Personal Injury FAQs

This experienced legal team shares their thoughts and perspectives on the most commonly asked questions about Texas personal injury cases. Here, find out what their knowledge of the law and years of injury experience have helped them learn about the different types of injury cases and how to protect victims just like you.

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  • Who Pays For My Medical Bills After An Accident?

    Ultimately, we want the insurance company for the person who caused the problem to pay the bills, but that's on down the road. They're not going to pay it immediately and they're not going to pay it piecemeal as you go. In these situations, the insurance company will not pay until they pay one time at the end of the case — a lump sum settlement. That's why you want to be sure and put it on your medical insurance, because if you don't then they won't bill your insurance.

    They won't bill the insurance company that hit you and you will get a bigger bill at the end of the day than if you had used your insurance. The other issue that you're going to run into is that many doctors will not see car wreck victims, even if you have insurance. So you need to be ready for that and try to get to someone who will take your insurance and will see a car wreck victim. If you're having any kind of difficulties you need to call a law firm or a lawyer to try and get some help on that.

    Have You Been Injured In A Texas Accident?

    If you've been injured you need to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our office directly at 817.440.3888 to schedule your free, no obligation consultation.

  • What Should I Do After I've Been in a Car Accident?

    First and foremost, get medical attention. If you aren't taken to the hospital and you're able to take pictures at the scene, take pictures of the license plate of the car that ran into you, the damage to the other car, pictures of the driver, pictures of any witnesses, etc. Be sure and get the names of any witnesses and how to contact them. A lot of people believe the police are going to get all the witnesses — they don't. Let me just tell you they don't do it.

    One of the most important things that you need to do when you have a car wreck is when you get medical treatment, give them your health insurance. The other person's insurance isn't going to pay for your healthcare, not at this point in time, but if you have a significant injury you absolutely want to hire a lawyer — the sooner, the better because there are a lot of things that happen early on and the insurance company is involved almost immediately. They know what they're doing, they do this every day. You don't, you're not in a wreck every day, and you’ll need some help and need some guidance.

    Have You Been Injured In A Texas Area Truck Accident?

    If you or a loved one was injured in a commercial truck accident in Texas, our experienced truck accident lawyers are ready to help right away. Contact us online, or call our Bedford, Texas office directly at 817.440.3888 to schedule your free consultation.

  • How Often Do Cases Go to Court?

    Oftentimes cases will never see the light of day inside of a courtroom. In fact, most of the time, most cases don't go to court. The reason is quite simple, because if the case gets worked up properly, it's going to settle just shy of going to trial. Now, there are other law firms out there that just have hundreds of cases, and they are just a mill that just turn them out and those cases almost always settle. It's because they can settle on the cheap in effect. The insurance companies know it; the lawyers know it; everybody knows except the client. At the Parker Law Firm, what we do is we take each and every case and prepare it as if it's going to trial.

    The easy answer is almost all cases settle before they go to trial. The harder answer is why are they settling before they go to trial?

    There are times that I may try three or four cases in a year. There are times when I may not try any cases in a year. And the reason is quite simple. It's because we were able to get them resolved. Whatever you do, hire an attorney who's going to take your case to trial, or at least is prepared to do that. Only then can you get top dollar best value for your case to make sure that you're compensated as fully and as adequately as the law will allow.

    Have You Been Injured In A Texas Accident?

    If you've been injured you need to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our office directly at 817.440.3888 to schedule your free, no obligation consultation.

  • What is Pain and Suffering and Mental Anguish?

    One of the most challenging things that we have in any kind of personal injury lawsuit is what we call pain and suffering and mental anguish. Most people don't give much credence to pain and suffering and mental anguish. That's a shame because anybody who's ever had an operated back, a broken hip, knows the significant pain that is associated with the recovery and just the event that happened as well as the mental anguish that goes with it. So that's very, very real. The law defines mental anguish as that type of anguish, more than just worried about lack that we all worry about from day to day, but such to the degree that it disrupts your daily routine and activities, because it's really something significant that's happened to you. Pain and suffering on the other hand is again, a very subjective, if you will, phenomenon. Injuries are very, very painful. What we tell our clients is to document and start keeping a diary. We work really, really hard at Parker law firm to understand you and understand your story so that we can communicate it because until the jury gets to know you and your story and what you've been through, they can't appreciate the significance of the pain in the mental anguish that you've been through.

    If you have been involved in a serious accident or injury as a result of someone else's negligence or even stupidity, and you want your story told, give me an opportunity to tell them, call me.

    Have You Been Injured In A Texas Accident?

    If you've been injured you need to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our Bedford, Texas office directly at 817.440.3888 to schedule your free, no obligation consultation.

  • Is It Illegal to Text and Drive in Texas?

    In Texas, it absolutely is illegal to text and drive. We passed a law to prevent that. It is so dangerous —study after study after study indicates that talking on the phone is the same as being drunk while driving. It's not only illegal, it's absolutely negligent to be doing it. And it seems like, especially in the last several years, almost every car wreck case that we're involved in involves texting or some type of use of the phone. And yes, the technology has gotten a lot better to where now we can trap that information. We routinely download the information from the cell phone company to find out if you were texting or driving. Is it illegal? Yes. You might get a ticket, but that's just a scratch on the surface compared to if you seriously hurt someone or even kill someone as a result of texting and driving.

    If you've been involved in a car wreck and are seriously injured, you absolutely want your attorney to search those records and take a look at them. We routinely do it at Parker Law Firm. And if you have any questions, give us a call. I'll be happy to try to answer them for you.

    Have You Been Injured In A Texas Area Car Accident?

    If you've been injured in a car accident you need to speak with an experienced car accident lawyer as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our Bedford, Texas office directly at 817.440.3888 to schedule your free consultation.

  • Why Does My Insurance Company Have to Pay?

    Anytime you're involved in an automobile accident, the state requires everyone to carry at least $30,000 in liability insurance. Unfortunately, oftentimes, especially in my practice where people are seriously injured, $30,000 won't even scratch the surface. And so we were forced, if we can't find other insurance available, we have to look at your insurance. And what I mean by your insurance as, I mean, what we call UIM or UM under insured or uninsured motorist coverage.

    The matter is you're going to have to rely on your own insurance company. It's not right. It's not fair, but that's life. It gets a little tricky when you have to do that, so if you've been seriously injured in a, in an automobile accident or a loved one has been give us a call and let us explain to you the uninsured. But also even if you don't have an accident and you just want us to look at your insurance policy, just to tell you whether or not you got enough coverage or what our recommendation would be. Give us a call. We'd be happy to take a look at your deck page, let you know exactly what you got and where you may or may not need some more insurance just to protect yourself. Look forward to hearing from you.

    Have You Been Injured In A Texas Area Car Accident?

    If you've been injured in a car accident you need to speak with an experienced car accident lawyer as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our Bedford, Texas office directly at 817.440.3888 to schedule your free consultation.

  • Can I Afford An Attorney?

    We're often asked when people come in to see us as, "how am I going to afford you?", "How do I pay you?" — And the simple answer to that is you don't have to pay me until we get a recovery. That's because we work on a contingency fee, and what that means is, is that we take a percentage of what the recovery is. It's typically a third — if we don't have to file a lawsuit, if we can get it resolved without having to file a lawsuit — versus 40% if we do have to follow a lawsuit. Oftentimes people are concerned, "well after I pay my lawyer, and after I pay all my medical bills, there's not going to be anything left for me." Unfortunately that might be the case with a lot of law firms, but at the Parker law firm, we make a guarantee to you. And that guarantee is that we will never, ever, ever, ever put more money in our pocket than you put in your pocket. Our clients will always put more money in their pocket at the end of the day than we do ours. Not everybody does that. Give me a call, let me explain it to you and see if we can help.

     

    If you or a loved one have been seriously injured as the result of the negligence of someone else, we would love to hear your story and see how we can help you. Call our office today at 817-503-9200 or fill out our contact form for a Free Consultation with our firm.

  • Texas Storm Damage Claims and Insurance Companies

    Storm damage in Bedford TexasIn Texas after a storm, the insurance company typically will not deny the entire claim. What they usually do is deny parts of the claim based on your insurance policies. For several years now, insurance policies in our state have been the type that do not cover anything except what your specific policy covers. Due to policies we have in Texas, there are few parts of your home that may be covered. For instance, in a tornado where the roof has blown off or if it was penetrated, the insurance company may take the position that they will pay for the roof, but they are not going to pay for the water damage that may happen to the inside of your house as a result of the roof damage.

    There are some questions as to whether or not the rain was windblown or if entered the roof through an open-access area. There are very technical details where insurance companies will try to hang their hat to justify not paying part or any of the claims. Another example that we often see is when dealing with hailstorm damage. They will say that the hailstorm came in from the northwest, therefore we are only going to cover the north and west slope of your wall since the east and the south slope did not get damaged. That is not necessarily true. This is an area where they may try to deny the claim. Likewise, they may say, “We are going to pay for this roof or part of the roof, but it may be a type of shingle that cannot be matched.”

    The insurance companies have a responsibility to replace it with light parts, but they cannot match it if they have to replace everything. Those are the typical areas where they normally will deny part of the claim as opposed to the entire claim. The list of what they will and can deny is as long as your imagination can fathom.

    What Actions are Illegal for Insurance Companies When Dealing With Property Damage?

    There are numerous actions that are illegal for insurance companies. We recognize that common law means just that. They have an absolute obligation to deal with you in good faith and fair dealing, and on top of that, we have statutes that provide that they cannot deceive you in any kind of way or give you false or misleading information. They also cannot barter with you by saying, “Okay, we’ll recognize that part if you take a lower value for this part.” They must properly investigate any and every claim.

    We sometimes see cases where they will not even come and look at the house; they will just deny the claim outright. That is probably going to be in bad faith on their part because they did not properly investigate the claim. There is another statute that we call the prompt pay statute. This says that once they recognize the claim, they have a duty to pay that claim in a timely fashion, and there are actually time periods set forth in the statute. Failure to pay those claims in a timely fashion, once recognized, can subject them to penalties and interests in attorneys’ fees.

    Is There a Statute of Limitation for Claims Against Insurance Companies in Texas?

    Yes, as the law stands currently, the time period for bringing calls of action against the insurance companies is two years from the date that the claim was denied. However, insurance industries over the last few legislative sessions in Texas have fought hard to change that law, and I expect that we will see a continued effort in upcoming legislative sessions. They are trying to change the law to say that you must file your claim within two years of the date of the incident as opposed to the two years from the date of the actual denial. It can be very problematic if you have water damage on an inside wall that does not manifest itself for quite some time. Oftentimes it may take months if not years for internal damage to the surface.

    Likewise, people may not honestly know that their roof has been damaged by the hailstorm for some time. It is important that the time period run from the time in which the insurance company denies the claim because if you have just two years from the date you made the claim, then the insurance company could wait two years and one day to deny the claim. Then it would be too late for you to file the claim. Right now the law is very much in the consumer’s favor, but just know that the clock is always ticking on these types of claims. Also be aware that the insurance industry is trying hard to make the time period even shorter in the future.

    Additional Information on Storm Damage Claims in Texas?

    The No. 1 thing that you can do in any storm is document not only all the damage but also all of your conversations with insurance adjusters. Many times insurance companies will run you through several adjusters in an attempt to wear you down. Each adjuster will visit the site and will want to start the process all over again. Always document your conversations. Better yet, you should record them. This way you will have documentation of what each adjuster has said and possibly offered. However, if you do suffer damage, Texas law provides that you must mitigate. That means you must try to remedy the damage so that no further damage occurs even before you receive a resolution with your insurance company.

    For example, if you have a hole in your roof, you need to take appropriate actions to get it patched so the damage is as minimal as possible. The last thing I would add is that you hire reputable and competent contractors to assist you with the storm damage. Those people are going to be instrumental in your claim and pursuing the claim if necessary against your insurance company. Steer clear of hiring some fly-by-night contractor who overinflates the need for the repairs and then when you need them to come and help you against the insurance company, they can’t be found. So if you’ll document, photograph, mitigate and hire good people, you are working toward protecting yourself.

    For more information on Storm Damage Claims in Texas, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (817) 503-9200 today.

  • When Your Child Is Seriously Injured Or Killed At Daycare

    Placing your child in daycare is a difficult decision that many working parents must face. It’s hard enough taking time away from your child, but worrying about their safety adds an extra emotional burden.

    In-home childcare is the fastest growing sector in the industry today, accounting for nearly 70 percent of the total child care industry. Despite being at a home, thousands of children are injured, and some killed, in their childcare setting each year.

    Of course, the occasional bumps and bruises are inevitable due to falls or incidents that are commonly associated with clumsy toddlers who are learning to crawl, walk or run well. Too often, though, children are injured so seriously that they require treatment from a hospital. Even worse, serious injuries can sometimes be fatal.

    Most Daycare Injuries Are Preventable

    Statistics from the National Center for Injury Prevention and Control tell us that approximately 4.2 million injuries were recorded for children ages one to four from 2001 to 2002. During that same time period, over 3,000 children in this age group died as a result of injuries sustained while in the care of a child care center or individual. The majority of these deaths were preventable injuries that could have been avoided had the following issues been addressed:

    • Workers received proper training and education
    • Environmental safety measures were put in place
    • Utilization of safer products in the care environment
    • Stricter laws to ensure child safety

    Common Daycare Dangers

    It is vital that the professionals in this industry improve existing safety hazards that could endanger the life of a child. As parents whose number one concern is our child’s safety, there are safety issues to be aware of as well. Some dangerous issues of note:

    • Children left unsupervised – Infants, toddlers, and children of all ages should always be in a caregiver’s sight.
    • Dangerous Adult-to-child ratio – There are laws that specify how many children one adult is allowed to supervise at a time. Often, child care centers will be out of ratio, and can lead to many injuries.
    • Uneducated or Untrained Staff – One of the most important safety measures that can be addressed is caregiver training and education. Each staff member should be trained in CPR and first aid procedures, as well as proper health and safety policies.
    • Medications Administered Improperly – When a caregiver administers medication to your child, it is extremely important that the correct amount of medication is given to avoid poisoning and other unforeseen side-effects.
    • Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) – This serious syndrome is increasing at day care centers today. Your infant’s caregiver should know that babies need to sleep on their backs, and on firm bedding that is void of fluffy blankets or toys that can become choking hazards.
    • Poisons and Toxic Substances within Reach – Child Care Aware reports that accidental poisonings are the leading cause of injury and death among young children. Cleaning supplies and medicine should be out of reach from children at all times.
    • Unsafe Playground Equipment and Recalled Products – Products used by caregivers are often times not tested to ensure child safety. Manufacturers are not required to do this, and children are harmed or even killed as a result. Playground equipment is particularly concerning because it most frequently causes children physical harm.

    There are many other safety concerns that caregivers must recognize. These include food safety, child illnesses, emergency planning and practicing, and background checks for employees and the state licensing of the child care home or facility.

    Speak To A Daycare Injury Lawyer Today

    As parents, we do the best we can to make sure the environment we place our children in and caregivers we place them with are top notch. Even then, injuries or fatalities occur when caregivers fail to honor procedures and standards they are required by law to follow. If your child becomes seriously injured, or is killed because of negligence on the part of a child care center or an individual you have entrusted your child with, you can receive compensation for your devastating loss. Parker Law Firm provides Complimentary Strategy Sessions that allow the client and firm a chance to fully analyze your particular situation and determine whether you have a case against a negligent caregiver. You can rest assured that Parker Law Firm will fight aggressively against child negligence and those who are responsible for harming your child.

    Contact Us Today

  • Who Can Be Held Liable In A Dog Bite Claim?

    Typically, in a dog bite claim, the owner will be held liable. However, there can be occasions where a son or a daughter may own a dog and they are living with their parents. While the parents may not be the actual owner of the dog, the fact that they allow the dog to be at their home may create liability on behalf of the home owner when they don’t actually own the dog.

    What Might Be Scenarios Where The Owner Of The Dog Isn’t Held Liable?

    An owner of a dog might not be liable for a dog attacking someone else if the owner did not know nor should they have known that the dog had vicious tendencies. There are cases where for whatever reason, a dog who has been well-behaved, well-mannered and never really shown any aggressive tendencies acts out for some reason or other. In those situations, the owner of the dog may not be liable because Texas does recognize what we commonly refer to as the “first bite is free” rule. This means if the owner didn’t know the dog’s dangerous propensities, then he won’t be liable for the first bite.

    Is There Any Sort Of Comparative Fault In Dog Bite Cases?

    In some cases there can be comparative fault in a dog bite case. For example, if a person provokes the animal or is teasing it or even trespasses onto the pet owner’s land, all of those facts can be seen as provocation, comparative responsibility or fault on part of the victim and that would minimize or even eliminate liability on the part of the dog owner.

    What Types Of Damages Can Be Sought In A Dog Bite Claim?

    The type of damages that are available in a dog bite claim, first and foremost, are for the medical care incurred in having the bite treated. That could be anywhere from a few hundred dollars to several thousand dollars or even tens of thousands of dollars, depending on the severity of the bite. Additional damages available are for lost wages, for permanent scarring or impairment and also for any muscle or tissue damage and that won’t heal properly. Future medical bills that will be incurred in the way of reconstructive surgery or plastic surgery to help with scarring as well as for mental anguish from the incident may also be available.

    Can Bystanders Or Witnesses File Claims For Mental Anguish?

    Bystander recoveries in dog bite claims in Texas are difficult. The law is rather tough but in essentially, if there is a very close familial proximity and relationship, then there could be a claim for a bystander recovery. Usually this is seen in a type of a claim where a mother sees her young child mauled by a dog. The maul would require the mother to actually have experienced and viewed the incident as opposed to walking up on it or being called later. In Texas, there has to be the closeness of a relationship such as a mother and child, but also the bystander has to have been in the proximity of the dog bite incident itself; meaning they experienced witnessing, seeing, hearing the dog bite actually occur.

    Can Someone File An Injury Claim If Dogs Attack Other Pets?

    A claim can be filed if a dog attacks someone’s pet. However, Attorney Brad Parker finds that it would probably be hard to find an attorney to take that claim in Texas. Whether it’s wrong or right, the law is that a pet owner can only recover the value of their animal and most pets are obtained for free or for a few hundred dollars. If that animal is injured, there may be a claim to recover the cost of treating injuries but if the pet is killed, the amount of recovery is going to be limited to what the value of that animal is. Unfortunately, Texas law says an individual can’t recover for emotional loss; only for the value of a pet.

    Is The Amount Of Damages Dependent Upon The Severity Of Injuries?

    The amount of recovery is always guided by the severity of the injury but it can also be guided by the level of disregard of the oppressiveness of the dog by the owner. In other words, there are people who know that they are raising pit-bull terriers and they don’t treat them well. They train dogs to attack and don’t take appropriate action to ensure that the animal is restrained from being able to get to other people. That level of conduct subconsciously can and does play a role in the culpability of the person who owns the dog.

    Damages are to be limited by the actual damage suffered by the person who was bit: current and future medical bills, mental anguish, impairment, pain and the suffering and other types of factors. Future medical expenses for cosmetic surgery are also taken into account if the bite resulted in scarring. The Parker Law Firm has had cases where young girls have been bitten by dogs in the face or on the arms or on the legs and they ensure that the cost for future plastic surgery or scar revision is factored into a settlement. The same is done where there may be muscle or tissue damage that needs addressing at some point in the future as well.

    For more information on Liability In A Dog Bite Claim, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (817) 503-9200 today.