League City Car Accident Lawyer
If you have been injured in a car accident due to the negligence of another, it is in your best interest to seek immediate legal counsel. You may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, property damage, lost wages, emotional pain and suffering, and other related expenses.
The car accident team at Burwell Nebout Trial Lawyers has been helping residents in League city and the surrounding areas since 1970, and we have a solid track record of obtaining substantial compensation for our clients in a timely manner.
Although it is always our goal to settle out of court, we are prepared to take your case to trial if a reasonable settlement cannot be reached. If you have been injured in a crash, contact a League City car accident lawyer at (281) 645-5000 today.
What Causes Most Car Accidents in Texas?
Motor vehicle accidents are a leading cause of accidental injury and death. In fact, more than 32,000 U.S. deaths and two million injuries are caused by car crashes each year. Of these deaths, one in three involve drunk driving and nearly the same amount involve excessive speed.
Texas is certainly no exception; 15,843 people were seriously injured in auto accidents in 2019, and one person was killed every two hours and 26 minutes.
And motor vehicle accidents also lead in work-related deaths, with crashes being the first or second leading cause of fatality in just about every industry. In 2018, a total of 1,276 workers were killed on the job in motor vehicle crashes.
Although auto accidents can occur for myriad reasons, and even among the most experienced drivers, negligence is often a factor. Some of the most common causes of car accidents include:
In today’s modern world, distractions are commonplace. Whether eating, drinking, putting on makeup, adjusting the radio, using a GPS, or texting a friend, engaging in any behavior that distracts your attention from the road can lead to a deadly auto accident. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), distracted driving claimed the lives of 2,841 lives in 2018 alone.
Involved in nearly one third of all traffic fatalities, speed really does kill. In 2018, excessive speed killed more than 25 people on average, each and every day. The primary reason for so many speed-related deaths is that it’s much harder to control a vehicle at higher speeds.
You also have less time to react to hazards at higher speeds. And the chance of being seriously injured or killed is substantially greater in a high-speed collision than one that occurs at slower speeds. Furthermore, speeding becomes even deadlier in the dark, in adverse weather conditions, and when the driver is inexperienced, or under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Failure to Obey Traffic Signs, Signals, and Rules of the Road
Traffic rules exist for a reason. Without designated lanes, signs, signals, laws, and general rules, this country’s roadways would be a chaotic mess. Most drivers follow these rules and laws, and expect others to do the same.
But even good drivers may make mistakes or poor judgments from time to time—driving a little too fast on icy roads to get to an important appointment, or running a red light because they thought they could make it in time. Other drivers display consistently bad behavior, endangering the lives of everyone with whom they share the road.
When failure to follow signs, signals, and traffic laws causes an injury accident, victims may be entitled to obtain compensation for resulting damages. Some of the most common examples of this type of negligent or reckless behavior include:
- Improper lane changes;
- Not using turn indicators when turning;
- Passing in a no-passing zone;
- Failure to yield;
- Traveling too fast for conditions, such as those that may occur during poor weather, at night, or in low visibility.
Driving Under the Influence of Drugs or Controlled Substances
Most people know that it is illegal to drive with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 percent in all 50 states. Even so, drunk driving continues to be a major problem in this country, and Texas reports an even higher incidence of drunk driving than the national average.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the percentage of adults who report driving while impaired is 1.9 percent nationwide, and 2.1 percent in Texas.
In 2016, there were 10,497 U.S. deaths involving alcohol-impaired drivers, making drunk driving responsible for 28 percent of all traffic-related deaths that year. But alcohol isn’t the only substance involved in crashes related to impairment; other drugs (including legal prescription medications) are involved in approximately 16 percent of annual motor vehicle crashes. And studies show that marijuana use increases the likelihood of a crash by 25 percent.
Drowsy or Fatigued Driving
You might be surprised to know that driving while tired can be just as dangerous as driving while intoxicated. Someone who has been awake for 18 hours is likely to be as impaired as someone with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.05 percent. And if you have been awake for a full 24 hours, you may drive as poorly as someone with a BAC of 0.10 percent, which is well over the legal limit in all 50 states.
According to the NHTSA, drowsy or fatigued driving accounted for 72,000 U.S. crashes in 2013. Although official reports indicate that these crashes resulted in 44,000 injuries and 800 deaths, the number of annual deaths may be as high as 6,000.
The examples above of negligent or reckless behavior are far from exhaustive. Any type of conduct that demonstrates failure to use proper care when operating a vehicle can result in liability.
If you have been injured in an auto accident due to the negligence of another, a League City car accident attorney can help you determine how to proceed. Contact Burwell Nebout Trial Lawyers today at (281) 645-5000 for a free and confidential consultation about your case.
Types of Car Accidents
From fender benders to multi-car collisions, car accidents are stressful situations, at the very least. When serious injuries or fatalities occur, car accidents can be physically, financially, and emotionally devastating.
Certain types of car accidents, such as head-on collisions, T-bone crashes, and vehicle rollovers, are more likely to result in serious injury and death, while rear-end crashes are the most common.
Head-on crashes generally involve two vehicles traveling toward each other in opposite directions. Since both cars are usually in motion, their combined speed dramatically increases the likelihood of serious injury or death. For example, if both cars are traveling at 45 mph at the time of collision, the impact would be similar to a one-car crash at 90 mph.
T-bone or Side-impact Crash
Getting “T-boned” refers to a side-impact collision that typically occurs at an intersection. One car usually crashes head-first into the side of another. Since the sides of a vehicle provide much less protection than the front or back, side-impact collisions are often deadly.
Vehicle rollovers, which typically involve high-profile vehicles, such as SUVs, frequently result in serious injury or death. When these vehicles take a sharp turn too fast, the vehicle can flip over onto its side or roof, often with deadly consequences.
Rear-end crashes are the most common type of car accident, and are frequently attributed to distracted driving. In most cases, the rear driver is at fault for this type of collision, but there are exceptions. The lead car may be at fault if the driver reversed into the rear car, was intoxicated, or if the lead car’s brake lights were broken.
Why You Should Hire a Car Accident Lawyer
Motor vehicle accidents can be extremely stressful, even if no one seems to be injured. The consequences of a collision can go far beyond personal injury, and it is possible to suffer financial damages through multiple avenues, including the loss of property and work.
In addition, navigating the red tape imposed by insurance companies can be frustrating, and they may balk at providing you with appropriate compensation for all damages incurred. If you are in such a situation, it’s in your best interest to seek advice and legal counsel from a League City car accident attorney.
Insurance Companies Are Not on Your Side
Despite what you see on television commercials, insurance companies are businesses determined to make a profit, and one of the ways they succeed in doing this is by paying out as little money as possible. They may also deny your claim and make it difficult to file an appeal. Before you speak to an insurance company representative, call a League City auto wreck attorney to determine your options.
Examining the Facts
Automobile accidents are complex, and very few people understand the many factors that can lead to an incident. A driver who seems to be clearly at fault may have had no way to prevent the crash from occurring. Only an expert in car collisions can say who is liable with any certainty. The automobile manufacturer may have installed a defective part, or unseen obstacles may have been in the road. Sometimes, other drivers even hide relevant information. A League City car accident lawyer will use experienced investigators to uncover all of the facts. This is why you should never admit fault to an accident until you have spoken to an experienced attorney.
Injuries Are Not Always Apparent
Immediately after an accident, you will likely feel distressed but may have no visible injuries. Your adrenaline may be overpowering the pain of internal injuries. In addition, some injuries directly related to the accident may not appear until days, weeks, or even months later. If you have already settled a claim with the insurance company, it may be too late to request compensation for any of these delayed-onset injuries, many of which can be chronic and affect your ability to work and your quality of life.
The damages sustained from an automobile accident often encompass much more than hospital bills and property loss. If you are injured, you may miss work during recovery, and if your injuries are severe, you may not be able to go back to work at all. In addition, many states allow you to be compensated for pain, suffering and emotional distress. Even situations such as a loss of intimacy with your partner or difficulty interacting with your family may have a monetary value. A League City personal injury lawyer will be able to analyze your situation completely and determine a true total of the current and future damages you have incurred.
Navigating the Waters
Your accident may be relatively straightforward, but the process is rarely as simple as it seems. It can take countless hours to file an accident claim or a lawsuit, and if you do not follow all procedures precisely, your case may be in jeopardy. You could experience long delays while refiling your claim, or it could be thrown out altogether. You are certainly within your rights to file a lawsuit on your own, but an attorney will be able to do so expeditiously and without any errors.
Facing Financial Losses
Without a League City auto wreck attorney, you may experience burdensome financial losses from your auto accident. If you need to file a lawsuit, you have to do so before the statute of limitations closes your window of opportunity. If you do not have the skills and resources to prove your case, you may never be compensated enough to cover your damages.
Benefits of Hiring a Car Accident Lawyer
In the blink of an eye, the lives of those involved in car accidents can be turned upside down. Depending on the severity of a crash, vehicles could be damaged, and people could be injured, or even killed.
And those at the scene are not the only ones involved; imagine being a parent and getting a phone call late at night that your son or daughter has been killed in an auto accident. You pray that you will wake up and realize it was all a bad dream, but unfortunately, that doesn’t happen. The same holds true when a wife loses her husband or a husband loses his wife in a similar manner.
After taking some time to go through the seven stages of grief, it is time to take action.
The Initial Consultation with an Auto Accident Lawyer
Experienced auto accident lawyers know how to take on the driver at fault, but they also understand the tricks big insurance companies try to play. In an initial consultation, your attorney will not only obtain facts about the case, but also determine whether there are sufficient grounds for a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit. The more documentation you have about the nature of the accident, the more likely it is that they will agree to take on your case.
Types of Damages a Car Accident Lawyer Can Help You Win
In a personal injury claim, multiple types of damages exist. There are tangible damages, which carry a defined monetary value. Known as economic damages, these are easy to document. Examples include medical and funeral expenses.
Non-economic damages, on the other hand, do not carry a defined monetary value. They are more difficult to document, and examples include lost wages, benefits, and companionship.
If a wrongful death claim is pursued, the at-fault party may also be liable for punitive damages. These damages are added on top of a client’s actual losses and are issued as a teaching tool to prevent this type of behavior in the future.
How an Auto Accident Attorney Proves a Client Deserves Damages
Tangible, economic damages are relatively easy for an experienced car accident lawyer to prove. Receipts of medical bills, auto repair bills, and funeral costs usually do the job. Proving intangible damages is much tougher. In order to do so, a personal injury attorney will need information about the victim’s age and health at the time of the crash.
They also must determine the expected lifespan of the victim as well as the financial impact their death will have on their family going forward. However, this is not nearly as difficult as proving punitive damages.
Punitive damages require proof that a defendant acted maliciously, recklessly, or willfully. Generally speaking, Texas courts try to issue these damages very sparingly. For a plaintiff to be awarded punitive damages, every juror must agree on the amount of the punitive damages and that awarding them is legally correct.
Not to mention, in Texas, these damages are capped. The state does not want them to be exorbitantly more than the value of the actual monetary loss the plaintiff suffered.
Texas Car Accident Laws
In Texas, if you want to obtain compensation for injuries and other damages caused by another’s negligence, you must be able to prove fault. This does not mean, however, that you cannot recover damages if you played a small role in causing the accident.
As a modified comparative negligence state, all involved parties will be evaluated to determine their level of fault. As long as your contribution of fault was no greater than those you are suing, you should be able to recover some damages.
For example, let’s say you were adjusting your stereo when a speeding driver ran a red light and smashed into the side of your car. Your momentary distraction may have prevented you from swerving to avoid the driver, but his speed and failure to stop at the red light were the primary causes of the accident.
The judge rules that you were 15 percent responsible for the accident, and the other driver was 85 percent responsible. If medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and property damage are valued at $100,000, your damage award will be reduced by your percentage of fault (15 percent), and you will receive whatever is left (in this case, $85,000).
Texas Statute of Limitations on Car Accidents
As with all Texas personal injury cases, Texas car accidents are subject to a two-year statute of limitations, during which time an injury claim must be filed to be valid.
(a) Except as provided by Sections 16.010, 16.0031, and 16.0045, a person must bring suit for trespass for injury to the estate or to the property of another, conversion of personal property, taking or detaining the personal property of another, personal injury, forcible entry and detainer, and forcible detainer not later than two years after the day the cause of action accrues.
(b) A person must bring suit not later than two years after the day the cause of action accrues in an action for injury resulting in death. The cause of action accrues on the death of the injured person.
If you fail to bring a claim before this window of opportunity closes, you will permanently forfeit your ability to do so.
The Process for Filing a Claim After a Car Accident in League City
If you have been injured in a motor vehicle collision due to the negligence of another, you may be entitled to substantial compensation. Once you are home safely, it is important to consult with a League City car accident lawyer immediately. You want to file an injury claim as soon as possible, but navigating this complex process without legal counsel can be confusing and stressful, and even minor errors can result in serious financial losses.
Seek medical attention after the accident, even if injuries aren’t immediately visible. Certain serious injuries, including damage to soft tissue and internal bleeding, might not produce symptoms for days or weeks. In addition to ensuring your safety and wellbeing, seeking treatment will result in a medical record, which can be invaluable to a personal injury lawsuit, should you decide to bring one against the responsible party or parties.
Do not, under any circumstances, give a written or recorded statement to any insurance company without first consulting your attorney. And don’t sign any waivers or release forms, either. Your League City car accident lawyer can handle the insurance companies and other involved parties on your behalf so that you can focus on healing.
At Burwell Nebout Trial Lawyers, our skilled injury team will investigate the details of your case, calculate damages, gather evidence to substantiate your claim, negotiate a settlement with the insurance companies, and position you for the best possible outcome. Insurance companies are notorious for bringing low offers to the table, especially when injury victims don’t have a lawyer by their side. Although it is our goal to reach a pre-trial settlement, if a reasonable figure can’t be reached, we are prepared to take your case to trial.
Contact Burwell Nebout Trial Lawyers Today
If another’s negligence has caused you harm, the skilled legal team at Burwell Nebout Trial Lawyers can help. We have been protecting the rights of clients in League City and the surrounding area for years, and we have an impressive track record of obtaining substantial settlements in a timely manner.
Our experienced car accident attorneys will work with the insurance companies, provide access to all kinds of resources, represent your interests in court, and help you get the full compensation available to you.
Do not attempt to undertake this complex, stressful process on your own. We can help. Contact Burwell Nebout Trial Lawyers today at (281) 645-5000 for a free and confidential consultation about your case.