Car Accidents

Car Accident Lawyers Fighting for Texans

In 2019, there was one reportable car accident in Texas every 56 seconds. That translates to hundreds of thousands of collisions and thousands of fatalities every year. On a yearly basis, those collisions result in nearly $40 billion in losses. For many individuals, those losses can be recovered through insurance or claimable through litigation.

If you’ve been involved in a car accident, you could be facing thousands of dollars worth of losses and expenses, not to mention the stress and injuries suffered as a result of the crash itself. Remember, you don’t have to go through the process of seeking relief alone. The Houston car accident attorneys of Lapeze and Johns, PLLC, would be proud to represent you either in insurance negotiations or a court of law.

If you’re unsure about whether or not you need a lawyer, you can book a free case review with our team to find your path forward. Keep in mind, we’re paid based on the outcome of your case. If you don’t get paid, neither do we.

Rising Car Accidents in Texas, By the Numbers

While Texas roads are generally considered among the most dangerous in the country, the safety of Texas roads has seen some improvement over the past decade. For instance, 2019 saw the lowest number of single-vehicle crash fatalities in over a decade. However, there are a number of areas in which Texas roadway safety is stagnant or actually getting worse:
  • Work zone accidents are skyrocketing with 2019 seeing double the number of accidents that took place in 2010.
  • The number of people injured in car accidents in Texas is rising, with 256,338 individuals injured in 2019 compared to 217,015 in 2010.
  • While the number of fatalities per hundred million miles driven has decreased since 2010, many years during that time saw significantly higher fatalities, peaking at 1.46 deaths per hundred million miles driven in 2014.
  • Truck accidents have increased by nearly 70% over the past decade.
  • Pedestrian deaths are also skyrocketing with 2019 seeing 84% more car accident pedestrian fatalities compared to 2010.

The first step to addressing a problem is being aware of it. With that in mind, it’s important that Texans are informed about the safety of the roads they use each day. By keeping our clients and readers up to date with the issues affecting Texas drivers, we hope to equip them with the tools to stay safe. You can find a collection of car accident reports accompanied by helpful information and statistics by following the link below.

Car Accident Facts

The suffering caused by a car accident doesn’t end on the scene. In fact, in minor crashes, the process of seeking compensation after a crash can be even more confusing than the crash itself. While recovery after a crash can be difficult, our Houston car accident attorneys will be here to support you and answer questions.

Common Causes of Car Accidents

Car accidents can be caused by many different factors. Being aware of some of the most common causes of car accidents in Texas can help drivers be more careful in potentially dangerous situations. Some of the most common contributing factors to car accidents in 2019 can be found below:

As you can see, car accidents are often caused by negligent or distracted drivers who’s behavior leads to avoidable crashes. With that in mind, changing those behaviors is clearly a key component of improving Texas road safety. One of the primary tools the U.S. uses to discourage reckless driving is litigation. If you’ve been involved in a car accident that was caused by someone else’s actions or negligence, a Houston car accident attorney can help you seek justice.

Common Car Accident Injuries

Due to the wide variety of circumstances that can cause accidents and the even wider range of vehicles that can be involved, no two car accidents are alike. The injuries that drivers, passengers, and pedestrians sustain as a result of car crashes can vary just as much, but there are some injuries that are more common than others, including:

  • Bruising, minor and severe
  • Whiplash
  • Other neck and back injuries
  • Concussions
  • Other head injuries including concussions
  • Post-traumatic and other stress disorders
  • Broken bones
  • Internal bleeding and organ damage

If you’ve been injured in a car accident, you could be owed compensation for your medical bills, medications, and other expenses. You can file a claim with your own insurance company or the company of the at-fault driver. You can schedule a FREE consultation with a Houston car accident attorney to learn more.

The key to staying safe both on the road and in the case of an accident is being informed. You can find guides on what to do after a car accident, how a car crash might affect your life, and many other useful topics by following the link below.

Seeking Coverage After a Car Accident

f you’ve been in a car crash, you’re probably wondering how to go about getting the compensation you need to cover your losses. Seeking this compensation can be difficult and there is no one clear cut path. However, you can follow ask a few simple questions to help determine your path forward:

Is the accident covered by insurance?

After an accident, you will need to determine whether or not your damages are covered by an insurance policy. If you were at fault or if you were involved in a single-vehicle crash, you will likely be making a claim with your own insurance company.

However, if you were involved in a crash that you feel confident was the fault of someone else, you will need to determine whether or not the at-fault party has insurance, specifically insurance that will cover your losses. If you sue a person for damages that they can’t pay, you’re unlikely to get the compensation you need. It may be a better idea to simply stick with your own insurance.

Do you need a lawyer?

For simple cases involving minor injuries and clear insurance coverage, you may not need to seek legal representation prior to filing an insurance claim. However, it may still be a good idea to take advantage of a free consultation with a Houston car accident lawyer. If your case is more complex, it may be in your best interest to at least seek the advice of an attorney. Getting a consultation is free, and a lawyer may be able to tell you if you have a strong case and what your legal options are.

If you determine you do need a lawyer, you probably won’t have to pay for their services out-of-pocket. Most lawyers work on contingency, meaning they are only paid if their client wins a settlement or court judgment.

Do you need to file a car accident personal injury lawsuit?

There are many methods for seeking compensation after a car accident that don’t involve filing a lawsuit, and you may wish to try out other options before taking legal action. For instance, you can send a “third-party claim’ to the insurance company representing the at-fault driver. This will begin the process of negotiations.

However, if those negotiations fail, you may need to file a suit against the insurance company. Keep in mind that the amount of time you have to make a claim could be limited.

Car Accident Personal Injury Claims

If you’ve been involved in an accident and an insurance company is denying your claims for valid losses, you may need to file a personal injury lawsuit. The process of filing a suit can be complex, so you may wish to seek legal representation prior to taking legal action. Below, you can find a brief overview of the filing process:

File a petition
  • File a complaint at your civil court.
Discovery
  • Pretrial investigation.
Mediation and/or Arbitration
  • A neutral party hears both sides of an argument and decide the outcome.
Trial
  • Jury selection, opening statements, presentation of all relevant evidence, closing arguments, and verdict.

During a personal injury suit, you could be eligible for three different types of compensation: economic, noneconomic, and punitive. Punitive damages are meant to serve as punishment for reckless behavior and don’t correspond to the cost of a specific loss. Economic damages are meant to compensate victims for losses that have a specific cost. Noneconomic damages are meant to compensate for losses that can’t be calculated.

Common economic and noneconomic losses that may be covered in a personal injury car accident suit can be found below.

Economic Losses
  • Medical expenses
  • Property damage
  • Medication costs
  • Lost wages
  • Lost earning power
  • Funeral expenses
Non-economic Losses
  • Pain and suffering
  • Lost relationships
  • Reduced quality of life
  • Disfigurement
  • Mental disorders

In the United States, most tort trials are related to personal injuries. Of those personal injury cases, the U.S. Department of Justice has estimated that over half involve car accidents. In Texas, the costs associated with these accidents have been increasing steadily over the past decade reaching an all-time high in 2018 at $39.6 billion.

Picking the Right Houston Car Accident Attorney

There’s no denying that choosing the right lawyer, or deciding to get a lawyer in the first place, can be a major decision. The legal representation you hire after a car accident could make the difference between a successful case and a lack of relief for the losses you’ve suffered. The high stakes involved can make it even more difficult to choose a lawyer, even after you’ve decided that you need one. With that in mind, you can follow a few simple steps to help ensure that the lawyer you hire will have the skills you need:

Ask for recommendations
  • Friends and family members often have first-hand experience with lawyers who they can either recommend, or warn against.
Look for experience
  • Every case is unique, so any lawyer you choose will need to have the experience they need to handle your particular needs.
Try out communication styles
  • Clear and open communication is essential to effective legal representation, and that means looking for a lawyer who makes time for you and your concerns using effective communicatio.
Check on their success rate and record
  • Understanding a lawyer’s success rate and trial record can give you an idea of the experience they have and whether or not they will be able to effectively represent you.
Look for insurance savvy attorneys
  • The actual process of seeking compensation after a car accident often primarily revolves around negotiations with insurers.
Utilize free consultations
  • Use free consultations to determine what sort of work your potential lawyer does and the services they will provide. You can ask a few simple questions:
    • How many cases are you currently handling?
    • What are your fees?
    • What additional resources do you have available?
    • How frequently will you (the attorney) be available?
    • Who else will be working on my case?

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Lapeze and Johns, PLLC: Dedicated to Serving All Texans

Based in Houston, Lapeze and Johns, PLLC, are proud to offer their services to car accident victims throughout Texas. You can find information regarding the specific cities, towns, and areas we serve below.

If you’ve been involved in a car accident in Texas, act now to claim any compensation you may be owed.

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