If you are at fault for a car accident in Texas, you may be liable for other involved parties’ damages, including property damage and losses related to personal injury or wrongful death. If you committed a traffic violation or engaged in reckless behavior that led to the accident, you may also receive a ticket or face criminal charges and subsequent penalties.
If you were in a car accident and believe you were not at fault, you may want to consult a car accident lawyer to discuss your legal options. An attorney can listen to your story, go over your options, and help you reduce negative consequences as much as possible.
Understanding Fault in a Car Accident Case
If you are at fault for a car accident in Texas, it means that you accept the blame for causing the accident through your actions or negligence. When it comes to car accidents, assigning fault is important because someone needs to pay for damages resulting from the crash. Therefore, if you are at fault for a car accident, you (or your insurance company) will likely be responsible for paying any victims’ financial or personal losses.
Common examples of driver negligence or careless actions include:
- Distracted driving
- Failing to yield the right of way
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Aggressive driving
- Running a stoplight
- Failing to maintain your vehicle
If you committed any of the acts above and it led to an accident, you may be at fault for the accident, and you or your insurance company may be liable for paying all damages.
Proportionate Responsibility in Texas
Texas has a law called “proportionate responsibility,” found in Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code § 33.001. This rule means you may still be able to recover compensation even if you were partly at fault for the accident.
This law is one reason you should not immediately admit fault at the accident scene. While you may be partly at fault, another party may bear a higher percentage of fault than you, potentially absolving you of some financial responsibility.
As long as you are less than 50 percent at fault, you may still be able to recover compensation from another involved party with a higher percentage of fault.
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What Can I Expect After a Car Accident If It Was My Fault?
Whether you are a victim of or at fault for a car accident, the process is typically the same. You are likely to go through these or similar steps:
Seek Medical Attention
If you are injured, your priority is to seek medical attention. If you are seriously injured, call an ambulance or go to the ER. If not, visit your doctor as soon as possible. Do not delay getting medical help, even if you think your injuries are not serious.
Speak with the Police Officer on the Scene
If you are not injured, you will speak with the officer who arrives at the scene. The officer will ask you questions and fill out an official report. Even if you believe you are at fault, it’s a good idea to say as little as possible to the officer. Stick with the facts and only answer the questions the officer asks you.
Consult with a Car Accident Attorney in Texas
Even if you were told or believe you are at fault for the car accident, you owe it to yourself to consult with a car accident lawyer. You may not be at fault, and our investigation may be able to establish this.
An attorney from Loncar Lyon Jenkins can investigate the accident, establish fault, and liability, and go over your legal options. If you attempt to handle a car accident claim on your own, you may make mistakes that could harm your case.
Negotiate a Settlement
If you have an attorney to represent you, they will speak directly to the insurance company on your behalf. Once your insurer receives all necessary documents, they will either reject the victim’s accident claim or negotiate a settlement. Once the claim reaches this stage, the insurance company will work directly with the victim or their car accident attorney.
What Losses Will My Insurance Company Cover?
Your auto insurance company will cover any damages incurred by the victim up to your policy limits. Damages may include:
Your policy may cover the victim’s medical expenses, such as:
- Emergency room visit
- Surgical care
- Hospital stay
- Pain medication
- Routine doctor visits
- Extended care
The victim may have to take off work to recover from injuries. If so, they could lose pay, benefits, tips, bonuses, or other forms of income. Your insurance company may pay for lost income, including disability.
Pain and Suffering
Car accident injuries can be life-altering. The victim may experience emotional trauma, depression, or a major lifestyle change. As a result, they may add pain and suffering to their accident claim.
If the accident resulted in a death, your insurance company may pay damages to the deceased victim’s family. Wrongful death damages may include:
- Funeral expenses
- Burial costs
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of household income
- Loss of consortium
How much your insurance company pays the victim depends on factors like the accident’s circumstances, who was involved, the total of all damages, and your insurance policy’s limits.
Contact our personal injury lawyers today
A Car Accident Attorney in Texas Can Help With Your Case
Never assume anything after a car accident. Instead, protect yourself legally. Let our law firm help you sort out the accident and protect your rights under Texas law. Call Loncar Lyon Jenkins at (800) 777-7777 and get a free case evaluation.