California Auto Accident Lawsuits: How To Increase Your Chances Of Prevailing
What can California car accident victims do to increase their chances of prevailing on an auto accident claim? A lot more than most people think, according to Matthew Nezhad, a California attorney whose practice is dedicated to handling personal injury claims and cases for injury victims throughout California.
“Tips” of the trade in California
Whether it’s an injury claim or not, Nezhad told us that you want to immediately make sure that you secure information. He explained, “That means obtaining information from the other side and taking pictures if you have a camera with you. If you don’t have one, buy one of those disposable cameras and keep it in your car so you can take pictures of the scene and of the cars that were involved in the accident. If there are any witnesses that may have seen the accident, get their information as well. You definitely want to preserve evidence immediately because, as time passes by, you may lose the witnesses that may have seen the accident and would have helped you with your case or claim.”
Seek medical attention – even if your injuries are minimal
One of the most important things to do after a car accident is to seek medical attention. Nezhad explained:
[E]ven if you have minimal injuries that you think may just be stiffness or headaches that will eventually go away, it’s important to have a doctor exam you. Whatever it is, you want to make sure that you’re evaluated. Hopefully it’s nothing severe or significant, but you want to make sure that it’s documented because months may pass and you still may have the injuries, the neck pain or the back ache. If it’s just getting worse after three or four months and you get it checked out then, chances are the insurance company won’t want to pay you anything. They’ll think that you’re not really hurt and just want to make a quick buck, which is not true.
Trial or settlement?
Prevailing in an auto accident case can happen by way of trial or settlement. However, while many car accident victims assume that their case will go to trial, Nezhad told us that the odds of that happening are unlikely. “Only about two to four percent of cases go to trial. Even though most cases settle and you don’t have to file a lawsuit, you definitely need an attorney who knows how to deal with insurance companies. That’s where our firm has experience. More importantly, you don’t have to pay for it out of pocket, so you have absolutely nothing to lose.”