The city of Glendale in sunny Southern California is known for its high quality of life and ample amenities. Yet there are documented issues with crosswalk safety as an above average number of fatal incidents involving elderly pedestrians. In general, the city ranks fairly well concerning car crash fatalities, but that doesn’t tell the entire story.
A recent op-ed piece by the LA Times from 2017 boldly made a claim that many Glendale residents have murmured about for years: the city of Glendale is a dangerous place to drive. Whatever the underlying causes may be, the fact is that Glendale has higher insurance rates, an excess of luxury vehicles, and many traffic violations that are rarely punished.According to recent data, the total number of car accidents that involved injuries or fatalities was 1,162. The intersection at Colorado Blvd. and Pacific Ave. holds the distinction for witnessing the most collisions in the city.
Unfortunately, this has become the norm, as the sad reality is that millions of Americans are injured every year in motor vehicle accidents. Thousands more are killed yearly, and those who do survive must endure the rest of their lives with permanent disabilities, including brain damage and spinal cord injuries.
What Does A Car Accident Lawyer Do?
Many of us grew up believing that insurance companies were on our side, looking after our best interests and always there to help us get back to whole after an unfortunate event such as a car accident. While you may think the insurance company is on your side, insurance companies are businesses, and the bottom line for any business is always profit. The primary goal of all insurance companies is to pay you as little as possible in the case of an accident so that they can maximize their profit off of the insurance payments you make to them.
If you’ve been injured in a car accident, your insurance company may respond by offering you a quick settlement, hoping they can discreetly resolve your case for as little money as possible. These companies know you’re in a vulnerable position and will use that bargaining chip to their advantage, unless you take the right steps to protect yourself. The car accident attorneys at West Coast Trial Lawyers will handle every part of your claim, including:
1) Guiding You Through the Entire Legal Process
Your car accident lawyer will be there to answer every question you may have regarding your specific claim. They will carefully guide you through every stage of the process, and will outline your options and provide you with all the information you need to make the best decisions for you and the people you love.
2) Protecting Your Rights
An experienced car accident lawyer is intimately familiar with the way insurance companies work and will handle all the details and necessary paperwork. They will work to build your case and will aggressively advocate for you and you alone. Your lawyer will make certain that you never do or say anything to the insurance companies or other parties involved which could hurt the strength of your claim.
3) Pursuing The Compensation You Deserve
Your lawyer will assess your case and will pursue all damages you deserve. Not only will they seek compensation for your damaged property and past and future medical bills, but also for your past and future lost wages, loss of earning capacity, pain and suffering, emotional distress, and other costs associated with your injuries.
4) Negotiating A Fair Settlement
Being represented by a well-respected lawyer sends a strong message to the insurance companies that you will do anything necessary to recover a fair compensation amount.
5) Filing A Lawsuit If Necessary
Litigation may be necessary, and in these cases, your lawyer will present a strong and persuasive case to the judge or jury. Your lawyer will aggressively advocate to get you maximum compensation for your damages and injuries.
What Do I Do After A Car Accident?
A car accident can be an extremely traumatizing experience. It can be difficult to know what to do or where to turn for help. In order to help protect you and make sure you are prepared in the event of an accident, the legal team at West Coast Trial Lawyers has outlined the following important steps:
- Make Sure Everyone is Okay. The first thing on your mind should be safety. Always make sure you and your passengers are alright. If anyone appears to be injured, please call 911 and request an ambulance.
- Call the Police. If no one seems injured or the damages appear minor, you may not want to call the police. You do, however, need to call the police so they can make an official report of the accident. Many law enforcement agencies don’t take reports unless there are injuries, so make sure to communicate your injuries to the officers responding at the scene.
- Exchange Information. This is crucial. Make sure to get names, addresses, phone numbers, driver’s license numbers and insurance information for everyone involved in the accident. Also, write down the make, model, year, color, and license plate number of all vehicles. This can be easily done using your cellphone’s camera.
- Get Contact Information from Witnesses. Chat with any available witnesses and write down their names and phone numbers. You may need to get in touch with them in the future. Their testimony may help you in the long run.
- Watch What You Say. Be careful of what you say after a traffic collision. Anything you say at the scene of an accident may hurt your case and can be used against you. Don’t apologize. Don’t admit anything. And don’t make any claims.
- Take Pictures of Everything. Take as many pictures as you can of the damage to all vehicles involved, as well as road conditions and any traffic signs and signals.
Get a Lawyer. Get in touch with an attorney even before reporting the accident to your own insurance company, especially if you’ve been hurt. Also, talk with your lawyer before making any statements to the other driver’s insurance company.