Desk with documents showing sources of recovery for a car accident caseIt is in your best legal interest that you hire a San Diego car accident lawyer who will do more than just file a claim with an insurance company on your behalf, especially because the available insurance policy may turn out to have insufficient limits to fully cover your damages in your bodily injury claim.

A resourceful auto accident attorney will investigate all sources of compensation and pursue all avenues of recovery for injured claimants, including any passengers you may have had with you (or if you were the injured passenger in someone else's motor vehicle).

You and the passengers in your vehicle may have claims against additional parties who bear responsibility for the car accident and you need to be aware of this possibility. For example:

All owners of a vehicle

All owners of a vehicle may be liable for the negligent conduct of the driver; this needs to be reviewed and looked at in great detail. These motor vehicle owners may range from the parents of drivers under the age of 18 to different (more than one) business entities providing their employees with vehicles as a job perk, or part of a job duty.


Employers may bear responsibility for auto accidents caused by their employees while on the job (within the course and scope of their employment relationship). In certain corporate contexts, parent companies of other businesses could be held responsible for the conduct of their wholly-owned subsidiaries. This, too, needs to be considered and reviewed in great detail.

Government units and agencies

Government units and agencies may share in the fault (legal liability) for the auto accident that caused you harm. Cities, counties, and even the state of California may have failed to design, remedy, direct, construct, and maintain safe roadways/streets or implement proper traffic control systems that were in proper working order on the day of the accident (including light signals, electronic walking signs, stop signs, and speed limit postings).

However, handling or navigating a car accident claim against a government entity is a sophisticated legal task with several unseen pitfalls, and requires considerable legal expertise and experience. In addition to this fact, very strict filing deadlines (statute of limitations) apply to car accident claims against government entities in California, making it imperative that you consult with a knowledgeable car accident lawyer without delay. For example, in San Diego, a bodily injury claim against the city of San Diego must be filed within six (6) months of the car accident or you lose any legal right to a remedy!


Automakers/manufacturers may also face separate liability for a negligent or defective design (or a component part) for injuries arising from a car accident. In San Diego, we recently saw this in the Mark Saylor case, in which a Toyota Lexus caused a sudden acceleration that led to a family's tragic death. Injuries may be caused, for example, by malfunctions to the working components of seat belts or defective tires.

The above are all possible sources of recovery for a California car accident bodily injury case.

Mark Blane
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San Diego Personal Injury Lawyer | California Car Accident Attorney
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