The Basics of Statutes of Limitations in San Antonio Car Accident Claims

Friday, September 24, 2021

If you get injured in a car accident in Texas, it is vital that you file an injury claim before the state’s statute of limitations. This is a strict time limit that all injury claimants must obey. With only a few exceptions, if you miss your statute of limitations, the courts will dismiss your case. Discuss your exact time limit to file with a San Antonio car accident lawyer today.

What Are Statutes of Limitations?

Statutes of limitations are legally enforced deadlines that require injured accident victims (plaintiffs) to file their causes of actions by a certain date. The purpose of the statute of limitations is to encourage prompt and timely filing. This can ensure important evidence is still available, such as accurate statements from eyewitnesses. Statutes of limitations also keep the justice system fair by preventing plaintiffs from holding the possibility of a lawsuit over defendants’ heads indefinitely.

Two-Year Statute of Limitations on a Typical Car Accident Claim

Texas Civil Practice and Remedies Code Section 16.003 is Texas’ statute of limitations on personal injury and property damage claims. This statute states that with only a few exceptions, a person must bring a lawsuit for an injury or property damage no later than two years after the date of the accident. The two-year deadline applies to most car accident cases in Texas and San Antonio, including crashes that cause catastrophic injuries. Failing to file the paperwork to bring a lawsuit within two years of a car accident may bar you from financial recovery.

Exceptions to the Rule

It is important to note that the statute of limitations in Texas has some exceptions to the general two-year deadline. Always speak to a car accident lawyer before assuming you have missed your deadline and forfeited the right to file. A lawyer may be able to identify an exception that gives you additional time to file. You may also have less than two years to file, however, depending on your type of case.

Exceptions to Texas’ statute of limitations include:

  • The discovery exception. The discovery rule tolls, or extends, the statute of limitations if the victim discovers his or her injury on a date later than that of the accident. The clock won’t start ticking in these cases until the date the victim discovered or reasonably should have discovered the injury.
  • Wrongful death claims. If you are filing a lawsuit for the wrongful death of a loved one in a car accident, you have two years from the date of his or her death, rather than the date of the collision.
  • Claims involving criminal charges. If your car accident case involves hit-and-run, driving under the influence, or another crime, the courts may toll your deadline until the completion of the criminal case against the defendant.
  • Claims against the government. In Texas, you must file a claim against a local or state government within just six months of the car accident.
  • Claims involving minors. If your car accident case involves injury to a minor, the minor generally has two years from his or her 18th birthday to file a lawsuit. If you wish to file a claim on behalf of your minor child, however, you have two years from the date of the accident.

There are many confusing rules related to Texas’ statutes of limitations, and state laws are constantly changing. It is critical to talk to a lawyer about your statute of limitations to understand how long you have to file a car accident lawsuit.

When Should You File Your Car Accident Case?

If you miss your filing deadline, you risk giving up the right to hold one or more parties financially responsible for your recent car accident in San Antonio, Texas. The best way to protect your right to recover is by filing a car accident case as soon as possible. Contact an attorney immediately after getting into a car crash in Texas for help filing by the deadline.

Posted by Aaron Herbert at 1:13 pm

What Is the Texas Dram Shop Law?

Sunday, September 12, 2021

When one person injures another, the injured party may seek compensation for his or her injuries and associated expenses by filing a personal injury lawsuit against the person who injured him or her. In some situations, a third-party may share some of the blame. This third-party may not have directly contributed to the injury-causing incident, but his or her involvement enabled the defendant (the person being sued) to commit the action.

One of the most prevalent examples of this situation would be a bar or other establishment that serves alcohol to an obviously intoxicated patron. In Texas, the laws meant to prevent such incidents are known as dram shop laws.

How Do Dram Shop Claims Work?

Any establishment or “social host” that provides alcohol to guests may be held responsible for any injuries that those guests cause to others after they leave the premises. Additionally, liquor stores and other alcohol vendors can be held responsible for damages in some cases, including any instance of alcohol being sold or given to anyone under the age of 18 or any instance of providing alcohol to an obviously intoxicated person.

A “social host” describes any individual who knowingly supplies alcohol to individuals under the age of 18. This does not apply to parents – a parent cannot be held accountable as a social host if his or her child injures another person due to intoxication. Under Texas laws, social hosts include any adult who is not a parent, legal guardian, or spouse of the minor under 18. Social host laws also apply to individuals who knowingly serve alcohol to minors under 18 or permit alcohol consumption by minors under 18 on his or her property.

Damages

As with any other personal injury case, a personal injury lawsuit involving dram shop laws can provide the injured party with various forms of compensation, including:

  • Medical expenses. Compensation for medical costs can include emergency response services and care, hospital bills, the costs of any necessary subsequent treatments (such as physical therapy or reconstructive surgeries), prescription costs, and any other medical expenses resulting from the incident.
  • Pain and suffering. The plaintiff’s attorney will consult with medical professionals who will act as expert witnesses. Expert witnesses have no personal involvement in a case, but instead, provide their expertise to the court to help a jury determine how an injury affected the plaintiff. Although it sounds difficult to quantify physical pain and emotional trauma with a dollar figure, expert witness testimony allows a court to determine a reasonable amount of compensation.
  • Lost income. If an injury prevents the plaintiff from returning to work for an extended period, he or she can claim lost wages as compensation. If an incident results in a permanent disability that prevents the plaintiff from resuming his or her job permanently, he or she can sue for the income that he or she would have reasonably expected to earn in the future.
  • Property damage. This includes damage to a vehicle or destroyed personal belongings.

Cases involving dram shop laws often involve extensive investigation, such as interviewing patrons and staff of the establishment who saw the intoxicated individual, security footage from the establishment, and consultations with expert witnesses. An attorney is crucial for successfully navigating any personal injury case and any case involving Texas dram shop laws – which will likely be complex.

The individual directly responsible for the incident and the establishment that served alcohol to the individual can both be held accountable for the incident. For example, if you were struck by a drunk driver and injured, you can sue the driver for compensation for the damages listed above. Additionally, if that driver just left a bar that continued to serve him or her alcohol after he or she was visibly drunk, the bar can also be held accountable for contributing to the incident.

If you’ve been involved in a drunk driving accident in fort worth or any other city in Texas, contact us for a free case evaluation.

Posted by Aaron Herbert at 5:27 pm

Five Reasons to Hire Our San Antonio Car Accident Lawyers

Friday, September 10, 2021

Five reasons to hire a Board Certified San Antonio car accident lawyer

Texas car wreck cases involve greedy billion-dollar insurance companies

If you’ve been injured in an auto accident in San Antonio or the surrounding area, the stress that comes from dealing with a traumatic injury and worry over damage to your vehicle can be overwhelming.  The last thing you should do is talk to the trained representatives of a billion-dollar insurance company before seeking legal advice. Insurance companies have spent millions of dollars developing strategies to lead car wreck victims into diminishing the value of their claims. Seek a free consultation with our experienced San Antonio car accident lawyers to help you preserve your rights and fight for the compensation you are entitled to get under Texas law.

Auto accident claims should be handled right from the start by Board Certified San Antonio car accident lawyers

If you were not at fault for the collision, there is no reason to speak with the insurance company. Your attorney will handle all contact with the insurance company and insurance adjusters, so that you can focus on your recovery. There are so many variables involved in car accidents that affect the outcome, and the best way to handle each case depends on the individual circumstances.  It is essential to seek advice from our car accident lawyers in San Antonio, who have a broad range of experience with many types of accidents and injuries to make sure your rights are protected and you are fully compensated for all of the injuries you sustained. Attorney Aaron A. Herbert is Board Certified in Personal Injury Trial Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, and has handled thousands of car accident injury claims.

Motor vehicle collision cases involve complicated legal hurdles requiring experienced legal advice

It is critical that your car wreck claim is handled right from the beginning to end. Some injured individuals are tempted to handle car wreck claims on their own, unaware of critical procedural and filing requirements. If deadlines are missed or your injuries are not properly documented, the value of your claim will suffer. Even worse, the risk involved in signing forms provided by the insurance company or giving recorded statements to insurance adjusters are grave.  A car accident lawyer from the Law Firm of Aaron A. Herbert can help you understand the legal issues surrounding your auto accident.

Investigation into the cause of the collision must start right away

The causes and circumstances of a car accident can affect what damages you can recover. The more time passes from the date of a car crash, the more difficult it will be to obtain crucial evidence. Over time, some evidence could be lost completely. When you hire Attorney Aaron A. Herbert for your car wreck claim, our dedicated team of San Antonio car accident lawyers and investigators immediately begin gathering information and evidence.  We quickly contact witnesses for statements, take photographs of vehicles before repairs begin or the vehicle is sold for salvage. If the police were involved in investigating the collision, our firm will file an “open records request” seeking squad car video and other evidence obtained by the police. Our firm uses cutting edge technology and discovery tools to investigate, discover, document and preserve every possible fact about your case in order to obtain the compensation you deserve.

Medical treatment is expensive and failure to document your injuries will hurt your recovery

To further complicate matters, the injuries sustained depend heavily on the circumstances of each individual car accident. Most Texans injured due to negligent drivers expect the insurance company will pay for medical treatment right away. In fact, when calling to set up a claim most car insurance companies will tell the injury person “we can’t help you with that until we get a statement”. Don’t be fooled by this tactic! The insurance company will not help you with medical treatment and the bodily injury adjuster will simply tell you they “are still investigating the claim” even if you give them a statement. The insurance company hopes you wait days or even weeks before seeking medical treatment, in order to claim the delay in treatment proves you were not severely injured. Our San Antonio car accident lawyers fight this delay tactic by ensuring our clients are able to obtain the appropriate medical treatment. For example, even if you have no way to pay for medical treatment, we can assist in finding medical facilities and diagnostic testing to properly document injuries sustained in the collision. Injuries are not always apparent immediately after the auto accident and this is why it is vital to speak with our experienced San Antonio car accident lawyers right away.

No-fee, no-obligation legal consultation

Attorney Aaron A. Herbert offers all victims of accidents a no obligation, free legal consultation. Call now to speak with a seasoned, experienced car accident attorney for a review of your case at (214)200-HURT. You can also click HERE to tell us about your case, and Attorney Aaron Herbert will contact you to discuss your legal rights and how we will fight to protect them.

Posted by Aaron Herbert at 4:13 am

Tanker Truck Rollover Prevention

Thursday, September 2, 2021

Tractor-trailers are vital parts of the American economy and transportation network, but they are also inherently more dangerous than smaller vehicles on the road. Trucks that pull tankers full of liquid goods, including gas and oil, can be even more dangerous. If these tanker trucks roll over, they can cause catastrophic damage, severe injuries, even fatalities. Depending on what a rolled-over tanker truck carried, the spilled contents can also present a serious risk of additional injuries as well as environmental hazards or public health emergencies.

Statistics indicate that almost 80% of all tanker truck rollover accidents happen due to some level of driver error. While truck drivers must obtain special certifications to perform their jobs and generally have more miles of driving under their belts than typical drivers, it is still crucial for them to understand the risks of driving tanker trucks and follow a few best practices to avoid rollovers.

Speed Control

Large trucks cannot stop or slow down as quickly as smaller passenger vehicles. They also require much longer distances to come to a complete stop. If a tanker truck driver is travelling too fast or not paying enough attention to other vehicles on the road, the driver may not have time to slow down or stop to avoid a collision. Tanker truck drivers can easily cause rollovers if they swerve to avoid a collision while traveling at speed. The sudden change in direction will cause the trailer to tip and probably fall over.

Speed is also a problem for turning. Tanker truck drivers need to account for changes on the road, and taking a sharp turn at high speed can easily cause a tanker truck to rollover. Drivers should reduce speed for turns and accommodate their vehicles’ size and weight.

Sudden Movements

Tanker truck drivers should do everything possible to avoid any sudden movements or jerking of the steering wheel. If a driver needs to suddenly turn to avoid another vehicle, the driver can unintentionally cause the tanker truck to rollover by oversteering or making the move too quickly. Tanker truck drivers can prevent rollovers by staying vigilant for changes in traffic patterns and avoiding reflexive sudden movements.

Plan Ahead

Tanker truck drivers can avoid rollovers by carefully planning routes ahead of time. By studying a route’s topography, known hazards, and any other elements like road construction on the route, drivers can make their deliveries with additional confidence. A driver who is not expecting a sudden change in road conditions is more likely to suffer a rollover accident, so preparation before every trip is important.

Trucking companies must ensure their drivers receive thorough training and have the experience necessary for handling tanker trucks. Most tanker trucks carry valuable goods, including fossil fuels, so trucking companies and their drivers have a high duty of care to ensure they do not put other drivers at risk with unsafe driving. Other drivers should be wary of all tractor-trailers on the road, especially tanker trucks, and avoid driving aggressively near them. Caution and good judgment from all drivers can help prevent tanker truck rollovers.

If you’ve been injured in a 18 wheeler accident it’s best to have a San Antonio 18 wheeler accident attorney review your case to see what compensation is available for you and your family.

Posted by Aaron Herbert at 6:24 pm