:41 20 Apr 22
Michael at HHJ Trial Attorneys is a professional Accident & Personal Injury Lawyers group. This group is very is highly recommended! They are very professional compared to other firms. If you are looking for a quality group of attorneys that will get the job done, this is the one to call!

Trusted San Diego Car Accident Lawyers

If you’ve been involved in a car accident in the city of San Diego, you need trusted legal advocates who can navigate the complexities of your case and ensure your rights are protected. At HHJ Trial Attorneys, we understand that the aftermath of a car accident can be overwhelming, both physically and emotionally. With a wealth of experience, dedication, and a commitment to delivering justice, our San Diego car accident lawyers are here to provide you with the guidance and advocacy you need. We are passionate about helping our clients secure the compensation they deserve, allowing them to focus on their recovery while we handle the legal intricacies. When you choose HHJ Trial Attorneys, you’re choosing a team of motor accident lawyers who will tirelessly pursue the best possible outcome for your car accident case.

Although it’s true that we can’t guarantee the outcome of your case, we have had the following successes in other cases: 

  • $300,000 settlement following an auto accident 
  • $790,000 settlement following car accident with injuries 
  • $1,000,000 settlement after a serious vehicle accident 

On this page you’ll find:

  • Learn more about what you should do after a car accident from a San Diego car accident lawyer 
  • What damages you can sue for with the help of an auto accident lawyer 
  • What are the common types of car accidents in San Diego 
  • The benefits of retaining a motor accident attorney 

How Can a San Diego Auto Accident Attorney Help Me?

If you’re involved in a car accident in San Diego, an auto accident attorney can be invaluable in navigating the aftermath. They offer a range of services that cover everything from legal expertise and guidance to emotional support. A San Diego auto accident attorney will have a deep understanding of California’s vehicle and insurance laws, ensuring that your rights are protected throughout the legal process. Their experience with negotiating with insurance companies is crucial, as they work to ensure that you receive a fair settlement that covers medical expenses, lost wages, and compensation for pain and suffering.

The process of gathering evidence is another area where an attorney can provide significant assistance. They conduct thorough investigations, collecting necessary documents like police reports and medical records, and can call upon expert witnesses to strengthen your case. Should your case go to court, an attorney will represent you, handling the complexities of litigation, including filing lawsuits and navigating trial processes.

Moreover, auto accident attorneys often work on a contingency fee basis, meaning you won’t have upfront costs and only pay if they win your case. This financial arrangement can ease the burden during what is often a stressful time. They also handle all the legal paperwork and adhere to deadlines, significantly reducing your stress and allowing you to focus on recovery. Beyond the tangible legal assistance, attorneys also offer emotional support, guiding you through the confusion and stress following an accident.

Choosing the right attorney is critical. You should look for someone with a strong track record in auto accident cases in San Diego, and who communicates clearly and effectively. The right attorney not only increases the likelihood of a favorable outcome but also acts as a pillar of support during a challenging period.

What are Examples of Common Types of Car Accidents?

San Diego, like any large city, experiences a wide variety of car accidents due to its busy roads, highways, and diverse driving conditions. Some common types of car accidents that occur in San Diego include:

  1. Rear-End Collisions: These are among the most common types of accidents, often occurring when a vehicle stops suddenly, and the car behind it fails to stop in time. Distracted driving, tailgating, and sudden stops in traffic are frequent causes.

  2. Side-Impact Collisions (T-Bone Accidents): These accidents typically happen at intersections and involve the front of one vehicle colliding with the side of another. They often result from failing to yield, running red lights, or stop signs.

  3. Head-On Collisions: While less common, head-on collisions are extremely dangerous and often occur on two-lane roads when a driver veers into oncoming traffic. Causes include distracted driving, impaired driving, and wrong-way driving on highways.

  4. Hit-and-Run Accidents: San Diego sees its fair share of hit-and-run incidents, where a driver causes an accident and leaves the scene without providing contact or insurance information. These can involve other vehicles, pedestrians, or bicyclists.

  5. Pedestrian Accidents: With its favorable weather, San Diego has many pedestrians, and accidents involving pedestrians are unfortunately common, especially in urban and residential areas.

  6. Bicycle Accidents: Similar to pedestrian accidents, bicycle accidents are prevalent due to the city’s active cycling community. These accidents often occur at intersections or when vehicles and bicycles share the road.

  7. Motorcycle Accidents: Motorcyclists are at higher risk of injury in accidents due to the lack of protection compared to cars. Accidents often happen due to visibility issues, lane splitting, or drivers failing to check for motorcyclists when turning or changing lanes.

  8. Multi-Vehicle Pile-Ups: These accidents typically occur on highways and involve multiple vehicles. High speeds, traffic congestion, and one initial collision can quickly lead to a chain reaction involving several vehicles.

  9. Rollovers: Vehicles, especially SUVs and trucks that have higher centers of gravity, can be involved in rollover accidents. These can be caused by sharp turns at high speeds, collisions, or tripping over an obstacle like a curb.

  10. Accidents Involving Commercial Trucks: The presence of commercial trucks on highways and in urban areas can lead to accidents due to the truck’s large blind spots, longer stopping distances, and the potential for cargo to shift or spill.

Each type of accident has its own set of challenges and complexities, especially when determining fault and liability. This diversity underscores the importance of having experienced legal representation if you’re involved in a car accident in San Diego.

What Types of Damages Can I Include In My Car Accident Claim?

When filing a car accident claim, you can include various types of damages to ensure you receive compensation that covers the full extent of your losses. These damages are generally categorized into economic, non-economic, and sometimes punitive damages. Here’s an overview:

Economic Damages

Economic damages, also known as special damages, are compensation for financial losses directly resulting from the accident. They can be easily quantified and typically include:

  • Medical Expenses: Costs for medical treatment related to injuries from the accident, including hospital stays, surgeries, medications, doctor’s visits, physical therapy, and any future medical care.
  • Lost Wages: Compensation for the income you lost while recovering from your injuries. This includes time off work, loss of earning capacity, and future lost earnings if your injuries prevent you from returning to your previous job.
  • Property Damage: Costs to repair or replace your vehicle and any other personal property damaged in the accident.
  • Out-of-Pocket Expenses: Reimbursement for any additional expenses incurred as a result of the accident, such as travel costs to medical appointments, home modifications for serious injuries, and other related expenses.

Non-Economic Damages

Non-economic damages, or general damages, compensate for non-financial losses, which are subjective and not easily quantified. They include:

  • Pain and Suffering: Compensation for the physical pain and emotional distress you experienced due to the accident and your injuries.
  • Emotional Distress: Specifically for the psychological impact of the accident, such as anxiety, depression, and PTSD, which might be considered separately from pain and suffering in some cases.
  • Loss of Consortium: Damages awarded to the spouse or family members of the injured party for the loss of companionship, affection, and support.
  • Loss of Enjoyment of Life: Compensation for the inability to enjoy hobbies and other life activities you participated in before the accident.

Punitive Damages

Punitive damages are not related to the compensation of your losses but are intended to punish the defendant for particularly reckless or egregious behavior and to deter similar conduct in the future. These are not awarded in every case and are typically reserved for situations where the defendant’s actions were especially harmful.

When preparing your claim, it’s important to carefully document all aspects of your damages to ensure you are fully compensated. This might involve gathering medical records, bills, proof of income loss, and evidence of any other financial or personal losses. An experienced attorney can help you accurately assess and articulate these damages to maximize your compensation.

What are the Benefits of a Auto Accident Lawyer?

Hiring a San Diego car accident lawyer can provide several benefits if you’re involved in a car accident in the area. These benefits include:

  1. Expertise in Local Laws: Car accident lawyers in San Diego are well-versed in California state laws and local regulations that apply to your case. They can navigate the complexities of these laws to ensure that your claim is handled correctly.

  2. Negotiation with Insurance Companies: An experienced lawyer can handle all communications and negotiations with insurance companies on your behalf. They are skilled in negotiating fair settlements and can prevent insurers from using tactics to minimize your compensation.

  3. Investigation and Evidence Gathering: Lawyers have the resources to conduct a thorough investigation of your accident. They can gather evidence, such as traffic camera footage, witness statements, and police reports, to build a strong case in your favor.

  4. Assessment of Damages: A knowledgeable lawyer can accurately assess the full extent of your damages, including medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and any long-term care needs. This ensures that you seek compensation that truly reflects the impact of the accident on your life.

  5. Representation in Court: If your case goes to court, having a lawyer means you have someone to represent your interests and fight for your rights in front of a judge and jury. They will handle all aspects of the trial, including presenting evidence and arguing on your behalf.

  6. Peace of Mind: Dealing with the aftermath of a car accident can be stressful. Having a lawyer handle the legal aspects allows you to focus on your recovery, knowing that a professional is advocating for your best interests.

  7. No Upfront Costs: Many car accident lawyers in San Diego work on a contingency fee basis, meaning they only get paid if you win your case. This arrangement allows you to pursue legal action without worrying about upfront legal fees.

  8. Maximizing Your Compensation: Lawyers are skilled in calculating and negotiating for the highest possible compensation. They consider current and future impacts of your injuries to ensure that the settlement covers all your needs.

By leveraging their expertise, experience, and resources, a San Diego car accident lawyer can significantly increase your chances of receiving a favorable outcome in your case.

San Diego Car Accidents Statistics

San Diego, home to an approximate population of 1.5 million residents, ranks as California’s second-largest city and the eighth-largest in the United States. With such a bustling urban landscape and countless vehicles navigating its streets, traffic-related issues and accidents emerge as an unfortunate but inevitable aspect of city life.

Here are the latest statistics on vehicle collisions in San Diego, drawing from data provided by the California Office of Traffic Safety, shedding light on both the overall volume and primary causes of these incidents:

  1. Total accidents resulting in fatalities or injuries: 20,270 incidents
  2. Accidents involving alcohol impairment: 2,446 cases
  3. Motorcycle-related accidents: 1,731 occurrences
  4. Pedestrian-involved accidents: 1,286 instances
  5. Bicycle-related accidents: 837 reported cases

It is noteworthy that nearly 24% of these accidents within the most recent year involved drivers exceeding speed limits, while approximately 12% had alcohol as a contributing factor. This cumulative count encompasses a spectrum of incidents, including those involving motor vehicles, pedestrians, and cyclists.

Example of a Car Accident Case We Handle

Client Information:
  • Name: Emily Rivera
  • Age: 28
  • Occupation: Graphic Designer
  • Residence: San Diego, California
  • Driving Experience: 10 years
  • Vehicle: 2019 Toyota Camry
Accident Details:
  • Date/Time: July 24, 2023, at approximately 5:30 PM
  • Location: Intersection of 5th Avenue and B Street, San Diego, CA
  • Weather Conditions: Partly cloudy, dry roads
  • Traffic Conditions: Moderate traffic, green light for Emily Rivera
  • Incident Description: Emily was driving her car southbound on 5th Avenue, approaching the intersection with B Street. While she had a green light and was proceeding through the intersection, an SUV driven by Michael Thompson attempted a rapid lane change from the adjacent lane to turn right onto B Street. Thompson’s vehicle collided with the passenger side of Emily’s car, causing significant damage and injury.
Injuries Sustained:
  • Concussion
  • Whiplash
  • Broken left wrist
  • Emotional distress
  • Total damage to car: $22,000
  • Medical bills (initial and ongoing treatment): $35,000
  • Lost wages: $8,000 (due to 2 months off work)
  • Pain and Suffering: To be determined
Liability Assessment:
  • Michael Thompson is found at fault for the accident due to unsafe lane changing and failure to observe traffic signals.
  • No evidence of impairment or significant distraction at the time of the accident.
Insurance Information:
  • Emily Rivera’s insurance: Comprehensive coverage with Insurance, including collision and medical coverage.
  • Michael Thompson’s insurance: Standard California liability coverage with Insurance.
Legal Considerations:
  • California’s at-fault state laws apply, where the driver at fault (or their insurance) is responsible for covering damages.
  • The statute of limitations for personal injury claims in California is 2 years from the date of the accident.
Case Strategy:
  • Gather all essential evidence, including the San Diego Police Department traffic collision report, witness statements, and photos from the scene.
  • Obtain comprehensive medical records detailing injuries and necessary treatments.
  • Secure professional estimates for car repairs or valuation for total loss.
  • Calculate all economic losses, including medical expenses and lost wages, and estimate non-economic damages like pain and suffering.
  • Consult with a personal injury attorney experienced in car accident cases in San Diego.
  • File a claim with Michael Thompson’s insurance, ABC Insurance, citing full liability.
  • Prepare for a lawsuit if settlement negotiations with ABC Insurance do not yield satisfactory compensation.
Potential Legal Actions:
  • Demand full compensation for damages from Michael Thompson’s insurance.
  • File a personal injury lawsuit in San Diego County Superior Court if necessary.
  • Pursue a claim under Emily’s underinsured motorist coverage if Thompson’s insurance is insufficient.
  • To obtain full reimbursement for the car’s damage, all medical costs, lost income, and compensation for pain and suffering.
  • Aim for a fair settlement out of court, but be prepared to litigate if needed to secure just compensation.
Next Steps:
  • Schedule a consultation with a skilled San Diego personal injury lawyer to review the case details.
  • Initiate a detailed demand to ABC Insurance outlining the damages, the liability of their insured, and the compensation required.
  • Prepare for negotiation or litigation based on the insurer’s response.

What Questions Should You Ask Following a Car Accident?

Following a car accident, it’s essential to gather information and ask specific questions to protect your interests and ensure a smooth resolution of the situation. Here are questions to ask:

Are You Okay?

Answer: Start by checking on the well-being of all involved parties, including yourself and the occupants of other vehicles. Safety is the top priority.

Should I Call 911?

Answer: If there are injuries, significant damage, or the accident is blocking traffic, call 911 immediately to report the accident and request medical assistance if needed.

What Are Your Contact Details?

Answer: Exchange contact information with the other driver(s), including names, phone numbers, addresses, and insurance details.

Do You Have Any Witnesses?

Answer: Ask if there are any witnesses to the accident, and if so, obtain their names and contact information. Witnesses can provide valuable statements to support your case.

Can I Take Photos of the Scene?

Answer: Yes, it’s a good idea to document the accident scene. Take photos of the damage to vehicles, license plates, the location of the accident, road conditions, traffic signals, and any relevant road signs.

Did You Notice Any Traffic Violations?

Answer: Ask the other driver if they observed any traffic violations or unsafe behavior that contributed to the accident, such as speeding, running a red light, or distracted driving.

Is There a Police Report?

Answer: If the police were called to the scene, ask for the officer’s name and badge number. Inquire about how to obtain a copy of the accident report and when it will be available.

Do You Need Medical Attention?

Answer: If you or anyone else involved in the accident is injured, seek medical attention promptly. It’s essential to prioritize health and well-being.

Who Is Your Insurance Provider?

Answer: Obtain information about the other driver’s insurance company, policy number, and the contact information for their insurance agent or claims department.

When Should I Notify My Insurance Company?

Answer: Notify your own insurance company as soon as possible, even if you were not at fault. Prompt reporting is often required by insurance policies, and it can expedite the claims process.

Should I Speak to the Other Driver’s Insurance Company?

Answer: It’s generally advisable to consult with an attorney before giving a recorded statement to the other driver’s insurance company. Your attorney can guide you on how to proceed.

Do I Need Legal Representation?

Answer: Depending on the circumstances of the accident, you may benefit from legal representation, especially if there are injuries or disputes over fault. Consult with an attorney to assess your situation.

Remember that the specific details of a car accident can vary widely, so adapt these questions as needed to address your unique circumstances. Seeking legal advice and consulting with your insurance company are crucial steps in protecting your rights and ensuring a fair resolution.

How Does Comparative Fault Impact a Car Accident Case?

Comparative fault, also known as comparative negligence, is a legal principle used to determine how damages are allocated in a car accident case when more than one party is at fault. In San Diego, as in many other jurisdictions, comparative fault can significantly impact the outcome of a case. Here’s how it works:

Pure Comparative Fault System: California follows a “pure” comparative fault system, which means that even if you were partially at fault for the accident, you can still recover damages. However, the amount of compensation you receive will be reduced in proportion to your degree of fault.

Assessment of Fault: In a car accident case, the court or insurance adjusters will assess the degree of fault for each party involved, including the plaintiff (the injured party) and the defendant (the at-fault party). This assessment is usually expressed as a percentage.

Impact on Damages: The amount of compensation you can receive is determined by multiplying the total damages (e.g., medical bills, property damage, pain and suffering) by your percentage of fault. For example, if you were found 20% at fault for the accident and your total damages amount to $10,000, you would be entitled to recover $8,000 ($10,000 – 20%).

Multiple Parties: Comparative fault can become complex when there are multiple parties involved. Each party’s degree of fault is assessed, and their liability is calculated accordingly.

Legal Representation: It’s crucial to have legal representation in cases involving comparative fault. An experienced San Diego car accident attorney can advocate for your rights, gather evidence to support your case, and ensure that your degree of fault is accurately assessed.

Insurance Negotiations: When dealing with insurance companies, they may try to assign a higher percentage of fault to you to minimize their liability. Your attorney can negotiate with the insurer to ensure a fair assessment of fault and compensation.

Court Proceedings: If a settlement cannot be reached with the insurance company, your case may go to court. In court, the judge or jury will determine the degree of fault for each party and award damages accordingly.

Statute of Limitations: It’s important to note that in California, you have a limited time (usually two years from the date of the accident) to file a personal injury lawsuit. Consult with an attorney promptly to ensure you meet the deadlines.

In San Diego, as in other parts of California, comparative fault can complicate car accident cases. However, it also ensures that individuals who may share some responsibility for an accident can still seek compensation for their injuries and damages. To navigate the complexities of comparative fault, consult with an experienced attorney who can help protect your rights and maximize your potential recovery.

What Happens If Another Driver Doesn't Have Car Insurance After an Accident?

If you’re involved in a car accident with another driver in San Diego who doesn’t have car insurance (uninsured driver), it can create a complex situation. Here’s what typically happens in such cases:

  • Reporting the Accident: Regardless of the other driver’s insurance status, it’s important to follow standard procedures after an accident. Ensure everyone’s safety, call the police to report the accident, and exchange contact and insurance information with the other driver, if available.

  • Your Own Insurance: In San Diego, all auto insurance policies are required to include uninsured motorist (UM) coverage unless you specifically decline it in writing. UM coverage can provide you with financial protection when you’re involved in an accident with an uninsured driver.

  • Filing a Claim: If the at-fault driver is uninsured, you may need to file a claim with your insurance company under your UM coverage. This coverage is designed to compensate you for injuries and damages caused by uninsured or underinsured drivers.

  • Policy Limits: UM coverage has policy limits, which are the maximum amounts your insurance company will pay for your injuries and property damage. The specific coverage limits will depend on your policy, and it’s essential to review your insurance policy to understand the extent of your coverage.

  • Settlement Negotiations: Your insurance company will investigate the accident and negotiate with you to determine the appropriate compensation. It’s important to have legal representation to ensure you receive a fair settlement.

  • Mediation or Arbitration: If you and your insurance company cannot agree on a fair settlement, you may need to pursue mediation or arbitration to resolve the dispute. Your attorney can guide you through this process.

  • Legal Action: If negotiations, mediation, or arbitration do not result in a satisfactory outcome, you may consider filing a lawsuit against the uninsured driver. However, it’s important to keep in mind that even if you obtain a judgment, collecting compensation from an uninsured driver can be challenging.

  • Underinsured Drivers: In some cases, the at-fault driver may have insurance, but their coverage limits are insufficient to fully compensate you for your damages. In such situations, you may also use your UM coverage to make up the difference between their policy limits and your actual damages.

  • Attorney’s Assistance: Consulting with an experienced San Diego car accident attorney is advisable in these situations. They can help you navigate the legal process, negotiate with insurance companies, and explore all available avenues for compensation.

Dealing with an uninsured driver after a car accident can be frustrating, but having uninsured motorist coverage as part of your own auto insurance policy provides you with a safety net. It’s essential to review your policy, know your rights, and seek legal assistance to ensure you receive the compensation you deserve after such an accident.

How Do I File a Car Accident Lawsuit in San Diego, CA?

Filing a car accident lawsuit in San Diego, California, involves several steps, and it’s crucial to follow the legal process accurately. Here’s a general guide on how to file a car accident lawsuit in San Diego:

  1. Consult with an Attorney:

    • Before proceeding with a lawsuit, consult with an experienced car accident attorney in San Diego. They can evaluate your case’s merits, advise you on the likelihood of success, and help you determine the best course of action.
  2. Review Your Insurance Policy:

    • Review your auto insurance policy to understand your coverage, including any uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, which may be relevant to your case.
  3. Gather Evidence:

    • Collect all relevant evidence related to the accident, including accident reports, witness statements, photographs, medical records, and any other documentation that supports your claim.
  4. Demand Letter:

    • Your attorney may draft a demand letter to the at-fault party’s insurance company, outlining your injuries, damages, and the amount of compensation you are seeking. This often initiates settlement negotiations.
  5. Mediation or Arbitration:

    • Prior to filing a lawsuit, parties may participate in mediation or arbitration to attempt to reach a settlement. This can be a faster and less costly way to resolve the dispute.
  6. File a Complaint:

    • If negotiations fail to produce a satisfactory settlement, your attorney will prepare a formal complaint, which is the document that initiates the lawsuit. This complaint will include details of the accident, your injuries, and the damages you are seeking. It is filed with the appropriate court.
  7. Serve the Defendant:

    • The defendant must be served with a copy of the complaint, along with a summons, which notifies them of the lawsuit and provides a timeframe for responding.
  8. Defendant’s Response:

    • The defendant has a specified period, usually 30 days, to respond to the complaint by filing an answer. They may also file a counterclaim if they believe you were at fault.
  9. Discovery Process:

    • Both parties engage in the discovery process, where they exchange information and evidence related to the case. This may involve depositions, interrogatories, requests for documents, and more.
  10. Negotiation and Settlement:

    • Throughout the lawsuit, there may be ongoing negotiations between the parties to reach a settlement. Many lawsuits are settled before going to trial.
  11. Pretrial Proceedings:

    • If a settlement cannot be reached, the case will proceed to trial. Pretrial proceedings, such as pretrial conferences and motions, will occur to prepare for trial.
  12. Trial:

    • The trial involves presenting your case before a judge and potentially a jury. Both sides will present evidence, call witnesses, and make arguments. The judge or jury will then render a verdict.
  13. Post-Trial Motions:

    • After the trial, either party may file post-trial motions to challenge the verdict or specific legal issues.
  14. Appeals:

    • If either party is dissatisfied with the outcome of the trial, they may appeal the decision to a higher court.
  15. Enforcement of Judgment:

    • If you win the lawsuit and are awarded damages, you may need to take legal steps to enforce the judgment and collect the awarded amount.

The process of filing a car accident lawsuit in San Diego can be complex and lengthy, and it’s crucial to have the guidance of an experienced attorney throughout the process. An attorney can help you navigate the legal system, build a strong case, and maximize your chances of a favorable outcome.

What are Some Frequently Asked Questions and Answers a Person May Have for an Accident Lawyer?

When consulting with a San Diego car accident lawyer, it’s common to have questions about your situation and the legal process. Here are some frequently asked questions (FAQs) and sample answers that individuals may have when seeking guidance from a car accident attorney:

Do I need a car accident lawyer for my case?

Answer: While you’re not legally required to have an attorney, having one can significantly benefit your case. An experienced car accident lawyer can help you navigate complex legal processes, negotiate with insurance companies, and maximize your compensation.

How much does it cost to hire a car accident attorney in San Diego?

Answer: Many car accident lawyers in San Diego work on a contingency fee basis. This means you don’t pay attorney fees upfront. Instead, your attorney receives a percentage of the settlement or court award if you win your case.

What should I do immediately after a car accident in San Diego?

Answer: After ensuring safety, call the police, exchange information with the other driver(s), seek medical attention if necessary, and consider contacting an attorney to discuss your case.

How do I deal with the insurance company after a car accident?

Answer: Be cautious when speaking to the insurance company. It’s often advisable to consult with an attorney before giving a recorded statement. Your attorney can handle communications and negotiations on your behalf.

What damages can I claim after a car accident in San Diego?

Answer: You may be eligible for various damages, including medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, pain and suffering, and more. An attorney can help you assess your specific damages.

How long do I have to file a car accident lawsuit in San Diego?

Answer: In California, the statute of limitations for filing a personal injury lawsuit is generally two years from the date of the accident. It’s crucial to consult with an attorney to ensure you meet all deadlines.

What if the other driver is uninsured or underinsured?

Answer: If you have uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage, your insurance may provide compensation. An attorney can assist you in navigating this process.

What if I was partially at fault for the accident?

Answer: California follows a pure comparative fault system. Even if you were partially at fault, you can still seek compensation, but it may be reduced in proportion to your degree of fault.

How long will it take to resolve my car accident case in San Diego?

Answer: The timeline varies, but it often takes several months to a few years to reach a settlement or go to trial. Your attorney can provide a more accurate estimate based on your case’s specifics.

Can I handle my car accident claim on my own without an attorney?

Answer: You can, but it’s generally not recommended. Insurance companies have legal teams to minimize payouts, and an attorney can help level the playing field, protect your rights, and ensure you receive fair compensation.

These FAQs and answers provide a starting point for individuals seeking advice from a San Diego car accident lawyer. However, the specific questions and answers may vary depending on the unique circumstances of each case. Consulting with an experienced attorney is the best way to get tailored guidance and representation. If you have been involved in a car accident, get in touch with our team of trusted professionals today for more information! 


How Do I Find the Right the Car Accident Attorney in San Diego?

When you’re in need of a car accident attorney in San Diego, online search results can serve as your starting point. However, it’s essential not to choose a personal injury lawyer based solely on advertising. Some law firms prioritize high caseloads, aiming to quickly settle as many cases as possible. You probably want a legal team that offers more personalized attention and empathy while vigorously advocating for your interests in interactions with insurance companies and opposing parties.

To ensure you secure the kind of accident attorney you desire, it’s crucial to delve deeper into your research. Examine client reviews to gain insights into their experiences with the firm (feel free to explore our Google-verified reviews here). Arrange a meeting with an attorney from our firm before making your decision, and ask pertinent questions. Inquire about the individuals who will be handling your case, their experience, past case outcomes, and the responsiveness when you have inquiries throughout the car accident case proceedings.


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