If you have been injured in any type of motor vehicle accident in Houston, you may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, property damage, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other associated costs.
Car wreck injuries can have devastating financial consequences. In addition to medical expenses, you may be unable to work for a period of time. For many people, even one week of lost income has can wreak havoc on the entire family.
A Houston car accident lawyer is essential if you have been involved in a car accident. At DeHoyos Injury Law, we have experience with all types of motor vehicle accidents, from minor fender benders to multi-car collisions involving commercial trucks. Insurance companies will do everything in their power to pay as little as possible. As such, it is imperative that you speak with an attorney prior to communicating with the insurance companies or any other involved parties.
Contact DeHoyos Injury Law today at 832-745-4878 for a free and confidential consultation about your case.
How a Houston Car Accident Lawyer Can Help
In the minutes, hours, and days following a car accident, there are multiple steps you can take to help your case and even more steps you can take to hurt it. Having an experienced attorney by your side can dramatically improve your chances of obtaining the compensation you deserve.
As with any personal injury claim, the specifics of your car accident claim will determine exactly how an attorney can help you win your case. However, generally speaking, a Houston car accident lawyer can:
- Handle, and negotiate with, the other driver’s insurance company
- Gather important evidence
- Review medical records for missing or incomplete information
- Position you for the most favorable outcome possible
- Contact witnesses and other important parties
- Arrange for expert witnesses
- Negotiate a fair settlement
- Take your case to trial if a reasonable settlement is not offered
In addition to all of the above, an experienced car accident lawyer can remove the burden of substantial amounts of paperwork, never-ending phone calls, and the general stress of dealing with a car accident claim. If you have been injured, the only thing you should be focused on is healing.
Damages You Can Receive in a Houston Car Accident Claim
As the leading cause of personal injury claims in the United States, motor vehicle accidents are responsible for millions of injuries annually. Each year, more than 2.5 million Americans seek emergency treatment because of car accident injuries. If negligence contributed to your injuries, you can likely recover damages. Common damages in a car accident claim include:
- Medical expenses: Including physical therapy, doctor visits, emergency treatment, hospitalization, surgery, prescription medications, and durable medical equipment
- Lost wages
- Pain and suffering: The physical and emotional distress you suffer following an accident
- Property damage to your vehicle, its contents, and any other property that may have been damaged in the accident
- Permanent disability
- Expenses for alternative transportation
What Causes Most Car Accidents in Texas?
Car accidents can occur for myriad reasons, in any location, and at any time of the day or night. That being said, at least one of the factors below is present in just about every car accident claim.
- Distracted driving: Texting, eating, applying make-up, and adjusting the stereo are all forms of distracted driving. In 2017, a total of 3,166 people were killed in car accidents involving distracted drivers.
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol: On average, 28 people die in drunk driving-related accidents every day.
- Speeding: In 2017, 9,717 people were killed in accidents involving excessive speed. Fatigued driving: According to the Governors Highway Safety Association report, approximately 5,000 people were killed in crashes related to fatigued driving in 2015.
Reckless driving, faulty vehicle parts, and poor roadway conditions are also common contributing factors in motor vehicle accidents. If you have been injured due to the negligence of another, the skilled legal team at DeHoyos Injury Law can help you determine how to proceed. Call us today at 832-745-4878 for a free and confidential consultation about your case.
Texas Car Accident Laws
In Texas, the insurance company must determine fault before it will provide coverage for an auto accident. This is because Texas is a “fault” state. In “no-fault” states, on the other hand, insurers provide automatic coverage to both parties, irrespective of fault. Because Texas operates under a fault system, there are strict requirements surrounding the minimum level of coverage that drivers must carry. The current minimums are:
- $30,000 per person for bodily injury
- $60,000 per accident for bodily injury
- $25,000 for property damage
If you are at fault for an auto accident, a basic policy (as shown above) should cover the other party’s medical and property damage expenses. The same is true if the roles are reversed. Of course, you can choose to carry more coverage for additional protection, but the amounts above are the minimums you are required to carry.
What if Both Parties Are at Fault?
In some cases, both parties are at fault in an auto accident. When this happens, you can still receive compensation based on Texas’ comparative fault law. This law states that a claimant who is at least 50 percent or less at fault in an accident is entitled to recover damages. To determine compensation, the courts will determine the percentage of fault each party is responsible for, and then reduce their compensation by that amount.
To illustrate how comparative fault works, consider the following scenario: Ginger is 20 percent at fault for failing to come to a complete stop at a stop sign and signal before turning, and George is 80 percent at fault for texting while driving and speeding. The total amount awarded in the case is 60,000. Because George was more than 50 percent at fault, he is not entitled to recover any damages. Ginger, however, is. The $60,000 award will be reduced by $12,000 (20 percent of the 60,000), netting her $48,000 in damages.
Texas Statute of Limitations on Car Accident Claims
In Texas, the statute of limitations on any type of personal injury case is two years. The statute of limitations, which refers to the period of time within which you must file a claim, can be shorter in certain situations, such as when the claim is against a government entity. Furthermore, waiting until you near the statute of limitations deadline to file a claim can result in a host of other problems. For starters, you run the risk of undermining the court’s perception of the severity of your case. You may also forget important information if you wait until a year or two after the accident to file a claim. Finally, waiting until the last minute dramatically limits your attorney’s ability to build a solid case against the at-fault party.
Contact DeHoyos Injury Law Today
If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident, the skilled legal team at DeHoyos Injury Law can help. We have an impressive track record of obtaining compensation for our clients, and our experienced attorneys will be by your side from start to finish. Although our goal is to settle out of court, we are prepared to take your case to trial if necessary. Our compassionate, knowledgeable lawyers have protected the rights of countless accident and injury victims in Houston, and we know how to position you for the best outcome possible. Do not attempt to go through this difficult process alone. Contact DeHoyos Injury Law today at 832-745-4878 for a free and confidential consultation about your case.