For more than 25 years, attorney Douglas Easton has earned Martindale-Hubbell’s highest AV Preeminent* peer review rating for ethical standards and legal ability.
How Much Does a Personal Injury Lawyer Cost in California?
It’s natural to have concerns about the potential cost of your legal representation in a personal injury claim. Many Americans assume legal representation to be prohibitively expensive, and this, unfortunately, discourages many personal injury victims from seeking legal counsel when they need it most. When you choose Easton & Easton to represent you, we understand that you are already facing economic strain due to your personal injury. Our goal is to make the legal representation you need as accessible and affordable as possible. We’ll provide you with transparent billing information so you can fully understand your potential legal fees and make an informed decision about your legal options after a personal injury.
Common Types of Personal Injury Claims Filed in Santa Ana, CA
“Personal injury” is an inclusive term that can apply to a wide range of situations. Essentially, any incident involving one party causing harm to another party due to negligence or intentional misconduct can qualify as a personal injury. Easton & Easton provides comprehensive personal injury representation for a wide range of cases, including:
- Car accident claims. One of the most commonly cited causes of personal injury claims throughout the United States is car accidents. Unfortunately, these incidents occur every day throughout California, and while some only result in minor cosmetic damage to vehicles, others can result in devastating or even fatal injuries. Therefore, after a car accident in Santa Ana, it is imperative to consult an experienced personal injury lawyer to have the best chance of recovering your damages as fully as possible.
- Motorcycle accident claims. Motorcycles can be enjoyable to ride, but they are some of the most inherently dangerous vehicles on the road. Motorcycles offer virtually zero physical protection to riders and passengers, and accidents involving motorcycles and larger vehicles almost always result in catastrophic injuries to motorcyclists.
- Premises liability claims. Private property owners have specific legal duties to the lawful visitors and guests on their properties. When a property owner notices any safety issue that could foreseeably cause injuries to a lawful visitor, they must take immediate action to correct the issue as swiftly and effectively as possible, or at least warn lawful visitors about the hazard if they are likely to encounter it. It’s important to note that property owners do not owe a duty of care to trespassers or intruders on their properties.
- Dog bite injuries. Dogs are popular pets, and the majority of them are friendly and well-behaved. Unfortunately, any dog is capable of attacking a person without warning and causing severe injuries. California state law enforces strict liability for dog owners whose pets injure others, regardless of whether the dog’s owner knew the dog was dangerous or if the dog had attacked people in the past.
- Brain injury claims. The human brain is incredibly fascinating and complex, but it is also highly vulnerable to traumatic injuries. When a brain injury occurs, the victim could face a wide range of adverse effects, and some of these effects could persist for months, years, or even the rest of the victim’s life. If you suffered a brain injury because of the actions of another party, you need a Santa Ana personal injury attorney to help you hold them accountable.
- Spinal injury claims. The spinal cord is one of the most crucial components of the human body, carrying brain signals throughout the body and allowing conscious control of the body. When the spinal cord sustains an injury, this communication pathway becomes permanently disrupted. As a result, the victim may be unable to feel certain sensations or may become fully paralyzed in a substantial portion of their body.
- Fatal accidents. Unfortunately, not every personal injury victim survives their experience. When one party’s negligence or intentional misconduct results in a death, the surviving family members of the deceased can pursue a wrongful death claim that functionally replaces the personal injury claim the deceased could have filed had they survived. These claims are very similar to personal injury claims in some ways.
These are only a few examples of the most common personal injury claims handled by the team at Easton & Easton. Ultimately, suppose you or a loved one sustained any physical injury, developed an illness, or suffered an economic loss due to the actions of another party. In that case, you could have grounds for a personal injury claim against them.
Damages and Compensation for Personal Injury Accident in Santa Ana, CA
The personal injury statutes of California aim to help a plaintiff become as “whole” as possible after a personal injury caused by another party’s negligence. Thus, success with any personal injury claim requires identifying the defendant responsible for causing the injury and proving they were negligent in some way that directly resulted in the plaintiff’s claimed damages. There are four main steps to proving negligence in a personal injury claim:
- The plaintiff must prove the defendant owed them a duty of care in the situation in question. “Duty of care” refers to the responsibility to exercise reasonable care and caution in a given situation. For example, a property owner has a duty of care to warn a lawful guest to their property about any known safety hazards if the guest is likely to encounter them while visiting the property.
- The plaintiff must then prove the defendant breached their duty of care in some way. Essentially, the plaintiff and their attorney must prove that a reasonable person in the same situation would have acted differently, likely preventing the plaintiff’s injury from occurring.
- The plaintiff must have suffered some type of measurable loss or harm to file their claim. A Santa Ana personal injury attorney can be a valuable asset in establishing the full scope of their client’s damages.
- The plaintiff must show the court their damages would likely not have occurred but for the defendant’s negligence. This means the plaintiff must offer evidence that establishes causation between the plaintiff’s claimed damages and the defendant’s negligence.
Successfully proving these four elements of negligence is crucial for the plaintiff to recover compensation for their losses. California state law allows a plaintiff to claim compensation for all damages resulting from a defendant’s negligence, which may include:
- Medical expenses, You have the right to claim compensation for the cost of the medical treatment you require from a personal injury. This includes immediate medical expenses like hospital bills and long-term medical costs for necessary rehabilitation and therapies your condition requires.
- Lost income. A Santa Ana personal injury plaintiff can recover wages lost because of a defendant’s negligence. Additionally, it is possible to secure compensation for lost future earning capacity if the victim is entirely unable to work in the future due to their injuries.
- Property damage. Suppose a defendant’s actions damaged or destroyed the plaintiff’s personal property, such as a vehicle in a car accident. In that case, the plaintiff can hold the defendant responsible for repair and replacement costs.
- Pain and suffering. California state law allows a personal injury plaintiff to recover compensation for non-economic damages like physical pain, psychological suffering, and emotional trauma caused by a defendant’s negligence. The amount received hinges on the seriousness of the plaintiff’s injuries and whether they face long-term or permanent medical complications from their injuries.
Your total recovery could be much more than you initially expected when you have the right team of Santa Ana personal injury lawyers managing your case. Easton & Easton strives to maximize our client’s recovery to the fullest extent possible under California law in every case we represent.
Comparative Negligence in California Personal Injury Claims
One issue that can prove problematic to some personal injury plaintiffs in California is the state’s pure comparative negligence statute. This law allows plaintiffs to recover compensation for their damages even if they are partially responsible for causing those damages. However, the court must assign fault percentages to the defendant and the plaintiff, and the plaintiff loses a percentage of their case award equal to their fault percentage. Unlike many other states that enforce modified comparative negligence statutes and bar plaintiff recovery at 50% or more fault, California’s pure comparative negligence law has no threshold. This means that theoretically, the plaintiff could be 99% at fault and still recover 1% of their case award.
It is crucial to secure legal representation from an experienced Santa Ana personal injury attorney if you are concerned about absorbing comparative negligence in your personal injury claim. Your legal team will help you minimize your fault percentage as much as possible by effectively leveraging evidence and testimony.
Talk to One of Our Santa Ana Personal Injury Attorneys
Experiencing any personal injury can be a life-changing experience, and you will have a much easier time securing the recovery you deserve with experienced legal counsel on your side. The right attorney can help you gather the evidence and testimony you need to prove liability for your damages and guide you through exploring every available channel of compensation to maximize your recovery. When you choose Easton & Easton to represent you in your Santa Ana personal injury claim, we will confidently guide you through every phase of your case.
It’s natural to have many questions and feel frustration and uncertainty when you or a loved one is struggling with the aftermath of a personal injury. We can help you understand your legal options and assist you in holding the party responsible for your damages accountable for their negligence. If you are ready to discuss your legal options with an experienced Santa Ana personal injury lawyer, contact Easton & Easton today to schedule a consultation with our team.