San Francisco Personal Injury Attorney

When you choose Chuck Geerhart, you're choosing to be represented by one of the finest trial lawyers in California. You're choosing personal attention from start to finish. And, you're choosing to never be passed off to a paralegal or junior lawyer.

Section Image

  • A friend recommended Chuck Geerhart. It was an excellent recommendation.

    As a British journalist, recently based in San Francisco and without medical insurance, things seemed pretty messy after I found myself in an airport shuttle, driven by a lunatic, who struck a parked cab. I had to go to hospital, who diagnosed a head injury – as, later, did a neurologist – but the shuttle company’s insurance company continually balked at paying the bills.

    A friend recommended Chuck Geerhart. It was an excellent recommendation. He was a great lawyer to have on my side, persistent in his battles with the insurance company, supportive of his client and a pleasure to work with, resolving the claim with the minimum of fuss.

    Susan
  • Chuck made sure I was fairly compensated for this life altering injury.

    I was working as an air traffic controller at SFO when a notoriously faulty elevator slammed to a stop between floors, throwing me against the wall and rupturing discs in my neck. I had to have major surgery on my neck. The City and the elevator maintenance company denied liability, until Chuck Geerhart obtained copies of all prior repair records which showed the elevator was continually resetting due to a power supply issue.

    During the discovery phase of the case, to protect my privacy rights, he filed a motion with court to block a subpoena issued by the defense that sought to obtain my complete confidential employment file and complete health history in violation of the law. We ultimately settled the case for $1,000,000 after mediation.

    I feel that Chuck did a great job making sure I was fairly compensated for this life-altering injury.

    Denise
  • Chuck Geerhart dealt with my case in the most humane way I could imagine.

    I was fortunate to have been referred to Chuck Geerhart when I was dealing with a very painful and tragic case of abuse by religious leadership, which was stretched over five years.
    Chuck Geerhart dealt with my case in the most humane way I could imagine. He was intelligent and strategic in his approach, always very communicative; an attentive ear, fearless and confident support for someone who was very confused and seeking answers where there were only walls. He always involved me in the process, sharing crucial information with me and allowing me the time and space to decide and move forward. He treated me like a partner, which helped me recover the power that was taken away from me.
    At the same time he provided the professional expertise which I needed in order to win the case. The process of winning this case was as empowering as the actual outcome. It was a healing experience in itself. I am very happy with the support and guidance I got from Chuck as well as with the monetary result from such a serious injury. It has truly helped me move on in a good way.

    Frank
$9 Million Settlement
Daughter and Parents of Decedent v. Insurance and Towing Companies
$5 Million Settlement
Client struck by a commercial vehicle and suffered serious leg injuries.
$5 Million Settlement
Client struck by a commercial vehicle and suffered serious leg injuries.
$9 Million Settlement
Daughter and Parents of Decedent v. Insurance and Towing Companies

Meet Chuck Geerhart

Founder

Chuck Geerhart was admitted to the California bar in 1989, and is a graduate of Cornell University and the UCLA Law School. He has tried 16 cases to jury verdict. He has also sat as a juror in three cases in San Francisco County. Chuck is a longtime member of the Board of Directors of the San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association (SFTLA), and will be SFTLA President in 2022. Chuck is a member of the American Board of Trial Advocates (ABOTA), an invitation-only organization of premier trial lawyers who have tried at least 10 jury cases to verdict.

Award Image Award Image Award Image
Attorney Headshot

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What should I do if I am injured because of someone else's fault?

Q. Should I give a statement to the other party's insurance carrier?

Q. What is a contingent fee agreement?

Q. Is it important that I seek prompt medical treatment?

Q. Is there a fee to speak with you about a case?

Q. Should I authorize the release of my medical records to an insurance company?

From the Blog

| Read Time: 4 minutes

Is California a No-Fault State for Car Accidents?

A common question about California auto insurance laws is, Is California a no-fault state? The short answer is no, California is not a no-fault state. This means that the person responsible (i.e, the “at-fault” party) for the car accident has to pay for the resulting injuries and property damage. For this reason, California is classified as a “fault state.”  If you have any questions or would like to speak with an experienced member of our team about a possible personal injury claim, contact us online or call (415) 577-4992 today. How Do No-Fault Laws Work? People injured in car accidents in no-fault states must make claims through their own car insurance policies for their damages up to a certain dollar amount. Their auto insurance offers something called personal injury protection (PIP) coverage, which reimburses people for medical expenses. Most no-fault states require PIP coverage. In most instances, people cannot pursue claims against the party responsible for the accident. In certain circumstances, someone might be allowed to sue the responsible party if their injuries exceed a certain dollar amount or the state considers their injuries catastrophic. No-fault states also handle property damages differently, depending on the state. Some states require people to file claims with their own insurance companies under their collision coverage if they have it. Other states allow people to file claims under the at-fault driver’s policy for property damage coverage. How Does Auto Insurance Work in a Fault State? In fault states, people have the right to sue each other for their injuries and property damage in car accidents. First, they must go through the other party’s liability insurance coverage. If the liability policy is not enough to cover their expenses, they can sue the person directly. In a fault state, the police determine who was responsible for the accident and write a report. The person who was not at-fault files a claim with the other party’s auto insurance company. The insurance company relies on the police report and any other evidence, such as witness statements or other documentation, to determine the policyholder’s percentage of fault. They will then proceed with negotiating a payout on the claim.  Comparative Negligence in California Comparative negligence means that all parties in a car accident can have some degree of fault for the collision, which affects any payout on insurance claims. The auto insurance companies look at the facts and evidence and determine what percentage of responsibility each party had for the collision. For example, if the insurance company decides that the injured person was 20% at fault, the company would reduce their payout by 20%. Similarly, if the case goes to trial, the jury decides each party’s percentage of fault, and any jury award for damages is reduced by that amount. Minimum Auto Insurance Requirements in California Drivers in California must have a minimum amount of liability insurance. Liability insurance compensates other people for their injuries or property damage in the event of an accident. The current minimums are as follows: $15,000 coverage for bodily injury to one person; $30,000 for bodily injury per accident; and $5,000 for property damage. These amounts are just what is legally required of California drivers. It is also smart to have some amount of uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) insurance for your vehicle. This type of coverage protects you and your passengers when you get into an accident with someone who doesn’t have enough liability coverage or the financial means to cover your costs. Uninsured motorist coverage protects drivers if the other person is at fault but they do not have liability insurance. Underinsured motorist coverage kicks in when the at-fault person has car insurance but not enough liability coverage to cover the other parties’ medical expenses. The UIM insurance covers the extra amount that the at-fault party’s liability policy does not cover. California law does not strictly require UM/UIM coverage, but it is wise to have it for your own protection. Your personal injury attorney can advise you on how much insurance you should have for each type of policy, as well as other types of auto insurance. What to Do If You Get into a Car Accident in California If you are involved in a car accident, the first thing you should do is ensure that you and your passengers are safe and tend to any injuries. Call 911 if necessary for medical attention. Otherwise, call the police. Collect the contact information for all the involved parties or witnesses. Also get the drivers’ license numbers, insurance policy numbers, and license plate numbers. If possible, take photos of the accident scene and any damage. Contact your insurance company to notify them of the accident, and then contact the at-fault party’s insurance company to make a claim. Get a copy of the police report and maintain records of any medical treatment or repair estimates. Then you should call a personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Contact the Law Office of Chuck Geerhart Chuck Geerhart is an experienced California trial attorney who will fight for your fair compensation if you or your loved one were injured in a car accident. At the Law Office of Chuck Geerhart, we represent victims of all types of accidents, including rideshare accidents, commercial vehicle collisions, and pedestrian accidents. We will help you determine the value of your damages and pursue either a settlement or litigation on your behalf. Also, we pride ourselves on giving our clients the utmost care and personal attention their cases deserve, and we only take on a limited number of cases at a time to do so. Contact us for your free consultation.

Keep Reading
| Read Time: 3 minutes

What Are California’s Bicycle Laws?

Generally, bicyclists must generally follow the same road rules and regulations as people who drive automobiles or other vehicles. Thus, it makes sense that California bicycle laws are found in the California Vehicle Code (CVC), just like the vehicle laws. California bike laws specify how and where bicyclists are to operate their bikes. They also layout protections for cyclists that are victims of bicycle accidents. Below is a summary of some of the key sections of the bike laws in California that you should know if you plan to ride a bike in California. If you have any questions or would like to speak with an experienced member of our team about a possible personal injury claim, contact us online or call (415) 577-4992 today. Where Can Bicyclists Ride? Bicyclists who are riding at the same speed as traffic may ride wherever they want. This also includes riding in the motorist lane of travel, which is called “taking the lane.” All bicyclists must ride on the ride side of the road going in the same direction as traffic, except in the following situations: Passing, Making a legal left turn, Riding on a too-narrow road, or If there is road construction on the right side. Below are more rules pertaining to where bicyclists must ride. California Bicycle Lanes If there is an established bicycle lane, bicycle laws in California say that anyone operating slower than the speed of traffic must use the lane, except in these situations: They are passing another vehicle, bicycle, or pedestrian within the lane; They are making a left turn; They are trying to avoid something like an object or hazard in the lane; or  If right turns are permissible. The cyclist must use reasonable care and the appropriate hand signals when leaving the lane.  California Bicycle Laws for Sidewalks  So long as local laws don’t conflict with the CVC, local authorities can enact ordinances to regulate cyclists riding on sidewalks and freeways. California Bike Laws for Equipment California cyclists must follow bike laws in California regarding how they equip their bicycles, such as: Brakes that allow a one-braked skid on dry, level pavement; Handlebars that do not elevate the rider’s hands above their shoulders; and A permanent, regular seat. Bikes must not be so tall that the bicyclist cannot support them upright while stopped with one foot on the ground or start them safely. Also, if the rider is operating their bike at night, they need a white headlamp, a rear red reflector or flashing light, and a white or yellow reflector on the pedals or cyclist’s shoes.  Other Miscellaneous California Bicycle Laws Below are some of the more important laws about how cyclists must operate: Alcohol and drugs—cyclists cannot operate under the influence, and they can get DUIs just as other drivers can; Earplugs or headsets—bicycle operators may not wear a headset or earplugs in both ears, except for hearing aids; California bicycle helmet laws—people under 18 must wear helmets that meet certain safety standards; Cyclists cannot block sidewalks or pedestrian paths with parked bicycles; Bicycle riders must yield the right-of-way to pedestrians at marked crosswalks or unmarked crosswalks at intersections; and Cyclists may not cross a toll bridge. This is not a complete list of all the laws that cyclists must be aware of, but they are the ones that people commonly need to know.  Laws That Protect Cyclists Cyclists face a much higher risk of injury than other drivers. The CVC contains laws that specifically protect cyclists. Safe Passing Law Motorists must give cyclists at least three feet while passing, whether in a bike lane or not. If they are not able to give three feet, the driver must slow down while passing.  Dooring Car doors can seriously injure cyclists and pedestrians. Motorists are required to be careful when opening their car doors. They must not open their doors in the way of moving traffic unless it is reasonably safe and will not interfere with traffic. They also must not leave their doors open longer than necessary. Blocking Bike Paths Drivers cannot block bike paths with their vehicles if it impedes cyclists’ reasonable movement unless it is necessary for safe operation or otherwise legal.  If You Were Injured in a Bike Accident, Contact the Law Office of Chuck Geerhart The Law Office of Chuck Geerhart represents bicycle accident injury victims in the San Francisco area and can help protect your rights and get just compensation for your injuries. Cyclists can sustain injuries for a number of reasons, including negligent motorists, bicycle manufacturing defects, or road hazards. Our attorneys will listen to your story and determine if you have a viable lawsuit and the value of your claim. We will do our best to negotiate a fair settlement or take your case to trial if necessary. We have helped countless clients, and you can read some of their testimonials for yourself on our website. It is important to hire an attorney as soon as possible after you are injured. Contact us today to schedule your consultation.

Keep Reading
Section Image