Unfortunately, accidents happen every day, with several reported every hour in California. Regardless of how careful you are behind the wheel, there will always be other negligent or reckless drivers who will put you at risk. This is the exact reason why you are entitled to compensation for damages suffered in an accident caused by the negligence or recklessness of another motorist.
Unfortunately, some motor vehicle collisions are so severe that they turn into criminal situations. Below are some of these situations that turn an accident into a crime.
- Driving under the influence of controlled substances. Drivers under the influence of alcohol and drugs who cause accidents that result in serious bodily harm or death can face severe sentences, including prison time, license suspension and expensive fines.
- Hit and run. Motorists who flee the scene of an accident can face heavy fines with up to 15 years behind bars.
- Accidents caused by reckless driving. Drivers who cause accidents involving major property damage and serious injuries as a result of reckless driving can face criminal charges. Some examples of reckless driving include driving at excessive speeds above the posted speed limit, ignoring traffic signs, and dangerous weaving in and out of traffic.
- Vehicular homicide. When a driver’s negligence behind a wheel causes a fatal accident involving a death or a third party, the driver can face manslaughter charges. Depending on the circumstances of the accident, the charge can be either a misdemeanor (commonly associated with a minor negligent action) or a felony (involving a higher degree of negligence).
- Accidents caused while the suspect is fleeing the police. In most situations, fleeing from the police will result in criminal charges. These charges can be aggravated if the driver causes an accident, especially once resulting in serious bodily injury or death.
Compensation for Criminal Car Accidents
Your rights as an injured party in an accident caused by the negligence of another driver are not impacted by whether criminal charges are filed against the at fault party. Criminal charges are brought by the state prosecutor against the other driver. You will have a civil claim for damages against the driver and their insurance company.
Depending on the specific circumstances of your case, you may be entitled to compensation for:
- Past and future medical bills
- Loss of income
- Loss of future earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
- Out of pocket expenses related to the accident
Contact an Experienced Fresno Accident Attorney
If you or a loved has been injured in an accident caused by the negligence of another party, you should discuss your legal options with an attorney as you may be entitled to compensation.
The Stockton accident attorneys at the Srai Law Offices advocate for their clients’ full financial recovery through hard work and an aggressive approach. For more information or to schedule a complimentary consultation with one of our attorneys, please call (209) 323-5558.