In a busy metropolitan city like Houston, the active city life and traffic can often lead to road accidents due to any number of reasons, like negligence, weather conditions, or ignoring the traffic laws.
Houston, Texas, has very strict and complex laws when it comes to personal injuries, especially injuries suffered in a car accident. Having a good car accident lawyer in Houston is as important as knowing your basic rights and the immediate action you should take when involved in a car accident. It will also be prudent to be aware of the legal process to help you navigate through it and stay in the loop while your lawyer works on your behalf.
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Legal steps for optimal compensation:
- Medical attention: The most important thing is your well-being and safety after being involved in a car accident. Once you have moved to a safe place away from the accident site, call the emergency services to report the accident. Very often, we ignore the minor injuries, which is not advisable after being involved in an accident as even a seemingly minor injury can become a cause for concern after a few days. A medical check-up is important to know the exact status of the knock or injuries. Collect the medical bills, reports, and prescriptions.
- Exchanging information: Exchange contact and insurance-related information with the other party and also take contact details from the witnesses. This will help you later with the legal process.
- Collect evidence: If you feel up to it, then try and collect evidence by taking pictures of the accident site, damage to the vehicles, your injuries and those of the other party, the condition of the road, and the traffic signs and signals. Note down the date, time, location, and also the weather condition. Make sure to report the accident to the police and take a copy of your report.
- Consult a lawyer: Now would be a good time to consult a car accident lawyer in Houston for further guidance and legal support. Ask for recommendations for a good lawyer from family and friends, in case you do not know any. The lawyer will guide you regarding the process, depending on the nature of your injuries and your liability. If the liability is being disputed, it is best to let your lawyer handle this and take it forward.
- Contact the insurance company: Contact your insurance company and inform them of the accident by giving relevant details. Try to stick to the facts as far as possible, without giving explanations, etc.
- Make a file: Collecting and preserving all the collected evidence is crucial for your own legal safety, and in case your car accident lawyer advises you to file a claim later. Make a file for the reports, medical bills, car repair estimate or bills, correspondence with the doctor or healthcare provider, and your insurance company.
- Assessing the damages: Your lawyer will conduct his own investigation to gather more evidence and assess the damages to ascertain and establish liability. In certain cases, both parties are responsible for the accident, in which case, as per the laws in Texas, the modified comparative negligence law will be followed. This would affect the compensation you may be seeking or hoping to receive.
- Negotiations: Once the liabilities have been established, your car accident lawyer will contact and negotiate with the other party and the insurance companies in order to reach a settlement with the best possible compensation in your favor.
- Filing a lawsuit: If you fail to reach a mutually agreeable settlement, your lawyer may advise you to approach the court and file a personal injury lawsuit. The lawsuit will cover all the expenses, damages, and losses suffered by you because of the accident.
- Representation in court: If the case goes to trial, your experienced car accident lawyer will represent and argue your case in court by doing their best to establish accountability for the other party with the help of the collected evidence, witness testimonies, surveillance footage, and more. On winning the case, the jury will ascertain the compensatory amount to be handed over to you. Your lawyer will help you collect compensation from the liable party or their insurance company.
Having an experienced car accident lawyer in Houston by your side will make a world of difference to the speed and quality of the recovery of your health – physical, mental, and financial. Understanding and navigating the complex laws in Texas is not easy, and at such a time, your focus needs to be on your own health instead of pursuing the legal process.