Car Accident Defense – Protecting Your Interests and Ensuring Fair Compensation



In the United States alone, there are approximately six million car accidents every year. That means an average of 16,438 car crashes occur daily! With such high numbers, it’s crucial to know the necessary steps to take to stay safe and safeguard your interests when involved in an automobile accident. To help you prepare for such an unfortunate event, we’ve compiled some essential tips and tricks for what you should do immediately following an accident.

Proving Property Damage to Your Vehicle

To prove the extent of damage your vehicle sustained in a crash, it’s vital to capture multiple photos of the accident scene, including the damage to all vehicles involved. If you don’t have a cell phone with a camera, consider investing in an inexpensive digital or disposable camera to keep in your vehicle’s glove compartment. Even if you’re unable to take pictures immediately because of injury or traffic concerns, revisit the accident scene later to capture the necessary images. These photos will assist your insurance adjuster and legal representative in understanding the precise details of the incident.


Gathering Crucial Information

When involved in an accident, it’s crucial to record the names and contact information of any witnesses. However, refrain from discussing the accident with them. Additionally, never admit fault or apologize, as these actions can be misinterpreted as an admission of guilt. Wait until the initial shock of the accident subsides, allowing you to evaluate the circumstances together with your insurance adjuster and attorney. Jot down every detail you can recall about the accident as soon as possible:

  • The location and time of the accident,
  • The direction the vehicles were traveling,
  • The known speed of each vehicle,
  • Weather and traffic conditions,
  • What the driver was doing at the time of the accident (e.g., moving or stopped, on the phone, listening to the radio, etc.), and
  • Any other information that may help the insurance adjuster understand the sequence of events.
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Determining Fault – The Insurer’s Role

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Insurance adjusters independently examine available evidence to determine fault. This evidence includes:

  • The condition of the insured vehicle,
  • If available, the police accident report,
  • Any videos or photos of the accident scene,
  • Photos of damage to the other vehicle,
  • Repair estimates,
  • Statements made by the parties involved,
  • Witness statements, and
  • Information obtained from the other driver’s insurance company.

Each insurer will provide a preliminary fault finding, but remember that this determination is not final and may be subject to change.

Comparative Fault Law in California

An experienced California accident lawyer can present the evidence in the most favorable light to the insurer. In some cases, adjusters may reassess fault allocation. California’s comparative fault law allows adjusters and the court to distribute blame for an accident among multiple parties. This means that even if you bear partial responsibility for a car accident in California, you may still be entitled to partial compensation for your losses.

Dealing with Unexpected Repair Costs


When Your Car is Considered a “Total Loss”

If the cost to repair your vehicle exceeds its actual cash value, it is deemed a “total loss vehicle” in California. In such cases, the insurance company may offer to reimburse you for a comparable replacement car. Alternatively, they may provide compensation up to your policy limit, deducting any applicable deductible. If you owe more on your financed vehicle than its worth, “gap protection” ensures sufficient funds to pay off the vehicle. It may be necessary to negotiate with the insurer or file an appeal to establish a reasonable “fair market value.”

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Trust Moet Law Firm for Expert Legal Representation

When involved in a car accident, it is crucial to seek guidance from experienced personal injury attorneys like Robert Moghadam or Nima Etemadian from Garrity Traina. They can evaluate your case and determine if you may be eligible for compensation. Call Garrity Traina at 1 (866) 424-0789 today for a trusted legal advocate by your side.