Known as the “City of Opportunity”, Gardena has approximately 60,000 residents. It’s location near major freeways such as the 405, 110, 105 and 91 means thousands of vehicles travel through or into Gardena all the time. All of that traffic explains the high number of accidents on Gardena’s surface streets and nearby freeways.
If you or a loved one were injured or killed in a car accident in Gardena, contact the Gardena car accident lawyers at The Dominguez Firm for a free consultation at 800-818-1818 today. We are available 24/7 and can travel to your home or hospital at a moment’s notice.
Below we’ve answered some of the most common questions we receive regarding car accidents in Gardena and the law.
Gardena car accident statistics
Gardena’s central location and traffic congestion has given it the sad distinction of being near or at the top in accident statistics for the state of California. Among Gardena’s most notorious traffic statistics are:
- Accidents caused by drivers who had been drinking (ages 21-34) – 31/Rank: 1
- Overall accidents caused by drivers who had been drinking – 73/Rank: 5
- Nighttime driving accidents – 56/Rank: 6
- Underage drinking and driving accidents – 3/Rank: 10
- Total accidents with fatalities and injuries – 473/Rank: 14
All of these rankings are based on statistics for similarly sized cities in the state.
Is it worth getting a lawyer for a minor car accident?
Yes. It’s common for people to experience a rush of adrenaline after an accident. That could cause symptoms to be delayed for a few days or even weeks. What appears to be a minor accident could leave you with health problems you’re not initially aware of. For example, even an injury that many consider minor, such as whiplash could lead to long-term health problems such as neck pain, numbness, headaches and dizziness.
You should consider at least consulting with a Gardena personal injury attorney to find out what your options are under the law.
What should I do if I was involved in a car accident in Gardena?
Your first priority should always be your safety. Immediately move to a secure area, but only if you can. Then call 911 or have someone do it for you. Other steps to take:
- Seek immediate medical attention. Even if you think you’re just shaken up, make sure you are seen by a doctor to rule out any injuries.
- Provide the officers on the scene with the facts of the accident as best you can. Do not speculate as to who caused the accident. Also, do not apologize to anyone either.
- Gather witness information and take pictures of the cars involved and the accident scene itself. Also photograph any street signs, traffic lights and any other evidence you feel is important.
- Call The Dominguez Firm right away.
I may share some of the blame for my Gardena car accident. Can you still help me?
Yes. In California you can share part of the blame for your Gardena car accident but still file a claim against the other driver. That’s because California is a comparative negligence state. That means as long as you are not 100% to blame for your accident, you can sue for damages.
The court will decide your percentage of blame and subtract that from your final verdict or settlement amount. So if the court decides you are 20% to blame for your accident and your final verdict or settlement amount is $1 million, you would receive $800,000.
One last point regarding this question; even if you think you were partially to blame for your Gardena accident, you should still speak to an attorney if you were injured. The chain of events leading up to your accident probably happened very quickly. Also, police reports aren’t always accurate. This is especially true if you had to be transported to the hospital and couldn’t give your version of events at the scene.
Let an experienced Gardena car accident lawyer at The Dominguez Firm go over the details of your case. It costs you nothing to see if we can help.
How much is my Gardena car accident case worth?
It’s true that no two car accident cases are the same. But there are some important factors that come into play when trying to determine the value of a car accident case:
- The extent of the victim’s injuries – This can be calculated by looking at all of the medical expenses caused by the accident. This also includes bills for mental health counseling and in the case of catastrophic injuries, long-term care and modifications to the home. Only future medical expenses need to be estimated.
- Time off from work due to the injuries – Some victims can return to their jobs exactly as before. Others need to return in a different capacity. For those who have suffered serious injuries in a car accident, they could miss months of work or not be able to ever work again.
- Property damage – This is the legal term for damage to the victim’s vehicle. It can be compensation for repairs or in the case of a total loss, a replacement vehicle.
All of the above are examples of economic damages. While these are relatively easy to add up, they often don’t make up the bulk of a person’s final settlement or verdict. Instead, non-economic damages usually do. Non-economic damages are not clearly spelled out by the law because they are not based on any bills. Frankly, it’s more about emotion. It’s based on how much the accident negatively impacted the victim’s quality of life. An experienced auto accident lawyer will be able to show the emotional effects of the car crash effectively.
Examples of non-economic damages are:
- Emotional distress
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Pain and suffering
It’s also important to note that the law puts no limit on the amount of compensation you can be awarded for your car accident personal injury case.
Who is to blame if a car hits a pedestrian who was jaywalking?
Jaywalking is illegal and there is alaw on the books in California prohibiting it. However, drivers must also exercise caution around pedestrians on surface streets. If a driver hits a pedestrian who was jaywalking, the pedestrian will have to take some of the blame for the accident because they were acting illegally. If the driver was also breaking the law by speeding, texting while driving, etc. then they might share the blame for the accident. Again, because California is a comparative negligence state, the pedestrian and the driver could both end up having grounds for a lawsuit.
Due to the population density of Gardena, pedestrians and drivers cross paths on a regular basis. Several intersections have been the site of serious and even fatal accidents. Thankfully, the city has taken steps to improve pedestrian safety in recent years by adding additional traffic lights at the most dangerous intersections.
I am an undocumented immigrant. Can I still file a claim if I was injured in a car accident in Gardena?
Absolutely. Your immigration status has nothing to do with your accident. It can’t be used against you by defense attorneys in a court of law. In fact, it can’t even be brought up at any point during your case. The Gardena car accident lawyers at The Dominguez Firm are well aware of this and will make sure your rights are protected while fighting to get you the maximum compensation you are entitled to under the law for your injuries or untimely loss.
I don’t have medical insurance. Can you still help me?
Yes. Don’t let a lack of medical insurance stop you from taking legal action if you were injured in a car accident in Gardena. The Dominguez Firm can help you obtain the medical treatment you need for your accident injuries. At the end of your case, we will deduct the cost of your treatment from the final settlement or verdict we obtain for you.
We work with a network of respected medical providers ready to help you. That way you can concentrate on your recovery instead of worrying about medical bills.
I lost a loved one in a car accident in Gardena. Can The Dominguez Firm do anything for me?
Yes. California law allows you to file a wrongful death claim against the person(s) who caused the untimely death of your loved one in a Gardena car accident if you are the legal next of kin.
The order of preference for filing a wrongful death claim is:
- Their spouse and any minor children
- Registered domestic partner
- If there are no living children, any grandchildren
- Stepchildren, if there are no grandchildren
Sometimes the question of who the next of kin is can be complicated. This is especially true for couples who were living together without being married because California does not recognize common law marriages. If there are issues with establishing the next of kin, the best course of action is to speak to a Gardena car accident lawyer at The Dominguez Firm to see what your legal options might be.
Just as with a car accident injury claim, you can collect both economic and non-economic damages in a wrongful death claim. The damages will be somewhat different due to the difference in the expenses incurred by the family of the deceased.
Examples of economic damages for a wrongful death claim:
- Funeral and burial expenses
- All medical bills for injuries related to the auto accident
- Loss of the victim’s future earnings
- Lost benefits and gifts the victim’s next of kin expected to receive
- Any household services with a market value the victim provided
Examples of non-economic damages for a wrongful death claim:
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of sexual relations
- Loss of affection
- Loss of the guidance the victim would have provided
The next of kin cannot collect anything for pain and suffering in a wrongful death claim. Instead they are entitled to damages for loss of companionship, sexual relations, affection and guidance the victim would have provided, usually for any children. As with a car accident injury claim, California law places no limit on the compensation they could be awarded.
How the Gardena car accident attorneys at The Dominguez Firm can help you
None of us expects to get into an accident, even in a heavily trafficked area such as Gardena. But accidents do happen, and they can cause permanent changes in our lives. If you were injured or lost a loved one in a Gardena car accident, The Dominguez Firm can help.
We know finances are probably a concern after an accident. That’s why The Dominguez Firm works on a contingency basis. We get paid at the end of your case from a percentage of your final settlement or verdict. That percentage will be clearly stated in the client representation agreement you sign with us. Plus, it won’t change depending on the amount. You don’t have to worry about any upfront fees or hidden costs. And in the unlikely event we can’t obtain any compensation for you, you owe us nothing. You win, or you don’t pay!
The Dominguez Firm is a full service law firm, not a referral service. We have award-winning attorneys in house ready to fight for your rights. They are backed up by our team of internal investigators, available at a moment’s notice and a staff of over 130 legal professionals. And if the insurance companies and their lawyers won’t do the right thing, we are prepared to go to court for the maximum compensation you are entitled to under the law. Not every law firm can say this.
If you were injured or lost a loved one in a Gardena car accident, contact The Dominguez Firm for a FREE consultation at 800-818-1818 today!