Personal Injury Accident? Actions to take?

Asked 10 months ago - Riverside, CA

Last night around 10:40p as I was getting off the freeway ramp and realized that the car in front of me decides to slow all the way to about 10mph. I decided to get into the other lane, drive up, and safely get back to my original lane I needed to get into. I asked the passenger what he was doing, and she told me that he was full on texting while driving. I stopped at the stop light ahead, and 5 minutes later I feel a ram into my car and we both jerk forward nearly hitting the dashboard. We both got out and talked to the guy, and he never apologized for his doing, and admitted that he was texting and driving and he had "ADHD" and wasn't paying attention. No extreme damages, except punctures and indents in my car. But the passenger and I both have extreme stiffness/neck pains.

Attorney answers (14)

  1. Malosack Berjis

    Contributor Level 20

    27

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . You need to contact a personal injury attorney ASAP. They will handle the filing of a claim against the other party's insurance company, as well as send you for proper medical treatment. We all give free consultations, so no reason not to call.

    Ms. Berjis is licensed to practice law in the State of California. The laws of your jurisdiction may differ and... more
  2. Mariam Mary Margaryan

    Contributor Level 15

    25

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Get medical treatment for your injuries. Report the collision to your insurance if you have not done so already. Consult with personal injury attorneys in your area for further advice about your and the passenger's potential claims.

    This information is not intended as legal advice or to create an attorney-client relationship between you and any... more
  3. Wendy Marie Schenk

    Contributor Level 16

    24

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . You should submit a claim for your property damage to the other driver's auto insurance carrier. Seek medical treatment if you haven't already. You might also wish to retain an attorney concerning your claim for injuries.

    [This answer is for informational and educational purposes only and is not to be considered as legal advice. Since all facts are not addressed in the question, this answer could change depending on other significant and important facts. This answer in no way constitutes an attorney-client relationship.]

  4. Paul J Molinaro

    Pro

    Contributor Level 17

    21

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Should one be rearended by a distracted negligent and rude driver, one should... First get medical attention and two... hire a personal injury attorney. The attorney will handle getting the claim filed, getting the police report, and all the legal stuff while the victim tries to get better.

    Fortunately, most of us personal injury types offer free consultations and take such cases on contingency no matter where the case is in California, so there is nothing to fear in calling us.

    - Paul

    Paul J. Molinaro, M.D., J.D.
    Attorney at Law, Physician

    Paul J. Molinaro, M.D., J.D. Attorney at Law, Physician Fransen & Molinaro, LLP 4160 Temescal Canyon Road,... more
  5. Michael R Varble, Esq.

    Pro

    Contributor Level 17

    20

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . get yourself checked out medically, call your insurance carrier and go see an attorney if your pain continues.

    The information provided herein is for informational purposes and should not be construed to establish an attorney... more
  6. Christopher John Gansen

    Pro

    Contributor Level 18

    18

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . I'd call a PI lawyer, who can get you into some PT or at least chiro and have you checked for more injury by way of x-rays. If you don't improve, you'd get MRIs after seeing an ortho MD. The sooner you get started the better. Both of your cases may not be monstrously huge, but you'll do better with a lawyer than without. That the other driver was texting may be of importance if you sue down the line.

  7. Christian K. Lassen II

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

    18

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . If you are injured, retain a personal injury lawyer. If not, let your insurance company resolve it.

  8. Maryam Parman

    Pro

    Contributor Level 15

    13

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . If you and your passenger have sustained injuries, please obtain medical treatment right away. Contact a personal injury attorney for a free consultation. Make sure to file claims with both insurance companies and submit an SR1 to the DMV if your property damage is over $750 or anyone has sustained injuries in this accident.

  9. Melody Parman

    Pro

    Contributor Level 7

    11

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . If needed, seek medical treatment for any injuries that you or your passenger sustained. Do not wait as a lapse in treatment may negatively affect your claim. Also, call your insurance and your passengers insurance to report the accident. I also recommend that you consult with a personal injury attorney who can recommend advice on a contingency basis. Avvo has a helpful attorney search to find an attorney, like ours, that will also provide you with a free consultation and will not charge you unless you win! Best of luck to you.

  10. Gerald R Stahl

    Pro

    Contributor Level 16

    12

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . All these answers are very good. If you are injured seek medical treatment and contact a personal injury lawyer. Your lawyer will do the rest of the work for you. Good Luck!

  11. John N. Demas

    Pro

    Contributor Level 9

    8

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . I’m sorry to hear about the collision and I hope both you and your passenger are able to recover from your injuries quickly. Based on the facts that you provided, you should both meet with a personal injury attorney as soon as possible.
    The type of personal injury claim you have is a standard motor vehicle collision cause of action. Now, there are two parts to a personal injury claim: (1) liability and (2) damages. In your case, it sounds like the liability portion will be easy to prove. Liability arises when the adverse driver has acted negligently and is therefore liable for his or her actions. To prove negligence, you need only show that the adverse driver was careless with the safety of other people on the road. Here, it sounds like the adverse driver was careless and not paying attention because he was texting. The fact that he may or may not have ADHD does not excuse his actions, and if his ADHD does tend to make him more careless or unsafe, then he should have been paying extra attention to driving.
    Additionally, if police responded to the scene of the incident, they will prepare a report reflecting the facts and circumstances of the collision. This kind of report is helpful to a personal injury attorney because it tends to establish which party was at fault. Based on the facts you provided, the police or authorities would have found the adverse driver at fault. But regardless of whether such a report is available, you still have a good case.
    The second portion of a personal injury claim is damages and the party at fault is responsible for paying your damages. Damages are the monetary and nonmonetary injuries you suffer as a result of the collision. There are two types of damages: (1) special damages and (2) general damages. Special damages are any damages that you can put a dollar sign on, like medical bills, loss of wages, and loss of property. For example, if you see your doctor, get an MRI, get chiropractic care, or have to undergo surgery as a result of this collision, the other party will have to pay for those bills. On the other hand, general damages are nonmonetary. For example, general damages can be pain and suffering, emotional problems, loss of consortium, or loss of enjoyment of life. The adverse driver will also have to compensate you for these injuries.
    At this point in your case, you should make sure that you get the treatment you need to restore the physical health you had prior to the accident. In addition, you should seek help from a personal injury attorney who can navigate the legal field for you. An attorney can evaluate all the facts of your case and advise you on how to proceed. Based on the kind of insurance the adverse driver has, the attorney will have to choose between various options to make sure you receive the compensation you need.
    I hope this information is helpful and I encourage you to seek assistance from a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible.

  12. Manuel Alzamora Juarez

    Contributor Level 20

    7

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . GET TREATED THEN GET A PI ATTORNEY TO REPRESENT YOU. BEST OF LUCK.

    This answer is provided by California Auto Accident Attorney Manuel A. Juarez, Esq., These answers are not... more
  13. Patrick James Hogan

    Contributor Level 5

    3

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . In the present case, a personal injury claim on the ground of negligence may be filed subject to the general rule that the burden of proof of negligence lies on the plaintiff. However, where an accident is of such a nature that, in light of past experience, it probably was the result of someone's negligence and defendant is probably the one responsible, the law may permit the trier of fact to draw an inference of defendant's negligence. This is the doctrine of “res ipsa loquitur.” It is an evidentiary rule. In California, the doctrine is defined as a presumption affecting the burden of producing evidence provided three preliminary fact conditions are met, defendant is presumed to have been negligent and the burden shifts to defendant to produce evidence either that he or she was not negligent or that any negligence on his or her part was not a proximate cause of the occurrence.

    The answer above should not be relied upon as legal advice. The information provided above is based on... more
  14. C. Donald Briggs III

    Pro

    Contributor Level 20

    4

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . The action to take is to consult with an experienced local personal injury lawyer.

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