Texas Accident and Injury FAQs
When you or someone you love has suffered injuries in an accident, it can be difficult to know where to turn for reliable and timely information. It’s natural to have many questions, and the legal team at Parker Law Firm is here to provide the answers and facts you are looking for. Browse our FAQs and learn about common accidents, compensation, and how an attorney can help. If you don’t see your question, don’t hesitate to reach out to our attorneys. Take a moment and fill out our online contact form to hear back from a knowledgeable and experienced legal team.
- Page 1
Do Insurance Companies Generally Defend Against Personal Injury Claims?
Typically, insurance companies will put up numerous defenses and contest any claim at every possible junction, even in rear-end collision cases. You will often see a defense asserted that you stopped too quickly and that it is your fault they ran into the back of your car. We see that all the time, even in traffic light cases where someone plows through a red light. They will try to argue that no; it was you that blew through the red light. Usually, there is no witness there, but if there is you have to rely on their interpretation of the facts or the events caught on traffic light cameras.
But past that, they will start to argue that your damages and injuries are not real or that you somehow malinger and you missed your doctor’s appointments. That is why your injuries have not progressed or healed the way they should have or that somehow this was a pre-existing injury and not something new from the accident. So yes, we see defenses asserted by the insurance companies in almost every single case.
Why is it Helpful to Understand the Defense Mechanisms Employed by Insurance Companies in Auto Accident Claims?
It is helpful to know and understand what defenses may be raised by insurance companies. We can anticipate what might happen ahead of time and try to head it off if we have the right information. For instance, we always make certain that our clients follow up with their doctor’s appointment and receive the recommended treatment so we can avoid the defense arguing that somehow you have not followed up or that you show gaps in your treatment process. For instance, if you have a bad back and it hasn’t bothered you for years, and then all of a sudden you have a flare-up. The event that caused the injury prior gives us a chance to go back and check prior medical records for this injury. We can demonstrate that this is not a pre-existing injury but may be an aggravation of an existing condition.
Likewise, if we even sense that there may be some type of a defense concerning liability, we can gather those facts early on in the process. Having been in this business for 30 years and representing folks who have been injured by the negligence of others, I know and understand from each individual case what I can probably expect from the defense, and it gives us an edge on trying to beat those defenses at the outset.
What are the Common Tactics of Defense for a Car Wreck Case?
The defense will first try to contact for a statement even before you retain an attorney. That is probably the single biggest mistake that someone can make when they give a statement to the other person’s insurance company. You would think that they just want to get the case resolved and that they are very nice and helpful, but in reality what they are trying to do is get you committed to certain facts and the extent of your injury so they can use that against you later. Oftentimes they will ask you to give them authorizations for your medical records, but that is not limited in time or scope.
They can even go back and retrieve your pediatric records if they think it is necessary and if it will help their case. You never want to do that. The other issue is that they will oftentimes make you think that they are going to negotiate and pay your bills. It can be several months if not years before you realize that they are not going to do that. What they try to do is wear you down so that you finally just give in, throw in the hat so to speak, and take whatever they offer you. Every time the insurance company acts, it is because they are trying to defeat you and your claim. This is a well-known tactic that they use over and over again, and that is why it is so critically important to get legal assistance as soon as possible.
How Can an Injured Person Defend Their Claim Against an Insurance Company?
First and foremost, never talk to an insurance company if you do not have a lawyer with you. They are not there to help you, and they are not there to be your friend. They are there to minimize and or defeat your claims. Secondly, do not give them authorizations to get all of your medical records. If you have been in a car wreck and you have been injured, what difference does that make? If you give them authorization, they can obtain any and all of your medical records from any healthcare professional. Thirdly, do not let the insurance companies drag this on for months or possibly even years.
There are statutes of limitations that apply in all states. But besides the statute of limitations, witnesses and evidence will fade out. The likelihood of filing a witness or filing a witness who is willing to get involved evaporates over time. If there is some type of digital evidence, it may be rewritten, destroyed or concealed. It is so critically important to start early in this process because the insurance companies are starting early on their end gathering evidence and materials to defeat your claim. It is critical that you do too, either on your own or by hiring a board certified personal injury trial lawyer.
For more information on defenses used by insurance companies, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling The Parker Law Firm at (817) 503-9200 today.
What’s My Personal Injury Claim Worth?
Many factors go into the determination of what a personal injury claim is worth, just as there are a number of factors that make it possible to assign blame. Ideally, the two work together to present a strong claim for personal injury so you may be reimbursed for your physical injuries, as well as property damages.
The insurance adjuster for your vehicle insurance company will give you the best estimate on your losses for property damage. As he or she works with the police and other insurance adjusters, blame can be ascertained — it’s not always assigned in totality to one person, sometimes there are mitigating circumstances.
The total value of your losses will include property damage, current and future medical bills, any belongings in the vehicle that were lost or ruined, a possible loss of consortium and wages, and any other loss that can have a dollar value placed on it. This number is then multiplied by a percentage of blame that is yours, which will then give you an estimate of the value of your claim. For example, if the value of your claim is $17,000 and you share 5 percent of the blame for the accident, it decreases your claim value by $850.00; so you would receive $16,150. Since you were 5 percent liable; however, your claim will be further reduced by 5 percent of the claim amount of the driver of the other vehicle. If there claim was $30,000, then can sue you for $1,500, which will reduce your claim’s worth to $14,650.
The last deduction for your claim will be the attorney’s fees.
Parker Law Firm is committed to giving individuals dealing with injuries, or facing life-threatening or lifestyle-challenging situations, a voice. Call us today at (817) 503-9200 or email us at [email protected] to receive the personal professional attention you deserve.
What Is Bad Faith Insurance?
Property and casualty Insurance exists to protect you and your loved ones from the financial devastation that can follow a severe weather-related event. When you choose an insurance company, you enter into a legally binding agreement that gives you coverage to protect you and your investments from damage and extreme financial loss. So what happens when you are confronted with a loss and your insurance company fails to meet their end of the deal? Or they offer less money than the extent of your damaged property? Or they fail to respond to your claim in a timely manner? All of these instances are examples of insurance bad faith and they all violate the Texas Insurance Code. Unfortunately, insurance companies don’t always act in good faith, and it can be confusing to understand whether or not your insurance company is attempting to manipulate you. Luckily, the Parker Law Firm is here to help you determine whether or not your insurance company is trying to take advantage of you. Below are some examples of bad faith insurance practices.
An insurer may be acting in bad faith if…
- Your insurer misrepresents your policy in any way. This includes the terms, the benefits and the advantages of the policy.
- Your insurer fails to affirm or deny coverage of your claim in a timely manner.
- Your insurer fails to pay a covered claim as a result of failing to properly investigate liability and damages based upon all available information.
- Your insurer fails to attempt in good faith a prompt, fair and equitable settlement in which the insurer’s liability is clear.
- Your insurer makes false statements regarding your previous payments on the policy.
- Your insurer misrepresents a material fact as it relates to your claim.
- Your insurer fails to explain policy limits and applicable provisions or exclusions in a timely manner.
- Your insurer refuses or delays a settlement offer under applicable first-party coverage on the basis that other coverage may be available or that third parties are responsible for the damages suffered.
- Your insurer uses illegal and fraudulent investigative techniques.
- Your insurer fails to offer fair evaluation of damages within a reasonable time upon receipt of claim.
Protect Yourself with the Parker Law Firm
The bottom line of insurance bad faith cases is this: your insurance company is attempting to mislead you so that the company can save money on your claim. How can you protect yourself from bad faith insurance practices? Contact the Parker Law Firm following an accident, natural disaster, or any other incident that requires insurance coverage. Insurance Bad Faith can be a difficult complication to deal with, but when you work with our firm, we will do everything in our power to protect your rights and conclude your case swiftly. If you have questions or concerns about your eligibility to file an insurance bad faith claim, do not hesitate to contact a Bedford lawyer from our team to discuss your potential case and schedule a Complimentary Strategy Session. At the Parker Law Firm, people matter, and we will fight your insurance company for every dollar of policy protection to which you are entitled.
What Is A Personal Injury Claim?
At its simplest and broadest, a personal injury claim is a legal case where another party is presented as liable for damages you’ve suffered, and it’s a claim that seeks financial compensation from them (or their insurance companies). This type of legal proceeding is also known as a “tort.” Injury torts hold “tortfeasors” (those who caused damages to you) accountable for negligence and recklessness, as well as deliberate actions that knowingly caused damages.
Injury claims are a broad area of the law, and they include (but are not limited to):
- Trucking/car accident claims
- Premises liability claims
- Dog bites claims
- Burn injury claims
- Product liability injury claims
- Any serious injury caused by the negligence of another
Personal injury claims are genuinely useful and beneficial to those who do not have the resources to pay for their own medical care, lost wages, or lowered earning potential. Brad Parker has been fighting for injury victims in Fort Worth since 1985.
In that time, our Fort Worth personal injury lawyers have helped thousands of people with severe injuries, tragic stories, and heartbreaking circumstances. Many of them were unable to pay for the medical care they desperately needed. Our work has helped countless people receive the resources to fully heal and recover from their injuries—both mental and physical.
The Steps You Need to Take
If you’ve been injured, the steps you need to take before filing a claim are fairly simple, but they require vigilance. For example, those who have been in a car accident need to make sure they record the circumstances of their collision as soon as possible after an accident (whenever possible).
In general, the steps to take immediately after an accident are:
- Seek immediate medical attention
- If possible, record relevant details (time, nature of accident, physical surroundings)
- Take photos of injury, damages, and scene of accident
Call a personal injury lawyer in Fort Worth
- Seek treatment for your injuries on a regular basis
- Keep all medical records and expense receipts
If you did not have a chance to record or photograph the details of your accident, that’s okay—skilled personal injury attorneys have the resources to conduct their own investigation into your case. The Parker Law Firm has a history and a reputation for building cases that present our clients’ stories with verifiable facts and details, which are vital to presenting your story to the courts.
What Do Personal Injury Claims Provide
Claims, at the bare minimum, provide people with the resources to recover from their injuries. That includes reimbursement for past medical costs and payment for anticipated medical costs in the future, both short and long term. As a result, it goes without saying that injury claims require that plaintiffs have genuine physical, mental, or neurological damage. However, in more severe cases, injury claims can provide for much more than medical recovery.
Injury claims have been known to provide our clients with:
- Reimbursement for lost wages
- Payment for lost earning potential
- Home renovations for permanent disability
- Compensation for emotional pain and suffering
- Punitive damages (for gross negligence or wrongful death)
Why Personal Injury Claims Matter
Injury claims allow regular, everyday people to have access to justice. When a car manufacturer, a construction firm, an insurance corporation, or any large company does not act responsibly and causes people severe injuries, the law gives them the power to hold them accountable. No other social or political tool gives individuals that same ability. Personal injury law is an equalizing force, forcing reckless or negligent people to face the results of their actions, no matter how large or well-prepared they are.
Seek justice with our firm—call (817) 503-9200 today for a Complimentary Strategy Session about your injury.