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What You Should Do After a Single-Vehicle Crash

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Although most people picture a collision between two vehicles when they imagine a car accident, many collisions involve just one car. If you get injured in a single-vehicle crash in Dallas, do not assume you have no legal options. Someone else may be financially responsible (liable) for your losses. Take certain steps to protect your rights after a single-car crash.

Report the Accident

You are still legally required to report a car accident to the police in Texas if it only involves your vehicle. Use your cell phone to call 911 immediately if it causes injuries, a passenger’s death or at least $1,000 in property damage. If you have injuries, request an ambulance. Remain at the scene until the police arrive.

Limit Your Movements

Until a paramedic has cleared you to move, do your best to remain in place and limit your movements – especially if you feel pain, numbness or tingling in your back or spine. If you have a spinal cord injury, moving or twisting the wrong way could exacerbate the injury and trigger more serious effects, such as permanent paralysis.

Talk to the Police

When the police arrive, give the officer your side of the story. Do not assume you are at fault, however. Even if you were the only driver involved in the accident, there could be other elements you are unaware of that contributed to the collision, such as a defect with your vehicle or a roadway hazard. Admitting fault can automatically place liability for the accident with you, even without an investigation.

Gather Evidence

If you can, collect evidence before leaving the scene of the car accident. Use your cell phone or a camera to take photographs of the scene. Capture close-up images of the damage to your vehicle, as well as wide-lens shots of the entire scene. If you believe something at the scene contributed to your crash, such as an obscured road sign, take photographs of this, as well. If you cannot take pictures right away, return to the crash site as soon as possible – before the city has the chance to clean up or repair any hazards.

Go to the Hospital

Do not delay in going to a hospital in Dallas to treat your car accident injuries. Waiting to see a doctor can make your injuries worse and can give your insurance company a reason to deny your claim. You may not notice the symptoms of an injury right away. Some injuries, including neck, brain and back injuries, have delayed symptoms. Your adrenaline from the car accident may also be masking symptoms. Always go to a hospital after a car accident, even if you believe you are uninjured.

Call Your Auto Insurance Company

Contact your auto insurance provider to report the collision. A representative will ask for details about the crash. Stick to the truth and do not elaborate more than is necessary to answer the questions asked. Again, do not admit fault for the accident. Wait for the insurance company to investigate and determine causation. Do not settle your car insurance claim until you have consulted with an attorney.

Contact a Dallas Car Accident Attorney

You may still be eligible for insurance coverage as the victim of a single-vehicle car accident. Your insurance policy may have coverage available if you have medical payment, collision or comprehensive insurance. You may also be able to file a third-party claim if someone else contributed to the accident. For example, you may have the right to bring a claim against the government for failing to maintain a safe roadway.

Speak to a car accident attorney in Dallas for professional assistance. An attorney can protect your best interests. A law firm can send investigators to the scene of your accident to determine the cause of the crash, for example, as well as identify third parties that may share fault for the collision. A lawyer can guide you through the entire legal process for the best possible outcome.

Posted by admin at 8:56 pm

What Are Diminished Value Accident Claims?

Wednesday, April 21, 2021

If you get into a car accident, you may qualify for insurance benefits to reimburse you for many different financial damages. Car insurance is meant to make a victim whole again – to put the victim back in the financial state he or she would have been in had the accident not happened. This includes reimbursing you for the diminished value of your vehicle after an accident.

What Is the Diminished Value of a Vehicle?

No amount of repairs can restore a crashed vehicle to the value it bore before the car accident. There is a stigma against vehicles that have been in accidents, even after they have been repaired. Despite the repairs bringing the vehicle back to like-new condition, the fact that the vehicle has a crash history will bring down its resale value on the market.

How Do You Seek Compensation for Diminished Value?

As the owner of a damaged vehicle, you have the right to seek insurance benefits for diminished value. If you did not cause the car accident, the other driver’s insurance company is responsible for paying for the diminished resale value of your vehicle. Otherwise, you may be able to seek this type of compensation from your own insurance provider if you have collision or comprehensive coverage.

Your own insurance company most likely will not want to pay you for the diminished value of your vehicle. Instead, it will only want to pay you for the repairs necessary to restore your car. First-party payments against collision coverage will only pay for diminished values in very limited circumstances. Tell your insurance company that you do not consent to allow them to seek reimbursement from the other driver’s insurance company until you have first been compensated for your diminished value.

If the other driver caused your car accident, notify his or her insurance company that you will be filing a diminished value claim and that you will not accept a settlement until this part of your property claim has been resolved. Follow the insurance company’s instructions for filing your claim and providing proof of your losses. Do not resolve your case, however, until you have spoken to an attorney.

How Does an Insurance Company Calculate a Diminished Value Claim?

Before you can recover compensation for the cost of the diminished value of your vehicle, you must prove that you have lost resale value. The insurance company will request evidence of this loss. You may be able to obtain evidence from a mechanic shop or using an evaluation tool such as Kelley Blue Book to show what your car was worth pre-crash compared to what it is worth now.

For example, if your vehicle would have been able to sell for $10,000 before the car accident, but will now only sell for $6,000, you will need evidence proving the $4,000 difference. Do not forget to combine this with the costs of your vehicle repairs. If it will take $2,000 to restore your vehicle, for instance, your full claim would be for $6,000; the cost of repairs plus the diminished market value of the vehicle.

Insurance companies want to protect their bottom lines by devaluing the claims they receive. You may struggle to negotiate a fair settlement for the diminished value of your vehicle from the insurance company handling your case. The insurer may undervalue the pre-crash resale price of your vehicle in its initial settlement. This is why it is important to speak to an attorney before you sign anything from the insurance company.

Contact an Attorney for Help

You may need to hire a car accident attorney to investigate the facts of your case and help you negotiate for a fair settlement from an insurance company for the diminished value of your vehicle. It often takes an expert to review the case and substantiate a diminished value claim. Hiring a law firm gives you the resources and professionals to successfully investigate and resolve a diminished value case in Dallas.

Posted by admin at 8:29 pm

7 Hidden Injuries to Watch Out for After a Car Accident

Monday, April 19, 2021

Immediately after a car accident, your adrenaline can act as a pain reliever that masks injury symptoms. You may not notice you are injured until hours later, after the adrenaline has worn off. This is why it is important not to say you are not injured until you have seen a doctor. Look out for symptoms of these seven hidden injuries after a car accident.

Soft-Tissue Injuries

There are hard-tissue and soft-tissue injuries. Hard-tissue injuries are often immediately noticeable, such as broken bones. A victim may not feel a soft-tissue injury, on the other hand, until later. Soft-tissue injuries include muscle strains, sprains, tendon injuries and dislocations. Common symptoms connected to soft-tissue injuries after a car accident include:

  • Pain
  • Soreness
  • Stiffness
  • Trouble moving

Soft-tissue injuries often impact the arms, shoulders, elbows and wrists, as well as the knees and legs. The muscles and tendons in the neck and back can also suffer soft-tissue damage in a car accident. These injuries can cause acute and/or chronic pain; however, pain and other symptoms may not be immediate.

Whiplash

Whiplash is the most common type of neck injury associated with motor vehicle accidents. This is a soft-tissue injury that harms the muscles and tendons in the neck due to the rapid back-and-forth motion of the head and neck in a crash, such as a rear-end collision. The symptoms of whiplash and other neck injuries are often hidden, with pain that is not immediately noticeable. Symptoms can include pain and stiffness in the neck, headaches, tingling, and numbness.

Brain Injuries

If the head or skull strikes an object during a car accident, the impact can be severe enough to make the brain bounce around inside the skull and sustain damage. This is called a traumatic brain injury. Although some brain injuries, such as concussions, show symptoms right away, others affect the victim more slowly. If the brain has slow bleeding or swelling, for example, the victim may not notice any symptoms until the injury has worsened enough to cause more significant damage.

Herniated Disks

A herniated disk describes a ruptured or slipped spinal cord disk. If a car accident causes trauma to the spinal cord, it can rupture the rubbery exterior shell of a spinal cord disk, causing the soft interior to push outward. If it pushes on the nerves surrounding the spinal cord, this injury can cause delayed symptoms such as sharp pains.

Spinal Cord Injuries

A herniated disk is just one of many different types of spinal cord injuries that can arise in an auto accident. Other common back injuries include spinal cord fractures, spinal concussion and nerve damage. Although these injuries can be severe or catastrophic – including paralysis – they may not show immediate signs or symptoms. It may take a few hours or days to notice pain, tingling, or loss of function or sensation related to a spinal cord injury.

Internal Organ Injuries

The internal organs can suffer injuries if an external force pushes against them, such as the pressure of a seat belt. Internal organs that may have hidden injuries after a car accident include the liver, kidney, intestines, lungs and heart. It may take some time for these injuries to present themselves, such as the eventual loss of a bodily function due to organ damage or slow internal bleeding.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Hidden injuries do not only describe physical injuries. They can also refer to mental, emotional or psychological damage connected to an auto accident. Witnessing or experiencing a car crash can cause psychological harm and mental health disorders, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

PTSD can result in symptoms such as depression, anxiety, flashbacks, nightmares and phobias. Most people who experience emotional distress notice it in the days or weeks following a traumatic event, not immediately after.

If you get into a car accident in Dallas, wait until you have seen a doctor before discussing whether you are injured with an insurance provider. You may have hidden or delayed injuries.

Posted by admin at 8:27 pm

Should I Admit Fault for the Car Accident?

Friday, April 16, 2021

Being in a car accident can be inconvenient, confusing and stressful. You may suffer serious injuries as well as expensive property damage. You will also have to deal with the insurance claims process, which can be difficult on its own. Although your first instinct may be to apologize or admit fault for a car accident, this is not a good idea for many reasons.

About Car Accident Investigations

Texas is a fault-based insurance state. This means that after a car accident, the party responsible for paying damages is the one who caused the crash. In a no-fault insurance state, on the other hand, all drivers will seek financial compensation from their own insurance providers, regardless of who caused the car accident.

If you admit fault immediately after a car accident, this can place 100 percent of financial liability for the wreck with you and your insurance provider, without further investigation. The other driver’s insurance company will make you pay for the accident even if a full investigation would have found evidence of someone else’s fault. The insurance company will not waste time or resources on investigating if you are willing to absorb fault for the accident from the start.

If you do not admit fault, the insurance company will have no choice but to investigate the crash. The insurance company will look at evidence such as the police report and eyewitness statements to piece together how the collision occurred. The insurance company will also send a claims adjuster to visit the scene of the accident and inspect vehicle damage in person. Then, the insurer will determine fault based on its investigation, rather than taking you at your word.

Texas’s Comparative Negligence Law

An important reason not to admit fault for a car accident in Texas is the possibility of shared fault among multiple parties. Although you may think you caused the car accident, there may be factors you are unaware of that also contributed to the crash.

For example, you may have been texting and driving, but the other driver might have run a red light without you noticing. In this scenario, it would be unfair for you to absorb 100 percent of fault for the crash since the other driver also contributed to the collision.

Texas is a modified comparative negligence state. This means even if you were partially to blame for a car accident, if someone else was also at fault, you can share liability and still recover at least a portion of a financial award.

In Texas, you can still recover damages with up to 50 percent of fault for a car accident. The court will reduce your compensatory award by an amount that is equivalent to your percentage of fault. If you are more than 50 percent to blame, however, you will be barred from financial recovery.

How to Speak to an Insurance Company

In the aftermath of a car accident in Texas, you will receive a phone call from someone called an insurance claims adjuster. It is important not to admit fault to the claims adjuster, as he or she will be searching for reasons to deny your claim.

Do not allow the adjuster to pressure you into admitting fault. Do not speculate about fault, either; instead, state the facts of the auto accident as you understand them. Do not offer any additional information besides answering the questions asked. If you do not know the answer to a question, say so.

Get Help From an Attorney

Admitting fault for a car accident to the other driver, the responding police officer or an insurance company could end your case before an investigation. This can rob you of the possibility of discovering fault with the other driver or a third party, such as an auto manufacturer or the government, barring you from the financial recovery you deserve.

Rather than admitting fault, contact a car accident attorney in Dallas if you believe you’re partially at fault for a collision.

Posted by admin at 8:25 pm

How a Police Report Can Determine Fault and Liability in a Car Accident

Thursday, April 15, 2021

If you get into a car accident in Texas, the person at fault for causing the crash will be financially responsible for your medical bills and property repairs. This is how Texas’s fault-based insurance system works. One of the best tools for determining fault and liability for a car accident is a police report.

When Is a Police Report Required?

Whether or not you have to call the police after a car accident depends on the law in your state and the severity of the collision. In Texas, you are legally required to report a car accident to the police if it causes any injuries, fatalities or property damage that appears to exceed $1,000. The law requires you to call the police as soon as possible – typically from the scene of the crash.

What Information Is Included on the Police Report?

When the police arrive, the responding officer will create an accident report with all of the most important information about the collision. The officer will conduct a brief investigation by asking those involved questions about what they witnessed and experienced. The officer may also take official photographs of the crash scene.

Typically, a police accident report contains the following information:

  • All of the basic facts about the crash will be documented, such as the date, location and exact time of the collision, as well as the names and information of the parties involved. It will also list the names of any eyewitnesses and a description of both vehicles.
  • If the police officer has an opinion about who or what caused the car accident, the officer may include this on the accident report. While this information is not treated the same way as the facts of the case, an insurance company can take the officer’s opinion about fault into consideration.
  • Many car accidents stem from a driver violating a traffic law, such as speeding or driving drunk. The crash report will include whether one or both drivers received any citations for moving violations and whether the officer believes the broken law contributed to the car accident.

This information can be critical during your car accident insurance claim. It can prove that the car accident took place the way you say it did and that you suffered the losses you are listing on the claim. The insurance company will want to learn as much as it can from the accident report before conducting its own investigation to determine fault.

How Is the Police Report Used During a Claim?

The police report for a car accident can provide information and evidence that helps an insurance company decide the driver or party at fault. Although it is not the only tool used to determine fault, an accident report can influence an insurance company’s decision. The insurance company can use facts and data provided in the report to piece together how and why the car accident happened.

An insurance company may work with crash reconstruction experts to create a diagram of how the collision most likely took place based on facts from the report, such as the time and location of the collision and statements from eyewitnesses. If the report includes information about one of the drivers breaking the law, the insurance provider will also use this to determine fault.

It is important to note that an insurance company will launch its own investigation before determining fault; it will not only look at the information on the police report. The insurance company will assign someone called a claims adjuster to revisit the scene of the car accident, inspect property damage in person and interview those involved to get to the bottom of the cause of the crash.

When to Contact an Attorney

The police report can be an important part of your car accident claim. It can ultimately determine whether or not you receive financial compensation for your injuries. Obtain and review a copy of your police report with help from an attorney in Dallas for more information about how it can impact your case.

Posted by admin at 8:25 pm

What Are the Top Reasons for Insurance Denials?

Monday, March 29, 2021

If you were injured in an accident in Dallas, Texas, you may not expect to encounter any problems during the insurance claims process. Unfortunately, most insurance companies wish to undervalue your claim or deny benefits altogether. This can lead to an insurance company denying your claim for a variety of different reasons – some valid, others not.

Top Reasons for Insurance Denials

Broken Rules or Requirements

Insurance companies have strict rules when it comes to filing claims. For a valid claim in Texas, you must obey the insurance company’s filing requirements. A common mistake is missing the deadline to file. Most insurance companies require claimants to report their accidents as soon as possible. Some place specific deadlines on filing, such as 72 hours after an accident. If you wait too long to file or skip another required step, this may provide a reason for the insurance company to deny coverage.

Liability Dispute

If the insurance company that receives your claim does not believe its policyholder is responsible for your accident, it may give this as the reason for the insurance denial. In your initial settlement demand letter, you must explain why you believe the insurance company is liable for your damages, including any relevant personal injury statutes. If you fail to do this, the insurance company may initially deny your claim by refuting liability. It is up to you or your attorney to respond with an explanation of why you believe the insurer is liable.

Comparative Fault

Part of a liability dispute may be the insurance company arguing that you caused or contributed to your own injuries. This is the defense of comparative negligence. In Texas, comparative negligence does not fully bar you from financial recovery. Even if the insurance company has proof you contributed to the accident, you could still recover partial compensation. The insurance company may have the right, however, to reduce your recovery by your percentage of fault.

Failure to Receive Medical Care

It is very important to receive medical care immediately after an accident in Dallas. If you wait to go to the hospital, an insurance company may state that you failed to mitigate your losses and base a denial of benefits on this fact. Failing to see a doctor will also result in no officially diagnosed injury. Be sure to fully list all of your symptoms to your doctor, including any pain and suffering you are experiencing. Your medical records must indicate your losses clearly to be eligible for insurance coverage.

Pre-Existing Injuries

Insurance companies often use pre-existing injuries to try to avoid paying clients. However, a pre-existing injury alone should not bar you from insurance coverage in Texas. Insurance companies must take plaintiffs as they are at the time of their accidents – even if this means with pre-existing injuries or health conditions. If an insurance company gains access to your full medical records in tries to deny your claim based on a pre-existing injury alone, a lawyer can help you argue your eligibility for benefits.

Insurance Bad Faith

Some insurance denials do not come with a reason. These are wrongful denials, as insurance companies have a legal obligation to explain why they reject claims. Your lawyer can help you contact an insurance company to request a reason for the denial.

If the insurance company gives a reason that does not apply to your case, this could be evidence of insurance bad faith. Bad faith is an insurer intentionally mishandling your claim. If you are the victim of insurance bad faith, a lawyer can represent you during a lawsuit against the insurance company itself.

If an insurance company recently denied your personal injury claim, consult with an attorney in Dallas for legal advice. An attorney can review your case and let you know if you are the victim of wrongful insurance denial. If so, your attorney can help you take action to appeal the denial.

Posted by admin at 10:18 pm

Who Is Liable in a Single-Vehicle Accident?

Monday, February 22, 2021

Not all car accidents in Dallas involve more than one driver. If you were the only driver in your recent auto accident, you may assume you are automatically at fault and must use your own insurance to pay for losses. Depending on the circumstances of your crash, however, this may not be the case. You may not have to pay for your own financial damages if one or more parties contributed to the single-vehicle accident.

Liable in a Single-Vehicle Accident

Accidents Due to Vehicle Defects

Some single-vehicle car accidents in Texas are traced back to faulty vehicle parts. If a part on your car malfunctioned or broke down while you were driving, and this is what caused your accident, you may have grounds for an auto defect claim against the manufacturing company. Common examples of faulty parts include:

  • Brakes
  • Tires
  • Headlights
  • Electrical systems
  • Airbags
  • Steering columns

An auto manufacturer has a legal responsibility to ensure the safety of its products. If it fails to fulfill this responsibility, leading to a design, manufacturing or marketing defect in one of its vehicles, it will be strictly liable for related auto accidents and injuries. Have an auto defect attorney investigate your single-vehicle accident for signs of a faulty product to find out if the automaker is liable.

Accidents Due to Road Defects

Even if you were the only driver involved in your car accident, you could have grounds to bring a claim against the city or state government if a road defect caused the crash. A road defect can describe any dangerous problem with the roadway that could foreseeably cause a car accident, such as a pothole, debris, construction zone, loose gravel, uneven shoulder, missing guardrail, obscured road sign or broken traffic light.

If the government agency in charge of maintaining the road where your single-vehicle car accident occurred should have done more to prevent your crash, such as respond more promptly to road maintenance requests, the agency could be liable for your losses. Note that a claim against the government must be brought within six months or less in Texas, depending on your county. This is significantly shorter than the typical statute of limitations in Texas of two years.

No-Contact Accidents

Even if your vehicles did not technically collide, another driver may be liable for your car accident if his or her carelessness caused you to run off the road or lose control of your vehicle. This is called a no-contact crash. If, for example, another driver almost merged on top of you, causing you to jerk the steering wheel, lose control of your vehicle and crash, the other driver may be financially responsible for the accident even your vehicles did not touch.

Unfortunately, it can be difficult to obtain financial compensation for a no-contact crash if the other driver does not realize he or she caused an accident and keeps driving. You may be able to obtain license plate numbers or partial plate numbers from eyewitnesses, however, or footage of the crash as evidence. Always call the police to help you gather what information is available after a no-contact single-vehicle car accident.

How a Car Accident Lawyer Can Help

You may or may not have grounds to hold someone else financially responsible for your single-vehicle car accident. If another individual or entity should have prevented your crash, that party may be liable for your medical bills, property repairs, lost wages and other damages.

A car accident lawyer in Dallas can help you with the claims process after a single-vehicle crash. Your lawyer can investigate the crash, determine fault, and help you understand your rights. Then, your lawyer can take over complicated legal processes on your behalf to ensure the best possible outcome. Consulting with an attorney can help you determine whether or not you have to pay for your accident out of pocket.

Posted by admin at 10:44 pm

Who Is at Fault in a Car Accident Changing Lanes?

Friday, February 19, 2021

If you get into a car accident in Texas, you must determine fault before you can file an insurance claim. This is the rule according to Texas’s fault-based insurance law, which holds the party at fault for a car accident responsible for injuries and losses. Determining fault, however, is not always easy. This is especially true after a car accident changing lanes.

Fault in a Car Accident Changing Lanes

A Driver Breaking Texas’s Lane-Change Law

If a driver breaks a law and causes an accident, he or she is liable. Texas Revised Statutes Section 545.060 states that on a road laned for traffic, a driver must keep to a single lane as much as is practical. A driver may only move from his or her lane when the driver can conduct the maneuver safely. Determining whether a lane change is safe or not requires a few basic driver tasks:

  • Checking to see if there is enough room in the destination lane to allow the lane change.
  • Using a turn signal to demonstrate the intent to switch lanes or merge.
  • If merging, yielding the right-of-way to existing traffic.
  • Using an appropriate speed to change lanes – not too fast or too slow.
  • Maintaining a safe following distance from other vehicles.
  • Checking the rearview and side mirrors, as well as blind spots, for cars.
  • Making the lane change slowly and carefully.

If a driver in Dallas breaks any of these rules, that driver is at fault for a resultant lane-change accident. If you get into this type of car accident, it is important to call the police to the scene of the accident so the officer can ticket the other driver for a moving violation. A traffic ticket can serve as evidence against the driver during your insurance claim.

A Distracted Driver

Distracted driving is a common cause of lane-change accidents in Texas. A distracted driver cannot pay enough attention to his or her surroundings to safely execute a merge or lane change. The driver may not notice a vehicle in his or her blind spot, for example, or may not recognize another driver moving into the same lane at the same time.

If a driver is distracted enough by using a cell phone, texting and driving, eating or drinking, changing a radio station, looking at a GPS, reading a billboard, daydreaming, or other activities while driving, he or she may be unable to make sure it is safe to change lanes. In this scenario, the distracted driver would be liable for a related auto accident.

Both Drivers

A lane-change accident case can get complicated if two drivers move into the same lane at the same time. In another scenario, when only one driver changes lanes, liability will go to that driver, as it is his or her responsibility to change lanes safely. If both drivers make the lane change simultaneously, however, fault is not as easy to determine.

Fault may be allocated to both drivers if they share the blame for the collision. In Texas, a modified comparative negligence law presides over cases where the plaintiff and defendant share fault for an accident. In this situation, you could still recover compensation even if you were partially at fault, as long as you were less than 50% responsible for the accident. However, the courts will reduce your recovery by your percentage of fault.

Contact a Car Accident Lawyer for Assistance

Navigating Texas’s liability laws can be difficult in any type of car accident case. If you were in an accident changing lanes, however, the legal process can be even more complicated. Consult with a car accident attorney in Dallas for assistance with this type of claim. An attorney can thoroughly investigate your crash, gather proof the other driver is at fault and help you proceed with an insurance claim. A lawyer will make sure your rights are protected throughout the legal process.

Posted by admin at 10:42 pm

Who Is Liable If a Recalled Car or Truck Caused the Accident?

Monday, February 15, 2021

Most car accidents are preventable and related to human error, such as a driver speeding or driving distracted. Some, however, are connected to defects with the vehicle that a driver has no control over.

Despite safety technologies improving in the automotive industry, 2018 had more light vehicle safety recalls than any other year in US history – 341, according to Stout’s 2019 Automotive Defect & Recall Report. If you get into an accident related to a recalled car or truck, find out who is liable.

Who Is Liable If a Recalled Car or Truck Caused the Accident?

Common Car and Truck Defects

Although many different types of recalled products can cause serious consumer injuries, auto part defects are particularly dangerous. Even a minor auto defect could act as a catalyst for a serious car accident. Common car and truck defects connected to motor vehicle accidents are:

  • Brake failure
  • Sticky gas pedals
  • Tire blowouts
  • Electrical issues
  • Exploding airbags
  • Seat belt malfunctions
  • Seatback failure
  • Problems with the steering column

When a vehicle manufacturer discovers a defect in one of its models, it lawfully must issue a recall. It must also make a reasonable effort to notify buyers of the defect, such as through an ad campaign or direct mail. A recall means the vehicle contains known defects that could be dangerous to consumers. The recall will contain information and safety recommendations for the vehicle’s owner, such as where to take the car for free repairs.

Who Is Responsible?

If a defective vehicle part causes a car or truck accident, an injured party may have a legal claim to damages. Most vehicle defect accidents fall under the category of product liability law. Product liability is a manufacturer or distributor’s legal responsibility for injuries caused by a faulty product. Under Texas’s product liability laws, a manufacturing company may be liable without proof of negligence if the vehicle contained one of three types of defects:

  1. Design flaw
  2. Manufacturing error
  3. Marketing mistake

If the injured party can prove the vehicle contained one of these product defects and that this is what caused the car or truck accident, the manufacturing company will be liable for damages whether or not the company was negligent. Other parties involved with the manufacture and distribution of the vehicle could also bear liability for a crash, such as a retailer, part or component manufacturer, or car dealership.

In a case where the doctrine of strict product liability does not apply, an injured crash victim may still be able to bring a claim based on the theory of negligence. An automaker could be liable based on negligence if it was careless and violated the accepted standards of care for the automotive industry. If the manufacturer knew about a defect but did not disclose it, for example, and this caused a car accident, the manufacturer could be responsible based on negligence.

How Will a Recall Affect a Claim?

Whether or not a recall was in effect at the time of your car or truck accident could affect your right to recover. An automaker may try to refute liability for your accident if you knew or reasonably should have known about the defect due to an ongoing recall.

If the defendant can prove that you received notice by mail of the recall with the company’s recommendation not to drive the car until getting it repaired, for example, this could protect the company from liability for an accident. If, however, your accident occurred before the recall was announced, the company could still be liable.

When to Hire a Product Liability Attorney in Dallas, Texas

A car accident case involving a recalled car or truck with a defect or safety issue can be complex. If you or a loved one was injured in this type of auto accident in Dallas, consult with a vehicle defect attorney for advice. If you have grounds for an injury claim against the manufacturer or another party, your lawyer can help you with the legal process.

Posted by admin at 10:14 pm

What To Do After a Rear-End Car Accident

Thursday, February 11, 2021

Although many rear-end car accidents are minor collisions, they have the propensity to be severe and even catastrophic. If a commercial truck rear-ends a small passenger car, for example, the injuries can be devastating. Knowing exactly what to do after a rear-end car accident in Dallas can help you effectively protect your rights as an injured victim, as well as help you from feeling overwhelmed in the aftermath of a collision.

What To Do After a Rear-End Car Accident

Pull Over and Check for Injuries

You legally must pull your car over immediately after any type of motor vehicle collision according to Texas law. Failing to pull over after a rear-end car accident could lead to a hit-and-run charge against you. This is a serious crime that can come with hefty fines and jail time.

Pull over as close as you can to the scene of the rear-end collision without putting yourself in danger. Turn on your hazard lights and check yourself and your passengers for injuries. When it is safe to do so, exit your vehicle and ask if anyone in the other car has been injured.

Call 911, If Necessary

If anyone has been injured in the rear-end collision, if anyone appears unconscious or bleeding, or if you believe there has been at least $1,000 worth of property damage, the law in Texas requires you to call 911 to report the collision immediately.

You should also call the police if your rear-end accident involves an uninsured driver, a drunk driver, or a hit-and-run. Calling the police can create an official accident report that your insurance company can use to assess your claim later. You or the police will need to file a report with the Texas Department of Transportation, as well.

Exchange Information With the Other Driver

While you wait for the police to arrive, spend the time exchanging information with the other driver. You and the other driver should exchange names, addresses, phone numbers, license plate numbers and car insurance information. You should also write down other accident details for your own records, such as the date, time and location of the crash, plus a description of the other driver’s vehicle.

Do Not Admit Fault

While it is important to remain polite and not get aggressive with the other driver, it is also important not to apologize for the crash or admit any fault for the accident. Admitting fault could automatically bar you from financial recovery. Even if you are the rear driver and believe you caused the crash, refrain from admitting fault. Wait for a thorough investigation of the collision to identify the at-fault party. There may be other factors at play that you are unaware of, such as a dangerous road defect or the other driver’s comparative fault.

Document the Crash

Something else you can do while you are waiting for the police is document the crash. Use a camera or smartphone, if possible, to take photographs of the scene of the rear-end car accident. Obtain the names and contact phone numbers of any eyewitnesses, as well. If any local businesses caught the rear-end collision on surveillance cameras, request copies.

Watch for Hidden or Delayed Symptoms

Go to a hospital right away after a rear-end car accident in Dallas. Rear-end collisions can cause many serious injuries, including whiplash, broken bones, muscle strains, lacerations and traumatic brain injuries such as concussions. You may or may not notice the signs and symptoms of an injury immediately; however, going to a doctor without delay can lead to prompt diagnosis and treatment even with hidden or delayed symptoms.

Consult With a Car Accident Lawyer

If you encounter problems or challenges during the insurance process after a rear-end car accident in Dallas, consult with a Dallas car accident attorney for assistance. If the other driver’s insurance company is refuting fault, for example, or not offering as much as you believe your injuries are worth, an attorney can help.

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