July 31st, 2023|
Social media has become an integral part of many people’s daily lives. Platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Snapchat provide users with an avenue for self-expression, sharing updates about their activities, health, and emotions.
The prevalence of social media means that information is readily shared. However, this can have unintended consequences if you are involved in a personal injury claim. Insurance companies and defense attorneys often use social media platforms to gather evidence and challenge the legitimacy of victims’ claims.
Understanding the potential impact of your social media posts on your case and working with a California personal injury attorney to represent your interests can help you receive the compensation you’re owed after an accident.
Defense attorneys and insurance companies may seek to undermine a personal injury claim by using social media posts that depict you engaging in activities or expressing sentiments that don’t align with your claimed injuries and damages.
For example, you claim to have suffered a debilitating back injury in a car accident, but your social media accounts showcase pictures or videos of you participating in sports or strenuous activities. This can cast doubt on the severity of your injuries.
Even an innocent post can undermine your claim and affect the outcome of your case. For instance, a post such as – “Just had an amazing workout at the gym! Feeling stronger than ever! 💪 #FitnessGoals #NoPainNoGain” – can be presented as evidence that your physical condition is not as serious as you report it to be, potentially reducing your compensation.
Posts about traveling or engaging in leisure activities can also be used to argue against your assertions of emotional distress or the accident’s impact on your daily life. For example, if you claim to have developed severe anxiety or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) following a traumatic incident, but you post – “Having the time of my life exploring beautiful destinations! ✈️✨ #Wanderlust #TravelAdventures” – the defense may argue that you aren’t suffering emotional distress after the incident.
While adjusting privacy settings can provide some control over who can access social media content, it is essential to recognize that even with strict privacy measures in place, anything posted online can potentially be uncovered and used in a lawsuit.
The legal principles surrounding using social media content in legal proceedings revolve around discovery rules and privacy laws. Discovery is a legal process that allows parties involved in a lawsuit to obtain relevant information and evidence from each other.
Courts generally allow the discovery of social media content if it leads to admissible evidence. This means that if the content on social media is relevant to the case, it can be requested and potentially used as evidence, regardless of privacy settings.
To protect the integrity of your personal injury claim, adopt some of these best practices for social media use:
- Limit your posts: Limit your social media activity while your personal injury claim is ongoing. Avoid posting about the accident, your injuries, or any activities that could contradict your claims. Also, ask your friends not to tag you in any post while your claim is pending because it could harm your case.
- Be wary of friend requests from unknown individuals: Exercise caution when receiving friend requests from unknown individuals during your claim. Insurance adjusters, defense attorneys, or their representatives may attempt to gain access to your social media content by posing as someone else.
- Consult with an attorney before sharing claim-related posts: Your attorney will have the expertise to help you navigate the legal complexities and ensure you don’t inadvertently harm your case. Consulting with your attorney before sharing any information can help safeguard your rights and strengthen your position in the claim.
If you or a loved one have been involved in an accident and are seeking compensation in a personal injury claim, speak with our attorneys at Berg Injury Lawyers and learn how we can support you throughout the process.
Our experienced lawyers understand the intricacies of social media and its implications for your case. We can advise you on protecting your privacy, avoiding damaging your credibility, and ensuring that your online presence aligns with your claim. Contact us today for a free consultation.
July 24th, 2023|
Ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft provide Californians with a convenient way to travel across the state. However, since 2011, ride-share drivers have been involved in an increasing number of accidents and fatalities, with around a 3% annual increase.
These accidents are often due to collisions with other vehicles, single-car accidents due to driver negligence, and incidents involving pedestrians or cyclists. Uber’s latest safety report found that 94% of accidents between 2019 and 2020 resulted from negligent behavior by third-party drivers, such as speeding or intoxicated driving.
Understanding potential liability in a ride-share accident can help you know your rights and obtain compensation if you’re injured in a crash.
Liability in ride-share accidents can be complex. These incidents often involve multiple parties, including ride-share drivers, the ride-share company, third-party vehicles, and passengers.
- Ride-share drivers: The driver operating the vehicle at the time of the accident may bear responsibility for the collision if they violated traffic laws or drove recklessly. However, their liability may depend on their active status at the time of the incident:
- If the driver was driving on their own time and was not signed into the Uber or Lyft app, you could receive compensation based on the limits of their personal auto insurance policy.
- If the driver is available for ride requests when the incident occurs, you can obtain compensation from the ride-share company. Uber and Lyft provide commercial liability coverage for bodily injury and property damage under these circumstances.
- An active ride-share driver in transit or on the way to pick up a passenger will be covered for $1 million by the ride-sharing platform.
- Ride-share companies: Companies like Uber and Lyft may also share liability, as they have a duty to ensure the safety of their passengers. Driver training, background checks, and maintenance of their fleet may contribute to their liability.
- Third-party vehicles: In some cases, another vehicle not associated with the ride-share service may have been involved in the accident. You can file a claim against a third-party driver if their actions or negligence led to the collision.
- Passengers: Passengers may have contributed to the accident by distracting the driver, not wearing seatbelts, or engaging in other unsafe behaviors. Depending on the circumstances, they may share partial liability.
If you sustain injuries from a negligent Uber or Lyft driver, your California car accident attorney with Berg Injury Lawyers can help you determine liability and seek a settlement from the responsible party.
Ride-sharing companies like Uber and Lyft fall under the classification of transportation network companies (TNCs) in California. Ride-share drivers and their companies are also subject to specific periods for liability in case of car accidents under state law. These periods include:
- Period 1: The driver enters driver mode and accepts a ride request during this period. The ride-share company’s liability insurance covers $50,000 per physical injury, $100,000 per accident, and $30,000 for property damage during this period.
- Period 2: The ride-sharing company provides a minimum of $1 million in commercial liability during this period.
- Period 3: The $1 million commercial liability coverage continues when the driver picks up a passenger. It ends as soon as the passenger leaves the vehicle.
Understanding these nuances can help your lawyer establish liability and pursue legal action on your behalf. They can use these California guidelines to help you know how to sue a rideshare company after a crash if the driver’s actions led to your injuries.
If you are injured in a rideshare accident, contact emergency services immediately. Then, take the following steps to document the incident and protect your rights to compensation:
- Document the Scene
Gather evidence, such as photos and videos of the accident site and witness statements. Obtain the contact and insurance details of the driver since ride-share drivers must have both personal and commercial insurance.
- Seek Medical Treatment
Some injuries, like whiplash, may not manifest immediately after an accident. Schedule a visit with your doctor to assess and document any hidden injuries. Your medical records can support your insurance claim and help your lawyer connect your injuries with the accident.
- Report the Incident to the Ride-Share Company
Inform the ride-share company about the accident as soon as possible. You must complete a claim form for Uber or Lyft, so they can begin reviewing your claim and award you compensation under their liability policies.
A California car accident lawyer from Berg Injury Lawyers can help you receive fair compensation if you are involved in a ride-share accident. Our experienced attorneys understand the complexities of ride-sharing accidents and can negotiate with ride-share companies or third-party driver insurers on your behalf. Contact us today for a free, no-obligation case evaluation.
July 21st, 2023|
With hundreds of trucks passing through its highways daily, California is a major transportation center. Despite efforts to prevent them, truck accidents continue to happen, often resulting in severe injuries and fatalities. Sacramento, which is California’s capital city, is an inclusion in this pattern. The state has developed trucking regulations as part of an effort to ensure the safety of truck drivers and other road users.
Acquiring the services of an experienced Sacramento truck accident attorney means you will not be left to deal with the aftermath of this potentially devastating life event on your own. You have a right to restitution, justice, and safety from possibly fatal effects, regardless of what caused your injury.
Truck accidents are a significant cause for concern because they frequently result in fatalities or catastrophic injuries.
California has enacted severe restrictions on the trucking industry in an effort to safeguard public safety on the road. Let’s explore the most common causes of truck accidents, and the steps truck accident lawyers take to resolve them.
State and federal rules impose weight restrictions on trucks. These rules differ based on the kind of cargo, truck size, and the number of axles on the vehicle. A serious overloading violation will push a truck beyond its weight limit, causing accidents.
An overloaded truck requires a longer stopping distance, provides less stability, and causes poorer vehicle handling. Overloaded trucks are more likely to experience brake failure, tire blowouts, and other technical issues. These trucks can also put too much strain on the road itself, which raises the danger of accidents for other drivers. Overloading violations result from truck drivers’ poor training or a desire to increase profits.
In trucking, distracted driving is a big problem that results in dangerous car accidents. Distracted driving is any activity that causes a driver to temporarily or permanently divert their attention from the road.
Because of how much time truck drivers spend on the road, distracted driving is a serious risk. Drivers can get tired or bored, causing them to act in a distracting manner.
Common distractions on the road include:
- Driving while texting or using a mobile device.
- Operating a GPS or other technological device while operating a vehicle.
- Drinking or eating while driving.
- Operating radios and other entertainment systems.
With the assistance of a reputable truck accident attorney, Sacramento residents can regain a sense of security and comfort and find a path toward obtaining the compensation they deserve.
Federal restrictions termed hours-of-service (HOS) regulations limit how long truck drivers are allowed to operate commercial vehicles. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Agency (FMCSA) developed these regulations to prevent driver weariness, which is a major factor in truck accidents.
HOS standards specify a maximum number of driving hours, as well as required rest times. Fatigued motorists have slower reaction times, poorer judgment, and greater difficulty in making sound decisions. All of these conditions will increase the risk of mistakes and mishaps. Drivers who violate HOS standards put both themselves and others at a greater risk of collision.
Road safety is mainly dependent on truck maintenance. The California Highway Patrol (CHP) enforces strict vehicle maintenance guidelines. According to California law, commercial vehicles must undergo an inspection at least once a year and every 90 days for those operating under hazmat permits. During these inspections, tires, brakes, lighting, and other car parts are checked to see if they are in excellent operating order.
Accidents involving trucks are often caused by poor vehicle maintenance. Tire blowouts, braking failures, and other mechanical issues can occur when routine maintenance is neglected.
Another significant problem in the transportation sector is driving while intoxicated. A driver’s ability to properly operate a commercial vehicle can be impaired by even a tiny amount of alcohol or drugs, putting themselves and other drivers in danger.
All drivers, including those operating commercial trucks, are subject to California’s stringent DUI laws. Drivers in California are considered to be intoxicated while operating a vehicle if their blood alcohol content (BAC) is 0.08 percent or greater, conferring to state rules and regulations. The BAC limit for commercial truck drivers should be 0.04%.
Given the legal statutes governing commercial vehicle operation, it is prohibited for truck drivers to operate such vehicles while under the influence of any substance. This includes not only marijuana and prescription drugs but any other intoxicating agent.
Driving while intoxicated is particularly risky in trucking since huge trucks need more space and time to stop than cars. A truck driver’s reaction time and judgment will be distorted by consumption of alcohol or other drugs, leading to catastrophic accidents.
When a California trucking regulation violation has lead to an injury, a truck accident attorney in Sacramento will provide the necessary legal advice and advocacy, fighting tirelessly to get justice and compensation for victims.
Seek legal assistance immediately if you or someone you love has been in a truck accident. Take action to get the compensation you’re entitled to. Contact a Sacramento truck accident attorney at Berg Injury Lawyers to discuss your options and protect your rights. Our experienced attorneys will work hard to ensure fair compensation for your injuries.
July 21st, 2023|
Accidents can happen to anyone, anywhere, at any time, and the injuries can negatively impact one’s physical health and financial situation. After an accident, medical and other associated costs can quickly pile up, placing a heavy financial burden on the victim. Personal injury protection (PIP) insurance is helpful in such accident occurrences.
PIP is a category of insurance that covers accident-related compensation and relieves the financial burden of recovery for people who have been injured due to the negligence of others.
In a contrast to traditional auto insurance, PIP insurance covers you and your passengers’ medical expenses regardless of who was at fault. PIP insurance also pays for other costs associated with accidents, such as child care, cleaning services, and travel costs.
Navigating into the details of PIP insurance can be daunting. With the support of an experienced personal injury lawyer, Sacramento residents can feel confident that they will have the backup they need to proceed through the insurance claim process.
Drivers in California are obligated to have car insurance that complies with the legal minimum liability standards. Although PIP insurance is not mandatory in California, insurance companies must make it available to drivers. California law requires drivers who opt out of PIP insurance to sign a waiver stating their choice.
California’s PIP insurance regulations have various exceptions. You may be eligible to forego your PIP coverage if you have health insurance that pays for injuries sustained in car accidents. However, your auto insurance company will need proof of your health insurance. Drivers who operate their vehicles for profit, such as ride-share drivers, are also ineligible for PIP coverage. A personal injury lawyer in Sacramento can help you determine whether you can forego PIP coverage.
You must submit a claim with your insurance provider to receive compensation if you have a PIP policy and are in an accident. The following information is usually required to file a claim:
- Your name, address, and insurance policy number.
- The time and place where the incident occurred.
- Details on the drivers involved.
- A description of what happened and any injuries suffered.
- Costs associated with medical treatment and additional charges.
The process of filing a PIP claim may appear straightforward, but there are some common issues that victims may need assistance with to secure their compensation. These issues include:
- The claims process taking too long.
- Disputes regarding the cause or seriousness of injuries.
- Difficulties in proving lost wages.
- Claims being rejected due to insufficient evidence.
To avoid these issues and resolve any differences between you and your insurance provider, you must record your injuries and expenses accurately. With the help of a knowledgeable personal injury lawyer in Sacramento, clients can gain a better understanding of personal injury protection (PIP) insurance policies. This ensures you receive all the benefits you are entitled to following an accident, while also receiving critical support during a difficult time.
Here are some advantages of personal injury protection (PIP) insurance policies and how they might help accident victims and their families.
PIP insurance pays for all accident-related medical costs and helps relieve some of the financial burdens. Hospital stays, medical visits, prescription medication, and therapy sessions are all covered by PIP insurance. This policy is beneficial if you lack health insurance or if your health insurance doesn’t cover injuries from car accidents.
PIP insurance provides wage loss compensation if your accident prevents you from working, which can help you replace any lost income. Those who depend on their wages to make ends meet and support their families need this insurance most of all. The policy includes wage loss payments for a set period, often up to a maximum amount as specified in your policy.
In the tragic event of a fatal accident, PIP insurance assists the deceased’s family with burial costs and survivor benefits. This premium supports the family during a trying time and lessens the financial strain of funeral costs. A survivor’s compensation could include payment for lost wages and other expenses incurred following the death of a loved one.
PIP insurance covers the driver and any passengers in the car at the time of the accident. This coverage may be significant for those who carpool or families with children.
PIP insurance provides victims’ families with comfort. It can also reduce the anxiety of having to deal with a car accident. If you have PIP insurance, you won’t have to stress about covering your medical costs as you recover and return to your regular activities.
With an experienced Sacramento personal injury lawyer, you will relax knowing that you have a tenacious defender fighting for your rights and securing the maximum compensation your personal injury protection (PIP) insurance policy allows.
Are you struggling to understand the complexities of the PIP industry? Don’t allow your injuries and medical expenses to mount. Get legal assistance from Berg Injury Lawyers.
Our expert attorneys specialize in PIP insurance disputes and will help you get the money you deserve. If you’ve been injured in a car accident, a slip and fall, or something else entirely, contact us for help.
July 21st, 2023|
People get injured all the time. However, no one has the right to injure another person. If they do—knowingly or unintentionally—they must compensate the victim. The process of recovering damages from the offender is what constitutes a personal injury case.
Some claims end in a settlement, while others can go to court. The path each case takes depends on the specific facts.
Sacramento residents can claim damages sustained in slips and falls, car accidents, assaults, dog bites, etc. Even if a victim has never had an injury case, they can recover fair compensation with the help of an injury lawyer in Sacramento.
The following article offers answers to some common questions that victims may have following an injury. Let’s begin by reviewing the applicable laws.
It is impossible to reverse an injury. But the judicial system provides an avenue for victims to receive compensation.
As with most counties in California, Sacramento applies a law known as California Code §3281. This law states that a victim may recover monetary compensation from the “person at fault” in an accident. Code §3283 adds that payable damages may include future losses or losses that appear after the judicial process has begun.
A person who purposefully assaults or injures another in any way must compensate them. But what about unintentional negligence? In Sacramento, there are four components of legal negligence. The victim must prove that:
- The defendant owed a duty of care.
- The defendant violated that duty of care.
- The breach was the direct cause of injury.
- The breach caused damage to the victim.
Sometimes it’s easy to prove negligence. For instance, a distracted driver who hits a pedestrian in a crosswalk is at fault. If they had been texting while driving, they breached their duty of care because they owe it to pedestrians to stay alert.
Sometimes, proving negligence can require additional work. For example, in the case of medical malpractice, the victim would require that an expert in the medical field review the standard practice requirements. The expert will need to provide testimony showing how the accused doctor deviated from an acceptable standard of care.
Whatever the case, if the victim can prove negligence on the defendant’s part, Sacramento law allows the victim to recover economic, non-economic, and punitive damages.
Personal injuries vary greatly and can happen anytime and in unexpected situations. Someone may be walking down the street when they get bitten by a neighbor’s dog. In another case, the victim may have been entering a building, excited about their first day at work, only to slip, fall, and break their spine.
Sacramento recognizes several types of injury claims, including the following:
- Auto accidents – cars, trucks, motorcycles, commercial vehicles
- Slips and falls
- Workplace injuries
- Wrongful death
- Product liability
- Medical malpractice
- Animal bites.
When looking for a Sacramento injury lawyer, victims should find an attorney with experience in their type of injury.
It’s normal to have a mountain of questions after an injury. We have provided the most straightforward answers to some of the most common questions below. Remember that these explanations are not comprehensive. If you have further questions or want more clarification, don’t hesitate to contact Berg Injury Lawyers Sacramento offices.
You might have a case if the injury was someone else’s fault. Consulting with an attorney to review your case can determine whether you will likely receive compensation for your injury.
Payment could be made by an insurer, medicare, or the victim may have to pay out-of-pocket. Eventually, however, whoever paid can recover their expenses from the defendant. Hiring a lawyer gives you a chance to recover those losses.
Maybe. Most claims don’t reach the court because the case is straightforward, and those involved feel there’s no need to delay the inevitable. Parties in an injury case can settle within a few months. However, when hiring a lawyer, hire one willing to go to trial if needed.
Not if the victim’s losses are genuine. Damages deserve compensation. And in most cases, the defendant’s insurance pays the victim, so they don’t have to pay out-of-pocket.
Duration depends on each case. Berg Injury Lawyers advise victims to be patient. It will take time for injuries to heal and for the claim process to end. The defendant’s lawyer may also need time to review the victim’s information.
Claiming damages from insurance companies is like going to war, and victims don’t want to go it alone. It’s in their best interest to find an experienced lawyer who knows all about the corners insurance adjusters often cut to reduce the value of victims’ claims.
We understand that victims may feel overwhelmed by the idea of speaking to a lawyer. That’s why we offer a free initial consultation where we will review their case. Consulting with us puts victims under no obligation to hire us. If anyone needs help with an injury case in Sacramento, they should reach out and schedule a free case review with us as soon as possible.
July 21st, 2023|
Wrongful Death Lawyers in Modesto
Losing a loved one because of another person’s mistake is painful and unfair. Whether loss of life results from intended action or accidental negligence, the responsible party should still be held accountable.
Intentional murder is a crime against society. In these cases, the state will typically be quick to prosecute suspected murderers. The family of the deceased can also file a wrongful death claim.
If the death occurred unintentionally and the state does not file a lawsuit, the deceased person’s relatives can still file a wrongful death lawsuit in civil court.
The article below will use examples and California law to break down the sometimes vague differences between these types of claims. A Modesto wrongful death lawyer can also help relatives determine what type of suit to file and where to file it.
Wrongful death is a civil lawsuit—relatives of a deceased person file for compensation from the defendant.
When a family member dies, the surviving relatives suffer. Losing companionship and income or incurring funeral expenses and medical bills adds to the emotional pain. Although no money can bring back a loved one, financial compensation can relieve the family of some of the burden caused by the death of a loved one.
A wrongful death claim differs from survival action claims, which only come into play if the victim doesn’t die immediately. Survival action claims aim to recover damages the deceased suffered before they succumbed to their injuries. These claims compensate for medical bills, pain, suffering, and lost income. A relative, the estate, or a personal representative may bring these claims against the defendant.
In California, the Code of Civil Procedure 377.60 – 377.62 lays out the rules for pursuing a wrongful death claim. It outlines who can bring the claim to a court of law, damages they can recover, and amendments that may affect lawsuits filed before or after the stated dates.
Here are two hypothetical examples of wrongful death cases. The first one qualifies as murder, but the second doesn’t.
Example 1: Terry unsuspectingly walks into her unlocked apartment. She assumes that her partner forgot to lock the door. However, a stranger quickly overpowers Terry and chokes her to death. Later, security cameras revealed that the intruder was a thief. When Terry walked in on them, they freaked out. When police officers track down and arrest the murderer, the state files a murder lawsuit against him. Terry’s partner also files a wrongful death lawsuit.
Example 2: Nick’s truck crashes into Liam’s car. Liam is badly hurt. An ambulance rushes him to the hospital. The doctors pronounce Liam dead on arrival. Nick did not intentionally kill Liam, but he was speeding and ran a couple of red lights. His negligence caused Liam’s family to lose a loved one, so Nick is liable for damages to compensate Liam’s family. The state doesn’t file a murder lawsuit, but Liam’s family has all the right to file a wrongful death lawsuit.
In both examples, families dealing with losing a loved one may feel overwhelmed. They may reason that the process is too complicated. But a wrongful death lawyer in Modesto can take away such worries and guide a victim’s family in the right direction.
The following section discusses the principles that distinguish murder from wrongful death.
Wrongful death differs from murder in several important ways.
Criminal cases (such as murder) require a higher standard of proof than civil cases (in this case, wrongful death). For example, when state prosecutors file a murder case, they must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant is guilty. However, wrongful death only requires that the plaintiff prove that the accused, more likely than not, committed the offense.
If a defendant is guilty of murder, the court will order a form of punishment. The murderer can be incarcerated for a time, or may even face a death penalty sentence. However, they are not required to pay monetary damages.
On the other hand, if the defendant is found guilty of wrongful death, they must compensate the family or estate of the deceased.
Remember that a defendant may be guilty of both murder and wrongful death. In that case, they would compensate the family and also face a jail term.
Generally, a murder occurs when the perpetrator has intentionally killed the victim . Wrongful deaths, however, can be either deliberate or accidental.
It’s the role of the state to file murder suits. Wrongful death claims are usually filed by relatives of the person who died. The relative may be a:
- Domestic partner
- Legal guardian
- Minor dependent
It may be difficult to decide who should file a lawsuit if there are several surviving relatives. However, after consulting a wrongful death lawyer, Modesto residents should feel confident in how to proceed.
First-time victims may not know where to start or if they even have a claim. This is where a wrongful death attorney can provide assistance. These lawyers will evaluate the case for free to determine if surviving family members are likely to recover damages.
Berg Injury Lawyers has represented thousands of victims in Modesto and has been in business for over four decades. We know what to look for to build a solid wrongful death claim. Schedule a free consultation session with us today to find out how we can help.
July 21st, 2023|
When you have been injured due to someone else’s negligence, it is important to understand the law and contact an attorney. At Berg Injury Lawyers, our team of experience personal injury attorneys in Modesto, California can help you navigate uncertain times and fight for any compensation you may be owed.
Comparative Negligence is a principle used to assign portions of damages to the parties involved in a personal injury case. According to this rule, the court calculates how much the injured victim should receive by reducing the total damages by the percentage of the plaintiff’s negligence.
It basically means determining who is at fault for what when an accident occurs. Different states apply the negligence rule differently. California, for example, follows the pure comparative negligence rule. Here, victims get compensation only for the damages that do not result from their own negligence. After determining the total damages, the payable amount is reduced by the percentage of the victim’s fault.
The contributory negligence rule is another one you might hear, but this one is different than comparative. If a state follows the contributory negligence rule, the injured victim cannot recover any damages if they contributed even slightly to their own injuries. However, as mentioned above, the comparative negligence rule allows victims to recover damages even if they are only partly to blame.
What Role Does Negligence Play in Modesto Personal Injury Cases?
After an accident, the question of who is responsible is the basis for personal injury cases in California. For example, suppose you’re approaching a business building and accidentally slip and fall on an icy walkway. Depending on various circumstances, you could be owed compensation for your medical expenses. Damages could include pain and suffering, medical bills, and lost income from being unable to work.
Victims may argue that the premises owner did not take reasonable measures to ensure the safety of their visitors. On the other hand, the building’s owner may assert that the victim was texting while walking and, therefore, is responsible for the damages. The comparative fault law would mean investigating both scenarios to determine a percentage of fault by each party.
Modesto’s comparative negligence law states that the plaintiff and the defendant can share the blame equally or differently. And because the role of compensation is to make the victim whole, payment should cover only the defendant’s share of the responsibility. In other words, victims must compensate themselves for their own negligence.
Insurance adjusters are tasked with determining how much fault the victim is responsible for and then making recommendations for payment. However, victims must remember that insurance adjusters will do their best to minimize compensation. With the guidance of a personal injury attorney, Modesto victims can successfully recover the compensation they deserve.
Modesto’s personal injury laws are unique to California. Because most first-time claim applicants aren’t sure where to start, they’re in a better position to recover fair compensation if they enlist the services of a personal injury attorney in Modesto.
An attorney can ensure that victims do not forfeit their right to compensation even if they’re partly liable for their injuries.
Additionally, experienced lawyers can relieve the stress of filing paperwork, breaking down legal jargon, and handling correspondence with insurance companies and the defendant’s legal team.
In Modesto, personal injury victims don’t receive compensation for their part in the incident. We advise any injured victims to contact Berg Injury Lawyers, who will take up the claim with the insurance company. The initial consultation is free and we don’t get paid unless you win.
July 21st, 2023|
The initial consultation with a lawyer is crucial to the success of your claim. An accident attorney in Modesto will know what to look for when reviewing an accident claim and will typically ask the right questions. If unprepared, an accident victim may not have the correct answers or may unwittingly provide false information.
If you were a victim of an accident and are seeking legal counsel, know that preparation for your initial consultation will be paramount. Having the appropriate documentation about your accident and injuries will ensure that your attorney can determine the strength of your case.
Accidents are distracting. They happen out of nowhere and force you to pause your daily routine and instead deal with insurance claims, hospital visits, and lost income. When that happens, victims often want a quick resolution so that they can get back to their everyday lives.
Below is a discussion of how victims can equip themselves for the consultation.
When victims have evidence of an accident, it’s easier to file a claim. Evidence can be pictures of the accident scene, videos, or eyewitness statements.
The most important step after an accident is to seek medical attention. But if the victim can take pictures or record a video before leaving the scene, these will be helpful for their claim. Victims can ask someone else to collect evidence if they are too hurt or shaken to do so themselves.
Surveillance cameras can also provide footage of the accident and vindicate innocent victims against insurance companies trying to manipulate them.
Some symptoms of a victim’s injuries may take a long time to appear, as shown in this video. Victims should keep a journal of how they feel for several days and weeks following the accident.
Writing down how they feel and how their lives have changed can help victims discover injuries that health providers may have missed. It also clearly shows non-economic damages, such as pain, suffering, and emotional distress.
It is essential to factor in every diagnosis and prognosis when estimating the value of an accident claim.
Victims should take note and keep records of all the treatments they undergo. Health providers can help foresee how injuries will affect the victim’s future. Skilled accident attorneys will collect all relevant medical information once they decide if an accident victim has a valid claim. Bringing as much documentation as possible to the initial consultation will help the attorney understand what may be involved in a case.
Collect all bills from treatments that have occurred as well as estimates for any future procedures or care. If there are payments you made for anything related to your treatment or accident, bring receipts.
An accident attorney in Modesto can estimate the potential recoverable damages when you provide a clear picture of all losses.
Your prospective attorney will ask many questions and you will have questions of your own. Make a list before you go to ensure you do not forget to ask them. Your consultation is a two-way conversation, so even if the question feels irrelevant, write it down and ask.
There are many accident attorneys in Modesto and other areas of California. A consultation does not mean you have committed to an attorney, nor does it mean that firm will take your case. It is important that you evaluate the firm as they are evaluating your case.
Modesto residents need to feel that the attorney they choose to represent them understands their needs and can show them compassion during the process. Most important of all, the attorney and their law firm should be licensed to practice and competent in handling accident claims in California.
Even first-time accident victims should know if the lawyer they plan to hire is a good fit. A reliable attorney:
- Cannot promise specific results. It’s against the law for attorneys to predict results for a case that has yet to begin.
- Should not compare one claim to another. All claims are unique. Consider it a red flag if the attorney unduly compares your case to another.
- Treats the victim with dignity and validates any concerns. A good lawyer should make the victim feel respected. Their concerns are valid.
Even if you are dealing with pain, hospital visits and more, taking a moment to think before speaking with a Modesto accident attorney can increase your chances of getting fair compensation. At Berg Injury Lawyers, we pride ourselves on treating our clients respectfully. We listen and tailor our services to the needs of every individual. Our No Fee Guarantee™ ensures that if you do not win, you pay nothing. Schedule a free, non-obligatory consultation with our experienced attorneys today.
July 17th, 2023|
Originally published July 20, 2020.
If you live in Sacramento, you’re likely behind the wheel of your vehicle longer than most people on your typical daily commute. One study suggests that Sacramento drivers spend 60 hours each year driving in traffic, establishing the city as having the 22nd-worst commute delay in the country.
THE WORST TRAFFIC TIMES IN SACRAMENTO
On weekdays, Sacramento’s roads are most congested between 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. On weekends, Sacramento drivers are most likely to encounter traffic between noon and 2 p.m. Unfortunately, for many commuters in Sacramento, braving long lines of vehicles during these hours of the day is unavoidable.
WHY IS TRAFFIC SO BAD IN SACRAMENTO?
The causes of our traffic woes are multifold. Sacramento is one of the fastest growing cities in California, which means there are an increasing number of vehicles on our roads. Another factor is the rise of so-called super commuters—people who face over an hour of commute times each day. The lack of affordable housing has pushed many people who work in Sacramento further away from the city, and they pay dearly in the form of time stuck in traffic.
THE CONSEQUENCES OF CONGESTED ROADS
Every year, commuters in Sacramento lose approximately $1,022 and 24 gallons of fuel because of traffic. In addition to lost time, money, and gas, congested roads cause other problems. Heavy traffic:
- Causes wear and tear on vehicles through repeated braking and accelerating.
- Blocks the path of emergency responders.
- Induces anger or “road rage” among some drivers.
- Contributes to air pollution and harmful gas emissions.
There’s also plenty of research suggesting that traffic increases the risks of car accidents. Though high-speed crashes are less likely when cars are traveling slowly, many other risks are introduced. For example, multiple-vehicle crashes and rear-end accidents can be more common when roads are congested.
IS THERE HOPE FOR A DAY WHEN SACRAMENTO HAS LESS TRAFFIC?
Probably not. If you’re hoping that these numbers will improve in the years to come, we hate to tell you things might get even worse. Researchers say that by 2030, Sacramento drivers could spend up to 70 hours a year behind the wheel during their commutes.
BUT ISN’T THERE A WAY TO SOLVE SACRAMENTO’S TRAFFIC PROBLEMS?
Easing commuters’ traffic problems is possible, though it usually requires solutions that are either impractical or impossible. The Brookings Institution, a reputable Washington, D.C. think tank, suggests four ways to deal with congestion:
1) Introducing tolls during the most heavily trafficked hours of the day to deter motorists.
2) Expanding road capacity to accommodate more drivers.
3) Expanding public transportation to give people more options.
4) Accepting it.
Yes, one of the leading think tanks in world suggests we essentially “get over it.” Brookings believes that option number four is the most realistic one. That’s because significant infrastructure improvements and tolls are politically and financially impossible in most parts of the U.S. If this esteemed think tank is right, we might benefit from looking at ways to make our commutes more tolerable.
Enjoying this article? You might also be interested in learning more about the worst traffic times in San Francisco.
HOW TO HANDLE THE STRESS OF TRAFFIC
If traffic is to be lumped in with death and taxes as something all of us will encounter, we’re best served by looking for ways to cope with it. Here are three methods for overcoming traffic-induced stress:
- Breathe: Researchers report that breathing techniques alleviate stress. Though some of these techniques are complex, others are doable even when behind the wheel. For example, one method of breathing for stress reduction is to simply exhale more slowly on each breath until stress subsides. Simple and effective.
- Listen to something engaging: Maybe you have certain types of music that put you at ease, or perhaps you enjoy podcasts or audiobooks. Whatever your entertainment of choice might be, being stuck in traffic is an opportunity to enjoy it. Just make sure you keep the volume down, so you can hear warnings signs of dangerous situations and avoid causing a distracted driving accident.
- Reframe the situation: You can view traffic as a waste of precious time, or you could view it as a break from the many demands you face at home or work. A simple change in perspective can make sitting idly much easier to endure.
Are these ideal solutions? No, we’d all prefer to spend less time in traffic. But if it’s a fact of life, we can find healthy ways to deal with it. We can do our part to keep a healthy perspective while also being mindful of the safety of our fellow motorists. What happens when you’re involved in a crash with a driver who wasn’t mindful of your safety? In these situations, there is a clear solution: Demand compensation for the crash-related expenses you face.
To learn more about traffic in California, check out the following resources:
- The Surprising Ways COVID Made U.S. Drivers More Dangerous
- Intersection Crash Statistics EVERY California Driver Should Read
- How California Might Tackle the Dramatic Increase in Road Deaths
IF YOU NEED LEGAL HELP, CONTACT BERG INJURY LAWYERS
The Sacramento car accident attorneys at Berg Injury Lawyers can’t shorten your commute, but we can help you get the payment you deserve after a car accident that wasn’t your fault. Our consultations are free, so contact us today to speak to our team for a case evaluation.
July 17th, 2023|
California, home to sprawling cities and bustling traffic, has a high rate of pedestrian accidents. From 2020 to 2021, pedestrian fatalities increased by 9.4%, from 1,013 to 1,108. This is largely due to its heavy traffic, urban congestion, and the increasing interaction between vehicles and pedestrians.
Pedestrian deaths are most common at night in urban areas and on roads far from intersections, where vehicles often travel at higher speeds. These incidents are often due to hit-and-run accidents, incidents at crosswalks, and collisions caused by distracted or impaired driving.
Understanding how pedestrian accidents are handled in California and having an attorney from Berg Injury Lawyers on your side can help you protect your rights and receive restitution for your injuries.
Pedestrians often suffer life-altering injuries after an accident with a vehicle. Injuries can require surgery, rehabilitation services, and long-term assisted care.
- Broken bones: Pedestrians in vehicle accidents can suffer fractures in limbs, hips, and pelvis due to the impact force. This can lead to pain, months-long recovery, and complications, such as permanent disfigurement or disability.
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs): Pedestrians struck by vehicles can experience severe head injuries. TBIs can result in cognitive impairments, memory loss, and negative impacts on relationships and quality of life.
- Spinal cord damage: Pedestrian accidents can cause spinal cord injuries (SCIs), leading to partial or complete paralysis. SCIs can result in ongoing medical treatment, assistive devices, and major lifestyle adjustments.
In California, pedestrians have the right of way in most situations. Drivers are expected to exercise caution and yield to pedestrians at marked crosswalks and intersections. If a pedestrian is struck by a motor vehicle, the driver is usually deemed at fault.
However, under California’s pure comparative negligence doctrine, all parties may bear some responsibility in an accident. If pedestrians act recklessly or move against traffic signals, they may be partially liable for their injuries, impacting the compensation they receive.
California previously considered jaywalking a citable offense for pedestrians. While the newly passed Freedom to Walk Bill makes it legal for pedestrians to cross outside a marked crosswalk or intersection, it still requires them to use reasonable care.
If you are on your phone when crossing the street, which causes you to ignore traffic and abruptly step out in front of a car, you may be partially responsible for your injuries under pure comparative negligence. In this situation, you could still win compensation, but your percentage of fault will reduce your settlement.
If you are in a pedestrian accident, you can protect your rights by taking action. Receiving medical attention, reporting the incident, and documenting your injuries can provide evidence for your attorney to determine fault and support your compensation claim.
- Seek immediate medical care: Contact emergency services or visit the nearest hospital immediately after the accident. Even minor injuries can worsen without treatment; seeing a medical provider allows you to receive appropriate care to prevent complications. It also provides documentation of your injuries, such as medical records, diagnoses, prescriptions, and receipts for medical expenses for your claim.
- Report the incident to police: Contact the local police department to report the accident. Provide them with accurate and detailed information about the incident, including the date, time, and location. This provides an official record of the incident, which you and your attorney can request a copy to use as evidence for your case.
- Document the incident: Take photographs of the accident scene from different angles, capturing the position of the vehicle involved and the apparent damage. Document your injuries, including cuts, bruises, and any visible marks. Obtain contact information from witnesses who saw the accident and share it with your attorney, who can contact them for an official statement.
In cases involving accidents between pedestrians and vehicles, the role of a personal injury attorney is crucial. A skilled attorney specializing in pedestrian accident cases can uphold your rights and help you receive the compensation you deserve.
Our California personal injury lawyers have the experience and resources to navigate the state’s pure comparative fault doctrine and prove that a negligent driver is liable for your injuries. We will investigate the accident thoroughly, gather evidence, and negotiate with insurance companies to get you a fair settlement.
If you were injured in a pedestrian accident in California, contact our skilled legal team today to schedule a free consultation. We can review your case and help you get started on your claim.