FORMER TEXAS ASSISTANT DISTRICT ATTORNEY. Among Other Accolades, Ward Maedgen Has Been Named In D Magazine’s – The Best Lawyers In Dallas multiple years.
Lawyer – Traffic collision, Nearby – Altoga
Why You Should Work With an Experienced Auto Accident Attorney
Our legal team will evaluate every part of the incident and develop the strongest possible case. That attention and commitment are your greatest hope for compensation, whether in a settlement or a jury award. A lawyer for vehicle accident victims can help determine if you are eligible to receive compensation under no-fault coverage. This includes financial recompense for any injuries or losses you sustained, missed wages, and other skyrocketing costs. Contact our Dallas law offices for a free initial consultation to learn more about all your options. Ward Maedgen Accident Attorneys are committed to helping you get the best outcome possible.
Claims adjusters and managers employ tactics and methods to reduce the payout, or get it denied altogether, when an insurance claim is filed. The legal team of the insurance company can also intervene if a case is brought to court. This is because these professional teams are designed to lower the annual insurance carrier’s payouts. They are, of course, skilled in what they do.
This means that, regardless of what outcome you get, as soon as your conversation with the insurance carrier for the other driver begins, you’ll be working with people whose purpose it is to reduce the claims however they can within the limits of the law. A very bad idea is to go up against these professionals without an attorney.
Sometimes clients learn this through hard work. We have seen people come to us after giving a recorded statement and trying to work directly with the insurance company. They typically make costly mistakes that are in their favor, which can reduce or even destroy their chances at a favorable claim. It’s often too late by this point to assist.
It is important that potential clients do away with insurance companies. This is because they’re seeking information that may be harmful to the client but beneficial to the insurance company and defendant. This is particularly true when you consider contributory negligence. Conversing with insurance providers can lead to misunderstandings. They aren’t trying to protect you. Instead, they are playing a game in which they try to get out from paying you the amount of your claim.
Common Case Types: Traffic collision – Texas
Although the Texas Department of Transportation has no data on rear-end traffic accidents, we know they are approximately 28% or 29% nationally. This type accident is probably the most common nationwide and Texas is no exception.
Texas is a state with modified comparative fault. This means that rear-end collisions in Texas do not only point to the driver responsible for them. It is important to consider the potential contributing factors. Did you have your brake lights on at all? Are you able to stop traffic flow completely? You used turn signals. Finally, in these instances, there must be a finding of fact: Was the defendant’s vehicle behind you? You can refute your testimony, but there must be evidence that the defendant did not follow you too closely.
Rear-end collisions could occur for several reasons. It can sometimes be caused by circumstances or circumstances that are not known. You might be able to see an object on the roadway that caused the defendant’s vehicle suddenly to stop. In some cases, a defendant may be following too closely and ran up on your bumper before slamming into you.
In court, both sides of an aisle will ask questions. What can you say about weather conditions, for example? Can they be blamed for this collision? Was speeding a factor? There might even be an argument about whether or not your tail lights were working. Last but not least, there’s the matter of contributory negligence. Some might argue that you contributed to the collision if you didn’t stop for traffic ahead.
Rear-ending is not an automatic win for a claimant, as you can see. An experienced auto accident attorney is invaluable in navigating these issues.
Although head-on collisions are statistically less common than rear end accidents, they are statistically more deadly. According to the Texas Department of Transportation, 538 people died in head-on collision accidents in 2020. These accidents constituted almost 14% of the traffic fatalities for the year in Texas.
Distracted Driving Accidents
The distractions caused by personal devices aren’t limited to texting. Although texting while driving has been banned in Texas since 2017, it is still legal to use handheld devices for other purposes, such as GPS and music. Distracted driving can still be a cause of an accident. However, it does not mean that a driver who causes an accident through distracted driving is excused just because they were texting. However, the law allows for a Class A Misdemeanor to be filed. This can include a one-year sentence and a maximum $4,000 fine.
Additionally to state laws and ordinances, cities in Dallas/Fort Worth have their own ordinances. Some are more restrictive than others.
Distracted driving caused 368 traffic accident deaths in 2020. Many more people were involved in or contributed towards non-fatal accidents.
Texas had 1,354 single car accident-related deaths in 2020. The NHTSA refers to these as “ROR” or Run-Off-Road crashes.
ROR crashes most often involve one party. This includes factors like alcohol use, poor weather and distracted driving. Because these types of accidents usually occur without fault, they are not often handled by personal injury law firms.
ROR accidents can happen when another driver is driving, and you have to take evasive maneuvers to avoid being in a collision. Texas had 51% fatal accidents in 2020. These areas commonly have two lane highways with opposing traffic and the potential for drivers to drift into an oncoming lane. Other times, drivers may try to pass unintentionally.
You will need to prove that another driver ran you off the road, such as someone who was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or someone who fell asleep while driving. An insurance company that reviews a claim involving a car that didn’t come into contact with another will scrutinize how and why if you claim the accident was caused by someone else. Witnesses who witnessed the accident may be able give evidence if the driver fled. It’s more common than ever that more drivers equip their cars with dash cameras.
If your Run-off-road accident was due to another driver’s negligence, you’ll want to work with a good personal injury attorney to build a case properly.
Side Impact Collision and Intersection Collision
As with head-on collisions, side and intersection crashes contribute significantly to fatalities and serious injuries in Texas. In 2020, there were 865 fatalities that could be attributed to intersection accidents or related to intersections accidents.
Side collisions often result in serious injury. This happens because the vehicle’s side is more vulnerable to being struck than it is the front. These injuries are reduced by modern car side impact airbags and curtains. However, the Texas fatality statistics above show that this type of accident can still be deadly.
A broad-side accident, like other types of Texas accidents, can’t automatically be considered a case due to Texas’ modified contributory negligence laws. There’s a chance that the negligence of another driver may not be sufficient for their car policy to pay. As mentioned previously, having experience and competence on your side in the form of a Texas accident attorney is critical.
Common Mistakes in a Traffic Collision
Parties to an accident may move vehicles without taking photographs or having officers present at the scene. This is a mistake because it makes photographic evidence less reliable and leaves the possibility for police to observe the vehicles after they have settled from the collision.
Another mistake people make is to contact the at-fault insurer and record a statement. Many people believe they are being cooperative, which is wrong. They are not being looked after by the insurance company. They want to help their insured. There is no obligation on the insured to speak with the insurance company.
Sometimes people make the error of not seeking immediate treatment, thinking they are able to handle it. They don’t have documentation from a professional to support their claims. As time passes, the likelihood of getting treatment is greater. If you wait too long or don’t seek treatment immediately, the insurance company may claim you weren’t injured. An insurance carrier may also use a gap between treatment as a defense.
Common mistakes made by people include not seeking immediate treatment, talking to their at-fault insurer, recording a statement, trying and resolving their claim themselves, accepting an earlier settlement, refusing to accept the outcome of the case, and refusing to take action.
Stopping Insurance Companies
Insurance companies could falsely accuse a wounded person of causing an accident in order to reduce payouts. You might find yourself victim-blaming after the police report is wrong. It is possible that you will find yourself in a “he told, she said” dispute with the negligent driver. You’ll need convincing evidence and the support of a professional to win your case.
We thoroughly examine the circumstances surrounding our clients’ claims, reading police reports, gathering testimonies, preserving electronic data from automobiles and surveillance videos, and consulting with crash reconstruction specialists.
Personal Injury Protection Insurance
Personal injury protection (PIP) is a type of coverage that is included on many personal auto policies. Although you can opt out of PIP in some cases such as if you have Medicare, for most drivers, the coverage is mandatory.
This personal auto insurance protection provides coverage for medical expenses incurred after an accident. It’s a type of “no-fault.” This means you can cover your medical expenses for yourself and your passengers, regardless of what happens in the case. PIP can also pay for lost wages.
It should be noted that the Texas minimum policy limit to cover PIP is $2,500. If you had a good insurance agent who went over the coverages with you, there’s a good chance that you may have opted for a higher amount. This will cover short-term medical expenses as the case progresses.
When an Accident Case Goes to Court
Most insurance claims settle before a lawsuit is filed.
However, not all accidents involving vehicles can be solved. Some issues may be beyond the ability of the parties. Perhaps the plaintiffs or defendants couldn’t agree upon how much compensation should go because they couldn’t resolve their differences.
In a trial, witnesses and expert witnesses may be called, responding law enforcement officers, and possibly others for testimony in front of a jury. The jury will decide the extent (or non-extent) of liability held by the defendant. A trial case is much more costly than one that is settled outside of court. However, a jury can award a plaintiff more than any settlement. Sometimes, your attorney may be able even to argue for punitive damage. This is something you would not get in a settlement.
After you file your lawsuit, the defense will request that you take a deposition. This is a formal conversation in which you will be sward in, both side’s attorneys will be present along with a court reporter. Both sides will ask questions to learn more about the accident, who caused it, your injuries and damages. Our attorney will also question any other drivers to find out their story and gain insight into what they might say at trial. He will also provide information about the defendant’s finances and insurance coverage.
Your attorney will be there to help you avoid answering questions that could hurt your case. Your attorney may also ask you questions that shed a favorable light on your case. The process doesn’t have to intimidate you. Texas regulations for depositions make it clear that you will not feel intimidated. And your accident lawyer will confirm this.
Expert Witnesses in Texas Motor Vehicle Trial Cases
An expert witness can present their opinion to a jury in a court matter. Expert witnesses can offer their expert opinion to assist the hearings in drawing a conclusion, based upon the available information.
The most common example of an expert witness in a motor vehicle accident case are medical experts. These medical experts and doctors can give an opinion on the likelihood of recovery, treatment needs, or prognosis for an injured party.
Although expert witnesses can help to strengthen a claimant’s case, this is not always the case. Expert witnesses aren’t always called. They typically participate only when requested by the court. An experienced motor vehicle company will be able to tap into its resources to find the right expert witness when this happens.
How long does it take to get a court case for an auto crash?
The trial itself is actually not the only consideration when answering how long the process takes. There are many things to be done before you even step foot into the courtroom. The lawsuit will be served on the defendant. Each party will then have to exchange evidence and depose witnesses. This entire process can take between one and twelve months depending on how complicated the case is, as well as how many parties involved.
This overview of Texas motor vehicle accident cases shows that it is not a good idea to do everything yourself. To learn more about your legal options, call us for a free consultation. Ward Maedgen Accident Attorneys has helped many people to recover from accidents over the years.
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