Austin Car Accident Lawyer
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No one plans to be in an accident; still, car accidents are common in Austin, especially during rush hours. Common car crash areas in Austin include busy intersections, such as at Cedar Park’s 183A Toll Road and Whitestone Boulevard. That’s why it’s important to know an Austin car accident lawyer in case you need help.
After being hurt in a car wreck in Austin, you may be eligible for compensation. Getting maximum compensation depends on several factors, though. That’s why, after an accident, it is crucial to know what to do and when to do it to reduce further harm and preserve your claim for damages. Start by speaking with an Austin car accident attorney. He or she will be able to assist you with the timely filing of your claim.
Types of car accidents seen by an Austin car accident lawyer
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, Highway Loss Data Institute (IIHS), there were 33,244 fatal motor vehicle crashes in the United States in 2019. Based on reportable crashes in Texas in 2018, there was one person killed roughly every hour and a half in a car accident. At least one person was injured every two minutes, and a reportable crash occurred every 58 seconds.
Car accidents can happen to anyone, even if you are a careful driver. Some accidents are caused by other drivers who are driving irresponsibly, and an accident cannot be avoided. If the driver is distracted by using a cell phone, speeding, or driving under the influence, then a car crash is more likely to occur.
Additionally, there are several types of car accidents. Different types of car accidents can cause certain characteristic injuries and may also provide clues as to which driver was at fault. The following are the most common types of car accidents, as seen by an Austin car accident lawyer:
To start, rear-end collisions are one of the most common types of car accidents, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). A rear-end collision is a type of accident where one vehicle crashes into the one in front of it. Oftentimes, the one who is rear-ended has no way to avoid being hit.
Rear-end accidents often occur an intersections and at low speeds. However, damages may be more severe if the driver is speeding or going faster than the rate of traffic when the collision happens.
Next, a side-swipe accident occurs when one car swipes alongside another car. This can happen due to an improper lane change or a driver being distracted so much he drifts from his lane. These types of accidents also happen if one vehicle fails to yield to another at an intersection and they run into each other. Side-swipe car accidents can happen on narrow roadways if an impatient driver tries to pass or even in parking lots if drivers try to get past someone else on their side.
Head-on collisions may be one of the most dangerous types of car accidents. These occur when there is nothing to stop or slow down one car from hitting another car directly, head-to-head. These occur on one-way streets when a driver runs into an oncoming car while going the wrong direction, against the flow of traffic.
A rollover can occur if a car is going too fast at the time of impact, and the vehicle is thrown onto its side and continues its motion until it rolls over. A vehicle may roll over multiple times before it comes to a stop. These types of accidents are often fatal if the car rolls more than once and lands on its roof.
A T-bone crash is one that occurs when the side of one vehicle is hit by the front end of another vehicle, creating a T-bone-shaped collision. These impacts mostly occur at intersections, usually when a driver fails to yield or stop at a sign or signal.
A multi-vehicle pileup involves more than two cars. These types of accidents can occur when large trucks crash and strike multiple other vehicles, causing lots of damage because of the size and weight of the truck. Multi-vehicle accidents are also common in areas that endure very cold temperatures. Ice can cause sliding that is hard to stop, which may cause a vehicle to slide into another and create a domino effect of cars colliding.
Steps to take after a car accident in Austin
While no one plans to be in an accident, knowing what to do in the event that one takes place can give you peace of mind. Consider the following tips and keep them in mind:
1. Call for Help
If you or someone else is hurt in a car wreck in Austin, call 911 immediately. You should always call the police after an accident and should file a crash report, even if the damages and injuries were minor. Texas law requires the driver of any vehicle involved in an accident in Texas to immediately report it to their local police department if the accident resulted in injury or death, or if a vehicle is too damaged to drive from the scene.
2. Exchange Information and Collect Evidence
Be sure to collect information from the other driver or drivers involved in the collision. At a minimum, gather names, phone numbers, and insurance policy information. If the police are on the scene, they can assist you in collecting evidence.
If you are able to, take pictures of any injuries and of both cars. Take pictures of where the accident took place. If you are able to take down more information, consider taking note of the weather and traffic conditions that may have contributed to the accident.
3. Hire an Austin Car Accident Lawyer
Personal injury attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, so hiring one is at no financial risk to you. A contingency fee means that the attorney will take a portion of your settlement award to pay for the legal services they provided. Having an Austin car accident attorney can be beneficial because they can speak to the other driver who caused your car accident and to the insurance claims adjusters on your behalf.
Common Injuries in a car accident
The extent of your injuries will determine how much car accident compensation you will receive. Car accidents can cause serious injuries. Some of the most common include:
- Back injuries
- Concussions or head injuries
- Scrapes, cuts, bruising
- Herniated discs
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
- Wrongful death
- Broken bones or loss of limb
Depending on the type of harm you suffered, your settlement claim will be adjusted and calculated. An experienced personal injury lawyer can help negotiate the best possible outcome for you so that you can recover the most money possible for your injuries.
Types of damages recoverable
Damages refers to your injuries suffered and costs incurred as a result of the car accident. Each car accident will be different, so they are assessed on a case-by-case basis. Depending on what damages you have, you may be able to recover compensation for the following, which is not a conclusive list:
- Ambulance ride or emergency room costs
- Follow up exams
- Hospital visits
- Medical bills
- Physical therapy
- Prescription medication
- Accident-related anxiety or depression
- Inconvenience of being injured and unable to enjoy daily activities
- Long-lasting disabilities or diminished functioning
- Loss of quality of life
- Mental anguish
- Mental health counseling
- Pain and suffering
- Post-traumatic stress from the accident
- Substance abuse counseling
- Car repairs
- Rental car to replace yours while it is being repaired
- Damaged personal property that was in the vehicle, especially the trunk
Who will pay for my damages?
If you are in a car accident and it was the other driver’ fault, you may be able to recover damages from that driver’s insurance. If that person does not have enough insurance coverage for all of your damages, you may choose to sue them directly.
Texas is an “at-fault” state which means that the driver pays for the accidents that they caused. An insurance claims adjuster will assign each driver involved in the car accident a percentage of fault. In Texas, the damages awarded to you will be reduced by your percentage of fault, if any. If any driver is more than 50% at fault, they will not be able to recover anything.
Texas, like most states, require drivers to have a minimum level of auto insurance in order to operate a vehicle. In some cases, depending on the insurance you and the other driver has, some of your damages may be covered. For any outstanding costs, you may bring a personal injury claim to recover directly from the other driver.
Get Help from an Austin Car Accident Attorney
At Zinda Law Group, our personal injury lawyers are experienced and have handled many cases involving victims of car accidents. We have the knowledge and resources necessary to help you determine what to do next and to help you achieve the best possible outcome for your case.
Meetings with attorneys are available by appointment only.