Fresno Car Accident Lawyer

Fresno Car Accident Attorney

 
  • 25 + Years of Experience

    When you hire us, you’re adding unmatched experience to your team, ensuring you get the best possible outcome.

  • 99% Win Rate

    Our firm maintains an impressive 99% win rate, even while accepting difficult cases other law firms have turned away.

  • No Upfront Fees

    We are not afraid of trial, and insurance companies know this. If it’s in your best interest, we are always trial ready.

In a recent year, California reported over 34,875 incidents of auto accidents. Of these accidents, more than 4,300 of them resulted in a fatality or a serious injury. Unfortunately, Fresno is no exception to these statistics: Let us not lose sight of the fact the number 4,300 represents a person—they are more than numbers—they are a friend, spouse, sibling, child, or neighbor somewhere in the Fresno community.

If you or a loved one suffered a serious injury, or you lost a loved one in a Fresno car accident, contact The May Firm today and let us help you get the compensation you deserve.

Work With an Experienced Fresno Car Accident Lawyer

Few things are more devastating than dealing with an accident where one had been acting with the proper amount of care the accident would have been prevented. Drunk drivers, distracted drivers, and reckless drivers jeopardize each one of us and our families.

At The May Firm, we have a history of getting victims of motor vehicle accidents the compensation they deserve. Some of our recent successes include:

  • $2,300,000 – Car accident settlement
  • $1,900,000 – Pedestrian killed by motor vehicle
  • $1,500,000 – Victim of TBI as a result of motor vehicle accident
  • $1,500,000 – Policy limits for an auto accident
  • $1,000,000 – Policy limits for auto accident requiring surgery

We know our past successes do not always mean we will have success with future cases, and past results can’t guarantee a future outcome. However, what our past successes do show is our commitment to every client we represent. We know when you have suffered a serious injury your physical health is only one of the issues you are dealing with. We help make sure you are not impacted financially because of another person’s negligence.

Fresno Car Accidents Often Result in Serious Physical Injuries

Careless drivers—unfortunately, they are everywhere on Fresno roadways. Victims of car accidents often suffer debilitating injuries some of which take weeks, or months to recover from.

While many factors determine the severity of injuries, victims often have to face some of the following injuries after a Fresno car accident:

  • Head and neck injuries – There is no way to physically prepare for the impact of an automobile crash. Because of the sudden jarring motion of your vehicle, your head and neck will nearly always be pushed either forward or sideways. These injuries can be devastating, particularly if the impact is at higher speeds. Victims often suffer concussions and other traumatic brain injury symptoms following car accidents.
  • Back and spine injuries – When two cars or a car and SUV collide, victims can be thrown around in their seats. Whether you are a passenger or a driver in a car, you can have soft tissue damage and damage to your spinal cord. The faster the vehicles involved in an accident are moving, the more likely you are to suffer these types of injuries.
  • Burn Injuries – After an accident there is the motor and fuel that can pose potential burning hazards depending on how bad the accident is passengers could be exposed to these heat sources and suffer catastrophic injuries.
  • Broken bones – Unfortunately in some instances, drivers and passengers can suffer broken bones in a car accident. Breaks in the arm, leg, and rib are not only painful, but they can also cause internal bleeding. Depending on the severity of the break, repairing the damage could require surgical intervention.
  • Soft tissue injuries – These injuries can be long-lasting and make no mistake about it, they can also be very painful. Strains, sprains, bruising, and lacerations can take weeks to recover from and can also result in additional physical problems.

These are only some injuries that can occur during a car accident. Because victims are often dealing with a sudden rush of adrenaline (common following an accident) many will not be aware of their injuries for a few days following a Fresno car accident. This is why it is imperative to seek medical attention immediately following a car accident. Hidden injuries can cause long-term problems.

Legal Liability Following a Fresno Car Accident

A cornerstone of civil litigation when someone is injured is the establishment of liability. While it may seem initially only a driver can be held liable, this is not always the case. Several factors may determine liability.

Here are some potential parties who may also be liable.

  • Employers – If you are injured in an accident where someone drove as part of their job responsibilities, the company may bear additional liability for negligent hiring, training, or supervision of the employee.
  • Drunk driving accidents – Unfortunately, Fresno car accidents may involve a drunk driver. While the driver may be mostly responsible for an accident, other parties including the restaurant or bar who served the alcohol may also be partially liable for your injuries.
  • Rear end accidents – When a driver is following too close and their brakes fail, not only are they at fault because they failed to control the vehicle, but in some cases, the brake manufacturer could be at fault too. Car part recalls which are not shared properly across media outlets can be responsible for accidents and in these cases, the manufacturer can be partially liable for any injuries a victim suffers.
  • Accidents caused by road conditions – In some instances, a municipality or government organization may be partially responsible for your injuries. These types of accident cases can be extremely complicated so make sure you discuss them with an experienced attorney.

As you can see, parties in addition to a driver may cause injuries. Speak with an experienced personal injury attorney who will gather all the available information and make sure the responsible parties are held accountable for your injuries.

Community Involvement

At The May Firm we strive to be involved and connected to our local community. For example, this past holiday season we organized bicycle and Christmas tree giveaways for individuals in our community. Our goal is to be a positive force for good in the local community and give back in some small measure to those we can serve. We receive satisfaction and joy from serving our clients and will continue to look for ways to be of assistance to the community as a whole. We receive positive energy from the community when we are involved.

We have listed a few of the local organizations we support and look forward to growing our outreach in the future. If you have any suggestions for ways we can be of service or support, please reach out to us.

  • Memorial Golf Classic
  • Rodeo
  • Hope
  • Logo
  • CASA

Where Compassion Meets Experience

We take pride in working hard for each of our valued clients and will help you recover from your injuries and losses, including lost wages, mental anguish, future earning potential, disability or continued health care needs and lost or damaged property.

Our Fresno injury lawyers stay well-informed and up-to-date on all applicable legal changes, so you can be confident that you will always receive relevant, current legal advice.

If you have suffered a personal injury or are a victim of an accident that is not your at fault for, contact our award winning Fresno attorneys 24/7 to schedule your free case consultation. You can also call our Fresno office at 1-(559)-385-2090. Let us be your personal injury and accident advocate.

“My number one goal is to help others. When you step foot into our firm, you’ll be treated like family, period.”
Robert May, Attorney | Founder

Range of Damages in Fresno Car Accident Claims

The first thing you may think about following a car accident is the damage to your vehicle. However, soon after an accident, a new financial reality will begin to sink in. You will likely be facing mounting medical bills, losing time from work, and you may also have to hire someone to help you perform normal household chores you would normally perform had you not suffered an injury.

Your Fresno personal injury lawyer can help you file a strong claim which may include the following damages:

  • Medical expenses resulting from your injuries Hospital costs in California are high. When you consider outpatient care, ongoing treatment for your injuries, prescription costs, and expenses of traveling back and forth for treatment the financial impact of your injuries can leave you financially devastated. The person responsible for your injuries should be held accountable for your treatment.
  • Wages while you cannot work – Whether you are out of work for a week, a month, or you are out of work permanently, your financial picture will change dramatically following your suffering a car accident injury. Your current lost income is fairly easy to determine. Your lawyer must work with your medical team to determine when, and if, you may return to work, and whether you will need to change your work activities to determine how much you could lose over your life because of your injuries.
  • Pain and suffering – In addition to the physical assault on your system and the pain in the aftermath of a Fresno car accident, there are other types of pain and suffering that you may include in your claim. Some of these include mental trauma, disfigurement, and loss of enjoyment of your life. Talk to your attorney about these types of damages.

Families who have lost a loved one in a Fresno car accident may also have additional avenues for their claim including the unexpected costs associated with a funeral and burial. You may feel like you are taking financial advantage of the loss of a loved one, and we all understand money cannot make up for that loss—but you should not have to bear the financial burden associated with another person’s negligent behavior.

Blaming Victims for Their Injuries

Make no mistake about it, people may blame an accident victim for their own injuries. Whether the liable driver claims you failed to signal, traveled too fast or slow, or failed to yield, there will be finger-pointing going on. Do not be surprised if the insurance company attempts to prove your injuries existed before the accident.

Drivers who cause accidents do not want to see their insurance rates increase, nor do they want to face the potential consequences of having points assessed to their driving record. Insurance companies want to pay as little in claims as possible since payouts reduce their profits. This is why you will see a variety of tactics used to minimize your claim or to attempt to shift some responsibility for the accident to the victim.

These are just a few of the reasons why you must use caution in the aftermath of an accident. When providing law enforcement with a statement, speaking to other people at the scene of the accident, or reporting the accident to an insurance company you have to make sure you do not accept any responsibility for the accident. Even a simple “I’m sorry” could indicate you were partially at fault.

Victims of a car accident should contact an attorney soon after seeking medical care, so they know what their legal rights are following a Fresno car wreck. Chances are high you will be contacted by an insurance adjuster within a few days and they may attempt to get information from you which could potentially damage your chances of getting the compensation you deserve.

Insurance companies are not there to be your friend. While they have a contract with the driver for whom they hold a policy, they are always going to be concerned about a claim being filed and will do everything legally possible to minimize that claim.

Insurers may ask you to accept a quick settlement—which would be a mistake. Additionally, they may ask you to give a recorded statement, or they may ask you to sign a medical release form. Do not take any of these steps without first discussing your case with an experienced Fresno car accident lawyer, because any one of these may not be in your best interest.

Weighing the Finances of Hiring a Fresno Car Accident Attorney

Victims of a car accident are rightfully concerned with their finances. Being out of work and having concerns about your future can be paralyzing. However, there is good news for those who decide to pursue a legal case in Fresno courts. You can speak with an experienced attorney at The May Firm at no cost. During this consultation, we will explain your rights and help you decide the best options for you and your family.

Should you decide to move forward, you will not have to worry about paying attorney fees immediately. Since we take car accident claim cases on a contingency fee basis, you will pay no attorney fees unless we secure a settlement or judgment on your behalf. If we do not succeed, you will not pay any attorney fees.

Get the Legal Help You Need From Our Fresno Drunk Driving Accident Attorneys Today

The longer you wait to file a car accident claim the more likely you are to run into stumbling blocks. California courts allow victims two years from the date of an accident to file a Fresno car accident claim. While this may seem like a long time, you must take several procedural steps to file a claim.

Drunk, reckless, or distracted drivers wreak havoc on our roadways. If you have lost someone you love on a Fresno roadway or you have suffered a serious injury, the time to take action is now. Contact The May Firm today for a free consultation. We can help you understand what legal options are available to you and help you navigate the complicated legal system for filing a civil suit against the parties responsible for your injuries. We are committed to making sure victims of Fresno car accidents have an advocate who will help protect their rights.

Fresno Car Accident FAQs

There were 3,208 traffic accidents across Fresno in a recent year according to a Fresno Police Department report. While it is heartening these numbers are lower than in prior years, more than 1,000 of the accidents resulted in an accident victim. Remember, these are more than numbers—each number is a person—often a person with a family.

Call Our Fresno Car Accident Attorneys Today

If you or a loved one were injured in a car accident in Fresno, you need legal representation to ensure you are treated fairly and you get the maximum compensation you may recover. At The May Firm, we are committed to making sure you get the representation you are entitled to, and we want you to focus on restoring your physical health without the burden of dealing with insurance companies.

Call us 24 hours a day, seven days a week at (559) 385-2090, or fill out our easy online contact form and see what a difference working with an experienced Fresno car accident attorney courtesy of The May Firm can make for your future.

Here are answers provided by Fresno car accident lawyers courtesy of The May Firm to some frequently asked questions we receive from clients.

Being involved in a car accident is terrifying. The first thing you need to do is move your car to a location of safety, so you are not in any physical danger from being hurt by another motorist.

Here are the basic steps you should take immediately following a car accident:

  • Check on occupants of all vehicles involved and help where needed
  • Notify local law enforcement by contacting the California Highway Patrol or Fresno police and advise them of any injuries
  • Take photographs of the scene including traffic signals or signs, damage to vehicles, and when appropriate injuries of victims involved
  • Exchange name, address, telephone number, and insurance information with all involved drivers
  • Request contact information for any witnesses to the accident
  • Seek medical attention by either having EMS transport you to the hospital, or seek attention from your own medical care provider

The things you avoid doing following a car accident could be as important as the things you do following a car accident.

Here are some things to avoid:

  • Giving any indication through your words that you may be partially or entirely at fault for the accident
  • Sharing information about the accident via social media
  • Speaking with an insurance adjuster before speaking with an experienced Fresno car accident attorney

Common sense will play a part—do not do anything which will jeopardize your legal case or your insurance claim following a Fresno car accident.

The first thing you should understand is the insurance adjuster will likely call you very soon after the accident is reported. Their goal is simple: To attempt to save the insurance company money. Insurance adjusters know if you have serious injuries you are likely to be concerned about how to pay medical bills, how you are going to pay your normal bills, and you are concerned about your health. They know if they can get you to agree on a quick settlement they can get you to accept a lower amount than you may recover.

In all cases you should avoid the following when talking to an insurance adjuster:

  • Downplaying your condition – Insurance adjusters are trained to ask questions to gather certain information. For example, they may ask for permission to record your call, and if they secure that permission they will likely start by expressing concern about your overall condition. They are hoping to get some simple statements such as “I feel fine” from you. They will use this statement against you. Your best bet is to tell the adjuster to contact your insurance company, or to have them speak with your car accident lawyer. This will help you avoid hurting your case.
  • Obtaining medical records – You may also be asked to sign a medical records release. This is a common challenge. Insurance companies have the right to ask for the records which pertain to the injury you sustained from the accident, but the releases are seldom that specific. Chances are the insurance company will attempt to get your prior records. The reason for this is they hope to use any preexisting injuries as proof your injuries were not caused by the car accident caused by their client. Never sign any forms presented by an insurance company without having them reviewed by an experienced car accident lawyer.
  • Quick settlement offers – The more serious your injuries, the more likely you are to get a quick settlement offer. The reasoning behind this is simple: If an insurer can get you to accept an offer, part of that offer will contain a waiver. The waiver may be in fine print on the back of the check and states that once you cash the check, the insurance company will have no further liability for any future claims pertaining to the accident. This is a common issue which accident victims often face—the insurer offers them a settlement, the plaintiff accepts the settlement, and future medical bills, lost wages, and other economic and non-economic losses remain a hurdle for the victim. Never accept a settlement without speaking with a Fresno car accident attorney.

No two car accidents are the same and no two victims suffer the same injuries. Numerous factors including the speed of the crash, the age of the victims, and the types of vehicles involved all play a role in the severity of the injuries sustained. However, there are some categories of damages which are the same in nearly every car accident.

These include:

  • Medical costs associated with your injuries – From the ambulance ride to the hospital immediately following an accident until the day your last follow-up visit occurs your medical costs can be part of your legal claim for a Fresno car accident. Medical costs are broad including rides to and from your visits, prescription drugs for infection or pain, and any specialized tests or procedures you may require to recover from your injury.
  • Wages current and future – When you are losing money because you cannot return to work due to the injuries you suffered in a Fresno car accident, you have the right to be made financially whole. Wages you lose during your recovery should be the responsibility of the party who caused your injury. Your car accident lawyer will also estimate the wages you will lose in the future either because you couldn’t return to work or wages you may lose due to follow-up care.
  • Additional economic damages – In addition to including the cost of repairing or replacing your vehicle which was damaged during a car accident, there may be other economic losses that your attorney can include as part of your overall claim. For example, if you need to make modifications to your home, require assistance in the home while you recover, or have other expenses related to your injuries, you may include them in your settlement request.
  • Non-economic losses – There may be non-economic losses such as pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment, or loss of consortium that you may include in a settlement demand. Victims should discuss their options with their attorney and determine what to include.

There is no easy method for determining the outcome of car accident settlements. Victims are encouraged to speak with their attorney to determine the best way to approach their claim, so they can get the maximum possible compensation for their injuries.

It largely depends on the insurance company. If your Fresno car accident attorney can reach an agreement on a settlement amount in line with your expectations, the process will proceed much faster. However, in some cases, we may have to take the matter to court for you to obtain the compensation you deserve following an accident.

Yes, because even when a driver is charged with a DUI, the insurance company may still attempt to minimize your claim. Keep in mind, while a driver may be facing a DUI charge, this has nothing to do with your Fresno car accident claim. In fact, victims often ask us if they must wait until the driver is found guilty of a DWI charge to proceed. The fact is you do not have to wait for criminal charges to resolve.

Lawsuits filed to compensate someone who is injured due to another person’s negligence are different from criminal DUI charges. A DUI is a criminal matter while a car accident compensation lawsuit is considered a civil matter. In the case of a DUI, the prosecutor has to prove beyond a reasonable doubt the driver was under the influence. In the case of a civil lawsuit, the case must be proven by a preponderance of the evidence, which is a lower standard. Additionally, while a conviction for DUI might help support a civil claim, a lack of a criminal conviction does not bar a plaintiff from pursuing damages in a Fresno civil court.

There is little reason not to retain an attorney. While you are free to pursue a claim on your own, there are numerous challenges associated with doing so. Insurance companies hope that many victims will not hire an attorney because they know most people do not understand what rights they might have under California statutes. They also know that they might get you to settle for a lower amount that you might accept if you have an attorney involved.

Keep in mind, insurance companies have attorneys who are working on their behalf. These attorneys are there to protect the insurer. To level the playing field, you need someone who will serve as your advocate during negotiations. Remember, an insurer will use numerous tactics to lower your potential settlement.

For example, if you suffer a back injury during a Fresno car accident, they will scour your medical records looking for prior history of back problems and claim your injury was the result of a pre-existing condition and not a result of the car accident. This is just one example of some methods that may reduce the amount of compensation you collect for your injuries.

Hiring an attorney quickly after a car accident helps protect your legal rights. In addition, if the insurance company refuses to negotiate a reasonable settlement, your attorney will be prepared to go to court to fight on your behalf.

This question comes up in almost every car accident case. Understandably, you care about finances during this difficult time. While you are focused on recovering from your injuries, you are getting bills in the mail and the last thing you want to do is face a mounting legal bill. Here’s the good news: In addition to offering a free consultation where an attorney can explain the legal process and help you understand what compensation you may recover, you will likely not have to pay any attorney fees upfront.

Fresno car accident lawyers at The May Firm, for example, will often take cases on a contingency basis. This means that unless your attorney can secure a settlement on your behalf, you will not pay attorney fees. Once your case has settled, your lawyer’s fees will come only out of the final settlement amount (or court judgment).

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