Calculating Lost Wages From a Car Accident

Thursday, April 28, 2022
A car accident resulting in injury tends to have a snowball effect; hospital stay, recovery time, surgery if necessary and extensive bills for all of the above are just a few of the problems with which you might have to contend. Another is lost wages from missed work. This can have lasting damage on your finances if not fully compensated, but your options to do so are not limited; one can be to sue the responsible party.

How Can I Calculate My Lost Wages?

This can largely depend on what type of job you have and how you are paid. If you work in a full-time salaried position, this calculation is rather simple. If you work on an hourly basis or your salary is largely dependent upon commission, it’s more difficult to calculate an exact figure. Lost Wages From a Car AccidentIf you have kept the same job and the same earnings, you could show your previous year’s tax return for an accurate estimate on how much you’re owed. If you have been working consistently before the accident, copies of recent pay stubs would also suffice. But if you have the type of job where earnings change from week to week depending on contracts, commission or the general scope of your work, you’ll need to show what you missed while you were away. This is especially true if you are self-employed or work on a freelance basis. Showing proof of assignments and work you missed, the contract agreement for said work and/or what you had earned on similar projects in the past will all be important. Wage loss doesn’t just include what you did miss, but also what you might have missed; future earning capacity and lost opportunities (such as a raise or promotion) can very well be included in your claim if you can verify them. Accurate calculation of lost wages depends on proper documentation; you’ll need:
  • Physician’s letter, describing the extent of your injuries, medications prescribed, suggested recovery and the total length of time you must miss work.
  • Employer’s letter, stating that you are in fact an employee there, and that you did indeed miss all of that time from work.
  • A copy of the police report.
The aforementioned paperwork, such as tax returns and previous pay stubs, will also be crucial for documenting your wages.

Wage Loss Insurance

It’s not a guarantee that your car insurance plan covers lost wages due to missed work. This usually happens if you choose the option with the lower deductible. Typical liability, uninsured motorist and personal injury protection plans will cover for lost wages, but as always, read the fine print to be certain. Liability and uninsured motorist plans will cover 100 percent of lost wages. Personal injury protection can be very important, because even though it will only cover 80 percent of lost wages, it does this regardless of whether or not you were at fault. In the event of a car accident, missing work can seriously hinder your ability to pay your medical expenses. Filing a lawsuit or claim for compensation against the responsible party can help you recoup what you had lost.
Posted by Aaron Herbert at 12:04 pm

Determining Liability for a Car Accident in Texas

Saturday, April 23, 2022
If you get into a car accident in Texas, you will hear the term liability when going through the insurance process or a personal injury lawsuit. In legalese, liability means legal and financial responsibility for an accident and related injuries. Holding someone liable for your car accident means that person or party will have to pay for your medical bills and other losses.

Insurance Company Investigation

The first phase in determining liability for a car accident in Texas is filing a car insurance claim. Filing a claim will initiate the insurance company’s investigation of the crash. The sooner you contact your insurance company, the sooner it can investigate the crash and preserve key evidence. If you do not report your collision within a reasonable amount of time, your insurer may have grounds to deny coverage. The insurance company will investigate the car accident by analyzing evidence such as: Car Accident Liability
  • Photographs and videos
  • Surveillance footage
  • A copy of the police report
  • Signed witness statements
  • A driver’s cell phone records
  • Crash reconstruction diagrams
  • Medical records
  • Testimony from experts
The insurance company will hire someone known as an insurance claims adjuster to handle claim evaluation. The claims adjuster may call you soon after your crash to ask what happened. It is important to tell the truth during conversations with the claims adjuster. However, it is also imperative to keep your answers short and do not offer any information unless requested. Do not admit fault for the car accident and do not accept a settlement until you have spoken to an attorney.

Application of the State’s Fault Law

At the end of a car accident investigation, the insurance company will implement the state’s fault law to determine liability for crash-related damages. Texas is part of the majority as a fault-based car insurance state. Under this law, the person or party at fault for causing the collision will be legally responsible for economic damages. In Texas, the driver who caused the crash will have to pay for victims’ medical bills and property repairs using his or her insurance coverage. In a no-fault state, on the other hand, all injured parties will file claims with their own insurance providers, regardless of who caused the car accident. In this way, the insurance law in the state where the car accident took place will determine liability for related losses.

4 Elements of Proof

Before you can receive financial compensation for a car accident from another driver’s insurance company in Texas, you or your car accident lawyer has to prove fault. This is how Texas’s fault-based insurance system works. As the injured victim, it is your responsibility to prove that the other driver carelessly or recklessly caused your crash. Proving liability requires clear and convincing evidence that four main elements are more than 50 percent likely to be true:
  1. The defendant owed you a duty to exercise reasonable care.
  2. The defendant breached his or her duty of care to you (the defendant was negligent).
  3. The defendant’s breach of duty is what caused the car accident.
  4. You suffered compensable losses in the car accident.
In general, it is enough to achieve a car accident settlement by proving these four elements to an insurance company. In some cases, however, an attorney has to present evidence and witnesses at court before a judge and jury for a judgment award that adequately reimburses a victim for his or her losses.

How a Car Accident Lawyer Can Help

If you were recently injured in a car accident in San Antonio, do not hesitate to contact a plaintiff’s attorney for a free consultation about your rights. An attorney can help you with each phase of the recovery process, including determining and proving liability for your car accident. At the Law Firm of Aaron A. Herbert, P.C., we can use our experience, resources and personnel to investigate your collision and help you determine liability. Contact us today.
Posted by Aaron Herbert at 11:32 am

What are Common Problems Survivors of Catastrophic Accidents Experience?

Friday, April 22, 2022
Negligence is a common factor that contributes to catastrophic accidents – whether a person drove while using a cell phone, drank on the job, or failed to maintain his or her property. When this happens, the party who caused the damage can be taken to court and sued for outstanding expenses. However, Texas law also accounts for extenuating circumstances, such as loss of companionship or the inability to continue pursuing a career. The following is a brief overview of the common problems survivors of catastrophic accidents face. If you have more questions or concerns about an injury you have received, contact an experienced legal professional in your area for more information.
  • Long-term physical damage. Catastrophic accidents often lead to paralysis, loss of limbs, severe brain damage, and other complications. For example, internal injuries may require special equipment to keep a person alive or functioning.
  • Long-term recovery. Coupled with physical damage, these victims often must relearn motor skills, such as walking, balancing, or speaking. Additional equipment, such as walking apparatuses or speech assistance devices, is often required.
  • Ongoing medical bills. The initial emergency room bill and related surgeries are likely the steepest charges victims ever face. Sadly, that is just the beginning. Continuing doctor’s visits, physical therapists, and live-in care commonly follow catastrophic accidents – and these are not one-time payments.
  • Loss of consortium. The physical consequences of these actions are apparent, but they affect more than just the victim. A settlement should account for losing the intimate relationship you enjoyed with a spouse or the ability to interact with your child.
  • The inability to return to work. Devastating accidents often keep a person from returning to his or her line of work or pursuing a career goal. Athletes, for example, may never play sports professionally again. Courts account for these types of long-term damages, and it is important to work with an experienced attorney to ensure these areas are considered.
  • Home modifications. Hand controls, bathroom modifications, ramps, machines to facilitate access to a bed, and vehicle modifications may be required to return at least some independence to these victims’ lives.
  • Emotional and psychological consequences. Post-traumatic stress disorder is a frequent result of a debilitating accident. Depression, suicidal thoughts, and other mental and emotional consequences may accompany a catastrophe.

The Common Causes of Catastrophic Accidents

A person may encounter a variety of accidents, but most will not warrant a consultation with a lawyer. However, if you or a loved one is hurt in one of the following types of accidents, it is important to seek medical attention and schedule a consultation with a local law firm.
  • Trucking accidents. The trucking industry is tightly regulated, but thousands of fatal accidents still occur on our highways every year. Teamsters and the companies that employ them must diligently track their working hours, truck maintenance, miles traveled, and more. Overlooking or ignoring these details can lead to major damages.
  • Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is markedly dangerous. If you are involved with a drunk-driver collision, seek physical and legal help as soon as possible.
  • Workplace accidents. Many workers’ compensation claims are for minor aches and pains, but professional accidents can also be fatal. This is especially true for those in the construction, oil, and logging industries. If you’ve been injured it’s important to consult with a lawyer to see the potential of a fort worth construction injury lawsuit.

Partner with the Right Attorney in Texas to Protect Your Long-Term Care

Catastrophic cases are legally complex by their nature. Several negligent parties may be responsible, from a shift manager to his or her employer, a product manufacturer, or the distributer. This is further complicated when several insurers enter the mix. Victims of major accidents are routinely offered settlements, but failing to scrutinize the terms of these agreements can leave victims with expensive bills that accrue over their lifetime – which the person or organization responsible for the damages does not pay. Work with a San Antonio, Texas, attorney specializing in personal injury law for more information. The team at Aaron Herbert is ready to represent your claim, so
contact us for a consultation. We get to the bottom of who is at fault for harming our clients, and we tirelessly explore the full extent of how catastrophic accidents affect these victims over the course of their lives.
Posted by Aaron Herbert at 10:50 pm

San Antonino Crosswalk Accident Lawyer

Wednesday, April 20, 2022
While crosswalks aren’t taken seriously in a lot of cities, in San Antonino area we do take them seriously – but in the wrong way. Many of the crosswalks in San Antonino are nearly invisible to drivers and pedestrians, whether due to design or due to lack of maintenance. The brown/gray brick patterns on black asphalt just doesn’t cut it for pedestrian safety. And even when a more visible pattern is used, many cities in North Texas do not spend the resources to re-paint the crosswalk patterns until the paint is severely faded. In the end, a lot of money is spent on the design and upkeep of our crosswalks in San Antonino and surrounding cities, yet no significant changes in design have been made in the last twenty years to make intersection crossings more visible. San Antonino Crosswalk Accident Lawyer 4While many people complain that San Antonino is not pedestrian walkable because of sprawl and suburban style urban design with little sidewalk connection between areas, this is only part of the problem. The cities in north Texas need to start valuing neighborhoods which are already walkable by supporting pedestrian comfort and safe with better crosswalk design. A better design currently exists for crosswalks that has been proven a safer alternative to designs used in San Antonino. San Antonino should install install continental crosswalks throughout the city.  The “continental” uses two-foot-widestripes which are more visible to approaching drivers. Paired with a limit (stop) line set back five feet from the crosswalk, continental markings better delineate pedestrian space and discourage vehicles entering the crosswalk. Additionally, cities in North Texas have slowly started replacing signal lights at crosswalks with “countdown” lights for pedestrians. These signal lights show a countdown timer while the pedestrian “walk” figure is displayed so that that pedestrians crossing the street know exactly when they must be out of the roadway.

Types of Injuries in accidents involving pedestrians

Pedestrians have no protection from injury in a collision with a motor vehicle, and the injuries they suffer are often serious, catastrophic or even fatal. Common injuries include: In the unfortunate event of an San Antonino crosswalk accident between a pedestrian and a motor vehicle, pedestrians will suffer severe bodily injury or even death. If you or a loved one has been involved in a pedestrian accident in San Antonino or other Texas city,  Board Certified Attorney Aaron A. Herbert can help. The personal injury San Antonino crosswalk accident lawyers at the Law Firm of Aaron A. Herbert have helped injured pedestrians or surviving family members hold negligent parties accountable for recklessness or wrongdoing. Please do not wait to contact us if you or someone you care about has been involved in a pedestrian accident in Texas. There is a specific amount of time in which you can take legal action and you do not want to forfeit your rights by waiting too long to speak with a lawyer. Contact Us today for a free, confidential consultation.
Posted by Aaron Herbert at 7:30 pm

Dooring – What’s the Law in Texas and How to Avoid It

Wednesday, April 20, 2022

Most people imagine a moving vehicle striking a bicyclist when they picture a bicycle accident. However, some of the most serious bicycle accidents in Texas happen when a car is parked. Dooring occurs when a driver opens a car door without paying attention to oncoming bicycle traffic – resulting in a biker striking the door and being propelled off of the bike. Dooring can cause serious injuries, such as broken bones and brain injuries. If you were injured in a dooring accident in Texas, you may be entitled to financial compensation.

How Do Dooring Accidents Happen?

Dooring is the outcome of a motor vehicle occupant failing to check for cyclists before opening a car door when parked in a place that gets bicycle traffic, such as a parking spot that is adjacent to a bicycle lane. If a driver is parked someplace where a bicyclist can ride directly next to the vehicle, he or she has a responsibility to check for oncoming bikers before opening the door. Failing to do so can result in a bicycle rider hitting the open door without being able to stop in time.

Does Texas Have Any Laws Against Dooring?

Yes. Texas has a specific law in place regarding dooring in Section 545.418 of the Texas Transportation Code. This law states that a person may not open the door of a motor vehicle unless it can be done so in reasonable safety and without interfering with the movement of other traffic if the door is on the side of the road available to traffic. It also prohibits leaving the door of a vehicle open for longer than is necessary to load or unload a passenger if the door opens on the side next to moving traffic. If a motor vehicle driver or passenger fails to obey this law or make a reasonable effort to prevent dooring, he or she can be held financially responsible for a resultant bicycle accident. The at-fault driver must pay for a cyclist’s medical bills and property repairs suffered in the accident. Proof that the individual broke Texas’s dooring laws can be enough to establish his or her liability for the crash.

Tips for Avoiding a Dooring Accident

Although the legal responsibility to prevent a dooring accident rests with drivers and motor vehicle occupants, both motorists and bicyclists in Texas can take steps to reduce the risk of this type of crash. Use these tips as either a driver or cyclist in Dallas. For drivers:

  • Never park in the middle of a bicycle lane, even temporarily.
  • Before you open your door, look in your side and rear view mirrors to check for oncoming cyclists.
  • Open the door with the hand that is furthest away from the door to force yourself to look over your shoulder for bikers.
  • Slowly open the vehicle door when it is safe to do so, and only enough to exit. Do not fling your door open.
  • Close the door as quickly as possible once you’ve exited the vehicle.

For bicyclists:

  • Ride a safe distance away from parked vehicles (at least three feet).
  • Don’t weave in and out of parked cars.
  • Be vigilant and pay attention to the behavior and movements of vehicle occupants.
  • Make eye contact with a driver you’re interacting with before proceeding.
  • Wear colorful or reflective clothing to increase your visibility to drivers.
  • Turn on your headlamp if you’re riding your bicycle between dusk and dawn.

You may have the power to prevent dooring or being doored as a roadway user in Texas. If you find yourself involved in this type of accident despite your best efforts to avoid it, contact a bicycle accident attorney in Dallas for assistance. You may be eligible for financial compensation from the driver’s car insurance company.

Posted by Aaron Herbert at 3:22 pm

Can You Still Suffer a Brain Injury While Wearing a Bike Helmet?

Tuesday, April 19, 2022

Riding a bike in Texas can come with significant injury risks. As a biker, you are vulnerable to serious and life-threatening injuries in a traffic accident. This includes traumatic brain injuries from striking your head or skull on the pavement. Although Texas does not have a universal bicycle helmet requirement, wearing one could save your life. Unfortunately, it is not failsafe; it is still possible to suffer a brain injury with a helmet on.

Bicycle Helmet Statistics

Studies have repeatedly found bicycle helmets to drastically reduce the risk of head and brain injuries in bike accidents. The National Safety Council reports that more than 50 percent of bicyclists who are killed in accidents each year are not wearing helmets. Helmets cut the risk of suffering a head injury in half. The odds are even higher of preventing a severe or fatal brain injury. Even if your state or county doesn’t require you to wear a bicycle helmet while riding, doing so is important for safety reasons.

How Do Most Bicycle Accident Brain Injuries Happen?

Bicycle accidents are a leading cause of head injuries, skull fractures and traumatic brain injuries (TBIs). TBIs are injuries to any part of the brain due to a source of external trauma, such as a blow or bump to the head. They include concussions, contusions, hemorrhages and swelling. Even a minor bump to the head could result in a serious brain injury. TBIs are especially common in bicycle accidents due to the high risk of the biker’s head striking the ground or the hood of a motor vehicle in a traffic accident.

While helmets are indisputably important for preventing brain injuries, they are not a perfect solution. Some researchers have found that helmets create a false sense of security, for example, which can lead to bicyclists taking greater risks. In addition, the shape of a bicycle helmet does not fully protect against brain injuries when the head is hit at an angle. Finally, helmets do not reduce the rotational forces in a bicycle accident that can cause brain injuries, such as a diffuse-axonal injury from the brain rapidly shifting inside the skull.

Bike Helmet Safety Tips

You can reduce your risk of suffering a brain injury in a bicycle accident by wearing a helmet at all times. The helmet you choose and how you wear it can impact its ability to protect your head, face and skull. Use these tips to decrease your risk of head and brain injuries as a bicyclist in Texas:

  • Look for the sticker of approval. The bicycle helmet you buy should have a safety approval sticker from the Department of Transportation or the Snell Memorial Foundation to ensure that it meets federal safety regulations.
  • Get the right fit. Purchase a helmet that fits snugly on your head. It should sit low on your forehead, with the straps forming a V-shape slightly in front of your ears. Always secure your helmet to your head so it doesn’t fly off in an accident.
  • Don’t wear an old or used helmet. Bicycle helmets should not be re-worn after they’ve been in an accident or impact, as this can compromise the elements in the helmet that protect the wearer’s head. For this reason, you should not purchase a used helmet, as you don’t know its history.

You should always wear a helmet while bicycling in Texas to reduce your risk of head and brain injuries. If you still suffer a brain injury even with a helmet on, you have rights in Texas. You may be eligible for financial compensation from the at-fault driver’s car insurance company. With assistance from a bicycle accident attorney, you can recover compensation for your necessary medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more. Discuss your bicycle accident case with a lawyer in Dallas for more information.

Posted by Aaron Herbert at 1:58 pm

How Do I Claim Insurance After a Bike Accident?

Friday, April 15, 2022

If you get injured in a bicycle accident in Texas, you may have multiple insurance policies available to cover your losses. The driver’s car insurance will typically pay for your injuries, for example, and your own health insurance or homeowners insurance policy may provide supplemental coverage. Find out how to claim insurance benefits after a bicycle accident in Dallas, as well as when to hire an attorney for assistance.

What Types of Insurance Are Available to Cover a Bicycle Accident in Texas?

If you get hurt in a bicycle accident, the first thing to do is receive medical care for your injuries. This can pave the way for your insurance claim, as most insurers require claimants to have seen a doctor. Once you’ve gotten medical care and collected information about the crash, explore all potential sources of insurance coverage for your accident. Several types of insurance policies may pay for your medical bills, bicycle damage and other losses, including:

  • Bodily injury liability insurance. If you have injuries and related costs, such as medical bills, and the other driver is at fault for the accident, his or her bodily injury liability insurance will pay. All drivers in Texas are required to carry at least $30,000 per person and $60,000 per accident in bodily injury coverage.
  • Property damage liability insurance. Similarly, if a driver is responsible for your crash, you can use his or her $25,000 in property damage liability coverage to pay for your bicycle repairs or replacement.
  • First-party insurance coverage. If you are at fault for the accident, the driver is uninsured or underinsured, or you get involved in a hit-and-run, your own auto insurance policy may pay. This could include uninsured motorist coverage, collision coverage and comprehensive insurance.
  • Homeowners or renter’s insurance. Since a bicycle is a type of property, your homeowners or renters insurance policy may pay to repair or replace it after an accident. This may cover your expenses whether or not you were at fault for the accident.
  • Health insurance. If you suffered injuries in the bicycle accident that require professional medical attention, your health insurance can help you pay for the initial costs of your treatment. You may wish to pursue additional compensation, however, if someone else caused your crash.

You may be able to seek financial benefits from a driver’s insurance company, your own insurance carrier(s) or a third party after a bicycle accident in Texas. Explore all of your financial recovery options with an attorney before accepting a settlement.

How Do You File a Bike Accident Insurance Claim in Texas?

Make sure you are adequately prepared for the insurance claims process before making a phone call or submitting a claim. You will need certain information about the bicycle accident, such as its time, date and location, as well as information about the driver who hit you. You will also need your police report number and information about your injuries if you’ve already seen a doctor.

When you’re ready, call the correct insurance company or companies to report the accident and submit a claim. The agent will guide you through the steps to take. Before you accept a settlement and sign a release form, however, take your case to an attorney for a review. You may deserve greater financial compensation than the insurance company is offering.

Do You Need an Attorney for a Bicycle Accident Insurance Claim?

Hiring a lawyer for a bicycle accident insurance claim is not mandatory in Texas, but it could significantly improve your case outcome and legal experience. A bicycle accident claim can quickly become complicated and difficult to litigate. Giving your case to an attorney can allow you to rest and focus on healing while an experienced and knowledgeable professional navigates Texas’s laws on your behalf.

For more information about what to expect during a bicycle accident insurance claim in Texas, contact the Law Offices of Aaron A. Herbert to request a free consultation

Posted by Aaron Herbert at 12:55 pm

Importance of Hiring a Pedestrian Accident Lawyer

Thursday, April 14, 2022

If you get injured in a pedestrian accident, you may wish the claims process to be over as quickly as possible so that you can put the whole thing behind you. While hiring an attorney may seem daunting, it is the best way to resolve your case. You can trust a lawyer to serve your best interests and work toward your case goals. A lawyer will help you go up against an insurance company while allowing you to focus on recovering from your accident.

Insurance Companies Don’t Want to Settle Your Claim

The first thing to know about resolving a pedestrian accident case is that insurance companies aren’t on your side. They want to save as much money on your payout by delaying claims processing, devaluing your injuries and even denying a valid claim. This is true whether you are seeking benefits from your own insurer or the car insurance company of the driver who hit you.

Insurance companies are notorious for taking advantage of injured pedestrians and attempting to convince them to settle for less than their claims are worth. When you hire a Dallas pedestrian accident lawyer, you protect yourself from insurance bad faith tactics. An insurance claims adjuster will know that your attorney can take your case to trial. This will typically result in a higher settlement offer to avoid the costs of court. Your lawyer can use aggressive legal tactics to demand fair financial compensation for your injuries.

You May Be Dealing With Your Injuries for Life

The injuries suffered in pedestrian accidents are often catastrophic. This means that the pedestrian will experience the effects of the injury for the foreseeable future – and potentially for life. This makes it especially important for the victim to protect his or her rights during the financial recovery process. Without assistance from an attorney, an injured pedestrian may settle for less than his or her injuries are worth, taking away the ability to pay for future medical needs. If you or a loved one suffered a severe injury in a pedestrian accident, work with an attorney to achieve the best results possible for your case.

A Lawyer Understands Texas Laws

Navigating a pedestrian accident lawsuit in Texas is tricky. Unless you have a legal background, you may not be aware of the multiple laws that will apply to your case. These laws can include the fault-based insurance law, statute of limitations, comparative negligence law and the Texas Tort Claims Act. You may also struggle with meeting the burden of proof, or presenting enough clear and convincing evidence to prove that the driver is at fault for your accident. A lawyer will understand all federal, state and municipal laws that apply to your case and how to correctly navigate them.

Saving Time and Money

Hiring a pedestrian accident lawyer will ultimately save you time and money. While this may seem counterintuitive, since you have to pay attorney’s fees, statistics show that claimants who hire lawyers almost always receive greater financial compensation than those who represent themselves, even after deducting attorney’s fees.

Most pedestrian accident attorneys operate on a contingency fee basis, meaning you will only pay your lawyer as a percentage of the settlement or verdict won, and only if you win. A lawyer can also cut time out of your lawsuit by handling confusing paperwork for you, having a team of staff members working on your case and preventing mistakes that can draw out the legal process.

You Have Enough to Worry About – Let a Lawyer Take Over From Here

Finally, hiring a pedestrian accident lawyer gives you the ability to rest, relax and enjoy greater peace of mind after a traumatic accident. You’ve been through enough as a pedestrian accident survivor in Texas. Entrust your case to an attorney to remove the legal burden from your shoulders. Your lawyer can make sure you have everything you need, such as a great doctor in Dallas and answers to your legal questions. Contact a lawyer today to find out more about how we can help.

Posted by Aaron Herbert at 11:09 am

What Are the Most Common Causes of Bicycle Accidents?

Wednesday, April 13, 2022

It is always better to prevent a bike accident in Texas than to try to recover from one after the fact. A bicycle accident can inflict injuries on a cyclist that last for life. In 2020, 79 bicyclists in Texas were killed in traffic accidents and hundreds of others were injured. The best way to protect yourself from harm as a bicyclist is to be aware of the most common causes of bicycle accidents in your city. This can help you recognize risks when you see them and take action to avoid a collision.

Distracted Drivers

Drivers are obligated to pay close attention to the road at all times. Unfortunately, distracted driving has become an epidemic on U.S. roadways. Distractions connected to cell phones, infotainment systems, personal grooming, food and drinks, radios, and GPS are rampant and have dramatically increased the number of car accident injuries and deaths per year. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported 3,142 lives lost because of distracted drivers in 2020. Many of these victims were bicyclists and pedestrians.

Following/Passing Too Close

Bicyclists have the same rights to the road as motor vehicle drivers, and they need space to safely navigate. Texas law states that drivers must keep at least three feet of distance between their vehicles and bicycles. When drivers become impatient or reckless, they may encroach on this space and endanger the cyclist’s life. Following or passing too close to a bicycle increases the risk of sideswipe accidents, such as a driver’s side mirror striking a bicyclist, as well as rear-end collisions.

Speeding

Speeding is one of the most common causes of all types of motor vehicle accidents, not just bicycle accidents. Speeding is defined as driving too fast for conditions. This doesn’t necessarily mean driving above the speed limit. If the posted limit is too fast in bad weather, a driver has a responsibility to drive below the limit. A speeding driver is less likely to be able to stop in time to avoid hitting a bicyclist or react safely to changing roadway situations.

Left-Hand Turns

Many bicycle accidents take place at intersections in Texas, often when a motor vehicle driver is attempting to make a left-hand turn. Many drivers underestimate the speed or misjudge the distance of a cyclist in the opposite lane. This leads to them making a left turn in front of a biker and either striking the side of the bicycle or forcing the cyclist to hit the side of the vehicle. In other cases, a driver turning left may not keep a proper lookout and fail to see an oncoming cyclist entirely.

Failing to Yield

Motor vehicle drivers should know and obey all roadway rules, including yielding the right-of-way to bicyclists, when applicable. Bicycles should be treated with the same respect as standard motor vehicles. At a stop sign, for example, a bicyclist who arrived at the intersection first would have the right to proceed across the road before a motor vehicle driver. Failing to yield and breaking other traffic laws invites bicycle-vehicle collisions.

Driving While Intoxicated

State data shows that 958 victims were killed in 2020 due to drivers under the influence of alcohol. A drunk or drugged driver is unable to make safe decisions behind the wheel. Intoxication can cause reckless behaviors, slowed reflexes, poor judgment and bad decision-making. It can also have a physical effect on a driver, such as blurred vision and muscle weakness. These effects increase the odds of a driver making critical errors or losing control of his or her vehicle and striking a bicyclist.

If you were recently injured in a bicycle accident in Texas, contact an attorney to determine the cause of your crash. If someone else is responsible, they may have to pay for your related bills and losses.

Posted by Aaron Herbert at 3:22 pm

How Much Money Can You Get From Getting Hit by a Car as a Pedestrian?

Tuesday, April 12, 2022

Getting hit by a car can cause devastating injuries, such as a major concussion or permanent paralysis. In Texas, pedestrians usually have the right-of-way. This makes it the responsibility of a driver to watch for pedestrians and prevent accidents. After this type of crash, you may have the right to seek financial compensation from the driver. Determining how much your claim is worth can help you negotiate for a fair amount from a car insurance company.

What Is the Typical Settlement Amount for a Pedestrian Accident?

While it is normal to want to know the average settlement amount for a pedestrian accident in Texas, it is not possible to find an accurate answer online. This is information that you can only get from a pedestrian accident lawyer in Dallas, and only after an in-depth case evaluation. This is because each case and client is unique. Even if there are similarities between two cases, the financial awards can vary drastically. This means that averages and settlement calculators found online will give you inaccurate results.

In general, personal injury case values are dependent on the severity of the injuries suffered by the accident victim. Since many pedestrian accidents are catastrophic – with common injuries such as broken bones, brain trauma, spinal cord injuries and wrongful death – this means they often come with high case values. This could mean a six-figure or seven-figure settlement for a severe or permanent injury.

What Damages Are Recoverable?

When seeking financial compensation for a pedestrian accident in Texas, one of the first steps is to create a list of your losses to include in a demand letter to an insurance company. It is critical to list all of your compensable damages, as missing any can reduce your settlement value. A lawyer can help you create your demand letter and come up with an accurate amount to pursue from a car insurance company. Recoverable damages may include:

  • Medical expenses. The past and future medical costs connected to your pedestrian accident, including necessary surgeries, therapies and medications.
  • Disability or disfigurement. Any ongoing medical care or expenses to accommodate a permanent disability, or the effects of significant scarring and disfigurement.
  • Lost wages. The amount of money that you lost from being unable to return to work after your pedestrian accident, as well as future lost capacity to earn due to a disability, if applicable.
  • Pain and suffering. The noneconomic damages caused by the accident, such as your personal stress, emotional suffering, physical pain, mental anguish and psychological trauma.
  • Death benefits. If a loved one passed away in a pedestrian accident in Texas, your family could be eligible for compensation for funeral and burial costs, loss of consortium, and grief.

You could receive compensation for all of these losses and more after getting hit by a car as a pedestrian. Discuss your case with an attorney to come up with a comprehensive list of your damages. A lawyer can help you prove your losses, provide evidence that the driver was at fault for your crash and demand maximum financial compensation.

How Are Settlements Calculated in Texas?

Many different factors can determine how much money a pedestrian gets after being hit by a car in Texas. Some elements used to calculate settlements and jury verdicts are injury severity, recovery prognosis, the age and health of the victim, the number of insurance policies available, and the defendant’s actions. While economic damages are calculated based on the amount of money the victim lost because of the accident, noneconomic damages are more difficult to estimate. A jury can use multiple equations or no method at all for calculating pain and suffering. Best way to find out how much your case may be worth is by consulting with an attorney.

Posted by Aaron Herbert at 2:26 pm

How to Deal With Head Injuries After a Car Accident

Tuesday, April 12, 2022
One of the most common types of injuries suffered in auto accidents in San Antonio is a head injury. Head injuries, such as skull fractures or contusions, can lead to brain trauma. A traumatic brain injury, or TBI, can cause significant symptoms that impact the victim for life. It is critical to know how to correctly deal with a head injury after a car accident in San Antonio for your own physical wellbeing, as well as to strengthen a legal claim to damages.

See a Doctor Immediately

Brain injuries are incredibly serious and require immediate medical care. There is no such thing as a minor head injury. Any bump, jolt or blow to the head deserves professional medical attention right away. It is especially important to go to a hospital after a car accident in San Antonio if you experience any of the following symptoms, which could point to a traumatic brain injury:
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Disorientation or confusion
  • Issues with memory or recollection
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Mood swings
  • Seizures
  • Any loss of consciousness
With these symptoms, you could have a brain injury from your car accident. Common types of brain injuries include concussion, diffuse axonal brain injury, hematoma, edema and hemorrhage. These are all serious traumatic brain injuries that can occur in an auto accident and inflict life-changing symptoms. Prompt medical care can help you relieve the symptoms associated with a brain injury, and may save your life.

Follow Your Doctor’s Treatment Recommendations

If you are diagnosed with head trauma or a brain injury after a car accident, a doctor will give you a personalized treatment plan. Your treatment plan may involve bed rest and avoiding potentially dangerous activities that could give you a second head injury, such as sports. A second brain injury too close to the first can lead to a more serious injury and related symptoms. Other head trauma treatments may include medications, physical therapy and rehabilitation. The most serious brain injuries can also require neurosurgery to repair parts of the brain or prevent further brain damage from swelling. Follow your doctor’s treatment plan exactly for the best prognosis for recovery.

Attend Follow-Up Appointments

Do not miss any follow-up appointments with your doctor or a brain injury specialist. These appointments can be critical for your recovery. Skipping appointments can show an insurance company that you are not doing your part to mitigate your losses connected to the head injury. This can result in the rejection of your insurance claim or a reduction of case value.

Document Your Medical Care

Document all of your medical care in the aftermath of a car accident. Careful and accurate documentation and recordkeeping can help you build a stronger car accident injury claim. Ask for copies of your relevant medical records and bills after receiving treatment for a head injury. If your brain injury made you miss work, document your lost wages, as well.

Keep an Injury Journal

It is also important to document the personal side of your brain injury case. Head trauma and brain damage are catastrophic because they can alter a victim’s quality of life. They can cause behavioral, cognitive and emotional changes, as well as mental health conditions such as depression and anxiety. Keep a record of everything you are feeling and experiencing as you heal from your head injury. An injury journal can help you demonstrate how the injury impacted your life to a judge or jury.

File a Car Accident Lawsuit With Help From an Attorney

If you believe someone else is responsible for causing your car accident in San Antonio, contact a car accident attorney to help you file a lawsuit. Filing a claim against a careless driver or another party could result in financial compensation for the losses associated with your head injury, including medical bills and lost wages. Learn more about your legal rights and filing a car accident lawsuit by consulting with an attorney today.
Posted by Aaron Herbert at 1:23 pm

How Insurance Companies Investigate Car Accidents

Monday, April 4, 2022
After you get into a car accident in San Antonio and file an insurance claim, you will need to go through the insurance company’s investigation process before you can obtain a financial settlement. Certain things about how insurance companies investigate car accidents are important to know as a claimant, as they can prevent the insurance carrier from taking advantage of you.

The Company Assigns an Insurance Claims Adjuster to Your Case

First, the insurance company will assign a professional known as an insurance claims adjuster to your case. Most insurance companies also hire insurance investigators to evaluate a claim for signs of fraud. The insurance claims adjuster is the person in charge of reviewing your claim, investigating the car accident and making a recommendation to the insurance company.

The Adjuster Calls You for Details

An insurance adjuster will investigate a car accident case in many different ways. First, he or she will obtain a brief summary of the accident from those involved. Expect a phone call from an insurance adjuster as soon as the day of the accident, or in the days following. The insurance adjuster will ask you questions about your accident, such as:
  • Your police report number
  • The time and date of the crash
  • The exact location of the collision
  • How many other vehicles and drivers were involved
  • The other driver’s contact and insurance information
  • A description of your property damage
  • A description of your injuries
  • Why you believe the accident occurred
You do not have to have answers to all of these questions. Remain honest and do not speculate about anything. If you don’t have an answer or don’t understand a question, say so. Be aware that the claims adjuster does not want what is best for you; his or her main goal is to save the insurance company money. Do not admit fault to a claims adjuster and do not agree to provide a recorded statement. This is a tactic often used to twist your own words against you.

The Adjuster Investigates the Car Accident

After calling you and others involved in the auto accident, the insurance adjuster will conduct a full investigation of the crash. The insurance adjuster, along with the investigator, will look for evidence or information to piece together how the car accident occurred. Evidence may include:
  • Information from those involved
  • Statements from eyewitnesses
  • Images or photographs of the damaged vehicles and accident scene
  • Information from a police report
  • Medical bills
  • Physical evidence, such as damaged property
  • Cell phone records
Preparing all of the information and evidence you have about your car accident ahead of time can help an insurance company investigate your case in a timely manner. Insurance companies in Texas have no more than 15 days to investigate a claim, although this can extend to 45 days with a valid reason.

The Insurance Company Looks for Ways to Save Money

Throughout your car accident claim, an insurance company may try several tactics to save money by reducing or denying a payout. The insurer may deny its policyholder’s fault for your car accident, for example, or try to blame your medical bills on a pre-existing condition. Be careful during conversations with a claims adjuster or insurance investigator. If you do not feel comfortable speaking to an adjuster yourself, you have the right to hire an attorney to negotiate for you. An attorney can help you detect insurance bad-faith and protect your claim.

A Car Accident Lawyer in San Antonio Can Help With the Next Steps

Upon concluding the investigation of your San Antonio car accident, an insurance claims adjuster will make a recommendation to the insurance carrier to either accept or reject benefits. At this stage, if a car accident attorney is representing you, your attorney can negotiate the settlement offered for an amount that is adequate for your injuries and losses. If a settlement is not possible, your attorney can help you go to trial instead. Learn more about the insurance investigation process, and protect your rights as a claimant, by hiring a car accident lawyer in San Antonio from the beginning of your case.
Posted by Aaron Herbert at 5:26 pm