Injured in a car accident? Injuries resulting from a car accident in Texas can be costly. Not only are there automobile repairs, but personal injuries can take extensive time to recover from. This process can be costly and cause financial hardship. The car accident lawyers at Liggett Law Group take pride in working with injured drivers to help explain all the legal options that are available after a car accident to financially pursue the responsible parties.
As the victim, the following actions are available to you:
- Take your claim to court and file a lawsuit against the at fault driver
- File a claim with the at fault driver’s insurance company
- File a claim against any party that contributed to the cause of the accident
The first two actions seem fairly straightforward. However, it is possible that other individuals or entities are partly or solely responsible for the car accident. Determining who is at fault and then finding a way to prove it can be extremely challenging.
Initially, it may appear the other driver is the only person at fault in the accident, but determining fault in after an accident is not always this simple. In fact, Texas law requires a certain responsibility of businesses and even governmental agencies regarding their role in car accidents. The following may be liable for the crash:
- Other Drivers
- Auto and Parts Manufacturers
- Trucking Companies and Delivery Companies
- Bars and Businesses Serving Alcohol
- A Government Entity
Who Can be Held Liable for the Damages that Resulted From the Collision?
When another driver demonstrates negligence in any way, causing an accident, they are held responsible for the resulting medical expenses and any damage to property, like your car.
Determining fault becomes more complex when more than two drivers are involved in an accident. The scenarios of accidents involving multiple cars are endless, and each case must be examined individually.
Auto and Parts Manufacturers
A design defect resulting from improper automobile parts manufacturing can lead to a car accident. Suppose a driver’s tire blows out, forcing them to swerve and cause an auto accident, and the tire manufacturer had been cited for manufacturing issues with the particular tire model on the vehicle. Then, the tire manufacturer may be responsible for the car accident because they produced the defective product.
Car and automotive product manufacturing companies understand that vehicle accidents like this have the potential to cost them millions in damages. They are ready to combat any lawsuit with robust legal representation.
Trucking Companies and Delivery Companies
The Texas economy is booming, driven by nonstop trucking commerce and the oil and gas industry. Employees are often put under deadlines that are challenging to meet and conflict with state laws, pushing drivers to compromise their safety and the safety of others.
Industries also have a responsibility to provide maintenance to the trucks and commercial vehicles they put on the roads. Failing to provide proper maintenance can result in deadly accidents.
And any business is responsible for hiring drivers with safe driving records and supplying the proper training for an employee to perform the job responsibly. How does a personal injury attorney prove an employer’s liability? By doing the following and more:
- Investigating a company’s safety record
- Subpoenaing a business’s vehicle maintenance records
- Acquiring a driver’s highway log and computer monitoring records
- Investigating a truck driver’s prior driving record for safety infractions
- Investigating to determine if improper loading procedures contributed to the accident
Bars, Nightclubs and Businesses Serving Alcohol
You may discover that the driver responsible for your accident was intoxicated. The Texas Dram Shop Act states that a bar, restaurant, social host, or other business engaging in the transactional sale or serving of alcohol to an individual that is noticeably intoxicated may be held liable for the damages and injuries caused by that person. This law also holds businesses and individuals responsible for serving or providing alcohol to minors.
The burden of proof will fall on the injured party to obtain certain documentation, including the following:
- Video footage proving the transaction. Surveillance videos are not kept indefinitely.
- Patrons’ or event attendees’ statements are needed to verify the driver’s state of impairment.
- Highway video footage can provide evidence of impaired driving by the defendant.
- Previous records or legal actions filed against the restaurant or bar may support a claim.
- Medical records documenting the blood alcohol content (BAC) of the defendant will be needed.
A Government Entity
The state of Texas, cities, and counties are responsible for maintaining safe roadways for drivers. If hazardous conditions play a part in a car accident, then the government agency responsible for the roadway can potentially be held liable. Improperly maintained roads or damaged highways that are inadequately signed may have contributed to the accident.
Once again, the burden of proof falls to the injured party.
Understanding insurance laws in Texas and determining who is responsible for the damages can help you reclaim your life and get you the compensation you deserve after a car accident in Texas.
Texas Insurance Laws
It is against the law to operate a vehicle in Texas that is not covered by insurance. Texas’ insurance system is fault-based, meaning that the individual responsible for the accident must compensate you for the damages you incurred. The law requires that a car accident lawsuit be filed within two years of the accident date, which is known as a statute of limitations.
The individual responsible for the accident must compensate you for the damages you incurred.
Additionally, Texas car accident laws are based on a comparative negligence rule. When you are involved in a crash and file a lawsuit, the court will assign a percentage of fault to each party involved. If a court finds that you were 30% at fault and the other driver was 70% at fault, then the damages you receive will be based on the 70% fault of the other driver, and your percentage of fault is deducted from the total payout.
Finally, Texas is a modified comparative fault state, meaning that if your actions contributed to more than 50% of the fault in a car accident, you would receive no compensation for the losses you incurred. Insurance companies also follow these guidelines, so reviewing your claim with a Texas personal injury attorney with litigation skills in car accidents can help you claim and receive the maximum amount of damages you deserve.
Advocates for Texas Car Accident Victims
Drivers suffering injuries in a car accident in Texas have legal options available to secure maximum compensation for their injuries. Weeding through all the laws that apply to car accidents and liability while ensuring the documentation to prove a case can be difficult and overwhelming. The experienced car accident attorneys at Liggett Law Group is dedicated to providing you with all your legal options in a car accident claim. Contact us for a free consultation to discuss your legal options.