Brentwood Car Accident Lawyer
Car Accident Insurance Claims & Lawsuits in Contra Costa County
If you have been injured or if a loved one has tragically lost their life due to a negligent or reckless driver, Ayala, Morgan & Buzzard is here to assist you. Our team of experienced Brentwood car accident lawyers brings together decades of combined experience and a successful track record in handling complex motor vehicle accident cases. We understand that this is an incredibly stressful and overwhelming time for you, which is why we provide compassionate and personalized legal services tailored to your specific needs.
Discover how our team can help you fight for the fair compensation you deserve. Call (925) 744-8869 or reach out to us online for a free and no-obligation consultation.
What Are the Most Common Causes of Car Accidents in Brentwood, CA?
The majority of car accidents are the result of negligence. Motorists have a responsibility to obey traffic laws and drive with caution. When they fail to do so, whether unintentionally or intentionally, they can cause devastating collisions, severe injuries, and even loss of life.
Some of the most prevalent causes of car accidents in Brentwood include:
- Distracted driving, such as texting while driving
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Inexperienced and teenage drivers
- Failure to yield the right of way
- Running red lights, stop signs, and other traffic control devices
- Speeding, including driving too fast for current conditions
- Driving too fast in construction or work zones
- Making dangerous or illegal turns
- Unsafe or unlawful passing
- Fatigued driving or falling asleep at the wheel
While most car accidents can be attributed to driver negligence, some are caused by external factors. Dangerous road conditions, poor weather, and defective vehicles can all contribute to or cause an accident.
At Ayala, Morgan & Buzzard, we thoroughly investigate motor vehicle accidents with the assistance of accident reconstruction experts and expert witnesses to determine precisely what occurred and, crucially, who is at fault. Our Brentwood car accident attorneys are here to help you get back on your feet, handling the insurance company on your behalf so that you can focus on your recovery.
Who Is Responsible for Your Damages After an Accident?
Since California follows a traditional fault-based (or "tort") system for car accidents, victims typically need to file a claim with the insurance company of the at-fault driver. Depending on the type of policy you have, you may be eligible for compensation from your own auto insurance provider, but most often, you will need to seek compensation from the other driver's insurance company. This involves proving fault, demonstrating that the other driver was responsible for the accident.
Under the state's pure comparative negligence rule, you don't have to prove that the other driver was entirely or mostly at fault; it is sufficient to show that they share some portion of the blame. Even if you were partially at fault for the crash, you can still file a claim and seek compensation, although your total recovery will be reduced by your percentage of fault.
For example, if you were hit by a driver who was texting and driving, but you failed to fully stop at a stop sign just before the accident, the court might determine that you were 40% at fault. In this case, if your total damages amount to $100,000, you would be able to recover up to 60% of that amount, or $60,000.
After an accident, it is the insurance adjuster's responsibility to determine what happened and who is at fault. Insurance companies often try to assign a greater degree of blame to victims in order to limit their payouts and reduce costs. At Ayala, Morgan & Buzzard, we know how to counter these tactics and other strategies employed by insurance companies. We are ready to protect you and your rights.
What to Do After a Car Accident in Brentwood, CA
If you have recently been involved in a car accident in Contra Costa County, there are several steps you should take to protect yourself, your rights, and your recovery.
First and foremost, if you have not already done so, seek medical attention immediately. Even if you believe your injuries are minor or will heal on their own, it is crucial to receive medical treatment after a motor vehicle accident. You may have underlying injuries that require professional care, and seeing a doctor establishes proof of your injuries for your personal injury claim.
Next, if possible, make sure to:
- Obtain and preserve all available evidence, including the other driver's name and contact information, insurance information, photographs of the accident scene, pictures of your injuries, statements from witnesses, copies of your medical records, and quotes from auto repair shops.
- If the police did not arrive at the scene, fill out an official police report providing details of the crash and any available information about the other involved parties, such as their names and contact information.
- Report the accident to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) within 10 days if the collision resulted in any bodily injury (regardless of severity), death, or property damage exceeding $1,000.
- Notify your auto insurance provider about the accident as soon as possible. Depending on the specific terms of your insurance policy, you may be required to report the accident within a few days to a few weeks.
- Avoid speaking to anyone from the other party's insurance company, and never make any official statements or sign anything without consulting an attorney.
While it is not mandatory to hire a lawyer, numerous studies have shown that individuals who enlist the help of personal injury lawyers tend to receive higher settlements compared to those who handle their cases alone.
Protecting Against Insurance Companies
Reach out to our car accident lawyers at Ayala, Morgan & Buzzard today. We provide assistance to victims involved in all types of motor vehicle accidents, including collisions involving passenger vehicles, motorcycles, large commercial trucks, pedestrians, and bicyclists. We have helped severely injured victims facing significant damages and have successfully obtained favorable settlements and verdicts on their behalf.
Our team offers compassionate representation and personal attention throughout the legal process. There are no upfront or out-of-pocket costs when you work with our firm. We only collect legal fees if and when we secure compensation for you.