Bakersfield Car Accident Lawyer

Being involved in a car accident can be stressful, even if you’re fortunate enough to walk away with only a slight scratch to your car and no physical injuries. When an accident does result in injuries and massive property damage, the stress levels dramatically rise.

A car accident can leave people with severe injuries, wrecked cars, and endless other expenses that stem from the accident. While some car accidents aren’t avoidable, many are. When a car accident is caused by a driver driving recklessly or carelessly, that is a car accident that could have been potentially avoided had they been more aware of their safety and the safety of others. 

When drivers fail to drive with a certain level of care, and they’re at fault for an accident, people who are harmed in that accident can potentially recover monetary compensation through a personal injury claim or lawsuit. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident caused by another driver’s reckless behavior, contact an experienced car accident lawyer. A Bakersfield car accident lawyer can determine the validity of your claim and help you pursue your right to compensation if there is the legal ground to do so.

13 Most Common Causes of Car Accidents

The thirteen most common causes for car accidents are:

  • Distracted driving
  • Speeding 
  • Drunk driving
  • Reckless driving
  • Fatigued driving
  • Running intersections
  • Running red lights
  • Not stopping at stop signs
  • Design defects
  • Unsafe lane changes
  • Wrong-way driving
  • Improper turns
  • Road hazards

Drivers can take steps to avoid being distracted or be responsible enough not to drive while drunk. When they fail to exercise a certain standard of care and cause an accident, they should be held responsible for the harm they cause. 

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PRACTICE AREAS

What to Do After a Car Accident in Bakersfield

No one can predict a car accident, but you can still prepare. The moments after an accident can be disorienting and terrifying, but staying calm is important. Remaining calm can protect your safety and your legal rights. After an accident, you should:

  • Get to a safe location 
  • Call 911
  • Exchange information 
  • Do not admit fault (don’t apologize for any reason)
  • Seek medical attention
  • Report the accident to your insurance company
  • Avoid speaking with insurance adjusters or given recorded statements
  • Call a Bakersfield car accident lawyer

The actions you take immediately after an accident may greatly influence the success of your personal injury claim, if you decide to file one. It’s important to be aware of what you say to the responding officer and ensure that you avoid apologizing for anything, even if it’s just because you feel bad for the other person. Additionally, if you are able to, it’s beneficial to take videos and photos of the accident to support your claim. 

Once your safety is ensured, and you’ve reported the accident to your insurance, it’s recommended to contact a Bakersfield car accident lawyer. Before speaking with an insurance adjuster, speaking with an attorney can protect your legal rights to compensation. The other driver’s insurance is looking out for their best interest, not yours. They will try to minimize or dismiss your claim so that they don’t have to pay you the full value of your claim. A car accident lawyer can help ensure that you aren’t accepting any fault or low settlement offers and that your claim isn’t denied. 

Determining Fault in a Bakersfield Car Accident

Determining who is liable or at fault after a car accident in California can be complex, mainly because of the state’s comparative negligence laws. Car accident claims prove liability on the legal theory of negligence. The four key elements to prove negligence are:

  • Duty of care: Legally, everyone on the road owes each other a standard of reasonable care.
  • Breach of duty of care: A driver failed to meet that legal standard of care.
  • Causation: The must be a connection between the accident and any harm someone suffered with a driver’s breach of their duty of care. 
  • Damages: This is the legal term used to describe the monetary compensation the person filing the claim could receive depending on their injury and other subsequent losses.   

Proving that the other driver is liable is not always as simple as it may appear. While it could appear simple on the surface, California’s comparative negligence law can complicate things. For instance, a drunk driver caused the accident, so they’re obviously responsible. However, if the other driver was on the phone, they may be partially responsible. Under California comparative negligence law, if the plaintiff (the person filing the claim) is partially responsible for their accident, the damages they receive could be reduced by the percentage of blame assigned to them.

Insurance adjusters and the other driver will likely try to place fault on you even if you aren’t even slightly at fault to avoid paying the full amount you are owed. Tackling insurance adjusters whose interest is to protect themselves can be taxing. Working with a trusted and skilled Bakersfield car accident attorney ensures that you have someone in your corner to protect you from false blame and helps to ensure you get the maximum value of your claim.

Type of Damages in Bakersfield Car Accident Claim

You can recover the following damages in a personal injury claim for a car accident.

Economic Damages

Economic damages are determined by physical proof of expenses that victims have incurred because of the accident, including:

  • Medical treatment
  • Prescription medication
  • Medical or assistive devices
  • Rehabilitation or therapy
  • Property repair or replacement
  • Lost wages or future earnings

Evidence of these damages can be made with actual receipts, medical reports, past pay stubs, and other kinds of physical documents that detail the expenses the person has incurred. 

Non-economic damages

Non-economic damages are the harm that cannot be proven through physical evidence such as receipts. These damages are difficult to determine because it’s challenging to place a monetary value on them. Non-economic damages include:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Limb loss or disfigurement 
  • Loss of enjoyment of life or activities 
  • Loss of consortium
  • Anxiety, grief, or shock
  • Insomnia
  • Inconvenience 
  • Emotional distress 

Proving the extent of your non-economic damages is challenging, but a skilled attorney can help compile all the evidence and support to prove the existence of your damages. 

Contact Karns & Karns Experienced Bakersfield Car Accident Lawyer

The car accident lawyers at Karns & Karns have the experience and skills to handle every aspect of your case. We understand that car accident claims can be a lot to handle emotionally and physically, which is why we are here to help guide you through every step of the process. Our experienced attorneys will make sure the negligent driver who causes the accident is held accountable for your injuries and damages. We are prepared to go to trial if necessary. Karns & Karns is prepared to take on your case and help you pursue the justice you deserve. You can schedule a consultation with us at (888) 381-8044 or fill out our contact form.

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Hear what others have said about us

Thank you so much for all the work everyone contributed to bringing my case to a successful conclusion. I am truly grateful to everyone.

Stephanie C.

Very friendly, professional, knowledgeable and always kept me up-to-date on what was going on with my case. Thank you Karns & Karns!

Jean B.

Most knowledgeable and helpful personal injury firm in town. The best.

James T.

I have used the lawyers at Karns & Karns on a number of legal matters over the years. Their skill and expertise is unmatched in my opinion. When my family was the victim of fraud, I turned to the lawyers at Karns & Karns. After a long litigation battle which eventually went to arbitration, I was awarded over $1,500,000.00. The lawyers at Karns & Karns were extremely prepared and I would recommend them to anyone.

John B.

I was seriously injured in a motorcycle accident. Bill Karns was with me every step of the way. Even though the other driver said the accident was my fault, I recovered over $1,300,000.00. Mr. Karns was professional, courteous, and skilled. I would recommend him and Karns & Karns to anyone involved in a major personal injury case.

Hank E.

After a horrible incident and life-changing event, Mike and Bill brought hope back into my life.

Mona L.

I was traumatically injured on the job by a negligent forklift driver. I reached out to Karns & Karns when I began to suspect that my other attorneys didn’t have the expertise to resolve a complicated case where the defendant, a massive organization, said I was at fault. I’m certainly glad I did. Bill and Mike treated me with respect, knew the law, and did exactly what was necessary to make the defendant accept responsibility for their bad acts. I recovered $1,000,000.00, and I have Karns & Karns to thank for that.

Ed B.

I can personally attest to the fact that Karns & Karns are perhaps the most responsive attorneys in California. To receive the sort of attention that I got from Mike and Bill is noteworthy.

Nelson A.

My experience with Karns & Karns is that they truly care. As a disabled veteran, I can’t ask for any better than two top gun lawyers whose main job is to get the best for me and my well-being.

Reginald R.