In California, most personal injury claims are a result of negligent conduct. California courts have defined negligence as conduct that fails to meet the standard established by law to protect others. The accident victim (the plaintiff) can sue a negligent person or entity (the defendant) for damages. To prove a negligence claim, a plaintiff must show that there was a duty to use due care, there was a breach of that duty, and the breach was the proximate cause of a resulting injury. The plaintiff has the burden to prove each of the elements in a negligence claim.
The first element is the existence of a duty. Generally, everyone must exercise reasonable care to avoid putting others at an unreasonable risk of harm. Whether there is a duty is a question of law that a court must decide. The plaintiff also has to show that the defendant breached the duty by failing to meet the standard of care under the circumstances. The plaintiff must also show that the defendant’s breach was the actual cause of the injury and the proximate cause of the injury. Finally, the plaintiff must show that he or she suffered an injury to person or property.
California now follows a system of pure comparative negligence. This means that after a jury assigns responsibility for an injury in a California car accident case, the plaintiff can still recover damages even if the plaintiff is partly at fault. And unlike in many jurisdictions, a plaintiff can still recover even if the plaintiff is found to be mostly at fault for the injury. The purpose of the pure comparative negligence system is to assign responsibility for injuries in proportion to each party’s negligence.
California Driver Arrested for DUI After Crash that Killed Six-Year-Old Girl
According to one news source, police claim that a driver had a blood alcohol level of almost three times the legal limit in a crash that killed a six-year-old girl in Fullerton, California. Police say that the driver tried to turn and lost control of the car, driving onto the sidewalk and hitting the girl. He then crashed into a parked car before coming to a stop. According to breath test reports, the driver had a blood alcohol content of 0.23 percent. The legal limit is 0.08 percent. Officials say that the driver was a 52-year-old who had been driving with a suspended license. He was arrested for felony drunk driving and felony vehicular manslaughter, as well as driving with a suspended license.
Seek Legal Guidance After a Crash
If you or a loved one has been injured in a California car crash, seek legal guidance as soon as possible. At Sharifi Firm, APC, our injury attorneys provide dedicated representation to Los Angeles residents who have been harmed due to the negligence of others. Our Los Angeles car accident attorneys are determined to pursue the full awards that our clients deserve, depending on their specific circumstances. We fight tirelessly for the compensation that you need so that your family and you can focus on the physical and emotional healing process. Contact our Los Angeles personal injury lawyers for a free, no-obligation consultation at 1-866-422-7222 or via our online form.
More Blog Posts:
How Do Courts Apportion Liability in California Personal Injury Cases Involving Multiple At-Fault Parties?, Southern California Injury Lawyer Blog, February 5, 2018
California Court Awards Additional Costs After Party Rejects Settlement and Loses at Trial, Southern California Injury Lawyer Blog, February 19, 2018