Low angle of black sedan on highway

Car Accident Lawyer

Emotional and financial losses make for hard times when the impact of a car accident ripples through your life.

Our expert car accident lawyers ease the burden and ensure you get fair compensation for physical, emotional, and property losses.

If you are seeking just compensation, turn to the personal injury experts known for winning cases: Bennett Johnson, LLP, Oakland-Napa, CA.

Free Consultations

Are you unsure you have a case? At this critical time, it is important you don’t make a decision before you have a clear understanding of potential outcomes. The car accident lawyers at Bennett Johnson, LLP, in Oakland and Napa offer no-pressure, free consultations to help you understand your legal options.  

We Take the Hard Cases Bennett Johnson, LLP

One of the Most Experienced & Successful
Law Firms in Northern California

The Bennett Johnson law firm focuses solely on personal injury cases. This laser focus has helped our clients win more than $500 million in verdicts and settlements.

While each accident case is unique, the steps needed to win justice don't change. It takes dogged determination and attention to detail. In our 40+ years of legal work, we have developed the deep resources and connections needed to build strong cases for our clients.

With offices in Oakland and Napa, we are positioned to help accident victims throughout the Bay Area and down the coast to Santa Maria.

Richard Bennett and William Johnson
Our legal team is led by recognized personal injury experts Richard Bennett and William Johnson.

 
Tenacious and tough, we take the hard cases that other firms will not touch:

The Gas Cap Worth $29 Million A Personal Injury Case That Had the Deck Stacked against It

 

An uninsured vehicle sideswiped our client’s older car, causing it to roll. Escaping fuel then burned the car and the family.

Other law firms wouldn’t take the case. Even the California Highway Patrol (CHP) lined up against our client. They claimed that by using a rag instead of a gas cap, that their own negligence made them partly to blame for their burns. 

With our client swearing his car was equipped with a keyed gas cap, our dogged lawyers sent an investigator to the scene and there, under a railroad overpass, we found a charred, keyed fuel cap. Not only was this evidence we needed to win the case, but it also unlocked an unknown source for compensation. Our client won $29+ million in restitution. Read about the case in Verdicts & Settlements. 

Think You Can't Afford a Lawyer? Call to Learn Why You Can Afford Us

Our car accident lawyers take cases on a contingency basis. That means, until and unless we secure a jury award or settlement, you do not pay us a single penny to handle your personal injury lawsuit. We also offer free consultations to help you decide if you have a case. 

Whether you’ve been rear-ended, T-boned, or a victim of a hit-and-run, contact us for a free consultation and we’ll review your case. You owe us nothing unless we collect compensation for you. We have offices in both Oakland and Napa. Call today:

(510) 444-5020

Infographic explaining difference between retainer and contingency-based fees

We Represent Clients

On A Contingency Fee Basis

If you are the victim of an auto accident, you can afford an advocate. At Bennett Johnson, LLP, we offer a free consultation and take your case on a contingency fee basis, meaning you owe us nothing unless we collect compensation for you. 

"Excellent Legal Care"

"Excellent legal care. Achieved a settlement to my satisfaction. I would recommend Bill Johnson to anyone." Leslie

Why Choose Us? Bennett Johnson, LLP

Car accident cases are complicated and crucial information is often not apparent at the time of the accident. We offer the strong legal representation you need to uncover all the facts and maximize compensation for lost wages, medical bills, and emotional costs. Our law firm serves the entire Bay Area, including San Francisco, Oakland, and Napa, as well as communities down the coast to Santa Maria

 

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Respected and
Widely Recognized

The Bennett Johnson team includes attorneys rated AV Preeminent by the prestigious Martindale-Hubbell, as well as members of the invitation-only National Trial Lawyers Top 100 and Super Lawyers. Our personal injury lawyers are well-respected by plaintiff and defense attorneys as well as judges.

 

Lawyers reviewing documents

Exclusive Focus on Personal Injury Cases

For more than 40 years, our practice has focused solely on cases of personal injury, successfully handling thousands of cases. This has given Bennett Johnson the in-depth knowledge needed to deal with complicated cases. Our aggressive, dedicated approach has helped us win over $500 million for our clients.

 

Gavel

We Win Big Verdicts
and Settlements

Our practice is one of the most successful and well-established law firms in Northern California. Established in 1981, we have won some of Northern California's largest verdicts and settlements. We are known for taking on cases other firms reject for being too expensive or difficult to prosecute.

Expert Car Accident Lawyers Serving Clients From the Bay Area Down the Coast To Santa Maria

We Speak Multiple Languages Spanish, Italian, and More

The Bennett Johnson law offices in Oakland and Napa proudly serve a diverse community. To better represent clients, the team at our law firm speaks multiple languages, including Spanish, Italian, German, and Russian.

Dealing With Insurance Companies After an Accident

 

Should You Talk to a Lawyer or an Insurance Claims Adjuster First?

Car accident cases generally start with filing an insurance claim. However, if a serious accident has left you financially shaken or grieving the loss of a loved one, you may be tempted to file the claim and accept the first insurance offer. 

However, that may not be in your best interest: insurance companies often try to minimize payouts. You need a skilled negotiator in your corner to win fair compensation.

In serious accidents, we recommend talking to a lawyer even before describing the accident to a claims adjuster, who will likely record the conversation. Any misstep in what you say could be used to deny or delay your claim.

Our team, led by recognized personal injury experts Richard Bennett and William Johnson, can protect your interests. Just knowing that you have skilled representation encourages insurance companies to negotiate fair compensation.

How We Deal with an Insurance Company That Is Unreasonable

If the insurance company is unreasonable or refuses to adequately cover your losses, we can file a lawsuit and represent you in court.

Bennett Johnson has top car accident attorneys and the resources to win in court. We work with medical providers, forensic specialists, and other parties to build the strongest case possible.

Whatever type of accident you were involved in, hiring one of our expert car accident attorneys can help ensure that you are treated fairly by your insurance provider and that you receive the compensation you deserve. Bennett Johnson serves the entire Bay Area, including San Francisco, Oakland, and Napa. Our services also extend down the coast to Santa Maria.

How Much Compensation Can I Receive after a Car Accident?

Each auto accident case is unique and calculating the appropriate compensation is complicated. In addition to property losses, there are emotional costs, lost wages, and medical bills that could last well into the future.  

The Bennett Johnson law offices have the experience and expertise to determine fair compensation, including for:

  • Past and future medical bills
  • Past and future lost wages
  • Property damage
  • Pain and suffering
  • Financial support
  • Wrongful death damages
  • Temporary or permanent disability accommodations

"Wonderful & Attentive" Personal Injury Lawyers

"I hired William C. Johnson to represent me in a personal injury claim. My car had been rear-ended on the freeway at very high speeds which totaled the car and left me with neck and back injuries. My insurer, Nationwide, tried to impugn my description of the incident by scoffing at it. For several months in meetings, they insinuated that I had caused the accident on purpose...but Mr. Johnson held firm and tough, and eventually the case was awarded a good settlement. Nationwide is NOT on your side, but William C. Johnson is!" Satisfied Client

Don't Let Time Erase Evidence in Your Case Request a Free Consultation Today

Time is an important element in car accidents. If you have been in a serious car accident, timely action is necessary to collect evidence to support your case. Over time, memories fade and witnesses are harder to track down. 

We have the in-depth team needed to develop a solid case. Our car accident lawyers handle every case personally and with compassion. We can even come to you. We often visit clients in their homes or hospital rooms to provide timely counsel.  

(510) 444-5020

A Track Record of Success Previous Verdicts and Settlements 

Truck Accident

Verdict example

Defective Machinery

Verdict example

"Fights the Good Fight"

"William, is always truthful doesn't miss any words and 'fights the good fight.' His 'Victory' is always for his clients." Gary

How A Car Accident Attorney Can Help

The personal injury lawyers at Bennett Johnson can ensure that nothing is overlooked while preserving evidence for your case. Personal injury cases are complex and sensitive, which is why our attorneys handle each case personally.

Our highly rated team works with in-house investigators, medical experts, and accident reconstructionists to build the strongest case possible. In addition to navigating the legal system, our personal injury lawyers will expertly: 

Evaluate the Extent of Your Injuries

When our firm takes on a personal injury case, we work with medical experts to evaluate your injuries and explain your damages to an adjuster and, if necessary, a jury. We also consult with life care planners to accurately calculate how your injuries will affect you for the rest of your life so that we can secure compensation for years to come, if necessary. 

Determine Liability

In addition to other drivers, accidents may also be caused by auto defects or dangerous road conditions that are a result of negligence by a governmental agency. Our firm works with in-house investigators, reconstruction experts, and local authorities to establish causation and determine liability. 

Negotiate with Insurance Companies

Insurance adjusters have years of experience minimizing car accident claims to save their company money. We know their tactics and will work doggedly to obtain fair compensation for your claim. If necessary, our law office will go to court on your behalf to ensure your medical bills and property losses are fairly compensated.

We Can Recommend the Best Course of Action

 legal options: filing an insurance claim vs. filing a lawsuit

Most collision cases start with an insurance claim. If the other party's insurance provider is acting in bad faith and not compensating you for the full extent of your damages, our attorneys may file a lawsuit against them. 

Proven Results 

"Through our attentive, aggressive, and dedicated approach to every single case, we have helped our clients recover over $500 million in compensation." Bennett Johnson, LLP

Understanding California Liability Laws   Comparative Negligence

California’s comparative negligence law recognizes that more than one person can contribute to an accident. "Blame," in the form of a percentage, is then assigned to each party based on how much each party's own actions contributed to the accident.

That percentage then carries over to determine how much compensation is allotted to you and the other parties involved in the auto accident.

If it is determined that you are 20 percent to blame for an accident, instead of receiving 100% compensation, you would receive 80 percent of the total damages. The other driver would receive 20 percent. 
 

Comparative negligence infographic: "$10,000 in damages. You are at 20% fault. Other driver is at 80% fault. The court would award you $8,000."


Our car accident lawyers work tirelessly to see that fault is fairly distributed among the parties involved.

 

Let our attorneys handle the legal complexities of your case while you and your family concentrate on healing.

If You Were in an Accident ...  The Clock Is Already Ticking on Your Case

There are deadlines for filing lawsuits and if you've been in an auto accident, the clock is likely already ticking when it comes to California's statute of limitations.

Once the statute of limitations runs out, it is highly unlikely you will be able to file a lawsuit for your car accident claim. You could end up missing out on receiving full compensation, or even any compensation at all.

Unfortunately, the statute of limitations can be complex. The Bennett Johnson personal injury practice understands nuances in the law and will manage timelines so that you receive the compensation due you.

Car Accidents Involving Injuries

In general, the statute of limitations in California is that you have two years from the date of the car accident to file an injury claim. If an injury is not discovered until well after the accident, a one-year clock starts from the date the injury was discovered. However, if the injured victim is a minor, the clock may be paused until the minor turns 18. Unfortunately, there are important legal complexities in these situation that can trip you up. Our car accident lawyers work closely with you to ensure the clock does not run out on your injury claim

Auto Accidents Involving Only Personal Property

In a car accident where damage is limited to just property damage, you have three years from the date the property was damaged to file a claim. 

Accidents Involving a Death

Like personal injury cases, you have two years to file a claim when an accident leads to a death. However, the statute of limitations is calculated from the time of the person's death, not the date of the accident. 

Accidents Involving a Government Agency

Cases involving a city, county, or California state government agency are the most urgent types of claims. Whether you are seeking restitution for an injury, wrongful death, or property damage, you generally have a short six months to file a claim. You will also be required to adhere to a rigid set of procedural rules. 

Attorneys Richard Bennett and William Johnson

Bennett Johnson, LLP

Attorneys Richard Bennett and William Johnson have practiced law for more than four decades. Since opening Bennett Johnson, LLP, in 1981, our clients have been awarded more than $500 million in verdicts and settlements. They are members of several professional legal organizations, including:

  • American Board of Trial Advocates
  • Million Dollar Advocates Forum®
  • San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association

To schedule a free initial consultation, contact us online or call us at (510) 444-5020.

Get In Touch Today

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Google map image of our location in 1939 Harrison St. Suite 200 Oakland, CA

Oakland Office

1939 Harrison St.
Suite 200
Oakland, CA 94612

Closed Today

Fax: (510) 835-4260

Google map image of our location in 929 Randolph St  Napa, CA

Napa Office

929 Randolph St
Napa, CA 94559

Closed Today

Fax: (510) 835-4260

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