McAllen Car Accidents Attorneys
Automobiles have become an indispensable part of modern life, with 95% of American households owning at least one car. However, despite the widespread acceptance of motor vehicles, they are still one of the primary sources of serious injuries and preventable deaths. In fact, an estimated 40,000 people lose their lives every year in the United States due to auto accidents. Sadly, these incidents are often the result of an individual’s or group’s carelessness. read on to learn what your legal options are from our experienced McAllen car accident lawyers.Car accidents can occur for a variety of reasons, and in some cases, there is little that anyone could have done to stop the accident from occurring. On the other hand, many vehicular mishaps are caused by acts of negligence, from choosing to drive while intoxicated to manufacturing vehicles with substandard safety features. In situations like these, car accident victims may be entitled to pursue compensation with an experienced McAllen Car Accident Lawyer for the damages they have incurred.
Causes of Car Accidents
Reckless or dangerous driving is one of the top causes of car accidents across the country, the McAllen area being no exception. Sadly, our McAllen reckless driving accident lawyers know, many people suffer devastating harm and losses in accidents caused by reckless drivers. As a result of reckless driving accidents, victims are often left dealing with not only severe physical harm, but also emotional and financial trauma as well.
Though dealing with such a situation can be extremely difficult, it can possibly be made easier by holding the reckless driver accountable for their actions and the harm they have caused. In fact, by filing a personal injury claim against the reckless driver, many victims are able to get financial compensation and justice, allowing them to better recover from the consequences of the accident. Read on to learn how you can file a claim against a reckless driver from our Mcallen car accident lawyers.
Common Causes of McAllen Reckless Driving Accidents
Because reckless driving is such a broad category, numerous individual behaviors can fall under this heading. However, some of the most common forms of reckless driving are:
- Failure to Yield
- Failure to Use Turn Signals
- Drunk Driving
- Driving While Distracted
These actions endanger both the driver committing them and anyone else who happens to be sharing the road with that driver. Sadly, victims often sustain traumatic, if not permanent, harm when involved in reckless driving accidents.
Of the many types of car accidents that occur, rollover accidents are among the most dangerous. When a vehicle flips over, sometimes repeatedly, the possibility of a person and their passengers sustaining serious injuries is very high. While not always the case, many of these accidents are caused by the negligent actions of other drivers or poor vehicle designs. In these situations, victims are often made to suffer more by knowing that the accident might have been prevented if another party had simply acted more carefully. Hold those parties accountable with the assistance of our McAllen rollover accident laywers, read on to learn how.
Being involved in a rollover accident in McAllen can be devastating, something that our Mcallen car accident lawyers are all too aware of. Fortunately, many victims and their families are able to get the justice, closure, and compensation they need after such an accident by filling a personal injury claim against the responsible party.
Common Injuries from Rollover Accidents
Because rollover accidents involve a driver completely losing control of a vehicle, they are extremely dangerous and can cause numerous terrible injuries, including:
- Lacerations from broken glass
- brain injuries from collision with windshields
- Whiplash from sudden movements
- Burn injuries from explosions
- Head / brain damage from roof collapse
- Broken bones from exterior damage to vehicle
In addition to these and other severe injuries, rollover accidents all too often result in the untimely death of innocent people, leaving their loved ones grieving. If you or a loved one has lost someone to a rollover accident speak with a McAllen wrongful death lawyer about your legal options for compensation.
Speeding is among the most common traffic violations, and is one of the most dangerous behaviors a driver can commit. Unfortunately, many people disregard the danger of this driving behavior, choosing to engage in it despite the threat it poses to both their and other’s safety. As a result, many people sustain serious injuries in caused by speeding each year. From broken bones, head trauma and blood loss to brain damage and permanent damage, speeding accidents can cause victims extreme harm.
Our McAllen speeding accidents lawyers know that many drivers have suffered from the unsafe behavior of other drivers, including speeding. While nothing can be done to reverse the consequences a speeding accident has had on a person’s life, the speeding driver can be held accountable for their actions.
Causes of McAllen Speeding Accidents
Though speeding is a dangerous activity in and of itself, it is actually the effects it has on a person’s driving that causes accidents. Typically, speeding increases the chances of an accident occurring due to:
- Decreasing a person’s reaction time
- Lowering visibility
- Increasing adrenaline
- Increasing nervousness / anxiety, especially in other drivers
- Preventing a driver from being able to stop suddenly
When a person chooses to speed and increases the risk of an accident occurring as a result, they should be held accountable for the harm their recklessness has caused. Speak with an experienced McAllen personal injury lawyer to discuss your options for recovery.
McAllen Car Accident FAQ
If you or a loved one were injured in a McAllen car accident, or elsewhere in the Rio Grande Valley, you have likely found yourself in the middle of a painful, stressful, and confusing time. Not only must you deal with your physical health, but you will also need to manage changes to your daily life, conversations with insurance companies, and repairs for your vehicle. All of this can seem especially unfair when you were not responsible for the accident.
Read on for answers to commonly asked questions after suffering injuries in a car accident.
Q: How common are McAllen car accidents?
Car accidents occur far too often. In one recent year, there were more than 6.7 million car crashes in the United States. That same year, nearly 1.9 million individuals were injured in car accidents. More than 3,300 fatal crashes resulted in 3,642 deaths in Texas; 32 percent of motor vehicle fatalities were car occupants, and 33 percent were pickup truck and SUV occupants.
- One person died every two hours and 26 minutes;
- One person was injured every two minutes and three seconds; and
- One reportable crash happens every 56 seconds
Additionally, 12,897 serious injury crashes involved 15,843 individuals suffering from a serious injury. The city of McAllen reported six fatal car accidents with seven fatalities, 55 suspected serious crashes, and 64 suspected serious injuries. There were nearly 1,500 crashes that involved injuries and almost 3,000 total crashes in the city. These numbers are higher than the majority of other cities in Texas.
Q: What are the most common causes of McAllen car accidents?
Car accident causes are most frequently documented as they relate to fatalities.
The most common causes of fatal car accidents are:
- Driving too fast for the conditions or speeding;
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or other regulated substance;
- Failure to stay in the lane;
- Failure to yield the right of way;
- Distracted driving;
- Careless or reckless driving; and
- Failure to obey traffic signals or signs;
The most common causes of traffic accidents in Texas are:
- Failure to control speed;
- Driver inattention;
- Disregard of stop signs or stop lights;
- Changing lanes when it is unsafe to do so;
- Failing to yield to a stop sign or when turning left;
- Failure to stay in a single lane; and
- Faulty evasive action.
Q: How do you prove the defendant was responsible for a McAllen car accident?
Many of the most common accident causes involve a failure on the part of a driver. If you believe that another party was responsible for the accident, you will need to prove that they acted negligently or intentionally and that the negligent action was the cause of your injuries.
The most common responsible parties are:
- A negligent driver. If another driver acted negligently, they are likely responsible for your injuries and any damage to your property. Evidence of negligence includes violation of traffic rules and regulations, including some of the most common causes of accidents like speeding, driving under the influence, and distracted driving.
- A negligent driver’s employer. If a negligent employee is acting in the course of their employment, their employer could be responsible for their actions. Common employees involved in traffic accidents include delivery drivers and commercial truck drivers. It is often advantageous to pursue recovery from the employer as they have larger insurance policies and more liquidity than the driver themselves.
- Vehicle manufacturer. If a vehicle manufacturer failed to appropriately assemble or test a vehicle or part, they could be responsible for any injuries that occur due to that failure. Establishing that a vehicle failure was at fault for the crash requires extensive testing and the potential involvement of experts.
- Local government. It is the responsibility of the local government to maintain streets and traffic signals, including crosswalks, traffic lights, and stop signs. If the local government fails in this responsibility and this failure causes an accident, the local government could carry a degree of fault for the resulting injuries. It can be very difficult, however, to secure recovery from a governmental entity. An attorney could work with you to determine if recovery may be possible.
The more evidence you can compile of the other party’s negligence, the stronger your claim for recovery could become. It could also determine how seriously you should consider any settlement offer made by the defendant.
Q: What is discovery?
Discovery is a phase of the trial that is very important for establishing evidence of negligence. Discovery allows parties to gather information from others involved in the accident.
The three main avenues for collecting information include:
- Depositions: Depositions are out-of-court oral testimony for witnesses or parties to a lawsuit. The lawyer for the opposing party conducts the deposition, but the deposed party’s attorney is generally present and able to object to questions. A deposition must follow the state’s procedural requirements, and the witnesses’ responses are often referenced later in court.
- Interrogatories: These are written questions, also called requests for further information, provided to the opposing party. All questions must be relevant to the issues in the lawsuit. Relevant questions for a car accident could include “How fast were you driving at the time of the accident?” or “Did you drink any alcohol on the day of the accident?” Interrogatories can be important in drawing out information important to the case.
- Document Production: Other parties may have documents in their possession that contain relevant information. A document production request may be required to gain access to these documents. Some documents are protected by a privilege, including attorney-client privilege and doctor-client privilege.
The other party would do their best to avoid responding to discovery requests and may request additional time, dragging out the trial process. An attorney could help you prepare compliant discovery requests, respond to objections, and reply to any discovery requests issued to you by the other party.
Q: What should be included in a McAllen car accident damages claim?
Once you have established that another party may be responsible for your injuries, you will need to compile the financial impact of those injuries into a damages demand. It is important to include all injuries in your damages demand, as this number will affect any potential jury award or settlement offer.
Common damages recovered after a car accident injury include:
- Medical expenses: You may be able to recover all medical expenses associated with your injuries. This can include doctor’s bills, hospital stays, prescription medicine, ambulance rides, and long-term costs like physical therapy. Be sure to include anticipated future expenses. Input from a medical expert may be necessary.
- Lost wages and income: Injuries often necessitate the victim to miss work resulting in lost wages. If your ability to perform your job duties or to work full time moving forward is affected, you could also recover for these future losses. An economic expert would evaluate your future earning potential and the impact of your injuries on this number.
- Property damage: Very few cars make it out of an accident unscathed. If your vehicle, or any other property, suffered damage in the accident, be sure to include the costs of repair or replacement in your damages demand.
- Emotional distress: A car accident can be a jarring experience. As a result, long-term emotional effects such as PTSD, anxiety, and depression are common for victims to experience as a result of their car accident. While often difficult to quantify, you may be entitled to recover for these damages.
- Loss of enjoyment: Injuries often limit a victim’s ability to participate in activities they previously enjoyed. An athlete might find themselves unable to participate in a sport, or a gardener might not be able to bend over to tend to their flowers. An attorney could help you evaluate whether you have suffered from a loss that could entitle you to additional compensation.
- Punitive damages: Punitive damages, referred to in Texas as exemplary damages, may be awarded to a victim to punish the defendant for actions that constitute malice or gross negligence.
While many damages can be straightforward—like doctor’s bills—many others can be complicated and difficult to quantify. Work with an experienced attorney to coordinate with experts, if necessary, and to ensure all your injuries are included.
Q: What steps should I take after a McAllen car accident?
First, tend to your own health and safety. Seek immediate medical attention even if you do not feel injured. Many injuries, especially internal injuries, can exist without presenting symptoms until they become much more serious. Additionally, failure to receive prompt medical treatment could limit your opportunity to recover medical costs associated with the injuries.
Once you have dealt with any medical concerns, you should take these steps to make your claim for recovery as strong as possible:
- File a police report. The police report can be an important evidentiary document in your case. The report would likely include photos of the accident scene, witness information and accounts, and citations issued for traffic violations.
- Stay organized. All the paperwork associated with your accident and pursuit of recovery will feel overwhelming. However, it is all incredibly important. Paperwork like medical bills, communications from insurance companies, and other similar documents could be important in building your case. Be sure to stay organized and keep copies of all relevant paperwork.
- Think before you speak. Be careful when speaking about the accident, especially to the media or when posting about the accident on social media. The defendant or their insurance company could use a simple statement against you. Imagine how the defendant could use a statement like “Well, I guess I could have gone a little slower.”
- Review before you sign. Be cautious about signing any paperwork before reviewing it thoroughly with our McAllen car accident lawyers. Hospitals, insurance companies, and other parties to the lawsuit will likely present paperwork to you. Some documents may request that you waive certain rights or agree to certain facts. An attorney could help you review all paperwork before you sign.
- Do not delay. You must bring a car accident lawsuit within two years of the injury. While this seems like a long time, significant work is required to research, prepare, and file a civil action. Be sure not to drag your feet in taking action, or you may miss your opportunity.
An attorney could help you manage your paperwork, deal with difficult conversations, and help you prepare to file a lawsuit before the statute of limitations runs out.
Q: Should I accept a settlement offer?
It is very common for car accident lawsuits to settle before or during the trial. It can be tempting to accept an early settlement offer because settlements offer a quick and certain resolution to the matter, with immediate compensation. Be wary of accepting an early settlement offer because it might be much lower than you deserve. Any settlement offer should be considered based on the strength of your case and all of the evidence.
Work with an attorney to determine the settlement strategy for your case.
Q: How long would a trial last?
Only a small percentage of cases end up at a jury verdict because trial results are difficult for either party to predict. In some cases, however, pursuing the trial to completion is the best strategy. This will depend on the strength of your case and the quality of the settlement offer proposed. If you proceed with a trial, the process can take awhile due to the need to compile your evidence, file relevant court documents, complete discovery, and file and respond to motions.
Going to trial, however, could result in you recovering far more compensation than a settlement.
Should you need to go to trial, we could help set reasonable expectations for the trial process and timeline, as well as the pros and cons of settling or proceeding with a lawsuit. Whichever way offers you the greatest advantage, we will strive to get you through the process as quickly as possible so you can move on with your recovery.
Working with an experienced attorney could be an excellent way to relieve the stress associated with the administrative and strategic decisions required after a McAllen car accident. If you have suffered car accident injuries in McAllen and the surrounding Rio Grande Valley, contact our car accident attorneys today for a free consultation.