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Car Accident Victims Can Sue

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San Francisco, CAIf you live in California and are injured by a person who tries to help you following a car accident, you can sue the person who injured you. So says the state Supreme Court, in a 4 to 3 ruling. This means that people who wind up hurting others while trying to save them could be held liable if they are not providing emergency medical help.

Car CrashAccording to the San Francisco Chronicle, The ruling follows a suit filed by a woman who says that her friend's efforts to pull her out of a car wreck actually resulted in paralyzing injuries. Injured victim was in a vehicle that spun out of control and hit a pole. The defendant pulled her friend out of the car before medical personnel arrived and said she did so when she noticed smoke coming from the car. She further said that she was careful in pulling her friend from the car. However, other witnesses said that there was no smoke coming from the car and the defendant put the victim next to the car after pulling her from it—this despite her alleged concern that the car would blow up.

The defendant claimed that she was protected from a lawsuit by a state law that prevents lawsuits against people who in good faith give emergency care at the scene of an accident. In making its ruling, 4 of the judges found that the law is only designed to cover medical care, including emergency medical services. The dissenting judges said that the ruling would discourage private citizens from helping one another in emergency situations.

What this means is that if you are involved in a car accident in California and someone tries to pull you from a vehicle where emergency medical services are not needed and you are injured by that person's actions, you may be able to file a lawsuit against that person for causing your injuries.

Of course, no matter where you live if you are involved in a car accident that is not your fault, you are likely eligible to file a lawsuit against the person who caused your accident. In fact, if your injuries are caused by an organization's negligence, rather than a person's negligence, you may also be able to sue for damages.

Recently, the family of a police officer who died a week after his traffic accident has been awarded $11.5 million in compensatory damages. The accident occurred after a woman, one of the defendants, failed to stop at a stop sign and then attempted to make a left turn. The officer swerved to avoid the accident, but his car tripped on the median curb and rolled over. It then hit a palm tree within the median. That tree crushed the roof of the police car and ejected the officer from his car. The officer later died from head injuries.

In their lawsuit against the Florida Department of Transportation, the family alleged that the department violated its own rules and standards by allowing a drainage curb and large palm trees to be present in a median on a road with a speed limit of 50 miles per hour. In fact, palm trees are barred from any roads with speed limits greater than 45 miles per hour because of the risk of such serious injury.

If you are injured in a car accident you will likely come up against high medical bills and other expenses. It is important that you speak to a lawyer who can help determine liability in an accident and make sure that you receive the compensation you deserve.


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