California holds the unfortunate distinction of having the most recorded car accident fatalities in 2019. With 3,606 deaths occurring via 3,316 car crashes, California led the nation in deadly motor vehicle collisions that year.
Here in Los Angeles County, car accident injuries are a common occurrence, even for the safest of drivers. The Los Angeles Police Department reported that 1,465 people were injured in car accidents last year (through December 25, 2021). That figure represents an astounding 21% increase over data confirmed from 2020, and a whopping 19% increase from 2019.
As so many car accidents leading to both injuries and fatalities occur in Southern California, drivers need to have a complete understanding of their rights under the law and should be aware of what steps to take after a crash. One of the most common car accident scenarios involves a failure to yield by another driver. Let’s look at what a failure to yield car accident entails in greater detail below. We’ll also provide information on what types of damages may be awarded in a failure to yield car accident injury civil lawsuit and review how to arrange for a free, confidential, and no obligation consultation with an experienced Dordulian Law Group car crash lawyer.
Laws are in place to help drivers understand who has the right-of-way when sharing the roadways. In California, the law makes it illegal for a driver to fail to yield to another motorist in certain situations.
California’s failure to yield laws are detailed under two sections of the state’s Vehicle Code (VEH) – § 21800 and § 21804. Let’s look at both of those in detail.
California Vehicle Code § 21800 states the following:
(b)(1) When two vehicles enter an intersection from different highways at the same time, the driver of the vehicle on the left shall yield the right-of-way to the vehicle on his or her immediate right, except that the driver of any vehicle on a terminating highway shall yield the right-of-way to any vehicle on the intersecting continuing highway.
(2) For the purposes of this section, “terminating highway” means a highway which intersects, but does not continue beyond the intersection, with another highway which does continue beyond the intersection.
(c) When two vehicles enter an intersection from different highways at the same time and the intersection is controlled from all directions by stop signs, the driver of the vehicle on the left shall yield the right-of-way to the vehicle on his or her immediate right.
(d) (1) The driver of any vehicle approaching an intersection which has official traffic control signals that are inoperative shall stop at the intersection, and may proceed with caution when it is safe to do so.
(2) When two vehicles enter an intersection from different highways at the same time, and the official traffic control signals for the intersection are inoperative, the driver of the vehicle on the left shall yield the right-of-way to the vehicle on his or her immediate right, except that the driver of any vehicle on a terminating highway shall yield the right-of-way to any vehicle on the intersecting continuing highway.
(e) This section does not apply to any of the following:
(1) Any intersection controlled by an official traffic control signal or yield right-of-way sign.
(2) Any intersection controlled by stop signs from less than all directions.
(3) When vehicles are approaching each other from opposite directions and the driver of one of the vehicles intends to make, or is making, a left turn.
California Vehicle Code § 21804 states the following:
(a) The driver of any vehicle about to enter or cross a highway from any public or private property, or from an alley, shall yield the right-of-way to all traffic, as defined in Section 620, approaching on the highway close enough to constitute an immediate hazard, and shall continue to yield the right-of-way to that traffic until he or she can proceed with reasonable safety.
(b) A driver having yielded as prescribed in subdivision (a) may proceed to enter or cross the highway, and the drivers of all other vehicles approaching on the highway shall yield the right-of-way to the vehicle entering or crossing the intersection.
While the above language presented in California Vehicle Code § 21800 and § 21804 may seem complex and at times confusing, the essence of the law requires drivers approaching an intersection to yield to other car drivers, motorcyclists, bicyclists, pedestrians, or additional motor vehicle operators (e.g. scooter riders) which have already entered said intersection. In other words, if another motorist of pedestrian has entered an intersection first, you, as the driver of a vehicle, must yield and allow that vehicle the right-of-way.
However, there are some additional questions that commonly arise when traveling California’s roads and highways, and each one can require a bit of context and further explanation.
– Question I: What happens if both vehicles – say a motorcycle and a car – arrive at an intersection at the exact same time?
– Answer I: In such a scenario, the driver on the left is legally required to yield to the driver on the right.
– Question II: What happens if the stoplight at an intersection isn’t working?
– Answer II: If the traffic light at an intersection is not working properly and both vehicles arrive at the same time, again the driver on the left is legally required to yield to the driver on the right.
– Question III: Does a left-turning driver have to yield to oncoming motorists traveling in the opposite direction?
– Answer III: Any vehicle intending to make a left turn or a U-turn must yield the right-of-way to all vehicles approaching from the opposite direction. Once the driver yields accordingly, he or she may then proceed with safely making a left turn or a U-turn, and all drivers approaching the intersection from that point must yield to him or her.
Failure to yield car accidents occur when one driver operates a vehicle as if he or she has the right of way (but, in fact, under the laws in place under the California Vehicle Code, does not). When a driver fails to yield the road appropriately and in accordance with California’s Vehicle Code, he or she often causes a crash or collision. When another driver fails to yield when you legally have the right-of-way and an accident happens, negligence has occurred under the law.
Accordingly, if you suffered an injury as a result of your failure to yield car accident, the at-fault party may be liable for significant damages. This means that you may be able to be awarded financial compensation through a civil lawsuit with the experienced car accident lawyers at Dordulian Law Group (DLG). Our team of dedicated personal injury lawyers will fight aggressively to help you recover all applicable damages for losses, such as pain and suffering, medical bills, hospital expenses, lost wages, lost earning capacity, and more.
Failure to yield car accidents can happen in any number of ways. Some frequently encountered failure to yield car accident scenarios include:
When another driver fails to yield the right-of-way to you and causes an accident leading to an injury in the process, a civil lawsuit can be necessary to help ensure you recover all applicable financial compensation needed to make a full recovery.
The types of economic and non-economic damages that may be recovered in a failure to yield car accident may vary depending on the unique circumstances of your incident (e.g. the severity of your injuries, the extent of liability by the at-fault driver, the driver’s history/record, etc.).
Here are some common examples:
Common Failure to Yield Car Accident Economic Damages
Common Failure to Yield Car Accident Non-Economic Damages
Punitive damages for failure to yield car accidents are in a separate class, and are only awarded in extreme cases where the at-fault driver displayed a severe disregard for human life. However, California failure to yield car accident victims should know that punitive damages are not capped in civil claims. Moreover, DLG’s Los Angeles, California, failure to yield car accident attorneys pursue punitive damages in all applicable cases.
A common question we often hear from failure to yield car accident injury victims is:
“How much is my case worth?”
Depending on the severity of your injuries, your failure to yield car accident civil lawsuit may be worth a significant sum of money. When negligence occurs in a failure to yield car accident, the at-fault party should be responsible for covering your resulting expenses, such as medical care costs, lost wages, and more. In such cases, negligence is often straightforward, and the at-fault party can be shown to have clearly endangered you as a motorist.
In general, the value of your California failure to yield car accident lawsuit will be unique to the circumstances of your incident. But when you secure representation with DLG’s expert car accident lawyers, you can be confident that we will fight aggressively to secure the maximum financial compensation available that includes all applicable damages. In addition, during your free consultation with a DLG failure to yield car accident lawyer, we’ll provide estimates for how long your case may take to settle and how much your total claim may be worth.
Hiring a DLG failure to yield car accident lawyer can help ensure that your personal injury claim is maximized, and that you recover all applicable damages. Our Car Accident Division is led by Sam Dordulian, a former Deputy District Attorney for Los Angeles County with more than 25 years of experience helping injured victims secure the maximum financial compensation they deserve.
Contact DLG today at 818-322-4056 for a free consultation. We are here to answer any questions you may have 24/7. And with more than $100,000,000 in settlements and verdicts recovered for our clients while maintaining a 98% success record, you can be confident that your failure to yield car accident injury lawsuit is in the best possible hands.
Ready to file a claim and pursue justice through a financial damages award? Our expert attorneys are available online or by phone now.
You have nothing to lose and everything to gain by ensuring that the insurance company or at-fault party does not take advantage of your rights after a failure to yield car accident injury. Take the first step towards securing justice via the maximum financial compensation you deserve by contacting a DLG Los Angeles car accident lawyer today. With our experienced personal injury lawyers, there is never any obligation or upfront fee, and you never pay a dime until we successfully recover a maximum settlement or verdict for your claim.
Reach out to DLG’s experienced team today for a free consultation or to ask any question regarding your California failure to yield car accident injury claim.
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