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 – Lavon Shores Estates
Why an Auto Accident Attorney is an Expert in Your Area
As part of their strongest possible claim, our legal team will investigate every component. You have the greatest chance for getting justice, whether it is through a settlement or jury award. A lawyer who specializes in vehicle accidents can help you determine whether you are eligible for no-fault compensation. This includes financial recompense for any injuries or losses you sustained, missed wages, and other skyrocketing costs. Our Dallas-based lawyers are available to help you learn more and provide a free consultation. Ward Maedgen Accident Attorneys are dedicated to making your case as successful 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. If a case goes to litigation, then the insurance carrier’s legal team steps in too. These teams of professionals are there to help reduce the amount that insurance carriers have to pay each year. They do a great job.
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 have to learn this hard way. We’ve seen clients come to our office after they have recorded a statement. This is because they are now trying to work with the insurer. They make big mistakes that can be used to their advantage and reduce or eliminate their chances of winning a claim. It is usually too late to assist them.
It’s crucial that potential clients never communicate with their 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 for contributory negligence. Misunderstandings can occur when insurance providers are contacted. They aren’t looking out for you; instead, they are playing a game where they’re trying to get out of paying you what your claim is worth.
Common Case Types: Texas Traffic Collision
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. You should evaluate mitigating factors. Did you have your brake lights on at all? Did you stop traffic completely? You used turn signals. These cases require a finding to fact. Was the defendant’s vehicle following you? You can refute your testimony, but there must be evidence that the defendant did not follow you too closely.
Rear-end crashes can happen for a variety of reasons. Sometimes there are unseen circumstances or conditions that cause it. One example is when a defendant might suddenly stop in front of you because there may be an object in the way. Sometimes, a defendant might have been following too closely and ran into your bumper before smashing into you.
In court, the questions will come from both sides of the aisle. For example, what can be said about weather conditions? These conditions contributed to the collision. Was speeding a factor? There might even be an argument about whether or not your tail lights were working. Last, but not least is the question about contributory negligence. If you didn’t brake in front of the traffic, then you might be considered to have contributed to the collision.
As you can see, being rear-ended is not an automatic win for claimant. An experienced auto accident attorney is invaluable in navigating these issues.
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 accidents were responsible for nearly 14% of all traffic fatalities in Texas.
Distracted driving accidents
Distractions from personal devices are not limited to 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. This does not mean that someone who caused an accident due to distracted driving is excusable just because they were doing something other than texting on their device. 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.
Out of state laws, each city in the Dallas/Fort Worth metro area has its own ordinances. Some may be more strict than those created by the state.
Distracted driving was responsible for 368 fatal traffic accidents in 2020, regardless of the laws. Hundreds more were likely involved in or contributed to non-fatal accidents.
Texas saw 1,354 car-related deaths in 2020. These are known as “ROR” (Run-Off-Road) by the NHTSA.
ROR accidents involve just one person in an accident. These factors include alcohol use, poor driving conditions, distraction driving, poor visibility and other road conditions that can cause the driver to lose control. These cases are not usually handled by personal injury attorneys because they involve only one party.
ROR collisions can also be caused by another driver. In these cases, you will need to take evasive measures to avoid a collision. Texas had 51% fatal accidents in 2020. These areas typically have two-lane highways with opposing traffic, which can lead to drivers drifting into the 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. 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. Eyewitnesses might be able to give testimony if another driver fled the scene. Many drivers now have dash cams in their vehicles.
A personal injury attorney can help you to prove negligence by another driver in a Run off-road accident.
Side Impact Collision and Intersection
Like head-on collision cases, intersection and side impact crashes are a major contributor to serious injury and fatalities in Texas. In 2020, the state had 865 fatalities due to intersection-related accidents.
One reason why side impact collisions tend to involve serious injury is because there is less barrier to impact on the side of the car as compared to the rear or 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.
A broad-side accident, like other types of Texas accidents, can’t automatically be considered a case due to Texas’ modified contributory negligence laws. 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 in a Traffic Collision
Parties to an accident often move the vehicles involved in the collision without taking photos or having police on the scene. This is an error as it reduces photographic evidence’s reliability and makes it impossible for police to inspect the vehicles immediately after the collision.
Another common error is when people contact their at fault insurer and make a recorded declaration. People mistakenly believe that they are being cooperative. They don’t have to look out for their insurance company. They are seeking information to assist their insured. The insured is free to not speak with the insurance company.
People make the common mistake of not seeking treatment immediately and believing that they can handle it. They don’t have documentation from a professional to support their claims. As time goes by, it becomes more difficult to get treatment. If you delay in seeking medical attention, or if you wait too long to seek it, insurance companies can claim that you are not injured. An insurance carrier can also use a gap in 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.
Combating Insurance Companies
Insurance companies may unjustly accuse the wounded person of causing a collision in an effort to reduce payouts. You might find yourself victim-blaming after the police report is wrong. There is a possibility that you could find yourself in a conflict with the negligent driver. To win your case, you’ll need compelling evidence and the assistance of a professional.
We investigate the details surrounding our clients’ claims. We read police reports, gather testimonies and preserve electronic data from vehicles and surveillance video.
Personal Injury Insurance
Personal injury protection (PIP), which is a type if coverage that is included with many personal auto policies, is an option. PIP can be omitted in certain cases, such as Medicare, but for most drivers it is mandatory.
This type of personal insurance protection protects against medical expenses after an auto accident. This means that you and your passengers can receive medical costs regardless of whether the case involves the liability of another driver. PIP can also provide coverage for lost wages.
Although the Texas minimum policy limit is $2,500, it’s not too high. A good agent will have reviewed your coverages with you and recommended a higher amount. This will allow you to pay for short-term medical expenses while the case progresses.
When an Accident Case Is Submitted to the Court
Most insurance claims settle before a lawsuit is filed.
However, not every vehicle accident can be fixed. Perhaps the parties are unable to resolve the issues. Perhaps the plaintiffs and defendants could not agree on how much compensation should be paid because they couldn’t resolve their differences.
Expert witnesses, witnesses, responding law enforcement officers and other witnesses can be called in a trial. The jury will decide on the defendant’s extent of liability. Even though a trial case can take longer and cost more than a settlement, a jury may be able to award plaintiffs 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.
Discovery & Deposition
After you file a suit, the defense side will ask for 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. You might be asked questions that help to shed light on your case by your attorney. However, the process does not have to make you feel uncomfortable. You won’t feel intimidated by the Texas deposition rules. Your accident lawyer will also ensure this.
Expert Witnesses in Texas Motor Vehicle Trial Cases
An expert witness can present their opinion to a jury in a court matter. A witness’s expertise can be used to help the jury draw a conclusion from the available information.
In motor vehicle accidents, medical experts are the most common expert witness. These medical experts, as well as other doctors, can provide an opinion about the chances of recovery for injured parties, their treatment requirements, and prognosis.
Expert witnesses can contribute to a stronger case for a claimant, but this is not so every time. Further, expert witnesses are not always called and typically only participate in a case when required by the court. If this occurs, an experienced motor car firm will have the resources necessary to find the right expert witnesses.
How long does a court case take for an auto accident?
The trial itself is actually not the only consideration when answering how long the process takes. There are many things you need to do before you step into the courtroom. The lawsuit must be served to the defendant. After that, each party must exchange evidence and depose witnesses. The whole process can take up to a year, depending on the complexity of the case and the number of parties involved.
As you can see, going it alone is not an option. 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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