How Does Car Insurance Work in California?

California is an at-fault state for car accident claims. Therefore, state law requires drivers to maintain a minimum amount of liability insurance coverage. Victims must prove the other driver caused the crash before the at-fault driver can be held liable for the victim’s damages

Our Los Angeles car accident lawyers have considerable experience handling accident claims. Together, they have over a century of legal experience. Since opening our firm, our attorneys have recovered over $400 million in compensation for our clients. 

If you were injured in a car crash in Los Angeles, contact or call M&Y Personal Injury Lawyers to schedule a free consultation with one of our personal injury attorneys at (877) 300-4535. Our lawyers can help you navigate the insurance claims process to ensure you receive all payments you are entitled to receive for a car accident claim. 

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How M&Y Personal Injury Lawyers Can Help You With a Car Accident Insurance Claim in LA

Our Los Angeles insurance lawyers at M&Y Personal Injury Lawyers understand California law inside and out. We also know how insurance companies work to undervalue and deny claims. Our legal team works to protect you from unfair and bad-faith insurance practices after a car accident. 

When you hire our legal team for your car insurance claim in Los Angeles, California, you can expect us to:

  • Verify insurance coverage for all parties involved in the car accident 
  • Filing insurance claims, communicating with the insurance company, and negotiating insurance settlements
  • Identify any personal injury claims that may need to be filed against individual parties who caused the car crash
  • Document your damages and calculate the correct value for your accident case
  • Work with expert witnesses to gather evidence that strengthens your case when necessary
  • File personal injury lawsuits and pursue the claims in court when the at-fault parties or their insurance providers failed to agree to fair settlement amounts
  • Provide legal advice, support, and guidance for you throughout the process

An insurance company fights for its best interest. They do this by fighting to protect the policyholder from liability for the car accident. You need an aggressive insurance claims lawyer to fight for you.

Contact our law office to schedule a free case evaluation with one of our experienced car accident attorneys in Los Angeles, CA.

What Are the Minimum Car Insurance Requirements in California?

  • California requires all drivers to show financial responsibility for the vehicles they own. Most individuals satisfy this requirement by purchasing car insurance. The minimum car insurance coverage required in California is:

    • Bodily injury or death coverage for one person per accident- $15,000
    • Bodily injury or death coverage for two or more people per accident – $30,000
    • Property damage coverage – $5,000

    Liability insurance coverage pays for damages other people sustain when you cause a car accident. As you can see, the minimum insurance requirements are very low. A minor injury could result in more than $15,000 in damages.

    You have the option of increasing your insurance coverage. Higher limits help protect you from personal liability if you are sued for a car accident.

    You can also purchase optional car insurance coverage, including:

    • Med Pay coverage pays medical bills you incur because of a car accident, regardless of who is at fault
    • Uninsured motorist coverage compensates you for damages caused by an uninsured driver or hit-and-run driver
    • Underinsured motorist coverage can help fill in the gap between an at-fault driver’s insurance coverage and the total of your damages
    • Collision insurance pays for damage to your vehicle if you cause an accident by colliding with another car or object 
    • Comprehensive insurance pays for damage to your vehicle from fire, flood, theft, hail, vandalism, and other covered catastrophes 

    Policyholders can purchase a variety of miscellaneous car insurance riders and endorsements, such as towing and road serviced coverage and gap insurance. Insurance agents can explain the terms and conditions of each type of car insurance and the premiums for coverage.

Filing an Insurance Claim for a Car Accident in California

When you file an insurance claim after a car accident, the insurance company assigns an adjuster to the case. The insurance adjuster investigates the accident to determine if the insured driver is liable for damages. If so, the adjuster calculates the value of damages and makes a settlement offer.

It is important to note that adjusters work for the insurance company. They protect the best interest of the company by avoiding and limiting liability whenever possible. Therefore, you should protect yourself by:

  • Never admitting fault for the cause of the car accident
  • Do not agree to a recorded statement or agree to a recorded telephone call
  • Never sign documents for the insurance company without having a lawyer review them
  • Consider hiring a Los Angeles insurance claims attorney as soon as possible to handle your case

When you have an attorney representing you, the insurance company knows that it cannot use its typical tactics to undervalue valid claims. Therefore, the company may be more willing to settle the claim for a fair amount instead of going to court against an experienced and successful personal injury lawyer. 

What if You Are Partially To Blame for a Car Accident?

Another thing to understand about how car insurance work in California has to deal with contributory fault. California contributory fault laws do not bar a victim from recovering compensation for damages if the victim is partially at fault for causing the crash.

However, the law permits courts to decrease the award for damages by the victim’s percentage of fault. Therefore, if you were 40% at fault for causing a crash, you only receive an amount equal to 60% of the damages award.

Insurance companies love to use contributory fault to reduce the value of car accident claims. Be cautious when talking to the company about the accident. Your statements might be intentionally misinterpreted to allege your actions contributed to the cause of the crash. 

Schedule a Free Consultation With Our Car Wreck Lawyers in Los Angeles

You are not required to accept the first settlement offer from an insurance company after a car accident. You also have the right to have any attorney represent you and review all documents before you sign them. Call now for your free consultation with a Los Angeles car accident lawyer to discuss how we can help you get the money you deserve after being injured in a collision.

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