Your Orange County Car Accident Lawyers
You never think it can happen to you – until it does.
Whether major or minor, a car accident can be jarring at the least or have a life-changing impact.
It’s normal to have questions and feel concerned or even confused following a collision. You’re probably looking for answers, and this page is for you.
Each accident is unique, and healing requires, time, patience, and often medical care.
If you’ve recently been involved in a wreck or have a loved one who was just in a car accident in California, we understand what you are likely going through. From “how did this happen” to phone calls from insurance companies, you need an advocate to help during this difficult time. You may hire our team regardless of where you reside in the state to represent you and your family in incidents involving motorcycles, car crashes and major 18-wheeler collisions.
We have helped hundreds of car accident victims navigate the legal process, and we’ve compiled this page to answer many of your most pressing questions following a collision.
If you don’t find what you’re looking for here, you can speak with an experienced car accident attorney today.
Call the attorneys at Hodes Milman Liebeck at (949) 640-8222 for a free, no-obligation consultation.
We want to hear what happened to you, help you understand your rights and know what to do next.
What Kind of Accident Was I in?
For many in car accidents, it can be difficult to recollect the sequence of events. Though, understanding what kind of car accident you were involved in can help explain the types of injuries you sustained, whether someone was to blame, and how to move forward.
The following list describes some of the most common types of car accidents. If you feel you were injured in a collision that wasn’t your fault, you may want to think about filing a claim against the at-fault party.
Understanding what type of car accident you were in will help you describe it to an attorney or to your insurance company.
Important: Do not speak with the other party’s insurance company. Insurance companies often want to speak with you to ask questions and try to make it appear that you were at-fault for the collision.
A side-impact collision is also known as a “T-bone” collision and occurs when the side of one car is hit head-on by another. These crashes are often known for causing severe property damage and personal injuries to the driver or passengers closest to the oncoming vehicle. Head injuries are common and visiting a doctor is always recommended.
Inattention and distracted driving (such as texting while driving) are largely responsible in many rear-end collisions. The most common injury from this crash is whiplash, however other spinal injuries may occur, such as damaging or shifting vertebrae which can attribute to pain in other areas of the body, or make walking difficult.
In most rear-end collisions, the rear driver is usually the one considered “at-fault” for the wreck and damages.
When the speed and weight of the vehicle are too great for a turn, the vehicle loses traction with the road and rolls over, flipping onto its side or roof. Occupants can be injured by hitting the roof of the vehicle or even flying debris. Though any kind of vehicle can rollover, SUV’s are the most common rollover vehicles due to their size and weight.
The sheer impact and force of two vehicles in a head-on collision almost always causes severe damage to the cars as well as the drivers. These happen often on two lane highways when cars drift over dividing lines or try to pass slower vehicles on the left.
When several cars are involved in the wreck, it’s known as a pileup. Multi-vehicle pileups often happen on freeways when cars are traveling at higher speeds and can result in a mass of mangled metal that is difficult for survivors to escape. Determining fault is especially complicated in these types of crashes because of the number of vehicles involved. A skilled car accident attorney can help with this.
Sideswipe collisions happen when two vehicles are traveling side-by-side and “swipe” each other. While the collision is not often severe, the impact can startle an unsuspecting driver and result in an accident.
Injuries You Can’t See
Depending on the collision, your injuries could be mild or incapacitating, but some of the most widespread damages of car accidents are those you can’t physically see, such as a brain injury or concussion.
After a car accident, it is common to not feel pain for day or even two, however, physical trauma may eventually set in and all of it should be recorded by a licensed physician.
In fact, if you were involved in a wreck and are considering seeking compensation for treatment, your medical records are an important factor in determining your therapy or rehabilitation.
Once you have seen a qualified physician, it’s best to speak with a car accident attorney who can help you understand your rights, answer your questions, and provide a plan for your next steps – this is called a consultation.
The attorneys at Hodes Milman Liebeck can help you determine the next best step for you and your family towards recovery. For answers to your questions and legal advice from experienced professionals who truly care, call us today at (949) 640-8222. Your consultation is free and confidential.
Most Common Car Accident Injuries
The seriousness and prognosis of the injuries you sustain after a car accident can depend on several factors. Vehicle size, speed, location and whether or not any drivers were impaired can all make a dangerous situation worse. Still, some victims of car accidents suffer from trauma that isn’t obvious to the outside world.
This is only a short list of the most frequent injuries from all types of car accidents. Have you experienced any of the following?
One of the most serious injuries, head injuries from car accidents are often the severe and sometimes difficult to detect. These include concussions, traumatic brain injuries, or the potential of a coma. Brain injuries are extremely sensitive and can worsen when they’ve gone undiagnosed or untreated.
Back injuries are another serious injury that can lead to nerve damage, among other things. Nerve damage alone can impair a vast majority of the body, including all extremities and even leading to paralysis in worst case scenarios.
By far one of the most common injuries in car accidents is whiplash, especially in rear-end accidents. Whiplash occurs when the neck is thrust forward, the head following and quickly snapping back, hyperextending the neck vertebrae.
Whiplash is often downplayed as a “mild” injury, however, when not properly diagnosed can lead to severe side effects and lasting pain. As we have recommended throughout this page, if you have been in an accident, protect yourself and your potential case by seeing a doctor to receive treatment and to document your injury.
It might be easy to think you’re in the clear if you haven’t suffered an injury like the ones above. What many often fail to consider is the emotional trauma that’s associated with car accidents. Along with traumatic brain injuries, the psychological devastation a person experiences from surviving a car crash is somewhat hard to discern at first glance.
Consider the following signs of emotional trauma following a collision:
- Social Withdraw
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
Can You Relate to Any of the Above Symptoms?
Please, don’t delay and seek medical attention as early as you can. Pursuing your health and caring for yourself is truly most important, and if someone is to blame for what has happened to you, you might even qualify for compensation to help offset the cost of therapy, medication or hospital bills.
The attorneys at Hodes, Milman Liebeck understand the aftermath following the worst and most tragic car accidents. We’ve stood up for families who have lost loved ones, honest men and women who have been damaged beyond repair and even children who have suffered because of an irresponsible driver’s negligence.
We know you have a burden, and we want to help remove it. Give us a call today at (949) 640-8222, for an absolutely free, confidential consultation with no obligation to hire us for your case. We’re ready to hear your story.
What Do I Do After an Accident in Orange County?
These steps might seem simple and basic, but they are each equally important for your safety, the safety of others and for filing a claim if you decide you want to. An experienced car accident lawyer can help fill in any of the blanks for any questions that you don’t find answers for here.
These steps best apply within 48 hours of a car accident:
These steps best apply within 48 hours of a car accident:
Factors That Can Hurt Your Claim
After an accident, it can sometimes be hard to think clearly. Your first inclination may be to apologize or blame yourself. You should check to see if all drivers and passengers are safe and unharmed; but no matter how you feel at the moment, do not admit fault to any part of the accident, especially to the other party. This can later be held against you, and if it is documented, it will make proving your claim very difficult. Let an attorney help you sort out the details of the collision.
Exercising or Lifting Heavy Objects
The experience of being involved in a car accident has been compared to being blind-sided by an NFL defensive linebacker. The impact can make healing time take longer, and this should be considered before returning to a workout routine or demanding job.
Not Following a Doctor’s Orders
If a doctor ordered bed rest but your job requires you to be at work, you should speak with your lawyer.
Choosing the Wrong Lawyer
A law firm that is not experienced in accident law may not understand the details of a traffic accident case, and if you are injured, what needs to be done to ensure you as the client are compensated for future medical expenses.
An effective car accident lawyer is an advocate for your personal recovery. They look ahead at your situation for 3, 5, or even 10 years to consider what you may need to live a comfortable life. Be cautious with a lawyer who may claim to get you a settlement “fast.”
Did you know: According to the California Office of Traffic Safety, 19,873 people were injured or killed in car accidents in 2014. Of those, alcohol was involved in 1,998 occurrences, though speed was a greater factor and accounted for 4,874 collisions throughout a Southern California county.
How to Find a Car Accident Attorney
For many, the first time they ever enlist the help of an attorney is following a car accident. It can be hard to know where to start, and you should decide to work with someone you feel comfortable with – not simply the lawyer you heard about on TV.
At Hodes Milman Liebeck, we know what you’re going through. We’ve walked with clients through countless instances of devastating loss from car accidents, and it makes the cases we’ve won on their behalf that much more rewarding.
If you’re not sure where to start, start with a free, no-obligation consultation today by calling us at (949) 640-8222. We’ll take care of every aspect of your case, including making phone calls and collecting medical records. You’ll be free to focus on what matters the most – your and your family’s healing.
Experience You Can Trust
For more than 30 years, Hodes Milman Liebeck has provided families and individuals experienced, trusted and compassionate legal representation when they've been injured by another's carelessness or negligence. As a team of personal injury and product liability attorneys, Hodes Milman Liebeck provides focused expertise to build a strategic case against negligent, injurious and willful offenders.
Featured in the News
For their support of the Veterans Legal Institute, Managing Partners Jeff Milman, Dan Hodes and Kevin Liebeck as well as Associate Gabe Houston received special recognition from the State of California, Congress and the United States. The firm has fought relentlessly to protect those who have served the country in matters involving medical malpractice, medical negligence and federal... Read More