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 – Krugerville
Why You Should Work With an Experienced Auto Accident Attorney
As part of their strongest possible claim, our legal team will investigate every component. That attention and commitment are your greatest hope for compensation, whether in a settlement or a jury award. A vehicle accident lawyer can assist you in determining whether your injuries are eligible for compensation through no-fault insurance. This could include financial recompense, lost wages, or other high-spending expenses. For a free consultation, call our Dallas-based law offices. Ward Maedgen Accident Attorneys is dedicated to making sure that your case goes as well as possible.
The claims adjusters or managers of insurance companies use tactics and methods in order to limit the payouts, or even deny it entirely. The legal team of the insurance company can also intervene if a case is brought to court. The bottom line is that these teams of professionals have their entire job to lower the insurance company’s annual payouts. Needless to mention, they excel at what they do.
This means that regardless of outcome, as soon as you engage with the insurance carrier of the other driver, you will be guaranteed to be working against people who’s purpose is to reduce claims while staying within the bounds of the law. Unarmed and without a lawyer is a terrible idea.
Sometimes clients find this out the hard way. We have seen people come to us after giving a recorded statement and trying to work directly with the insurance company. Normally they make huge mistakes that play to the advantage of the company and hurt or destroy their chances of a favorable claim. It’s often too late by this point to assist.
It is crucial that potential clients do not communicate 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 especially true when it comes to contributory negligence. Talking to insurance providers can cause misunderstandings. They don’t look out for you, but they play a game to try and get out of paying what your claim is worth.
Common Case Types: Traffic collision – Texas
Although Texas Department of Transportation does not collect data on the proportion of traffic collisions are rear-end accidents, nationally speaking, we know that they are about 28% or 29%. This kind of accident is likely the most common nationally and, based on our experience, 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. Consider the possible mitigating factors. Are your brake lights on? Did you slow down traffic? Was your use of turn signals evident? In all these instances, a finding must be made of fact. For example, was the defendant’s vehicle behind your vehicle? Your testimony may be refuted so there must be additional evidence to show that the defendant was following too closely.
There are a few reasons rear-end collisions can occur. Sometimes, it is not obvious circumstances that lead to the collision. For example, an object in the roadway might have caused the defendant to stop suddenly causing his/her vehicle to run into you. In some cases, a defendant may be following too closely and ran up on your bumper before slamming into you.
Both sides will be asked questions in court. What can you say about weather conditions, for example? Can they be blamed for this collision? How about speeding? You might also argue about whether your tail lights worked. Last but not least, there’s the matter of contributory negligence. You might be argued that you contributed to the accident if you did not lane brake ahead of traffic.
As you can see, being rear-ended is not an automatic win for claimant. This is where an experienced auto accident attorney can help you.
While head-on accidents are less common than rear end accidents, they are statistically much more dangerous. The Texas Department of Transportation recorded 538 fatalities from head-on collisions in 2020. These fatalities accounted for almost 14% in Texas’s traffic deaths.
Distracted driving accidents
These days, the distractions from personal devices is not limited to just texting. Texting while driving is illegal in Texas, but it is still allowed to use a handheld phone for other purposes such as GPS or music. However, this does not make it any less possible for someone to cause an accident by texting while driving. A person can be charged for a Class A misdemeanor, including jail time of upto a year and a maximum $4,000 penalty.
Additionally to the state laws, the individual cities of the Dallas/Fort Worth area have adopted ordinances to differing degrees. Some are stricter than the state laws.
Regardless the laws, in 2020 368 traffic accident fatalities were attributed to distracted driving. Many more people were involved in or contributed towards non-fatal accidents.
Texas saw 1,354 car-related deaths in 2020. These are called “ROR”, or Run-Off Road Crash by the NHTSA.
ROR crashes almost always involve one party. These cases are not usually handled by personal injury attorneys because they involve only one party.
ROR accidents can happen when another driver is driving, and you have to take evasive maneuvers to avoid being in a collision. In Texas during 2020, 51% of the fatal accidents occurred in what were called “rural” areas. These areas are often surrounded by two-lane highways and have the potential for drivers drifting into another lane. Another reason a driver might be trying to pass dangerously is that he or she may not know how to do so.
You’ll need to prove the other driver was responsible for you being run off the road. A car accident claim that was not in direct contact with another vehicle will be reviewed by an insurance company. They will look into the circumstances and determine if there were any other factors. Eye-witnesses may be able to testify if the other driver fled. It’s more common than ever that more drivers equip their cars with dash cameras.
For a Run-off-road case where another driver was negligent, you should contact a good personal injury lawyer to help you build a strong case.
Intersection and Side Impact Collision
Side impact and intersection collisions are major contributors to serious injury and death in Texas, just like head-on collision cases. In 2020, the state had 865 fatalities due to intersection-related 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. Side impact airbags have been proven to reduce the risk of serious injuries. As you can see in the Texas fatality stats above, side impact collisions are a very real threat.
As with other accident types in Texas, due to modified contributory negligence laws, even a broad-side accident can’t be automatically considered a clear cut case. It’s possible that even though the other driver was negligent, there may not have been enough negligence to allow their car insurance policy to pay. A Texas accident attorney can help you if you lack the experience and expertise.
Common Mistakes After a Traffic collision
Often, the other party to an accident will simply move the cars involved without taking photos or having the police present at the scene. This is a mistake. It makes it difficult to get reliable photographic evidence and also leaves little opportunity for police observation of the vehicles once they are settled.
Another common mistake is to call the at-fault insurer and make a recorded confession. 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. The insured is not required to contact the insurance company.
People sometimes make the wrong decision to not seek immediate treatment. They believe they can handle the situation. They don’t have the documentation required by a doctor to back up their claims. As time passes, the likelihood of getting treatment is greater. If you do not seek immediate medical attention or wait too long, your insurance company could claim that you were not injured. An insurance company can also use a delay in treatment as a defense.
It is common for people to make mistakes by talking to the at fault insurance company, recording statements, trying to resolve their claims themselves, accepting an early settlement before they know the outcome, or not getting treatment immediately.
Combating Insurance Companies
Insurance companies could falsely accuse a wounded person of causing an accident in order to reduce payouts. It is possible that the police report was incorrect and victim-blaming could follow. It is possible that you will find yourself in a “he told, she said” dispute with the negligent driver. To win your case, you’ll need compelling evidence and the assistance of a professional.
We review the facts surrounding each client’s claim, including reading police reports, collecting testimonies, conserving electronic data from cars and surveillance videos, as well as consulting with crash reconstruction specialists.
Personal Injury Protection Insurance
Personal injury coverage (PIP) can be included on most 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 form of personal auto coverage is designed to pay for any medical bills incurred in an accident. This means that regardless of the outcome of the case involving the other driver’s liability, you can still get medical care for yourself and your passengers. PIP can also cover lost wages.
However, Texas’ minimum policy limit for Personal Injury Protection (PPI) is $2,500. Not a lot. You may have selected a higher amount if your agent was knowledgeable and had reviewed all the coverages. This will help you cover your short term medical expenses while the case is advancing.
When an Accident Case Is Submitted to the Court
The majority of insurance claim claims are settled before a lawsuit is filed.
However, not all accidents involving vehicles can be solved. Perhaps the parties are unable to resolve the issues. Perhaps the plaintiffs had difficulty agreeing on the amount of compensation due to their differences.
Expert witnesses, witnesses, responding law enforcement officers and other witnesses can be called in a trial. The jury will determine the defendant’s liability. 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 lawyer may be able argue for punitive damages. This is something that cannot be offered in a settlement.
A deposition is required by the defense side after you file a lawsuit. You will be asked questions by both sides during this formal conversation. Both the attorneys on each side will be there as well as a reporter. Each side will ask you questions about the accident and who was responsible, as well as 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. You might be asked questions that help to shed light on your case by your attorney. You don’t need to feel intimidated by this process. Texas rules for depositions mean that you won’t be intimidated and your accident attorney will also make sure of this.
Texas Motor Vehicle Trial Cases
Expert witnesses can offer their opinions to jurors in court cases. The expert witness can assist those who are hearing the case to draw a conclusion using their knowledge.
Most often, experts in motor vehicle accidents are medical professionals. These doctors or other medical experts can render an opinion about an injured party’s probability of recovery, need for treatment, or prognosis.
Expert witnesses can be a valuable asset to a claimant’s case. However, this is not always true. Expert witnesses aren’t always called. They typically participate only when requested by the court. If this occurs, an experienced motor car firm will have the resources necessary to find the right expert witnesses.
What length of time does it take for a court case regarding an auto accident to be resolved?
How long it takes to get through a trial isn’t the only factor. There are many things that have to occur before you can ever enter the courtroom. The lawsuit must be served on the defendant. The parties then exchange evidence and take deposition 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.
As you can see, it’s not wise to go it alone in Texas. Contact us today to schedule a complimentary consultation to learn about your legal rights. Ward Maedgen Accident attorneys have helped many recover from car crashes over the years.
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