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Santa Clara County personal injury attorney

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that approximately 90 percent of vehicle occupants in recent years use a seat belt and that seat belts save almost 15,000 lives each year. However, failing to wear a seat belt is still a significant factor in many vehicle-related deaths, as 47 percent of people killed in vehicle accidents in 2017 were not wearing a seat belt at the time. Even if you survive a car accident in which you were not wearing a seat belt, you may experience serious injuries resulting in costly medical expenses and a lasting impact on your quality of life. Furthermore, your failure to wear a seat belt may actually result in less compensation in a personal injury case.

How Do California Seat Belt Laws Affect Negligence?

California law requires vehicle occupants to wear a seat belt under most circumstances in recognition that doing so is the most effective way to save lives in the event of an accident. If you are wearing a seat belt and driving responsibly and you are involved in an accident caused by another driver’s negligence, you may be able to reduce or avoid serious injuries entirely. If you are seriously injured under these circumstances, you can make a strong claim that the other driver was completely at fault for the accident and seek full compensation for any damages resulting from your injuries.

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San Jose personal injury attorneyGetting into a car accident is most of the most stressful things a person can experience. Finding out that the person who caused the accident did not have auto insurance can be even more devastating. Generally, when a person causes a car crash, their insurance is responsible for compensating the other individuals involved in the accident. Without this insurance, the process of recovering costs associated with the accident can be significantly more complicated.

Uninsured Motorist Coverage

Automobile insurance is required by California law, but some individuals choose to drive without insurance anyway. Because of this, car insurance companies offer uninsured motorist coverage and underinsured motorist coverage. Uninsured motorist coverage is insurance which guarantees that the policyholder will be covered if they are involved in an accident caused by an uninsured motorist or are in a hit-and-run accident. California state law requires an uninsured motorist provision to be included in all auto liability policies. However, you may voluntarily decline this coverage via written request.

Even individuals who have purchased uninsured motorist protection can find themselves without enough financial compensation to pay for damages caused by an uninsured driver. The coverage included through an uninsured motorist policy is often not enough to cover the extensive costs incurred by a serious auto accident.

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San Jose workplace accident attorneyWhen you have been injured at work, your thoughts may initially turn to filing for workers’ compensation benefits to cover the costs and damages associated with your injuries. Such a reaction is reasonable, as workers’ compensation is intended to offer coverage for a large majority of workplace accidents and injuries. There are, however, many situations in which workers’ compensation is either insufficient or inappropriate, and a separate lawsuit may be necessary.

Personal Injury and Third-Party Lawsuits

The best and most appropriate route for obtaining the compensation you deserve following a workplace injury depends on a number of factors. First, the cause of your injury is important. If you were injured in an accident that nobody else caused while in the normal scope of your job, a personal injury lawsuit will probably not be necessary.

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San Jose car accident attorney, after an accidentWith the dawn of the new year, California has reported 2,360 traffic accidents statewide since January 1, 2017—traffic accidents that may represent the five most common types such as rear-end collisions, damage to parked cars, weather-related accidents, side-impact collisions, and wildlife-related accidents. If you are involved in any type of vehicle accident, what is required of you under California Law? The State Bar of California has the answers. Listed below are the primary requirements of any one involved in an accident in California.

Q. Do I Have to Stop? 

A. Yes. California law requires you to stop when involved in any type of vehicle accident, whether it involves a pedestrian, is a crash involving another vehicle, or only results in damage to a parked car. Exiting the scene of any accident can increase the risk of hit-and-run charges, even if the accident was not your fault.

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San Jose car accident attorneyThe moment you find yourself in a car accident, your mind races with a slew of concerns. You must assess whether or not you or any of your passengers are injured, check on the other drivers involved in the crash, exchange information, and speak with the police. Then, you will probably be forced to relive the whole scene again and again as you recall and give an account to law enforcement and insurance companies of what led to the collision.

Making sure you are covering all the necessary bases in the midst of the shock that comes with the immediate aftermath of a crash can be overwhelming. It is just as important, however, to take note of what you should not do following the crash

Do Not Run

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San Jose personal injury attorneyThe spring and summer months are upon us in beautiful California. The days get longer and of course warmer. With the change in weather comes the inevitable urge for motorcyclists to get out and ride. As always, motorists need to be cautious of each other and make a conscientious effort to watch for motorcycles. It may be easier for you to see a traditional four-wheeled vehicle and predict their driving habits because you may be more familiar with them. Yet, motorcycles are present and have traffic capabilities that other vehicles do not, such as lane splitting. While these actions are perfectly legal and have many benefits, there are driving habits that may make lane splitting hazardous for our motorcyclists.

What Is Lane Splitting?

Lane splitting is the name given to the act of a motorcyclist maneuvering their motorcycle between two lanes of traffic driving in the same direction. Its purpose is to overtake or pass slower moving or stopped traffic. It is also known as “lane sharing”, “white lining”, “filtering” or “stripe riding”. These names are indicative of the motorcycle actually driving on or near the painted white line that separates two lanes of traffic traveling in the same direction.

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motorcycle, lane-splitting, Santa Clara County motorcycle accident lawyerLane-splitting has long been a heated debate when it comes to the subject of motorcycle accidents. The topic has been so controversial, in fact, that just last year The Wall Street Journal reported that the state of California has been the only state in the U.S. to legalize the action thus far, setting a new precedent for the rest of the country. Other states have been following in California’s footsteps to push legislation that will allow motorcyclists to drive between lanes on the open road—an agenda not likely to disappear any time soon. Oregon, Texas, and Tennessee are just a few states aiming to make lane-splitting legal, and many others are close behind.

A Dangerous or Efficient Trend?

The idea behind the practice of lane-splitting is that it allows motorcyclists to reach their destinations faster while contributing to a smoother, less congested commute on the highway. This is considered especially helpful during rush-hour commute times. The drawbacks, of course, have been the largest source of opposition for those against the legislation. Lane-splitting can be dangerous for both the motorcyclist and nearby automobile drivers, as visibility is further limited and the space in which the motorcyclist must navigate is narrow, restricted, and at times obstructed.

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fault, San Jose personal injury attorneyThe cause of injuries in a car accident is not always clear. Often people focus on who was at fault for the car accident, but the sometimes the real legal question is who is at fault for the injuries. It is possible for the insurance company to blame you for at least partially causing your own injuries.

Comparative Negligence

California law recognizes the principle of comparative negligence. This means that if your negligence was a partial cause of your injuries, your award for damages can be reduced by the percentage of your fault.

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