Is California a Fault State?
California is considered a fault state. An at-fault state puts the blame and financial responsibility on individuals. The person responsible for the car accident is also responsible for the resulting losses, including medical bills and property damage.
A no fault state means that all parties involved in an accident will have coverage from their insurance with respect to injuries or damages no matter who was at fault for the accident. Here’s what to do if you are involved in a serious California car accident where fault is a question.
How Car Insurance Works in a Fault State
In a fault state, like California, all drivers are required to purchase car insurance for their vehicle. In fact, driving a car in California without insurance is against the law and can result in fines for the driver found to be operating a motor vehicle without proof of insurance.
When purchasing auto insurance, it is important to understand your coverage, something many drivers do not take interest in until being involved in a car accident. Car insurance plans in California are required to meet a minimum policy known as the 15/30/5 rule, which means that the insurer must pay up to:
- $15,000 for the death or injury of one individual
- $30,000 for the death or injury of more than one individual
- $5,000 is the minimum for coverage of property damage
Whenever a driver is involved in an accident, they are required to show their proof of insurance. If the police are called to the site of the accident, they will request the proof of insurance from all drivers involved. Additionally, during the exchange of information, each driver will provide certain documentation with the individuals involved, including their license, contact information, and proof of insurance.
Common Causes of Car Accidents in CA
With all the drivers, and tourists, in California, the roads from San Diego to Fresno are often packed. It is no surprise then that California often leads the country is car accidents.
When a car accident occurs and the police are called to the site, they will collect information from all parties involved and, in most cases, will assign fault, as they see it, to one or both drivers.
Generally speaking, the police are looking at whether someone was engaging in:
- Driving Under the Influence (DUI)
- Aggressive or Angry Driving
- Distracted Driving
Other reasons for driver negligence can include:
- Violating Traffic Laws
- Defective or Poorly Upheld Vehicle Parts
- Poor Road Conditions
The police officer’s finding is not necessarily determinative and an experienced attorney can help you recover the financial compensation you are owed.
As a fault state, serious California car accidents can get complicated quickly, especially when more than two drivers are involved in the collision. If you were involved in a car accident and are looking to recover property damages, file a personal injury claim, or learn more about the legal remedies available to you, reach out to our experienced legal team at Ghozland Law Firm today.