Houston Car Accident Attorney
How to Maximize Compensation for Your Car Accident Settlement
In 2020, personal injury claims were up 97% from the previous year. Personal injury law helps victims of car accident injuries that were not their fault. Car accidents, for instance, fall under personal injury law in Texas and the rest of the US.
Were you recently injured in a car wreck that was due to someone else’s negligence? If so, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries, medical expenses, lost wages, and more.
A Houston car accident lawyer can help you win the compensation you deserve and help you file car accident lawsuits. But how can you maximize your compensation?
This is one of the most common questions we receive from our clients with car accident cases. If you want to know how to ensure you get the most out of your car accident claim, you need to read this guide. We will answer all the questions you have been searching for below.
Texas Car Accident Stats
If you get injured in a Texas, Houston car accident, you are not alone. After all, Houston is the #1 city for car accident deaths in Texas. Here are some more Houston car accident statistics you need to know.
In 2019, Houston, Texas, had nearly 2,100 car accident-related fatalities
In Texas, nearly 2,500 people die due to car wrecks each year
Dallas, the city with the second-highest number of traffic fatalities in Texas, had nearly 1,500 car accident-related fatalities in 2019
The age group with the highest car accident fatality rate in Texas is the 21 to 25-year-old age group
Men are 44% more likely to die in a Texas car accident than women
Speeding (26% of crashes) and drunk driving (28% of crashes) are the top causes of car wreck fatalities in Texas
In Texas, the most deadly car crashes occur between the hours of 8 p.m. and 12 a.m. midnight, with over 6,500 car wreck-related deaths occurring during this period each year
In terms of days of the week, the most deadly car accidents occur on weekends, with Saturday being the most common day for car accident-related fatalities
In terms of months, October and November are by far the deadliest month for drivers in Texas.
Common Car Accident Injuries
Common car accidents can cause a range of injuries, ranging from minor cuts and bruises to more serious, permanent damage. Depending on how severe the accident is, some of the most common car accident injuries include:
Traumatic Brain Injuries
TBI or traumatic brain injury is a common car accident injury. It can range from mild to severe and often result in long-term consequences such as memory loss, impaired judgment, depression, personality changes, and even death. In the United States, more than 1.5 million Americans suffer from a traumatic brain injury each year.
Spinal Cord Injuries and Paralysis
Depending on how strong the impact of a car accident is, it can cause spinal cord injuries. In serious cases, these injuries can result in partial or total paralysis. People who have suffered from this type of injury often need to undergo specialized and expensive medical treatments, including physical therapy and assistive technology.
Another common car accident injury is a back injury. This type of injury can range from minor muscle strains to herniated disks, ruptured discs, and more serious conditions such as spinal cord injuries. Back pain is often one of the first signs of an underlying back injury caused by a car accident.
If happen to be in an accident that involves a fire, you could suffer from burns. The severity of the burn will depend on the type of fire and how long it takes to put out the flames. Burns can cause permanent scarring and disfigurement, as well as ongoing pain, so it’s important to seek medical attention as soon as possible after a car accident.
Metal that pierces the body, either from the car or other debris, can cause internal injuries. Other causes can be anything from broken ribs that puncture organs to abdominal bruising. Internal bleeding can be hard to detect, so it is important to wait for medical professionals to arrive before going anywhere else.
Amputation or the loss of a limb can happen when the force of a car accident is too great for the human body to endure. This is common to drivers as they are more susceptible to being pinned in the car.
Disfiguring can be anything from facial injuries caused by broken glass to severe burns. Facial injuries can be especially difficult to recover from both physically and mentally, as people may have difficulty adjusting to their new appearance.
Whiplash is another common car accident injury and is often caused by the sudden jerking of the head as a result of a car accident. This can cause pain in the neck, shoulders, arms, and even headaches.
Depending on how severe the accident is, people can suffer from knee injuries. Kneecap dislocation, torn ligaments, and even broken bones are common after a high-impact collision.
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder PSTD
Not so physical injury, but car accidents can cause mental trauma as well. Many people suffer from PTSD after a car accident due to the shock of the event and its consequences. This can include difficulty concentrating, sleeplessness, flashbacks, and more.
Texas Car Accident Laws
All states have specific rules regarding how the law treats car accident claims. In Texas, there are also laws determining when a car accident victim can file a car accident claim, insurance claim, and how much they can receive in car accident compensation. Learn more about relevant Texas and Houston car accident laws that could apply to your car accident.
Texas Car Insurance Minimums
Texas requires all drivers to have car insurance. At a minimum, drivers must have $30,000—$60,000 liability insurance for car accident-related injuries and $25,000 liability insurance for property damage. The minimum liability insurance helps to cover your injuries and vehicle damage after a wreck.
If the minimum does not cover your injuries and/or property damage, you can file a personal injury lawsuit and file for insurance claim against your UIM policy carrier to recover damages.
Texas Fault Car Insurance
Texas is an at-fault insurance state. That means you can file a lawsuit against another driver for causing your injuries as long as the other driver caused the accident. If you cause the Houston car accident, you cannot successfully win a lawsuit. Insurance companies determine fault before determining whether to pay an insurance claim. To determine fault, insurers often conduct investigations to review the available evidence. They may determine that one or both of you were at fault for the wreck.
Texas Modified Comparative Negligence
You can file a personal injury claim against another driver if he or she causes a wreck that leads to your injury. You can not file a claim, though, if you were at fault.
But what happens if both you and the other driver were at fault? This is where modified comparative negligence would apply. The modified comparative negligence rule assigns a percentage of fault to each party. As long as your share of the fault is 50% or less, you can sue the other driver.
However, your percentage of fault for the accident will impact your compensation. Your ultimate damages award will be reduced by your percentage of fault. For example, say you receive a $100,000 car accident verdict for your injuries. But the judge determined that your share of fault was 50%. The judge would subtract 50% of the award, leaving you with only $50,000.
Texas Personal Injury Lawsuits
A personal injury lawsuit in Texas is one in which an injured person or persons sues the party responsible for their damages. The injured party can then receive compensation, which is also known as damages. We will talk more about the types of damages car accident injury victims can receive in a moment.
Texas Wrongful Death Lawsuits
In some cases, car accidents result in death instead of injury. When this happens, the victim’s family can file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver. This type of claim is a wrongful death lawsuit.
The main difference between a personal injury and a wrongful death claim is who receives compensation. In a personal injury claim, the injured party receives compensation. With wrongful death, the deceased person’s family receives compensation.
Texas Car Accident Claim Statute of Limitations
The statute of limitations for personal injury claims in Texas is two years from the date of the accident that caused your injury. If you do not file within this period, you must forfeit your right to compensation.
The statute of limitations for wrongful death claims in Texas is two years from the date of the accident that caused your loved one’s death. Again, failing to file within two years means you must forfeit your right to file at all.
What Type of Car Accident Compensation Are You Eligible For?
Texas recognizes two forms of compensation or damages in car accident-related personal injury cases. These damages are called compensatory and non-compensatory damages.
Compensatory damages compensate the victim for financial losses and other intangible, often emotional losses. There are two types of compensatory damages: economic and non-economic damages. Some states place caps on the maximum amount of compensatory damages a personal injury claimant may receive.
In Texas, however, there are no caps. The only exception is if you file a claim against a government official or employee. In this case, you can only win up to $250,000 in compensatory damages.
Non-compensatory damages are also known as punitive damages. This type of compensation does not pay you back for losses. Instead, judges order punitive damages to punish the negligent party.
Unlike compensatory damages, punitive damages do have caps in Texas. A single claimant in Texas can typically only get up to $200,000 in punitive damages. Learn more about the different types of damages available to personal injury claimants in Texas next.
Economic damages compensate car accident injury victims for their financial losses. The most common financial losses car wreck victims incur include medical expenses, property damage, and lost wages while in recovery. These types of losses are the easiest to prove. Make sure you hang onto all records related to your car accident injury to help maximize your economic damages award.
Non-economic damages compensate car accident injury victims for emotional pain and suffering. Mental anguish, loss of enjoyment, limb loss, disfigurement, and loss of consortium are also types of non-economic damages. Because these losses are typically emotional in nature, they can be particularly difficult to prove. That is why it is critical to hire an attorney who has experience winning non-economic damages for his or her clients.
As mentioned, some judges order personal injury claim defendants to pay punitive damages. Punitive damages are also called exemplary damages in Texas. Judges order this type of compensation to punish defendants who showed gross negligence, resulting in the accident.
In Texas, gross negligence refers to the at-fault party’s willful or otherwise disregard for the safety of others, i.e., you. Gross negligence often applies to situations where the at-fault party was intoxicated during or texting before the accident. Aggressive drivers and drag racers also commonly have to pay punitive damages.
In some cases, people can get more than $200,000 in punitive damages. This happens if the economic damages awarded surpass $100,000. Here, the cap would be two times the amount of economic damages plus the total amount of non-economic damages.
10 Factors in Your Car Accident Compensation
Now that you know the types of compensation you may be eligible for, you may wonder: how are personal injury award amounts determined? There are countless factors that go into this calculation. Below, we have rounded up the top 10 factors judges use to determine your car accident settlement award.
1. Your Injury and Its Severity
Compensatory damages help pay you back for financial and lifestyle losses due to your injury. So, it should be no wonder that the type of injury you receive and how severe your injury is factor into your award. If your injury includes scarring, disfigurement, or total loss of a body part, you can get more compensation. These conditions can increase the amount of non-economic damages you are eligible for. Additionally, more severe injuries lead to higher medical bills and more time off work. That is why economic damages awards often increase with the increasing severity of the injury
2. Your Share of Fault
Remember when we mentioned the modified comparative negligence rule in Texas? This rule applies to situations where both the victim and the defendant were at fault for the accident. As mentioned, your percentage of fault impacts your ultimate compensation award. The judge will subtract money from your award for each percentage point of fault assigned to you.
Injured victims who have a share of 51% or more fault for the accident can not recover compensation at all. That is because Texas is a fault state. In fault states, you can not file a lawsuit if you were primarily responsible for an accident. This is true even when you are the injured victim of the wreck.
3. Your Insurance Provider
In Texas, car insurance providers must cover injuries and/or car damages their policyholders cause. That means the negligent driver’s insurance company will cover the cost of your injuries and property loss.
In some cases, the amount the other driver’s insurer pays out does not cover all your expenses. If you have full coverage auto insurance, your provider will also help cover the cost of your car damage. Often, payments from both insurance companies still are not enough to cover your damages.
That is where a personal injury lawsuit can come in. You can file a lawsuit against the other driver. You cannot sue another party’s insurance company in Texas. However, keep in mind that the defendant’s insurance policy may limit how much you can recover.
4. Your Age
Did you know that younger victims of car accidents may be eligible for higher compensation? This fact has to do with the non-economic portion of a personal injury award. You may recall that non-economic damages compensate car accident victims for their pain and suffering. The thinking goes that younger drivers have to endure more pain and suffering from their injuries.
Why? Younger drivers have more years to live and deal with their injuries. The higher non-economic damages award can help compensate them for these additional years of pain and suffering.
5. Your Pre-Existing Health Conditions
Any pre-existing health conditions or injuries you may have had before the accident can also decrease your non-economic damages award. Pre-existing conditions reduce the following portions of the award:
Pain and suffering
Loss of enjoyment of life
Pre-existing conditions can contribute to all of the above. So, a jury may have a hard time distinguishing between the pain and suffering your pre-existing condition or injury causes and that caused by the new injury.
People suffering from pre-existing injuries or illnesses may not receive as much compensation. However, this is not always the case when you work with a local attorney who has experience with these kinds of situations.
6. Your Property Damage
Property loss is part of a personal injury settlement or award. It falls under the economic damages part of your compensation. The amount your receive for property loss depends on the extent of damage to your vehicle. The award will include an amount to pay you back for repairs on your vehicle.
You can also get compensated if you have to buy a new car because of the accident. You can also get compensated for other costs associated with damage to your vehicle. For example, say you need a rental car while your vehicle is in the shop. Your settlement award can include a portion for this type of expense.
7. Your Economic Damages
We have already discussed one type of economic damage: property loss. But this is far from the only type of economic damage out there. The most common ones are probably for medical expenses and lost wages.
Many forms of compensation that fall under economic damages repay money you have spent already. However, you can also receive compensation for the money you expect to spend on your injury in the future.
For instance, some victims ask for compensation for loss of future earning potential or future medical care. Judges commonly award compensation for these damages in cases where the victim incurred severe or long-term injuries.
Last but not least, you can also get compensated for your legal fees. Of course, you can only receive compensation for legal fees acquired from your personal injury case. All of these factors can help to increase your ultimate settlement award.
8. Your Non-Economic Damages
Non-economic damages are notoriously tricky to prove in personal injury cases. Hiring a lawyer experienced in winning car accident victims these awards can increase your chances and, thus, your compensation. Texas law includes the following in its definition of non-economic damages:
Pain and suffering
Mental or emotional anguish
Loss of consortium
Loss of companionship
Loss of enjoyment of life
Injury to reputation
The easier damages to prove are disfigurement, physical impairment, and injury to reputation. Loss of consortium and companionship apply to wrongful death cases. They are also relatively easy to prove in court. The more difficult of these to prove are the ones impacting emotions and mental health.
After all, we can not measure psychological damage in the same way that we can measure physical harm. Still, finding a lawyer who can help you win non-economic damages can greatly increase your ultimate settlement amount.
9. Your Judge
Judges take evidence into account when determining compensatory damages. There is little subjective decision on the judge’s part in this aspect of compensation. The way your judge may impact your ultimate compensation has more to do with non-compensatory damages.
Judges award punitive damages at their own discretion. And some judges are more likely to award this type of compensation than others. We also call punitive damages exemplary damages because they make an example of the defendant. If the defendant in your case was grossly negligent, causing your injury, your compensation could increase significantly.
10. Your Houston Car Accident Attorney
The Houston car accident lawyer you choose to represent your case arguably has the greatest effect on your compensation. The more experienced your lawyer is, the higher your compensation will be.
Houston car accident attorneys know the evidence needed to prove certain damages. They also know when a victim can get more compensation by going to trial instead of settling.
What is more, many local Houston car accident attorneys know the local judges. Your lawyer can leverage his or her knowledge to plot the best course of action. That way, you can get the maximum amount of compensation that you deserve.
In Texas, most Houston car accident lawyers work off of contingency fees. Contingency fees are contingent upon the outcome of your case. If you do not win your claim, you pay nothing for legal representation. But if you do win, your car accident attorney will take his or her fee as a percentage of your total settlement award.
How to Maximize Car Accident Damages in Texas
Personal injury lawsuits can be long and arduous processes. And this is true whether you settle outside of court or bring your case before a judge. You are already suffering due to your injury. So, it is important to hire personal injury lawyers to get the highest amount of compensation possible.
That way, you will feel like the stress of your lawsuit was worthwhile. Luckily, an experienced Houston car accident lawyer knows how to maximize your compensation. Here are a few expert tips for getting the most out of your car accident case.
See the Doctor ASAP
In some car accident claims, the defendant’s lawyer will try to argue that the victim’s injuries are not connected to the accident. This often occurs when victims fail to seek medical attention immediately following the accident. But getting medical care ASAP is critical for maximizing your award and reimbursing your medical bills.
After all, your doctor can testify on your behalf during your car accident lawsuit. You should even go to the doctor after a car accident even if you do not think your injuries are serious. On the off chance that your injuries get worse over time, your initial visit can serve as proof of the start of your problems.
Finally, make sure to follow all your doctor’s recommendations. Attend all follow-up visits and adhere to any treatment plans provided.
Keep Detailed Records
Judges and juries decide personal injury lawsuits on the basis of evidence. So, the more evidence you have on your side, the better your chances of getting maximum compensation. In Texas personal injury cases, the burden of proof lies with the plaintiff. The plaintiff is you — the person who files the claim. And “burden of proof” means that you must prove the other party’s fault and the extent of your injuries.
Take pictures of the damage done to your vehicle and the other driver’s vehicle. You should also photograph your injuries and, if possible and/or applicable, the other driver’s injuries. Try to collect witness contact information and statements at the scene, too. If you call the police, ask for a copy of the report. Your lawyer can also obtain the car accident report after the fact if you can not at the time of the accident.
The above evidence can help prove your share of fault in the accident. And as you may recall, your share of the fault for the accident will determine your ultimate compensation.
When you receive treatment for your injury, also make sure to hold onto documentation. Documentation may include your treatment plan, receipts from the visit, and your medical record.
The last thing we will talk about here is keeping a journal. Record your daily experiences after the accident. Keep track of any serious injury and make sure it is being treated. Focus on mental and emotional experiences to help support your claims about pain and suffering, and mental anguish.
We have barely scratched the surface when it comes to documentation after a car accident. Schedule a consultation with a local car accident injury lawyer to learn more about the documents you will need to maximize compensation.
Avoid Speaking to Insurers
Most people believe that their insurance company or the negligent driver’s insurer is on their side after an accident. This is especially true when you are the victim. But insurance companies are not your friend. We highly recommend hiring an attorney before talking to insurance companies after a car wreck.
Insurance claim investigators are looking to minimize the amount their employers have to pay out per claim. Your lawyer will advise you not to admit fault, neither on your part nor the other driver’s. He or she will also advise you against sharing any information you are not 100% certain about. Insurers may try to use your uncertainties against you.
For example, the insurance provider may try to paint your account of the accident as unreliable because of the incorrect information you provided.
Finally, avoid sharing information about the extent of damage from the car accident. This includes damage to your vehicle and injuries – serious injury, light scratches, fractures, etc. you may have obtained.
Any information you provide to an insurance company can and will be used against you later. And again, the insurance company’s primary goal is to decrease your ultimate compensation award.
Hire an Experienced Lawyer
If we have not stressed it enough already, hiring an experienced Houston car accident lawyer is vital to your success. These professionals know the ins and outs of personal injury cases. And having these experts on your side can be invaluable.
For example, many insurance adjusters may try to lowball your settlement. Your Houston car accident lawyer will know that most payers offer more than a quarter less than what your case may be worth.
What is more, many personal injury victims earn more compensation in court than during settlement. This is why it is important to hire a personal injury lawyer who is trial ready should the opportunity arise.
How to Maximize Car Accident Damages in Texas
The moments immediately following a car accident are the most critical. And this is especially true if you get injured and want to file a personal injury lawsuit. Yet, the moment following a wreck can be chaotic. You do not always have time to think through your actions or lack thereof.
Instead, save this list of what to do after a Houston car wreck. That way, you will have our tips handy in case you ever need them.
Report the Accident
Did you know that the Texas Department of Transportation requires people to report car accidents? This is especially the case if a car accident results in someone’s injury. So, the first thing you should do is call the police.
Of course, move your car out of the way of harm first. You should also check on anyone with life-threatening injuries to see if they need help. But call the police as soon as possible.
As we mentioned earlier, the police report from the accident is a critical piece of evidence. You need to make sure you actually file a police report to get this important piece of documentation, though.
If your injury does not require immediate attention, you should next collect evidence at the scene. As a reminder, that includes getting witness statements, taking photos of the damage, and asking for the police report. There are additional critical pieces of information to gather.
For example, always get the other driver’s insurance information. Their contact information, name, driver’s license number, and license plate may also be helpful.
Finally, your own written account of the accident may be useful. You might forget important details in the hours and days following your injury. A first-hand account directly following the wreck can help in these situations.
Record where the accident happened and at what time it occurred. Mention any relevant weather or road conditions. Also, take photos of any road signs or debris that could help make your case.
Seek Medical Attention
Go to the hospital immediately if you have severe or life-threatening injuries. If your injuries are less severe, follow the steps we listed above. Once things have settled down, though, go to the doctor promptly. Immediate medical attention for your injuries can reduce the risk of complications.
Further, your doctor’s report can establish the initial connection between the accident and your injury or injuries. Make sure to report any and all injuries, no matter how minor they seem. Even seemingly insignificant cuts, scrapes, and bruises can help to increase your ultimate compensation award.
Never Admit Fault
We already mentioned how admitting fault to an insurance company can impact your award. After all, your share of fault determines your ultimate compensation, if you are eligible for any compensation at all.
But you should not just avoid admitting fault to insurance providers. You should also avoid admitting fault publicly. Really, you should avoid saying anything publicly about the accident. Staying off social media is important here. It is common for defense attorneys to use social media statements against victims in court. Even apologizing to the other driver could be viewed as an admittance of fault.
Call a Local Attorney
Ideally, you should seek legal representation before you speak to your insurance company. A seasoned car accident injury lawyer can help you plan what to say and what not to say. What you may not know is that an experienced car accident lawyer can also help investigate your case. He or she can advise you on the types of evidence you should collect. Or your lawyer can acquire this proof on your behalf. You can technically represent yourself in civil cases in Texas.
Civil cases include personal injury cases and other non-criminal proceedings. Representing yourself is also known as pro se representation. We do not recommend representing yourself in a personal injury lawsuit. You need an experienced professional on your side to help you know what to expect. Your attorney will know how to fight for your right to maximum compensation for your injuries.
How to Find the Best Car Accident Lawyer
If you have made it this far, you probably believe that your car accident injury case is valuable. The next step is to find a Houston car accident attorney. We compiled our top tips for doing just that below. Or check our in-depth guide to hiring a car accident attorney for more.
Check With the Local Bar
Not sure where to look for legal help? Google is a great resource, but the State Bar of Texas is the go-to search engine for finding lawyers near you. Search the Texas State Bar registry at this link. You can search by legal specialty, location, law school, languages the attorney speaks, and the types of fees accepted. The location and legal specialty search boxes are especially helpful. Make sure to choose a professional who practices in your state and, preferably, your city. And never hire a lawyer who does not specialize in the type of lawsuit you plan to file. In this case, that means you should hire a lawyer who specializes in personal injury and, specifically, car accident injuries.
Ask for Referrals
Once you have a list of personal injury lawyers near you, you will want to narrow down your list. Start by asking your friends and relatives who have filed personal injury claims for recommendations. Most people will not recommend an attorney who did not win their case. So, this can be a great way to vet out potential winners.
If you use the Texas Bar’s search engine, you can skip this step. But if you find your attorney on Google or via a referral, make sure to verify the attorney’s credentials. Again, you can use the Texas State Bar’s Find a Lawyer tool. You can input the attorney’s name, law firm, or bar card number. Then, the search engine will show you their credentials, law school, and any certifications they may hold.
Read Online Reviews
If you plan to consult with an attorney without a referral, it is always a good idea to look up reviews. Google and Yelp are great resources here. You can also browse lawyer review sites like Avvo, Martindale-Hubbell, and Lawyers.com. It is important to note that a few bad reviews here and there should not turn you off from an experienced car accident attorney you love. But if there are multiple bad reviews, you should definitely see this as a red flag.
Schedule a Consultation
Many attorneys offer free consultations. That is because they know smart clients like to shop around. The free consultation is your time to vet out the lawyer and make sure he or she is right for your unique case. You can usually schedule a consultation on attorney websites.
Google the law firm or attorney’s name, and their associated website should pop up.
Otherwise, you can call the law firm to schedule a consultation.
Ask Lots of Questions
Do you want the maximum payout for your car accident-related injury or injuries? If so, you need to ask the right questions in your consultation. These questions can help determine if the lawyer has the resources to win your case.Here are some great questions to ask during your initial consultation:
Have you worked on cases like this before? If so, how many? What were the case results?
What type of compensation can I expect from my case? How much compensation have you won clients with similar cases in the past?
If my case does not settle, are you prepared to go to trial?
Will you handle my case, or will you hand it off to a more junior associate?
What is your payment structure? What is the contingency fee you accept in personal injury cases?
A good lawyer should be prepared for all these questions. What is more, he or she will be extremely confident when answering them. But here is a word of warning. A lawyer should never guarantee an outcome in your case. It is illegal to guarantee an outcome in a legal proceeding, and it is often a sign of a shady lawyer.
Instead, choose an attorney who helps set your expectations. Your lawyer should be open to communicating with you about any updates that could impact your expectations during the suit.
Need a Houston Car Accident Attorney?
Maximizing your car accident injury compensation starts immediately after the wreck. Make sure you report the accident immediately, document important information on the scene, and seek medical attention ASAP. You should also call a Houston car accident attorney. Your lawyer can help you know what to say and not say to insurance companies.
Plus, he or she can represent you if you want to file for additional compensation. Are you searching for a personal injury lawyer with car accident compensation experience? The O’Hara law firm can help you get the compensation you deserve for your injuries.
Contact us today to schedule a consultation and find out why we are the best personal injury lawyer for your needs.
Car Accident Attorneys in Houston, Texas
Hundreds of thousands of car accidents occur each year throughout the state of Texas, but that does not make them any less impactful for those involved in them. Driving past a wreck on your way to work is one thing, but it is an entirely different story when it is your life, your passengers and your vehicle on the line. When that is the case, we’re here to offer our expertise. As a car accident attorneys, our goal is to help you seek the appropriate compensation for any injuries you or your loved ones have sustained from the collision.
Whether or not you seek our counsel after an accident, we believe that it is important for you to know what to do after a car wreck, especially if you have been hurt. To that end, you will find below some general information about the legalities involved in car accident cases. But first, a note about keeping things in perspective:
After an accident, your first priority should be your own health. Everything else can wait. It’s vital that you get the medical care you need, along with post-traumatic counseling, if applicable. Before you worry about anything else, take care of yourself physically and emotionally.
If you do not have health insurance and cannot afford to pay for medical care out of your pocket, our team at the O’Hara Law Firm can help you locate medical providers that will treat patients without health insurance. Some doctors and medical providers will agree to wait to get paid until after your auto accident claim settles.
Your car can be replaced. You can't.
Next Steps after a Car Wreck
Regarding the legalities of your wreck, there are a few preemptive steps you can take to help get your case moving forward. For instance, a smart thing to do after an accident is to take photos. If you yourself are not able to photograph the incident, you could enlist the help of a loved one. Have them take pictures of the scene of the accident, the vehicles involved, your injuries, and anything else that is unique to the situation. Later on, those photos could prove valuable to your case.
Another crucial step post-accident is filing your case. Depending on the specific circumstances related to your accident and your insurance, this may entail filing a claim with the other person’s insurance, filing a claim with your insurance company, filing your case in court, or even filing an administrative claim (if a government vehicle was involved). No matter the details of your accident, it is always best to file as soon as possible, as each type of claim has its own set time limits.
If you pursue a claim against a government entity, you have a very short time period to provide written notice to the government representative. Consult with an attorney for advice.
Many car accident cases are simple and straightforward, but it can only help you to enlist the aid of an experienced personal injury attorney. We got into law because we were — and still are — determined to help those who have been hurt because of someone else’s actions of negligence.
If you or a loved one has been hurt in a car accident, do not hesitate to call for a free consultation. After hearing the details of your case, we will guide you through the next steps we believe you should take.
Our Attorneys Mr PATRICK O’HARA
A FIRM FOCUSED ON YOU
Our team of attorneys, along with an approachable and very capable support staff. From the moment you decide to work with us, you will know that you are supported, understood, and advocated for.
So give us a call today. We are ready to focus on your case so that you can focus on recovery.