Oakland Personal Injury Attorneys
Personal Injury Attorneys Serving Oakland
Personal injury attorneys in Oakland are an important part of our legal system. You might even say that these legal professionals are an important part of our overall society. Without personal injury attorneys, innocent victims would find it difficult to hold negligent individuals accountable. In many situations, these negligent parties consider themselves above the law. They might even intentionally act in a negligent or reckless manner to increase their profits. While these parties may face criminal consequences as a result of their actions, these penalties only go so far. A wealthy individual such as a property owner might simply laugh off a $500 fine for not making their premises safe for members of the public.
In contrast, a personal injury lawsuit holds them accountable for their actions, and it acts as a genuine deterrent for further acts of negligence. In effect, Oakland personal injury attorneys help make society safer each day. While it is true that individuals could theoretically file lawsuits without the assistance of an attorney, this rarely works out. Navigating the legal system can be incredibly confusing, time-consuming, and expensive for the average citizen. Personal injury attorneys help these victims stand up to powerful individuals and approach the legal system with a sense of clarity and efficiency.
If you have been injured by a negligent individual or entity in Oakland, you should enlist the help of a qualified attorney as soon as possible. Ideally, you should team up with a firm that has considerable experience with personal injury cases, such as Mary Alexander & Associates. With the help of a committed legal team, you can hold negligent parties accountable and make Oakland safer for everyone.
What Does a Personal Injury Attorney Do?
What happens after you enlist the help of a personal injury attorney? How do these legal professionals ensure that you get the compensation you deserve? What specific tasks will your attorney undertake? The first step is to attend a consultation with your attorney. You will go over the specific circumstances of your injury, and your lawyer will assess whether or not you should pursue a claim or a lawsuit.
If your attorney believes that you have a strong case that is worth pursuing, they will start the process of building your case. This process involves considerable research. Your attorney’s main focus will be on gathering evidence to support your claims. To some extent, you can help with this in a number of ways. Your lawyer might ask you to provide receipts of medical expenses and records of your treatments. They may also ask for doctor’s notes and medical imaging that prove the extent of your injuries. You can also help your attorney by telling them as many details of the accident as possible.
At this point, your attorney may help you deal with insurance companies. Negotiating with these companies can be tricky, and it helps to have a skilled lawyer on your side. Both sides will present their own evidence and claims, and in many ways, this process is like a trial. At the end of this negotiation process, you may end up going to trial if you cannot agree on a settlement.
If you end up going to trial, your lawyer will continue to play a central role in your aim to regain compensation. They will be responsible for presenting evidence to the court, giving oral arguments, questioning witnesses, and much more. Your attorney may also focus on finding weaknesses in the defendant’s arguments and exposing inconsistencies in their stories.
Filing a Claim vs Pursuing a Lawsuit
You may be wondering whether it is better to file a claim through an insurance company or pursue legal action through a trial. Both options have their own set of benefits and drawbacks, and your personal injury attorney in Oakland can help you decide which route to take. That being said, injured victims almost always pursue a settlement with the insurance company first and foremost.
This is because when you negotiate a settlement with an insurance company, it is a slightly more controlled environment compared to a trial. When you go to court, you are essentially at the mercy of a judge and jury. There is no telling what decision they might make. They may offer you more than what the insurance companies are offering, or they may offer you much less.
Insurance companies understand this, and that is why they are likely to settle out of court rather than going through a trial. They understand that judges and juries could potentially offer you much more than what they are willing to part with, and they prefer to work in this controlled environment. Their main goal is to offer you as little as they can get away with, while still avoiding a trial. At the end of the negotiation process, you can speak with your attorney and ask them whether or not you should accept the settlement. While this decision is completely up to you, your attorney can tell you whether you stand to receive more through a lawsuit.
The only exception is if there is no insurance company involved. For example, you might be a pedestrian who was hit by an uninsured driver. If neither party has an insurance policy that can cover damages in the event of an injury, a lawsuit is the only real option.
What are the Personal Injury Laws in California?
Each state has its own unique approach to personal injury lawsuits, and there are a number of laws that apply to these situations in California. Many other states have “no-fault” insurance laws that allow individuals to file injury claims without ever establishing who is at fault for a car crash. California does not follow this system, which means that you must establish that another party was liable for your injuries if you want to receive compensation. In addition, you will need to file your claim with the insurance provider of the negligent driver.
One of the benefits of living in an “at-fault” state such as California is the fact that you can file for non-economic damages, such as pain and suffering. In “no-fault” states, this is almost always not the case. On the other hand, the negotiation and filing process in an “at-fault” state is much more complex and demanding, because you are responsible for establishing that another driver was to blame for your injuries.
California also follows a system of pure comparative negligence when it comes to personal injury lawsuits. This means that multiple people may be responsible for one car accident – including the victim. Pure comparative negligence places no limits on how this fault may be divided among many responsible drivers. For example, one driver might be 25% responsible, another might be 25% responsible, and a third might be 50% responsible. It is important to remember that you can theoretically receive compensation even if you were 99% responsible for your own injuries in California. The only downside is that you would receive just 1% of your normal settlement amount.
Enlist the Help of a Qualified Attorney Today
If you have been searching the Oakland area for a qualified, experienced personal injury attorney, look no further than Mary Alexander & Associates. Thanks to a wealth of experience with all kinds of different personal injury lawsuits, we are well-equipped to help you pursue justice. We are passionate about helping injury victims in California pursue a fair, adequate settlement amount, and we will fight for your rights to receive the compensation you deserve. Reach out today, and we can plan out your next steps together.