California’s roads and highways can be both majestic and dangerous. Here in Southern California, in addition to having some of the worst traffic in the world, we’ve seen a dramatic increase in motor vehicle fatalities over the last year.
As is the case in virtually every state, California residents are required to possess a valid driver’s license in order to legally operate a motor vehicle. Despite this law, many people utilize a variety of motor vehicles – cars, trucks, scooters, etc. – every day without a proper license. Whether the license is expired, or the driver simply failed to ever obtain one in the first place, many unlicensed driver car accidents occur in the Golden State each year.
Below we have all the information you need – whether you’re the victim of an unlicensed driver car accident or you’ve been injured while operating a motor vehicle without a license – including how to file a claim for financial compensation to recover losses such as medical expenses, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
Driving without a license can lead to prosecution (typically as a non-criminal or misdemeanor charge). However, under California’s comparative fault law, when a car accident occurs, what’s most important is actually who was liable for the crash (and whether or not the at-fault driver has the required insurance minimums for the state of California).
Let’s first look at the minimum auto insurance liability coverage under California law:
Minimum Bodily Injury Liability Limits
Minimum Property Damage Liability Limits
All California drivers are required to carry the above minimum auto insurance – liability coverage is mandatory for all motor vehicle operators. However, as is the case with licenses, not all drivers follow the law.
Accordingly, if you’re injured in an accident with an uninsured driver, that driver could face additional legal penalties and be held personally liable for any property damage or physical injuries sustained in the crash.
With California being a pure comparative fault state, a portion of responsibility for a car accident is assigned to each driver. In some cases, one driver can be found to be 100% liable for a motor vehicle collision. However, in the majority of cases, both drivers (or multiple in the case of a multi-car crash) are assigned a percentage of liability.
As a result of California’s comparative fault law, anyone who sustains an injury in a car accident can pursue financial compensation through a civil lawsuit. This is where having a trusted, experienced, and proven car accident lawyer like Sam Dordulian can be so important.
Driving without a license in California is wrong. That said, an unlicensed driver who is injured as a result of another driver’s negligence still has rights under the law.
While the opposing party will almost certainly attempt to use the fact that you were driving without a license against you, as stated previously the most important element in a car accident claim is proving fault. Again, this is where having an experienced and dedicated car accident attorney can be so important.
While the at-fault party will try to use your unlicensed driving as a factor in the claim, a skilled attorney can successfully argue that, while unlicensed driving is wrong, the most important factor is liability. Therefore, the other driver’s distracted, drowsy, or reckless driving should be put into the proper context in terms of ultimate liability for the car accident and resulting injuries.
Again, this is where choosing the best personal injury lawyer to handle your claim is so important. With Dordulian Law Group (DLG), our car accident clients are offered an unparalleled level of experience, in addition to added advantages that provide peace of mind and the confidence they deserve knowing that their claims are in the best possible hands.
Founded by a former Deputy District Attorney for Los Angeles County, DLG is led by Sam Dordulian, a skilled car accident and personal injury lawyer with over 100 jury trial victories.
If the at-fault driver was operating the vehicle without a license, DLG’s Car Accident Division attorneys will fight to ensure you recover the maximum financial compensation you deserve for any injuries and property damage. Again, the most important element in a car accident claim is liability, so although whether the driver was licensed or unlicensed will play a factor, it will not necessarily be the most important factor.
Rather, if the driver was texting or speeding while driving, we’ll use our years of experience and past success to develop a precise legal strategy that seeks to recover every available ounce of financial compensation for a variety of losses (both economic and non-economic).
Examples of common damages that are recoverable in car accidents include:
Another reason for choosing the best and most experienced car accident attorney to handle your claim includes the potential for recovering non-economic damages in your claim. As these damages can be subjective and more difficult to quantify, they also require a certain level of skill in order to be properly proven under the law.
That’s where Sam Dordulian’s 100 jury trial victories, as well as DLG’s 98% success record and more than $100,000,000 successfully recovered in settlements and verdicts can prove to be such an advantage for injured car accident victims. With Dordulian’s courtroom experience, we prepare every car accident claim for trial – and if necessary, we’ll fight there to help you secure the maximum financial compensation you deserve. Our level of experience as well as our proven results simply can’t be found at most other settlement mill firms that might be quick to accept a lowball offer from an insurance company.
At DLG, our Car Accident Division features two skilled attorneys who previously worked as defense counsel for major auto insurance companies. Now, they fight for our clients, helping protect their rights and successfully counter any underhanded tactic or trick attempted by these major corporations and their high-powered legal teams.
Furthermore, DLG employs an in-house Chief Investigator to help uncover any critical evidence that can prove your claim and increase your financial damages award. A retired LAPD Central Traffic Division detective, DLG’s Moses Castillo knows the importance of maintaining and recovering evidence after a car accident, and he’s a big part of the DLG Advantage.
California regularly records thousands of deadly car accidents every year. Of the 3,316 fatal car accidents that occurred in the Golden State in 2019, 3,606 tragic deaths resulted. That equates to 9.1 motor vehicle deaths per 100,000 Californians. Though we had the highest number of fatal car accidents that year, Texas actually took the dubious distinction of accumulating the most fatalities with 3,615 (just nine greater than California, however).
In 2020, California experienced an increase in those numbers, with 3,723 motor vehicle deaths occurring. Fortunately, California’s 2020 statistics did not increase at the same rate as the nation as a whole. The National Safety Council (NSC) reported that as many as 42,060 people died tragically in car accidents that year – an 8% uptick.
The overall fatality rate was even higher – soaring an alarming 24%. Throughout 2020, the NSC estimates that an additional 4.8 million roadway users – drivers, pedestrians, bicyclists, etc. – were seriously injured in crashes.
According to various reports, California’s 2021 fatality numbers look troubling.
As we mentioned earlier, proving negligence in a car accident claim can be a complex task requiring legal skill and experience. Negotiating with insurance companies, proving the proper percentage of fault under the law, and fighting to ensure all future medical and rehabilitation bills are covered can be difficult, especially if you’re taking on all those responsibilities while injured. The good news is that car accident victims who hire an experienced and dedicated team of attorneys like ours at DLG tend to recover higher financial damages awards.
A study by the Insurance Research Council (IRC) found that settlements were 40% higher when the injured party had hired a private attorney to handle their claim. Additionally, IRC research confirms that the average insurance payout is 3.5 times higher for clients with private attorney representation. And 85% of all money paid by insurance companies for bodily injuries (like those often sustained in car accidents) goes to clients who have secured qualified private legal representation.
Hiring an experienced Los Angeles car accident attorney like DLG’s Sam Dordulian to handle your claim means you’re statistically more likely to receive a 40% greater settlement and 3.5 times higher insurance payout. When you combine those statistics with DLG’s experience and proven results…
… it’s easy to see why injured California car accident victims choose our team to handle the important responsibility of seeing their claim through to a successful conclusion.
Contact the experts at DLG today for a free car accident consultation. We’ll listen to the facts of your case, launch a thorough investigation, and put together a precise legal strategy based on our years of experience and past success. With our No Win/No Fee Guarantee, you never have to worry about upfront costs or out-of-pocket expense. At DLG, you don’t pay a penny until we recover maximum financial compensation for your car accident injury.
Contact a member of our dedicated team today online or by phone at 818-322-4056. We’re ready to fight as your dedicated legal advocate, ensuring justice is served and you recover the financial compensation you deserve to make a complete recovery – physically, emotionally, and financially.
“Can’t thank Dordulian Law Group enough. I was involved in a personal injury case that lasted a little over 1.5 years and despite it being lengthy their level of professionalism, promptness, and communication remained the same until the very end. Always seeking their clients best interest their attorneys are the best at what they do, I highly recommend them to you reading this review and everyone I know.”
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