Articles Tagged with Personal Injury Texas

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Insurance-Claim-PictureThe insurance company is not your friend. I feel like I say this to every potential client, and I get the same response “they’ve been really friendly so far.”

Then we get into the claims process and get down to brass tacks and the client quickly realizes that, had they gone into this without an attorney, what would have been considered “fair” by the insurance adjuster’s definition would have been much different and less zeros on it.

Case in point, I was speaking to a friend recently I had not seen in nearly a decade and it came up that he had been involved in an 18-wheeler accident a few years back. He told me how he had tried to go it alone for a while against the insurance company, in part because they seemed to be on his side and they accepted liability right away. He was hurt pretty bad in the accident and required shoulder surgery and weeks of rehabilitation.  However,  in his initial meeting with the insurance company’s adjuster, they offered him $1,500. He said he couldn’t believe it and as he said it, he seemed to think that I should be surprised too, but I wasn’t.

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Fatality-Crash-Rockwall-300x225Time is of the essence if you or a loved one has been involved in an 18-wheeler wreck. The trucking company and the insurance company is going to take steps to eliminate evidence of wrongdoing on their part. You need to hire an attorney and get them working on protecting the evidence related to the accident because it has a very funny way of disappearing.

For instance, there was a fatal 18-wheeler accident involving Forney resident, Latonya Child, in Fate, Texas near Rockwall off of Interstate 30 just the other day. Absolutely horrific tragedy. The driver of the truck obviously did not stop. Although this information is generally applicable to all accidents, but if I were advising this family as a lawyer, or even as a friend, I would say: hire an attorney and do it now. I have handled too many 18-wheeler wreck cases involving incapacitating injuries and deaths to say any different. That family, and any other family involved in such a tragic accident needs someone to tell them that the insurance company is not their friend and does not have their best interests at heart, no matter what the insurance company says. They need someone to protect their rights and make sure that the person who decided to be negligent on that day and take away their loved one pays for what they did. Period.

It is vitally important to the injured party’s case that an attorney take certain actions to protect evidence in the days and weeks following an 18-wheeler wreck. The three main things an attorney needs to for anyone in such a situation send spoliation letters (evidence protection letter), get an accident reconstruction specialist out to the scene of the accident, and get ahold of all the witnesses and take their statements.

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Scales-300x132So often we hear legal terms such as “negligence” and “wrongful death” used by attorney’s and non-attorney’s alike. It is almost common place for people to use the word when describing an accident or a person’s behavior. If you listen to some of the local radio stations here in Dallas-Fort Worth you will probably hear a few commercials for attorneys asking the question “have you been injured because of someone else’s negligence?” The word is thrown around almost nonchalant. But, under the law, negligence has a very deep and complex meaning. Using the word as a broad stroke “that was negligent” does not afford the word its due, and under the law, may not actually be so, as you will see below.

For attorney’s and legal professionals, these terms have significant meaning beyond the common understanding of the words. In law, these are called “legal terms of art”. For the practitioner of law, terms of art such as negligence, wrongful death, and the thousands of other legal terms of art have a meaning beyond just a Webster’s Dictionary definition. So, in this article we ask “just what does the word ‘negligence’ mean?”

Terms of art can have different meanings in different jurisdictions. For the most part, the term “negligence” has the same legal definition in all 50 states. However, what may be different is how it is applied in certain situations. For instance in Texas, up until 2015, evidence of a plaintiff’s own negligence by failing to wear a seat belt was not admissible to show that the plaintiff was partly or wholly the cause of their own injuries. However, that all changed with the Supreme Court of Texas’ decision on Nabors Well Services, Ltd v. Romero.  Now, it is admissible, so you have yet another reason, other than the obvious, to wear your seat belt. The Supreme Court now says that if you fail to wear a seat belt it can be used against you to limit your recovery in a personal injury lawsuit. Many other states allow such evidence to be used to establish a plaintiff’s own negligence, but there are others states who still do not allow this type of evidence to prove plaintiff’s negligence.

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personalinjury3-300x201The answer is simple, but to understand importance of the work they do, and the value they bring to their clients, you must understand a little more about the process of handling personal injury claims. It is no cake walk, even for experienced personal injury attorneys.

Notifying Insurance Companies and Establishing Communications Between the Parties

A personal injury attorney will notify the insurance providers of the claim for injuries and that the injured party is represented by counsel. This is true whether it is a motor vehicle accident, boating accident, commercial vehicle accident, or even slip-and-fall. These providers must be provided “notice” of the claims being made by the injured parties that were caused by their insured. In addition to notifying the at-fault parties insurer, the injured party will need to notify their own insurer of the possibility of any claims under their own UM/UIM in the event that the other party has no insurance or carries insufficient coverage to pay for the damages that have been suffered.

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Traffic-i35_jpg-300x199Via Fort Worth Star Telegram- The identity of a little girl who was killed in a four-vehicle crash on I-35 has been identified. 4-year-old Sofia Cardenas, was killed and another female was taken to the hospital Tuesday morning in Burleson as a result of a crash Interstate 35.

According to the Tarrant County medical examiner, Cardenas died after being taken by CareFlite to Cook Children’s hospital in Fort Worth. .

Burleson police and fire responded to the crash around 7:45 a.m. at the 800 block of northbound I-35W, said city spokeswoman DeAnna Phillips.

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Via inForney.com, a driver was injured early Friday morning when the driver’s vehicle struck the back of the 18 wheeler, causing significant damages to the driver’s vehicle. The accident happened around 3:22 am near the Kaufman-Van Zandt county line on I-20. It is not clear as to who or what caused the accident.

For more information, follow this link to the story on inforney.com.

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(credit: espnfc.com)

Ryan Hollingshead, FC Dallas midfielder, suffered three cervical vertebrae fractures and will remain in a neck cast for 6-8 weeks after being struck by a vehicle this past Friday, according to espnfc.com. According to the story, there is no risk of spinal injury and function.

The accident happened during icy conditions on Friday. Hollingshead had stopped to assist another vehicle that had been in an accident. According to Fox 4 News, Hollingshead told teammate, Tesha Akindele he was struck “30 feet into the air” and thought to himself, “I’m dead. I’m dead or I’m paralyzed.” Luckily for Akindele, that was not the case and he should be able to make a full recovery. However, FC Dallas opens Championship League play in February and Hollingshead will not be able to play, and he is likely to miss as much as a month of the regular season.

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Every now and then you may come across a semi-truck or car-hauler parked on the side of the road, or even partially in the road and think to yourself, “that is so dangerous,” or “they should not be allowed to do that.” Well, technically they aren’t supposed to do that. Section 545.301 of the Texas Transportation Code provides that an operator may not stop, park, or leave standing an attended or unattended vehicle on the main traveled part of a highway outside a business or residence district unless:

(1) stopping, parking, or leaving the vehicle off the main traveled part of the highway is not practicable;
(2) a width of highway beside the vehicle is unobstructed and open for the passage of other vehicles; and
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Anyone driving in and around Kaufman county can tell there is more traffic than their used to be. Forney is growing. Terrell is growing. Talty, Kaufman, Heartland/Crandall, and even little old Combine has seen some growth. For most people in Kaufman county, the growth is a welcome sight.

But the old Farm to Market roads that many of us travel on a daily basis have become a danger zone. Back when these two lane “highways” were built, there were no cellphones, no Facebook. The only reason you got distracted on the road was because you saw a deer or you were changing the radio station. With all the increased traffic and increased distraction, these two lane roads have begun to show their age.

It seems like every day or two Mathew Richards is writing about another head on collision or rollover crash that has happened on those roads. Last night it was another head-on collision near Lake Ray Hubbard drive, which is pretty close to where 740 and 460 meet. Now, I am not calling for an all out upgrade of the roadway system in Kaufman county. For one, I don’t want to pay for it. But as a personal injury attorney, I see people who have had their lives changed forever because of accidents. I meet people who have lost loved ones as a result of these types of accidents. Safe driving is important to me, not just because I don’t want to see anybody get hurt, but because we need to keep our roadways safe for those who may be traveling in those other cars. It may not just be Joe Schmoe in the other car you hit. It may be Joe, Jr., and that is exactly what drives our firm to take each case of unsafe driving so seriously. We want to make an example out of those drivers who do not take the safety of the other drivers on the road seriously. Distracted drivers, unsafe drivers, and anyone in between are driving selfishly. It is important that people understand that it is not “okay” to text and drive. It is not “okay” to watch Youtube videos while driving on Highway 80. Its just not. Your phone, and the entertainment it brings, is not more important than the safety of everyone else on the road. And when one of my clients comes in here and tells us about how they got hurt by some selfish driver who was on their cellphone, then get ready because we are about to make an example out of them.