Any truck accident has the potential to be serious even at low speeds due to the size and weight of the vehicles. When a truck accident occurs, one of the first steps for those involved is to determine who was at fault. Keep reading to find out how that is done according to California law. Remember that you have an experienced truck accident attorney in The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker. You can call 800-333-0000 for a free case evaluation.
In California, Fault is Tied to Negligence
It can be complicated to determine fault in truck accidents. Generally speaking, it is related to negligence. If a driver acts negligently and causes an accident that results in an injury, then they could be liable for damages. Due to the complexity of these cases, a personal injury attorney is best suited to find the right way forward for your particular case.
Examples of Negligence
There are many types of negligence. Some are simple as not paying attention to the road. Others involve not following all applicable traffic laws. Common examples include speeding, drunk driving, running a red light, texting while driving, failing to yield to a vehicle with the right of way, and driving while distracted. This is far from a comprehensive list but these are all common examples.
The Legal Standard for Negligence in California
Now that you understand what the term means and have examples of it, let us look at what it means specific to California. Our laws require that an injury victim who is seeking compensation for damages be able to prove with a preponderance of the evidence that the plaintiff was negligent, that their negligence led to an accident, and that this accident led to property damage and/or injuries.
It must also be proven that the plaintiff had a duty of care to the defendant, meaning they had a legal responsibility not to cause them harm. For example, when a person gets behind the wheel of a car, they are taking on a duty of care to others on the road. On the other hand if someone trespasses on their property and is struck by their vehicle, the owner likely did not owe them a duty of care because they were on the property unlawfully.
California Allows for Partial Fault
It is often the case in truck accidents that there was not just one party at fault – there may be several parties. In that case, the courts would determine what percentage of fault each party had. Their compensation would then be reduced by their percentage of fault.
Take this example: Your damages after a truck accident came out to $100,000 and you were found to be 25% at fault. Your damages would be reduced by 25% to $75,000. To learn more about negligence and how you can prove it, contact The Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 800-333-0000 for a free legal consultation.