Even when you do your best to drive defensively and avoid danger on the road, unfortunately, you can’t control certain risk factors. Bad weather, poor road conditions, vehicle malfunctions, and the actions of other drivers cause car accidents throughout the Houston area every day. Many of these accidents are minor fender-benders that you can resolve with a call to the insurance company. Others are much more severe, resulting in major damage, injuries, expensive medical bills, and other frustrating complications.
If you’re the victim of a serious crash, there are steps you can take to make sure you get the best possible outcome, including finding the right Houston car accident lawyer to represent you. Our Houston car accident attorneys at Johnson Garcia LLP can help you navigate the stressful legal aspects of your case and get the compensation you need while you recover.
After a crash, you might be in a state of shock. You might be confused, or you might be angry. These feelings are common and normal. But it’s important to get into a calm mindset before talking to the other driver or the police. It’s hard to speak clearly and rationally if you’re angry or upset.
If you or your passenger(s) is seriously injured, pinned, bleeding, or unresponsive, don’t try to move yourself or the passenger. This can make injuries worse. Call 911 immediately, or make sure someone else on the scene calls. If you’re not seriously injured, take a few deep breaths and do the following:
With so many vehicles in Houston, car crashes are an everyday hazard for most people. Some crashes are unavoidable. However, most accidents on our roads are preventable and are caused by the negligent acts of other drivers. At Johnson Garcia, our experienced Houston car accident lawyers handle many types of car accident cases, including:
If you are involved in an accident, it may be helpful to understand more about the type of accident that injured you or a loved one. This may help you understand what led to your accident, who may be liable, and what you could possibly recover if you file a personal injury claim.
In the days and weeks after an accident, you’ll probably have a lot of questions. Even if you took all the right steps after the accident — exchanging information with the other party, calling 911, and getting a police report — you may still feel unsure about what to do next and what to expect. Here are some questions to think about if you’re deciding whether to call a Houston car wreck lawyer.
After a car accident, you have enough things to worry about — medical bills, loss of income, and painful injuries, to name a few. Your instinct might be to try to deal with the insurance company on your own. But it can be an exhausting process. We’ve seen too many people accept settlements that are too low because the insurance companies wore them down or because they didn’t know they could get more. Accepting too little can leave you in a difficult financial position, with less money than you actually need to cover your losses. Our experienced Houston car accident lawyers will help you:
Insurance companies are in the business of making money. They want to pay out as little as possible and close your car accident injury claim quickly. Make sure they don’t undercut you by going in prepared. At a minimum, you need to understand your insurance policy and coverage details. Take the time to understand things like what bodily injury coverage is and who it covers, whether you have coverages on your policy that protect you — like comprehensive and collision — and whether you’re protected in case an uninsured or underinsured person injures you or causes damage to your property. Make sure you know the approximate Kelley Blue Book value of your car, and keep all medical bills related to your accident. If you decide to negotiate with the insurance company on your own, here are some tips:
The best way to ensure you get the best settlement is to hire an experienced Houston car accident attorney. The Houston car accident lawyers at the Johnson Garcia LLP firm know when insurance companies are trying to take advantage of people to get a claim off their books. We’ll fight for your rights to get you the best settlement. For more information on how to deal with insurance companies after an accident, view our helpful infographic below.
When an individual is hurt in a car wreck due to another party’s careless actions, it’s normal to wonder how much compensation they can get from the at-fault driver. Coming up with an estimate is complicated since no two accidents are the same, and injury cases heavily rely on facts.
It is difficult to determine how much a car accident claim is worth without a comprehensive investigation into the facts surrounding the case. Various factors go into calculating how much one can receive after an accident, which is why having a skilled Houston car accident lawyer in your corner is advisable. A few factors that can determine how much your case is worth include:
To better understand how much you can receive after a car accident, speak to an experienced attorney who can assess your injuries and evaluate available damages. Remember, Texas is an at-fault state, meaning the negligent driver who caused your accident is required by law to pay your damages. Texas requires drivers to maintain a minimum liability coverage of $30,000 per person and up to $60,000 per accident. Your lawyer can push for the best compensation that accurately reflects what you are owed due to your injuries.
When filing a personal injury claim in Houston, TX, the burden of proof rests on you and your lawyer. To prove liability, a car accident lawyer needs to show:
Even if the defendant’s liability is clear-cut, their insurer may try to shift blame and even deny or devalue your claim. For this reason, you need to be proactive and gather evidence that can help you prove your case, including:
It’s also important to note that you should never admit fault to other drivers or insurance representatives at the scene of the accident. This may significantly hurt your claim. Posting on social media about the accident may also jeopardize your chances of securing a fair settlement, if any.
If you’re the immediate family member (spouse, child, or parent) of someone who passed away in a car accident due to someone else’s negligence, it’s important to know you can bring a lawsuit immediately for wrongful death. No amount of money can bring your loved one back, but it can help bring a sense of justice and provide a more secure future for survivors. Call us at 832-844-6700 to set up your free consultation today.
Our Houston car accident attorneys at Johnson Garcia LLP know it can be a confusing and emotional time after an accident. Your whole life might have been turned upside down. Not being able to work or struggling to pay mounting medical bills can be incredibly difficult and stressful. Building a good case requires professional experience and care. Whether you’re fighting for medical coverage from the insurance company or are in dispute with another party involved in the crash, you can trust us to:
Most people think an attorney is unaffordable, so they never even make that first call to a law firm. Insurance companies know this and may undercut you when it comes time to payout. What many people don’t know is that some attorneys work on a contingency basis, which means they get paid nothing if they don’t win your case. And if they do win, they receive a portion of the settlement (typically 33–40%). Nothing comes out of your pocket.
This is precisely how Johnson Garcia LLP operates. Our Houston car accident attorneys work on a contingency basis, and there are no up-front costs to hire one of our Houston car accident attorneys. If we don’t win your case, you pay nothing. Why do we do this? Because we’re confident that if we take on your case, we’ll win. Call us at 832-844-6700 to set up your free consultation today.
Houston’s roads and freeways are notoriously dangerous. Reckless or distracted drivers, heavy traffic, and changing weather conditions are a few reasons why. It’s not uncommon for drivers to be side-swiped by someone making a careless lane change, T-boned by someone running a red light at an intersection, or rear-ended by a negligent driver who fails to stop. Here are a few examples of hazards and situations that can lead to a serious car accident:
Regardless of the weather or other hazards, all drivers have a duty to drive defensively and take precautions while driving, like maintaining enough space between their car and the car in front of them. If your vehicle was damaged or you were injured in an accident because of someone else’s negligence, you have the right to compensation for your damages and injuries.
According to the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), there were 4,481 motor vehicle fatalities in 2022, representing a decrease from the 4,497 deaths recorded in 2021. Here are other statistics posted by the department regarding motor vehicle crashes in 2022:
These statistics highlight the serious problem of vehicle-related injuries and deaths in Texas. Unfortunately, too few people get the compensation they deserve after an accident. Our Houston car accident lawyers are proud to represent everyday people. Our mission is to help victims get back on their feet.
When drivers, passengers, and pedestrians are involved in accidents, they risk sustaining various types of injuries, broadly categorized into impact and penetrating injuries. Both types of injuries can be severe, and that’s why our Houston car accident lawyers recommend you visit a medical professional for an accurate diagnosis and treatment.
Here are some of the common injuries that injured victims may sustain after car wrecks:
A traumatic brain injury (TBI) occurs when a “sudden, external, physical assault damages the brain.” When drivers or passengers are involved in head-on collisions, T-bone accidents, or whiplash accidents, they may suffer brain damage. Flying debris during car crashes may also cause TBIs. Traumatic brain injuries require immediate medical attention.
The impact of a car accident on the body can cause long-term disability due to spinal cord injuries. These injuries can cause partial or total paralysis, which may happen immediately after the crash or take time to manifest.
These injuries are common in car accidents since the human body isn’t designed to sustain heavy crash impacts. Still, symptoms may delay showing up, and victims may experience chronic pain and disability for years.
During an accident, victims may come into contact with car parts, such as hot engine parts or chemicals, that can cause severe burn injuries. A vehicle may also burst into flames, causing life-threatening injuries to one’s entire body. Common types of burns that affect accident victims include:
Catastrophic burns, such as third and fourth-degree burns, may require skin grafting and surgery.
When accident victims are hit by flying objects or forced into car parts, internal organ damage may occur. Blunt force trauma or a puncture wound may lead to organ damage to the small intestines, spleen, or liver. Organ damage may result in internal bleeding, which could lead to the formation of blood clots days or weeks after the incident.
Broken arms, wrists, legs, and ankles are common in Houston car accidents. Other victims may also sustain broken pelvises. The severity of these injuries ranges from simple breaks to compound fractures that may require surgery and physical rehabilitation.
Facial injuries caused by broken glass or impact on the side window, steering wheel, airbag, or any other hard surface are difficult to deal with. Disfigurement from facial injuries may require surgery and leave the victim with a lasting scar. The nose, eyes, ears, and mouth are delicate parts that can easily sustain injuries.
The force of impact during a car accident can sever an entire limb or lead to substantial damage necessitating its partial or complete removal. Limb loss can significantly affect a victim’s life financially, physically, and mentally. One may have to undergo expensive rehabilitation and use prostheses or other assistive devices for their entire life.
Not all injuries in a car crash are physical. Sometimes, collisions can leave victims with emotional scars, which occur due to a shock to the system. Visions may haunt victims, or you may relive the traumatic event whenever you get into a vehicle. PTSD may affect one’s sleep, concentration, and behavior.
If you sustained a minor or severe injury after an accident, make sure you visit your doctor for a comprehensive checkup and keep a record of all your visits. Also, remember to document any symptoms you may experience after the accident, such as physical pain. Our Houston car accident lawyers will use such information to push for the best possible compensation for your injuries.
When you’ve been injured in a motor vehicle accident, you may not have the physical ability, mental energy, or relevant knowledge to handle all aspects of the situation on your own. If you’re struggling to get coverage for medical bills and other expenses or find yourself engaged in a dispute about employer disability, an experienced car accident lawyer in Houston can provide the knowledge and support you need.
At Johnson Garcia LLP, our Houston car accident lawyers work hard to get you the outcome you deserve as the victim of a serious car accident. With years of collective experience handling personal injury cases and resolving insurance and business disputes, we can help you get the money you need and guide you through the often-stressful process of filing a suit.
We don’t ask clients who can’t afford it to pay anything upfront. Your initial consultation is completely free, and if we don’t recover damages for you, we don’t get paid — it’s just that simple. To learn more about what we can do for you or set up an appointment to discuss your case with one of our personal injury lawyers, call Johnson Garcia LLP today at 832-844-6700 or fill out our contact form online.
While there’s no legal requirement to get a lawyer after a car accident in Houston, there are many benefits of doing so.
Above all else, getting a car accident lawyer ensures that the insurance company doesn’t take advantage of you during a difficult time in your life. Your Houston car accident attorney will protect your legal rights as they negotiate aggressively with insurance companies to help ensure you receive all the compensation you may be entitled to after an accident.
Additionally, your car accident lawyer can answer all your questions and provide legal guidance, which allows you to focus more time on your physical recovery.
If you suffer any type of car accident injury, it’s best to consult with an experienced Houston car accident lawyer right away to learn more about your legal options for compensation. You may assume that your insurance policy will cover your injuries, treatment, and other damages, but there’s no guarantee of that happening.
It’s especially best to consult with an attorney immediately after an accident because according to the Texas Statute of Limitations, you only have two years to file a claim. While two years may sound like a long time, car accident claims are complicated processes that require sufficient time for investigation, negotiations, and taking your claim to court if necessary. Don’t delay.
While you may consider it a minor car accident, you could come to find that you suffered hidden or internal car accident injuries that are affecting your health and financial circumstances in several ways. Also keep in mind that some injuries have delayed symptoms that appear days, weeks, or even months later after the accident. The word “minor” means something different to everyone, so don’t take any chances with your health and future financial well-being. At the very least, take advantage of a free consultation with an experienced Houston car accident lawyer to learn more about your legal rights, the insurance claims process, and the steps you can take to obtain compensation for any damages.
Texas is an at-fault state so if another party caused your accident, it’s critical to consult with a knowledgeable Houston attorney as soon as possible to begin the legal compensation process. Don’t make the mistake of relying on your insurance company for guidance after a car accident. When you go at it alone, there’s a greater chance of making a mistake, such as agreeing to less compensation than what your case is worth.
You don’t want to leave any money on the table if you’re injured in a car accident in Houston. Luckily, there are many steps you can take to maximize your car accident settlement, starting with a consultation with an experienced Houston car accident attorney. Your attorney will review the details of your accident, allowing them to estimate the total value of all your damages and injuries resulting from the crash.
You can help your attorney estimate the total value of your case by maintaining all evidence of expenses and losses associated with your car accident. These include photographs of your injuries and property damage, records of doctors’ appointments, medical exams, medical bills, car repair and/or replacement costs, and lost income.
There are a variety of contributing factors that can impact the average settlement for a car accident in Houston.
Some of these include: insurance coverage limits, the severity of the accident and your injuries, proving liability, lost wages, out-of-pocket expenses, property damage, and the long-term impact of injuries on your life.
For example, if you suffer minor injuries in a car accident — such as a soft tissue injury — you shouldn’t expect to receive as much compensation as you would with major injuries, such as bleeding on the brain or paralysis.
From $10,000 on the low end to multi-million dollar settlements on the high end, consulting with an experienced Houston car accident attorney will help you better understand what to expect.
Insurance companies take many steps when determining settlement amounts for a car accident in Houston and Texas.
As a general rule of thumb, insurance companies take into consideration special damages and general damages in determining a first settlement offer. The more severe the accident and your injuries, the greater their settlement amount could be.
Of course, insurance companies aren’t as trustworthy as they want you to believe. They’re in the business of saving money, so don’t expect their first settlement offer to be fair.
Just remember: Even though the insurance company is responsible for making a settlement offer, you’re under no obligation to accept. You have the legal right to hire an experienced Houston car accident lawyer who can negotiate or take your case to court if you’re unable to reach common ground.
As tempting as it may be to accept the first settlement offer — as this allows you to put your case in the past — it’s not generally a good idea. And that’s especially true if you’ve yet to consult with an experienced Houston car accident attorney near me.
Insurance companies are known for making lowball offers in hopes that you accept and close your claim. Doing so allows them to save money, which is exactly what they want.
The only time you should accept the first settlement offer is if your attorney suggests that you do so. Otherwise, it’s best to have your attorney enter negotiations.
You’re under no obligation to accept a settlement offer from an insurance company.
If you reject the first settlement offer, your legal team of experienced Houston car accident lawyers will continue to negotiate with the insurance company in hopes of reaching a number that you consider more in line with the amount of your car accident injuries and damages.
Should these negotiations come up short, it may be time to file a Texas personal injury lawsuit. This allows you to take your case to court, where a jury and/or judge decides if you should receive compensation and how much.
Keep in mind that negotiations between your Houston car accident attorney and insurance company may continue, even after you file a lawsuit so you can still reach a settlement before going to trial.
Generally speaking, there are two ways that an insurance settlement is paid out: in a lump sum or as periodic payments, such as once per month or several times per year.
You may have a preference, so this is something to discuss with an experienced Houston car accident lawyer upfront. He/she will keep this in mind as they negotiate the terms and conditions of the settlement with the insurance company.
When it comes to communicating with an auto insurance adjuster, the best thing you can do is remain quiet and avoid discussing details about the accident or your injuries. Better still, rather than talking to the adjuster yourself, refer all correspondence to your Houston car accident lawyer.
Not only does this help you avoid saying the wrong things, but it also shows the insurance company that you’re serious about receiving all the compensation you may be entitled to.
If an auto insurance adjuster contacts you directly, politely decline to speak with them and/or give any recorded statements. Let them know that your attorney is handling all conversations on your behalf.
You hope that your car insurance rates won’t go up as a result of an accident in Houston, but it’s still possible this could happen.
This depends largely on factors such as your driving history, where the accident occurred, your insurance company, and if any liability is placed on you.
For more information, contact your insurance company directly. They can answer your questions and help you understand the impact of your claim on future premiums.
Proving pain and suffering can be a challenge, especially when it comes to car accident injuries that you cannot physically see. However, it’s not impossible.
Some of the documentation you can use to your advantage include: medical bills, medical records, expert testimony, and psychiatric records.
The more documentation you collect, the easier it is for your Houston car accident attorney to prove your pain and suffering.
In the state of Texas, a basic multiplier is used to calculate the value of pain and suffering in a car accident claim.
Both lawyers and insurance companies use a formula that starts with adding up all economic damages, such as lost wages and medical bills. The total number is then multiplied on a scale between 1.5 and 5.
For minor accidents and injuries, the multiplier will be on the low end. As the severity increases, so does the multiplier. A multiplier of 5 only comes into play in the most serious of car accident claims. For more information about how your pain and suffering damages may be calculated, consult with an experienced Houston car accident lawyer near you at Johnson Garcia LLP.
In most cases, it doesn’t make sense to accept the first offer from an insurance company. Tips for negotiating a car accident settlement include: gather all necessary accident evidence and injury documentation, maintain accurate records, emphasize any details that work in your favor, get everything in writing, and don’t rush through the process.
Rather than risk making a mistake that ruins your claim, it’s best to rely on an experienced Houston attorney to negotiate a car accident settlement on your behalf. They know how to negotiate aggressively with insurance companies, what to say, what not to say, and when to take a hard stance.
It’s generally better to settle out of court due to the extended time and cost required in taking your car accident case to trial. Not only does this save you time, but it also reduces the amount of stress placed on you during this difficult phase of your life.
Of course, if you’re unable to settle out of court, you shouldn’t shy away from filing a lawsuit to pursue compensation for your damages. Your Houston car accident lawyer may continue to negotiate with the insurance company before the court date so it’s still possible to settle before going to trial.
Insurance companies make lowball offers for one simple reason: to save money.
If they’re successful, meaning that you accept their lowball offer, they’re able to close the claim without paying out as much money as your case may actually be worth. The more money an insurance company pays out, the less profit they earn.
Insurance companies will continue to make lowball offers as long as car accident victims continue to accept them. Many people do this because they don’t know better and/or they simply want to put this chapter of their life in the past.
The best way to avoid a mistake is to consult with an experienced Houston car accident lawyer. They’ll estimate the full value of your accident claim and negotiate aggressively on your behalf while advising you as to what is and is not a fair offer.
You’d like to think that your insurance adjuster is on your side, but more times than not, adjusters may tell lies in an attempt to settle your car accident injury claim for less than what you may deserve.
Insurance adjusters will tell a variety of lies, such as: your policy doesn’t cover a specific type of loss, you’re obligated to provide a recorded statement, you need to sign a release form to receive payment, and you only have a certain period of time to accept a settlement offer. These lies may land them and the insurance company in hot water regarding bad faith practices.
Knowing that insurance adjusters are not trustworthy can help you take a more cautious approach to the claims process. You can protect by hiring an experienced Houston car accident lawyer to correspond with all insurance company representatives on your behalf.