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In Houston, the number of auto accidents has been on the rise. In 2021, there were around 75,000 crashes, which is an increase of about 14% from the previous year. Houston also has an increasing rate of deadly crashes, which outpaces all of the rest of Texas.
This is no doubt partly due to Houston’s large population and the city’s reputation as one of the country’s most important shipping hubs. Our city’s impressive accolades, however, do not make the auto accident claims process any less confusing.
In this article, we’ll discuss a lot of the broad topics regarding auto accidents in Texas. We’ll discuss common types of car accidents in Texas, as well as important legal issues like liability, negligence, and comparative fault. Finally, we’ll talk you through the legal process of a personal injury claim, and give you the best tips for maximizing your settlement.
If you have been involved in a Houston auto accident, call DeHoyos Accident Attorneys today.
There are several types of car accidents common in Houston, each affecting how lawsuits about the accident may be handled:
In Texas, the laws and regulations specific to auto accidents include several key legal concepts, such as liability, negligence, and comparative fault. Let’s look at what these important aspects are and how they can affect your case.
Texas is an “at-fault” state, meaning individuals injured in a car accident typically start by filing an auto insurance claim. They have two options: a third-party claim through the negligent driver’s insurance company, or a first-party claim through their own insurance company.
Texas law requires motorists to carry a minimum amount of insurance, which includes $30,000 for one person in an accident, $60,000 total for all people in an accident, and $25,000 for property damage. This is called 30/60/25 coverage.
Texas law requires a two-year statute of limitations from the date of the car accident. Missing this deadline can mean missing out on legal compensation through the lawsuit.
Texas negligence laws comprise several elements. The first one is to establish the Duty of Care, which is the defendant’s obligation to act in a safe way on the road. Texas drivers assume this duty of care when they are issued a license.
The Breach of Duty is what you’ll have to prove for the other driver to be held responsible. Basically, the other driver owed you a duty of care but did not fulfill it. They can do this by engaging in distracted driving, ignoring the traffic signs, or being inebriated behind the wheel.
The third element you must establish is that the breach of duty directly caused your injuries or the damage to your vehicle. You must have tangible financial evidence that the accident cost you money. That is what your attorney will attempt to get back for you, including non-tangible damages like emotional distress.
Texas follows a modified form of comparative negligence, also called proportionate responsibility. Under this rule, a plaintiff can recover damages even if partially at fault for the accident, as long as their percentage of fault is not more than 50%. The total settlement is reduced proportionately based on what percentage you were found to be at fault, too. If you are found to be 51% or more at fault, you are barred from recovering compensation from the other driver.
These legal frameworks guide how liability is determined and how compensation is awarded. They emphasize the importance of understanding your rights and the rights of the other drivers on the road.
In Texas, the process of handling an auto accident claim involves reporting the accident, filing an insurance claim, engaging in settlement negotiations, and potentially filing a lawsuit.
DeHoyos Accident Attorneys can streamline this process and ensure that the proper documentation is filed and swift action is taken. We can assist in negotiating with insurance companies and maximizing your settlement while minimizing the confusion and stress. Call our Houston office today at (832) 745-4878 for a free consultation. We can ensure your bills are covered, and your rights are protected.
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“As a client to this Law Firm, I found it to be rewarding base on their work ethics. With there expertise, knowledge, flexibility and being responsive to their client needs. They will see that their client receive the best outcome on there case. There are many people out there that have bad ideas about lawyers, but DeHoyos Accident Attorneys will make sure that you’re not stressed about anything pertaining to your case. I’ll recommend that you seek this Lawyer and Law Firm for any unraveling situation you might face.”
“I can’t say enough good things about DeHoyos Accident Attorneys! Mr. Ryan DeHoyos is extremely knowledgeable in his field of Personal Injury. I was injured in a motor vehicle accident last year and Mr. DeHoyos stopped at nothing to get me the compensation I deserved. He kept me updated on my case regularly and guided me to get the medical care I needed. Additionally, his staff is so kind and caring, especially Ashley… Thank you, DeHoyos Accident Attorneys for your professionalism in closing my case…and WINNING big!”