If you are involved in an accident that results in personal injuries, you can bring a Woodland Hills personal injury claim against the person responsible to get financial recovery for the costs associated with your injuries. However, what if more than one person is or may be responsible for causing your injuries? When this occurs it is possible that both parties can be found liable for covering the costs of your injuries and damages under the legal doctrine of joint and several liability.
Joint and Several Liability in California
Joint and several liability is a legal doctrine that holds multiple people responsible for the entire cost of injuries caused to a person in an accident, regardless of how big or small their part was in causing the accident.
For example, if a victim is injured in a car accident involving two other cars, both drivers of car #1 and car #2 could be held responsible for the injuries and thus be required to pay for the full cost of the damages that the victim suffered. This is true even if car #1 is only 30% at fault for the accident and car #2 is 70% at fault for the accident. Under the joint and several liability law, the victim only has to show that both drivers contributed to causing the accident and then can recover in full for their economic damages from either driver. It is then up to the drivers to determine who will pay what portion of the judgment. In this example, car #1 would argue that car #2 should have to pay more of the cost of the damages because car #2 was more at fault.
Joint and several liability applies to economic damages, which are damages that can be assigned an exact dollar value. Some types of economic damages include: hospital costs, costs of future medical expenses, physical therapy and rehab costs, lost wages, lost earning capacity, among others.
It is important to note that parties will not be jointly and severally liable for non-economic damages in a negligence case, but will only be responsible for the portion of non-economic damages for which that party is at fault. Non-economic damages are damages that don’t have an exact monetary value attached to them, but are things you suffered nonetheless. Non-economic damages can include: emotional distress, loss of enjoyment of life, permanent disfigurement or disability, pain and suffering, and more.
Talk to a Knowledgeable Woodland Hills Personal Injury Attorney
Understanding the ins and outs of bringing a Woodland Hills personal injury claim can be difficult. If more than one person or party is responsible for your injuries, it can be even more confusing to know how to handle the case. This is why having the help of a skilled Woodland Hills personal attorney by your side is so important.
At Walch law, we have years of experience handling personal injury claims that include multiple defendants and involve the concept of joint and several liability. We know how to make sure you are including all parties responsible for your injuries and help you get the full compensation you deserve, no matter the role each party played in causing your injuries. We can take care of handling your case for your financial recovery, so you can spend your time focusing on your physical recovery.
If you have been injured in an accident in Woodland Hills or anywhere in California, reach out to Walch Law today for a free case consultation by calling us at 866-465-8792.