What happens when an accident is your fault?
When it comes to car accidents, California is a “fault” state. This means that anyone involved in an accident must file a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company. The person who is responsible for the crash (at fault) will be responsible for paying damages.
Even if an accident is your fault, you may still be able to recover for your losses. California is a pure comparative negligence state. This means that even if you are 99% responsible for the accident and the other driver is just 1% at fault, you can still recover for your damages. Your total compensation will simply be reduced by the percentage that you are at fault.
For example, if you suffered $100,000 in damages in a car accident, and it is determined that you were 60% at fault for the crash, then you will receive $40,000 in compensation. That is because your $100,000 in damages will be reduced by 60%, or $60,000.