Houston is a global city with a population of more than 2.3 million people, making it the fourth most populous city in the country. In this bustling metropolis, an accident or personal injury could sidetrack your personal and professional plans, leaving you in pain, out of work, and struggling to pay medical bills.
You expect the at-fault party’s insurance company to come through for you, but they might undervalue your claim or hold you at least partly responsible. How can you get the help you need with your personal injury case in Houston?
A Houston Personal Injury Attorney Can Evaluate Your Claim Today
It’s sometimes challenging to know the next steps to take after an injury.
At first, you might be in so much pain you can’t think clearly. Then, you receive all the bills for your medical treatment, which can be expensive even with health insurance.
You may also need to buy mobility aids, pay out of pocket for physical therapy, or hire someone to help with household tasks you usually do yourself. Depending on how your accident occurred, you could also have suffered property damage.
Meanwhile, you might be unable to return to work for weeks or months.
At this point, injured people usually consider making an insurance claim or seeking restitution from the at-fault party. Unfortunately, you may be met with claim denials or a letter stating you were at fault when you don’t believe that’s true.
This is why you should not call the insurance company—at least, not without help from an experienced personal injury attorney who understands the nuances of the insurance policy and Texas laws.
At the CEO Lawyer Personal Injury Law Firm, we offer free consultations about any potential personal injury claim. Whether you haven’t filed a claim yet or have received a denial from the insurance company, we’ll review your case and explain your options.
There is no obligation, and if we do take your case, you won’t pay us anything until we win or settle it.
What Should You Do After A Car Accident?
Car accidents are a common problem in a city with a considerable amount of traffic.
In 2022, Houston saw 317 traffic fatalities and countless more accidents involving injuries. Harris County as a whole reported 560 traffic deaths in the same year.
While these numbers are slowly declining, the city is working to implement safer street systems, including new intersection designs and lower speed limits.
Obeying the speed limit and other traffic laws, avoiding distractions while driving, and wearing a seatbelt are ways that you can help reduce your risk of an accident. Unfortunately, you can’t guarantee others on the road will do the same.
If you experience a collision with another vehicle, it’s helpful to follow these tips to protect your legal rights:
Pull over at the first place where you can do so safely. If your car can’t be moved, turn on your hazard lights while you call 911 and wait for first responders.
If your injuries don’t prevent you from moving around, check to see if it’s safe to exit the car. If so, take pictures of your car, the other vehicle, the road, and the surrounding area. Closeups of your injuries and any damage to your vehicle are especially helpful.
Exchange insurance and contact info with the other driver. Be polite and resist the urge to discuss fault, even if you’re confident the other driver is responsible. Arguments at the scene will not help your case and could worsen things. If the other motorist seems determined to start a fight with you, simply return to your car and wait for the police.
Give a statement to the police. You should respond to their queries honestly but don’t admit fault. Believe it or not, we often meet people who incorrectly think they’re responsible for an accident. You may not have all the information about the crash, and it’s not your job to speculate on who caused the collision. Shared fault is also common in car accidents, and we’ll talk more about what that means for your case in the next section.
Pay attention to how you feel. Are you injured? Does anything hurt? Are your passengers all right? Sometimes, an injured person doesn’t feel any pain or symptoms initially. It’s not unusual for pain to begin hours or days after an accident, so if you experience any new symptoms within a week or two of the collision, seek medical attention immediately.
Get medical care if you have any noticeable injuries at the scene, even if they seem minor—like cuts or bruises. Sometimes, these mild symptoms are indicative of a more serious issue that requires treatment.
How Does Modified Comparative Negligence Affect Your Car Accident Claim?
As we mentioned earlier, it’s possible for both drivers to bear some responsibility for a car accident. To recover damages under Georgia’s modified comparative negligence statutes, you must be less than 50 percent at fault.
Then, whatever share of fault you do have will be subtracted from your settlement.
With this system, you will not be barred from recovery for making a small mistake. However, the other driver’s insurance company may try to take advantage of the situation by overestimating your share of fault or even attributing a small amount of responsibility to you when you didn’t contribute to the accident.
Remember, if they decide you are at least 50 percent at fault, they don’t have to pay you anything.
Would you know if the insurance adjuster gave you a larger share of the blame than you deserved? Unless you’re an insurance expert, chances are that you wouldn’t.
It can be hard to calculate how much responsibility you have on your own. This is one reason why seeking help from an experienced personal injury lawyer is essential—we can estimate how much your share of fault should be and work to ensure the insurance adjuster doesn’t inflate your level of culpability.
What Other Problems Do People Encounter With Car Insurance Claims?
If it’s abundantly clear that the other driver was 100 percent at fault, insurance adjusters may instead focus on the amount of damages you have. Many injured people are unaware of all the damages they’ve suffered and may only ask for a few of them.
Your insurance adjuster might assume you have no other damages, or they could undervalue the ones you do have. For instance, they may decide not to pay for some of your medical treatments, deeming them unnecessary (never mind what your doctor thinks).
This is another area in which your lawyer can be helpful. One of the first steps we take is to calculate the value of all your damages accurately so that when the insurance company makes an offer, we can help you determine if it’s fair.
What Damages Can You Seek in a Personal Injury Case?
Here are some categories of damages we will ask about when evaluating your claim:
Medical bills. This includes your existing bills and future medical costs if you’re still in treatment. In most cases, we will wait until you fully recover to settle your claim because we want to ensure no costs are left out. However, in the most severe cases where the injured person will need long-term care, we may estimate your future costs so we can settle your case.
Lost income. Your injury could cause you to miss work while you’re hospitalized, and depending on the nature of your job, you might be out of work until your injuries are fully healed. If your employer has provided you with paid time off (PTO), you may have enough to cover the time you miss—but then you lose your vacation days, future sick days, etc. We can seek compensation for paid and unpaid time off.
Lost earning potential. In more consequential accidents, the resulting injuries could be permanent. You deserve compensation for any permanent disability or disfigurement you suffer, and if it prevents you from returning to work, we can pursue damages for lost earning potential.
Pain and suffering. Insurance companies can use different methods to calculate your pain and suffering, which could be physical or mental. But with any method, they might underestimate this damage, so we will work to show how intensely your injuries affected you.
Property damage. We can also seek restitution for any property damage you sustained in the accident. In car accidents, this usually means vehicle damage. In other cases, valuables like laptops or phones may have been damaged.
Wrongful death. The worst personal injury cases are ones where the injured person dies of their injuries. Many people are shattered after losing a loved one, and their grief may be compounded by practical concerns like a flood of bills they can’t pay. If you’ve lost a loved one to another party’s negligence, we may be able to pursue damages, including final medical bills, burial or funeral costs, lost financial support, and more.
How Common Are Boating Accidents in Texas?
Unfortunately, Texas ranks third in the nation for boating accidents, with 201 accidents in 2022 alone. Of those crashes, 30 resulted in fatalities, 87 caused non-fatal injuries, and 84 led to property damage.
Texas is also among the top states for boat accidents involving an intoxicated boat operator. Alcohol use is a leading factor in boat collisions on a national level as well, and one of the best ways to prevent crashes on the water is to plan around alcohol use.
There’s nothing wrong with having a good time, but make sure you have a “designated driver” for your boat.
Here are some more safety tips to reduce your risk of being injured in a boat accident:
Always wear a life jacket—and if you own or rent a boat, ensure it has enough US Coast Guard-approved flotation devices for everyone on board. Even good swimmers can be injured in an accident, and a life jacket will keep you afloat until help arrives.
Don’t speed. If you’re in an area with posted directions regarding speed, be sure to follow these instructions. You should also be aware of other boats or objects and slow down when close to them. Additionally, boaters should reduce their speed when weather conditions or visibility decline.
Take a boater safety education course. Texas requires a boater education course for anyone who operates a motorboat with at least 15 horsepower or a windblown vessel longer than 14 feet. However, everyone can benefit by brushing up on their boating skills if it’s been a few years or you haven’t taken a course previously.
Maintain a lookout. Many accidents could be avoided by using a proper lookout. If you’re getting tired and unable to concentrate, it’s time to let another qualified boater take over for a few hours. In low visibility, it may be helpful to ask a second person to help you keep watch (although you should maintain a lookout yourself as well).
Use your boat’s lights as needed to remain visible.
Who Is at Fault in a Boating Accident?
As with car accidents, the people involved in a boating accident frequently disagree about fault. In a collision with two or more boats, the two boat operators often blame each other. However, there are other potentially liable parties.
Here are some examples of different parties and why they might be liable in some boating accidents:
One or more boat operators. When the operator was driving carelessly, speeding, boating while intoxicated, or otherwise negligent, they could be at fault. If the collision occurred between two watercraft, it’s possible both operators contributed to the accident. In single-vessel crashes, people often assume the boat operator was at fault, but this isn’t always true, as there could be other reasons for the crash.
The boat’s owner. The owner may or may not be the operator, but their actions could cause an accident even when the boat operator is careful. For example, the owner is typically responsible for maintaining a boat in a safe condition. If they ignore regular maintenance or put off fixing mechanical problems, they may be negligent. Failing to provide required safety equipment, such as flotation devices and fire extinguishers, could also be evidence of negligence.
The boat’s manufacturer. If the boat or one of its components is defective in some way that causes the crash, you might have a defective product claim against the manufacturer.
A service provider. If we find evidence that a mechanic or service worker made a mistake that caused the crash, we may be able to make a claim against the service company.
Passengers. Most of the time, passengers are not at fault in collisions, but if a guest becomes agitated and tries to grab the wheel, they might cause a crash. Another possible scenario is when a passenger accidentally causes someone else to fall overboard.
Because it can be difficult to determine liability on your own, we recommend speaking with a personal injury lawyer to learn more about your options after a boating accident. Once we identify the liable parties, we’ll look for a relevant insurance policy that may cover your injuries—boat insurance, business liability insurance, etc.
If there is no insurance policy available, we may be able to seek compensation directly from the liable party.
If You’re Injured on Someone Else’s Property, Are They Liable?
Maybe. In a premises liability case, you have to show that the property owner neglected their “duty of care.”
This typically means that the owner knew or should have known about a dangerous situation on the premises and failed to take reasonable steps to reduce the risk to visitors.
Here are some examples of situations where a property owner might be liable:
You took the stairs at your local shopping center, and you tripped and fell. We later learned the stairway wasn’t up to code, creating a hazard. The property owner has a duty to ensure their building is up to code and fix any areas that aren’t.
You go to a party at a coworker’s house, and their dog bites you. Your coworker admits the dog is sometimes aggressive when there are many strange people in the house— but they didn’t take steps to avoid a problem, like putting the dog in a separate room. (Dog owners may also be liable for attacks that happen off their property if they knew or should have known the dog was dangerous.)
On your way into an office building, you climb the steps and reach for the handrail, but it gives way, causing you to fall. If the property owner didn’t regularly check the grounds and deal with repairs like a loose railing, they could be negligent.
Your toddler fell into a neighbor’s pool and almost drowned, requiring an expensive trip to the emergency room. We learned the neighbor failed to check that the pool cover was securely closed, and it was still partially open at one end. In this case, the neighbor might have been at fault.
How do you know if the property owner was aware of a hazard or should have been? Did they take steps to avoid injury, but you were hurt anyway?
People often struggle with questions about liability in these situations, especially if they know the property owner. Yet, at the same time, they may be unable to absorb the costs of their injuries.
If you’ve been hurt on someone else’s property, we advise you to talk with a personal injury lawyer. Your visit is confidential, and we may be able to negotiate a peaceful resolution, such as obtaining compensation from a homeowner’s or business liability insurance policy.
Do All Workers Have Workers’ Compensation Protection in Texas?
Unlike many states, Texas does not require most private employers to carry Workers’ Compensation insurance (unless they contract with the government). However, a large number of employers choose to provide Workers’ Compensation in the hopes of avoiding lawsuits.
It’s helpful to understand that Workers’ Compensation coverage usually prevents an injured worker from suing if the employer’s negligence caused their injury.
If your employer does have Workers’ Compensation coverage, it should pay for your medical treatment and some of your lost wages. You can’t be turned down because the employer claims the accident was your fault, but there are several other reasons your claim could be rejected:
The employer, their insurance carrier, or both believe you caused your injuries on purpose. In other words, they think your injuries were due to an intentional choice rather than an honest mistake.
The insurance company has reason to believe you were intoxicated or horsing around when you got hurt.
They believe you faked the injury. This is common with soft tissue injuries or other injuries that are difficult to diagnose with imaging or other tests.
They think your injury happened when you weren’t at work. We often see this argument with repetitive stress injuries, even when the job causes the kind of repetitive stress that might trigger such an injury.
If your Workers’ Compensation claim has been denied for any reason, please ask a personal injury lawyer to review the denial. If we can find evidence to refute the insurance company’s claims, we may be able to appeal the denial and obtain the benefits you deserve.
What if Your Employer Doesn’t Have Workers’ Compensation Insurance?
You may be able to sue your employer or a third party, but you will need to show negligence. Please contact an attorney as soon as possible to give us the best chance of finding evidence to prove your case.
How Can You Get Help From a Houston Personal Injury Law Firm?
Please contact the CEO Lawyer Personal Injury Law Firm for a free consultation about your case, even if it doesn’t fit into any of the categories discussed here. Personal injuries can happen in any situation, and we’ll work to learn what happened and explain your options.
Attorney Ali Awad founded the CEO Lawyer Personal Injury Law Firm only a few years ago, and it has since become one of the fastest-growing law firms in the country. With the help of his experienced legal team, Mr. Awad has recovered millions of dollars for injured people and their families.
You can also find him on social media, delivering down-to-earth legal advice to over a million followers. Work with him today when you call (833) 254-2923.
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Frequently Asked Questions
After a personal injury, you're bound to have legal questions. The CEO Lawyer Ali Awad can provide you with answers to these questions, just as he's given answers to his millions of curious social media followers. Take a look at some of the most common personal injury law questions for general information, and then reach out to one of our seasoned attorneys for specific guidance on your case!
To quickly resolve matters following an accident, insurance companies will offer you less than you deserve in compensation for your injuries. Many victims feel pressured to accept these offers as the bills begin to pile up, but that is rarely a good idea. The insurance company is looking to protect its bottom line; and will offer injured victims less than they deserve. An experienced personal injury attorney understands how to negotiate with the insurance company and can look out for your best interests by getting you the compensation you deserve after an injury. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, it is important to avoid negotiating or providing recorded statements to the insurance company without first seeking help from a qualified personal injury attorney.
Do You Have a Personal Injury Case?
The best way to determine if you have a personal injury case is to speak with a knowledgeable attorney. Our legal professionals have the expertise to evaluate your case and determine a strong legal strategy so that you can obtain the greatest amount of compensation possible under the law. We will enlist investigators, assistants, and other specialists to collect accident reports, speak with witnesses to your accident, and put together a plan. While you focus on your physical recovery, we will remain committed to fighting for the compensation that you deserve.
Georgia's Personal Injury & Accident Firm
Accident victims have a limited time to file a personal injury lawsuit. This time period is referred to as the statute of limitations, and in Atlanta, it lasts only two years. This means that if you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, you have only two years to pursue a personal injury suit. If you wait too long to reach out to an experienced attorney, you might be forever barred from seeking the compensation you deserve.
What to Expect From Your Initial Consultation With a Personal Injury Attorney?
During your initial consultation with CEO Lawyer team, we will go over the important details of your personal injury accident, which include the nature and extent of your injuries, how your injuries have impacted your ability to earn a paycheck, the cost of your medical treatment, and whether further medical treatment will be required. We will answer any questions you might have, as well, in regards to our experience, our track record of success, and what to expect from the legal process.
Many personal injury victims wonder if they will be able to afford the legal fees required to pursue a lawsuit. CEO Lawyer injury and accident attorneys will not ask for any type of upfront fee unless we are successful in obtaining compensation for you. That means that if you have been harmed in a motor vehicle accident, slip and fall accident, defective product accident, or any other type of personal injury accident, you can absolutely afford to contact our law office today for assistance. In fact, you cannot afford to wait. Reach out today.
We understand that some accident victims might have already obtained the assistance of an attorney but may be dissatisfied with the services provided. We are standing by and prepared to help you change legal representation, regardless of where you are in the process.
Speak to an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney Today
If you or a loved one has been injured in any type of personal injury accident, you should not hesitate to speak with the experienced attorneys at CEO Lawyer personal injury law firm. Call, email, or fill out our online contact form today so that we can begin helping you pursue the compensation you deserve.