Frequently Asked Questions

Almost all personal injury claims are defended by insurance company lawyers and paid by insurance, so the person or corporation you sue will not necessarily have to pay any money out-of-pocket. A personal injury claim is a civil case, not a criminal case, and the defendant will generally not go to jail because of the claim.

You will not have to go to court unless your case cannot be settled and must be tried. In California, the vast majority of claims (around 95 percent) are settled before trial; however, because of the many factors involved, it is impossible to predict whether your particular case is one which will be settled or one which must be decided by a jury.

Yes. There are strict statutes of limitations, which prohibit the bringing of old claims. For many claims, these statutes of limitations may be two years, although there are cases with shorter and longer statute of limitations. You should consult a lawyer as soon as you are aware that you have been injured. Even if you were injured some time ago, you may still be able to bring a claim. Failing to file a personal injury lawsuit within the statute of limitations will cause the claim to expire and you will not receive any compensation for your injuries.

If you are injured through the fault of someone else, you are entitled under California law to full, fair and adequate compensation for your injuries.

You should not discuss your injury or the way in which it happened with anyone until you have consulted an attorney. These statements might be incorrect, incomplete, taken out of context, or be harmful to your case at a later date. The defendant’s insurance companies have a tendency to be Do not file any written reports or descriptions, sign any papers, or agree to any settlement, as this may affect your ability to recover full compensation for your injuries.

Seek medical attention. If you are injured, your health must be your initial and main concern. Do not take any unnecessary risk and obtain medical treatment as soon as possible. If you or someone in your family has been injured, you should thereafter seek legal advice as quickly as possible to see if you have a California claim for personal injury. The cause of an injury may not always be obvious, and there may be one or more parties responsible for the injury. The Law Office of Gene Halavanau can help determine the cause of an injury, and whether someone is legally responsible for the injury.

Law Office of Gene Halavanau represents its personal injury clients on a contingent-fee basis and provides a free initial consultation to evaluate your case. If we accept your case, you pay no legal fees unless we are successful in obtaining compensation for you.

If you are in need of legal advice or assistance, it is in your best interest to seek out someone with professional legal training.

The San Francisco based Law Office of Gene Halavanau understand the complexities of traffic accidents, product liability, and slip and falls, and can provide you with the legal expertise you need to win your case. We are also available to assist you in every step of the legal process, taking the time to answer your questions and to make sure you understand your legal rights. We will never make any critical decisions about your case without your prior permission.