Frequently Asked Questions

About Personal Injury Cases

Experienced Accident Attorney Fluent in Spanish and English Los Angeles and Palm Springs Offices

After an accident, there are several steps you should take to protect yourself while making sure you get the help you need.

  • Call the police. Call 911 to request police officers and emergency vehicles in case of injury or death. For a fender bender with no injuries, you may be able to skip this step.
  • Get information about the other parties in the crash. Write down the license plate, makes, models, and years of other vehicles and obtain the names of others involved in the accident, driver’s license number, and insurance card. Pull out your phone and take a picture of any documents as well as the condition of the cars to speed up and make the information exchange accurate.
  • Pull out your smartphone and take photos. Your phone will assist in getting information from the other driver(s), but you should take a picture of your injuries when they are fresh and shots of the vehicles before they are moved and of your injuries. A witness may be willing to take photos if you can’t.
  • Record perceptions of the accident on your phone or at least write detailed notes about the crash and your injuries before you forget. Try to get the names and contact information of any witnesses or passengers in the car, as this information will help your attorney and insurance company evaluate your case.
  • Do not admit fault for the accident. Even if you think that the accident was your fault, don’t share that thought with the police, the other party, or insurance adjusters or representatives. Once you get your own lawyer, our investigation may identify other responsible parties or circumstances. We will communicate with the other parties’ insurance.
  • Seek medical attention immediately. Even if you walk away from the accident without obvious injuries, you may have a head injury or soft tissue injury you are not aware of. If you later determine you were injured in the accident, the insurance company may minimize your injuries.
  • Look carefully at the scene of the accident. Are there potholes, other road conditions, potentially inadequate lighting, malfunctioning traffic lights, or blocked stop signs? This information might help your attorney build a case about accident frequency where yours occurred.
  • Contact an experienced personal injury lawyer to make sure you get a fair settlement. In a comparative negligence state like California, you might be offered a settlement that sounds good but is less than you deserve. As your attorney, the Ariel Law Group will negotiate with the other party’s insurance on your behalf after approximating how much of the fault of the accident injured party in a car, truck, motorcycle, or pedestrian accident contributed to it. We will fight for your rights– even if you have no insurance or driver’s license.
  • Don’t talk to the other insurance company on your own. Let us handle all communication with insurance companies and other parties.

California is a comparative negligence state, which means that any person involved in an accident might be responsible for a percentage of the blame. If a driver ran a stop sign and hit a drunk pedestrian or a car that stopped so its driver could check the directions, he might bear most but not all the blame for what happened. The drunk pedestrian or the driver of the other stopped car would be assigned some blame, so that percentage would reduce any settlement they win.

As your attorney in accident cases, part of our job is to prove that your negligence was as small as possible to ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve. The comparative negligence principle applies to most personal injury cases in California but not in Workers’ Compensation cases.

No. Insurance companies are anxious to settle for as little as possible. Before accepting an offer from an insurance company, make sure to talk to an attorney at the Ariel Law Group.

No. Your attorney should handle all communication.

In California, claims have a statute of limitation, so you have two years to file a claim in most cases, although the law makes some exceptions. While this gives you time to see if injuries and other losses are an ongoing concern, you should contact us as soon as possible after the accident. The facts of your case are much easier to establish right after the event than two years later.

You may be awarded economic and non-economic damages when your case is settled. Economic compensation might include past and future medical bills and past and future lost wages. You might also be awarded damages for non-economic factors such as stress, inconvenience, pain and suffering resulting from physical pain, emotional distress, mental anguish, loss of consortium, and even punitive damages.

As your attorney, we can estimate the type and proposed dollar figure for the damages your case might support.

You should feel at ease with your lawyer, but here is what to look for.

  • Experience. A personal injury lawyer comes up against experienced lawyers with the interests of their own clients at heart. You want a lawyer who is passionate about your case and who has experience that might be measured by years of practice, cases won, experience in the justice system, or relevant experience in the business world.
  • Fees. Many personal injury lawyers offer a free consultation and then work on contingency, which means you pay nothing until they win your case. Even though you don’t have to pay out of pocket at first, your lawyer will tell you about the fee structure and how fees will impact your final settlement figure.
  • Comfort level. Your accident has changed your life, so when you go to a lawyer, you want someone who will passionately fight your case. A lawyer is not your best friend or your therapist. Still, you should find someone you feel comfortable talking to, who responses with empathy and treats you with respect, and who you can communicate with, preferably in your own language.

The attorneys at the Ariel law Group have 30 years of experience and a track record of winning big settlements for their clients. We are upfront about the costs of pursuing your case and the fees we will earn. We can communicate with you in English and Spanish, so nothing about your case will get lost in translation.

At Ariel Law Group, we have a team of experienced and competent attorneys who specialize in motor accident liability law, catastrophic injuries and wrongful death, and premises liability, along with Workers’ Compensation. Call or text us at 888-888-2598 or 760-760-1010, send us an email, or fill out the form below to set up an appointment. Free consultations in English and Spanish.

We are waiting to help you! Contact us today so we can get started to help you restore your life.


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