Orange County, California is a beautiful place to live. Sometimes, it can feel like paradise. But there is no paradise on Earth that is completely free of risk and harm. Just like anywhere else on the planet, Orange County has its dangers.
Orange County is located in California, which means that the California laws that govern torts and personal injury cases could help you seek justice in the event that you are harmed by someone else’s recklessness or negligence.
But the laws can’t help you if you don’t know a few basic things about how they work and how to take advantage of your opportunities. That’s why it’s important for all California residents to learn about the basic laws regarding personal injury
Risk is all around you
California’s beauty hides plenty of dangers. There are car accidents in the notorious Southern California traffic, slip-and-fall incidents on slick floors or broken sidewalk tiles, and even the danger of being harmed in a crime. So, naturally, you do your best to take care and limit your risk. You drive at safe speeds and practice defensive driving. You watch where you’re going and protect yourself with everything from insurance policies to security systems.
But there are more than 3.1 million other people in the county, not to mention the individuals who come for work or are just passing through. Any one of them can throw a wrench into your careful protection plans. No matter how defensively you drive or how carefully you protect yourself, others can make terrible decisions, take reckless actions, or just make mistakes — and you could be left holding the bag.
When someone else’s irresponsibly actions cause an accident that hurts you, that irresponsibility has a legal definition: negligence. And negligence is at the heart of how personal injury cases work.
Understanding California personal injury law
You don’t need to be an expert in personal injury law to get justice for the damages that you’ve suffered — that’s what personal injury lawyers are for. You do need a basic understanding of what the law says in order to know if you should seek legal help in the first place.
In California, people who are injured are allowed to sue for damages. Those damages include financial damages like medical bills and lost wages and less tangible damages, like pain and suffering. It’s crucial to understand who gets sued in this situation. California’s personal injury laws are interested in justice: If a person caused an accident through negligence, then that person should pay for the resulting injuries. Contrary to popular belief, you can’t sue over just any accident — or, at least, not successfully. In short, if there’s no negligence, there’s no case.
Getting the right result
Everyone hopes to never need the services of a personal injury attorney, but if you do, you should know how to go about securing one and getting the best possible result in your case.
Things start at the scene of the accident. Call the police, get a police report, and document the scene in any way that you can. Whether it was a slip-and-fall incident or a car accident, it’s vital that you have as much proof as you can get of how the accident happened. Later, this will be key to proving negligence.
Similarly, you should hold onto any records and documentation of your damages. Doctor’s notes, medical bills, and pay stubs that show lost income are all vital to proving your financial damages. The law loves details, so make sure you have proof of all the numbers.
Next, you need to get in touch with an Orange County injury lawyer. The sooner you do this, of course, the better. California’s statutes of limitations govern the amount of time that you have to make certain types of legal filings, including personal injury lawsuits. Acting fast will also help you and your attorney get to vital evidence before it disappears. Plus, it’s an advantage to give your lawyer as much time as possible to prepare the case.
At your initial consultation, show the attorney your records and talk about your situation. If the attorney takes your case, you could be on the road to being made whole again after your terrible accident.
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