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Houston Car Accidents: Frequently Asked Questions

Houston Car Accidents: Frequently Asked Questions

You likely have questions if you’ve been involved in a car accident in Houston, TX. What are the next steps? How do you prove that the other driver is liable for your damages? What if they blame you?

Our Houston car accident attorneys at Zehl & Associates Injury & Accident Lawyers can answer these and other questions you may have. 

With our award-winning attorneys by your side, you’ll be well-positioned to recover compensation for the full extent of your losses. Our undefeated Houston car accident lawyers have a reputation for breaking records. We’ve secured billions of dollars for injured victims, winning some of the largest settlements and court awards in history.

We offer a free consultation to discuss your car accident case with an experienced personal injury attorney in Houston, Texas. Call our law firm at 1-888-603-3636 or contact us online to schedule your appointment.

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Why Should I Hire an Attorney After a Car Accident in Houston, TX? 

Why Should I Hire an Attorney After a Car Accident in Houston, TX? 

Hiring a skilled attorney can significantly affect whether you walk away with a lowball settlement or an award that fully compensates you for past and future damages. You’ll likely be dealing with an insurance company. Their adjusters and agents are trained to employ tactics that undervalue (and deny) valid claims. 

Don’t accept a quick settlement offer without consulting our Houston personal injury lawyers. You could be leaving money on the table. Also, you can’t ask for more money if you discover additional injuries or damages later on. You release the company from any further liability once you accept their offer. You will avoid these and other mistakes with an attorney by your side.

You’ll want Zehl & Associates Injury & Accident Lawyers advocating for you because: 

  • We’ll provide honest advice and guidance throughout the process
  • We can build a solid case proving every element of your claim 
  • We’ll handle all communications and negotiations with opposing parties
  • We can protect you from bad faith practices
  • We’ll take your case all the way to trial if the insurance company refuses to present a fair settlement

We’ve negotiated numerous large settlements, but we’re also fierce trial attorneys who aren’t afraid of a court battle. We’ll ensure that you recover the full compensation you’re owed under Texas law. Contact us today to schedule a free initial consultation. 

What Should I Do After a Car Accident in Houston, TX?

Many car accident victims are understandably in a state of shock after their crash. However, the things you do after a traffic collision can drastically affect your health, legal rights, and ability to recover fair compensation. Additionally, you have certain duties you must adhere to under Texas law.

Here are some steps to take after an auto accident in Houston: 

  • Stop your vehicle at the accident scene (or as close to it as possible). You must remain there until you’ve fulfilled all legal obligations, as explained below. 
  • Call 911. Request an ambulance if you or anyone else was hurt. Under the Texas Transportation Code, you must contact the police after any crash that results in injury, death, or apparent property damage exceeding $1,000. However, even if you don’t think your collision meets these conditions, you should notify the authorities. If they’re dispatched, they’ll prepare an accident report outlining important details. 
  • Exchange information with the other driver (or allow the police to do so). That includes names, auto insurance information, vehicle registration numbers, and addresses. 
  • Don’t apologize to the other driver, discuss fault with anyone, or say you feel “okay.” These statements can be used against you in a future legal claim. 
  • Document the crash scene, if possible. Take pictures and videos of traffic conditions, property damage, skid marks, road debris, and any other relevant details. Write down what happened while it’s fresh in your mind. Additionally, obtain contact information from eyewitnesses.
  • Get a prompt medical assessment, even if a paramedic evaluated you at the accident scene or you don’t think you’re injured. Adrenaline can mask the signs of injury, and some minor injuries may indicate something more serious. Also, your medical record will help prove the link between any injuries you sustained and the crash. 
  • Notify your car insurance company of the collision, regardless of fault. However, don’t provide a recorded statement or discuss anything but solid facts. 

Reach out to an experienced car accident attorney in Houston as soon as possible. Your lawyer can communicate with insurance adjusters and others on your behalf and help you avoid mistakes that could hurt your case.

What Types of Compensation Can I Recover in a Houston, Texas Car Accident Case? 

Texas car accident victims may be entitled to compensation for economic and non-economic damages in a personal injury case.  

Economic damages are the financial impact of the car accident and injuries, such as: 

  • Medical bills for an ambulance, hospital stay, treatment, etc. 
  • Future medical expenses if you need long-term care or services 
  • Physical therapy
  • Lost wages and benefits
  • Reduced earning potential 
  • Property damage to your vehicle and personal property
  • Out-of-pocket expenses

Non-economic damages are the intangible effects you experience, such as: 

  • Pain and suffering
  • Chronic pain
  • Reduced enjoyment of life
  • Emotional distress, including anxiety and PTSD
  • Inconvenience
  • Disability 
  • Scarring or disfigurement

In some cases, a Texas court may award a plaintiff punitive damages (also called exemplary damages). These awards don’t compensate for a specific loss. Instead, they serve as a way to punish a defendant for malicious or grossly negligent conduct. Our personal injury lawyers in Houston will evaluate your case and identify the damages you are entitled to under Texas law. 

Can I Still Receive Damages If I Was Partly Responsible for a Texas Car Accident?

The modified comparative negligence law applies when a car accident victim is partially at fault for the crash. Under the statute, everyone who shares responsibility is assigned a percentage of fault. You can only recover damages if your share of blame doesn’t exceed 50%. If you’re deemed more than 50% at fault, you’re barred from receiving compensation from the other party. 

Your percentage of fault will reduce your compensation. For example, suppose a court determines that you are 40% responsible for a rear-end crash. You’d only be entitled to 60% of your damages from the other driver. If you were found to be 51% at fault, you’d receive nothing. 

Insurance adjusters and other at-fault parties may allege shared fault. They want to reduce their financial obligations. Don’t just take their word for it; they may have no evidence to back up their allegations. Contact an attorney to ensure that you receive a fair payout.

Who Could Be Liable For My Car Accident Damages in Houston, TX?

Anyone who contributed to your collision could be liable for your losses. Sometimes, that means multiple parties could share financial responsibility. 

Potential at-fault parties include: 

  • Another driver
  • Pedestrian
  • Bicyclist
  • Motorcyclist
  • Truck driver
  • Trucking company
  • Manufacturer of a defective vehicle part (e.g., airbag or brakes)
  • The employer of a negligent driver who was working when the crash occurred

Our car accident lawyers in Houston will work to identify every party who shares accountability for your traffic crash.

How Do I Prove My Car Accident Case?

Most motor vehicle accidents result from driver error or negligence. In other words, drivers typically don’t intend to cause collisions. They are simply careless, such as when they drive while distracted, speed, or tailgate. 

A negligence case consists of four legal elements: 

  • Duty of care – drivers owe everyone on the road an obligation to drive cautiously and follow traffic rules
  • Breach of duty – the driver breached their duty by failing to act as a responsible driver would under the circumstances, such as by texting and driving
  • Causation – the breach (texting while driving) directly led to the collision 
  • Damages – you sustained losses, such as costs for medical care and lost income 

You prove these elements using evidence, such as police reports, photos, videos, surveillance footage, medical records, expert witness reports, and eyewitness statements.

How Much Does It Cost to Hire a Car Accident Lawyer in Houston?

Our Texas car accident lawyers take cases on a contingency fee basis. That means you don’t have to pay anything upfront or out of pocket to retain an experienced attorney. Attorney’s fees will be deducted from your settlement or jury award. 

If your case is unsuccessful, you won’t have to pay any legal expenses. We can explain our contingency fee agreement in detail during a free, no-obligation consultation. 

How Long Do I Have To File a Car Accident Lawsuit in Texas?

Texas law imposes a strict deadline for filing personal injury lawsuits, known as the statute of limitations. You will typically have two years from the collision date to file a car accident lawsuit. However, there could be exceptions that give you more or less time. 

Additionally, it’s best to initiate your case as soon as possible while evidence is available and witnesses remember what happened.

If you miss the statute of limitations that applies to your case, you’ll lose your right to recover damages through the courts. Contact our Houston personal injury attorneys to learn more.

Schedule a Free Case Evaluation With Our Undefeated Houston Auto Accident Lawyer: Call 1-888-603-3636 or Contact Us Online

If you were injured in a car crash in Houston, TX, Zehl & Associates Injury & Accident Lawyers should be your first call. We’ve recovered billions of dollars for injured accident victims, and we’re prepared to do what it takes to get you fair compensation. 

Contact our Houston auto accident lawyers today to schedule a free case assessment.

We handle all types of car accident claims, including:

Additional Houston Car Accident Resources