California Car Accident Laws

7 Key Car Accident Law Points You Should Know in California

Motor vehicle accidents in California are governed by various laws and regulations. Here are some key points to understand about motor vehicle accidents in California:

1. Fault-Based System: California follows a fault-based system when it comes to determining liability for motor vehicle accidents. This means that the at-fault party or their insurance company is generally responsible for covering the damages and injuries resulting from the accident.

2. Insurance Requirements: California law requires all drivers to carry minimum liability insurance coverage. The minimum requirements for liability insurance in California are $15,000 for injury/death to one person, $30,000 for injury/death to multiple people, and $5,000 for property damage.

3. Comparative Negligence: California applies the doctrine of comparative negligence, which means that liability for an accident can be allocated among multiple parties based on their degree of fault. If you are partially at fault for an accident, your compensation may be reduced in proportion to your level of fault.

4. Statute of Limitations: In California, the statute of limitations for filing a personal injury lawsuit related to a motor vehicle accident is generally two years from the date of the accident. It’s important to note that there may be exceptions to this timeframe, so consulting with an attorney is advisable to understand the specific deadlines in your case.

5. Reporting Requirements: California law requires drivers involved in a motor vehicle accident that results in injury, death, or property damage exceeding $1,000 to report the accident to the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) within 10 days.

6. Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage: It is highly recommended to have uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage in California. This coverage helps protect you if you are involved in an accident with a driver who has insufficient or no insurance coverage.

7. Comparative Fault: California follows a pure comparative fault system, which means that even if you are partially at fault for an accident, you can still recover damages. However, your compensation will be reduced by your percentage of fault.

If you are involved in a motor vehicle accident in California, it’s crucial to gather information about the accident, such as the parties involved, their insurance information, and any witness statements. It’s also advisable to consult with a personal injury attorney who can guide you through the legal process, assess liability, and help you seek fair compensation for your injuries and damages.

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