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  • Writer's pictureRobert Schuerger

How to File a Lawsuit for Car Accident in Texas

Although many are avoidable, car accidents are common. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), nearly 50,000 people died in motor vehicle crashes in 2023 alone. Unfortunately, these incidents can change victims' lives forever.


Texas has multiple laws in place to protect people who have been physically and mentally harmed in car accidents. Injured parties can bring legal action against at-fault drivers to recover compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, emotional trauma, and other damages or losses.


However, victims need to take certain steps to build a solid car accident case and ensure they receive the compensation they're entitled to.


Are Victims Filling a Car Accident Lawsuit?

Are Victims Filling a Car Accident Lawsuit?


After being injured in a car accident, victims have two options: file a personal injury claim with the at-fault driver's insurance provider or take the case to court through a lawsuit.


Most car accident claims are resolved before reaching court, as injured parties' attorneys negotiate a fair settlement with the liable driver's insurance company to avoid the tedious litigation process. They can also provide insight on how to file a lawsuit for personal injury in Texas.


Unfortunately, many insurance companies just want to protect their best interests and do everything possible to reduce victims' compensation. This is when car accident lawsuits are considered.


Steps to File a Car Accident Lawsuit

Steps to File a Car Accident Lawsuit


If victims cannot reach an agreement with the at-fault driver's insurance company or feel that the settlement offer is unfair, they have the legal right to file a personal injury lawsuit for an auto accident.


In Texas, car accident cases are handled as civil matters. As mentioned, victims can seek help from a personal injury lawyer and file a lawsuit to recover compensation for their medical treatment, financial losses, and other damages. In order to file car accident lawsuits and secure the best possible outcome for their cases, injured parties should complete the following steps:


Step 1: Make Sure They're Safe

The first thing car accident victims should do is ensure they're safe. Injured parties must wait for first responders who will provide treatment or transport them to the nearest hospital as soon as they arrive at the scene and move off the street to avoid being struck by other vehicles.


Step 2: Conduct a Preliminary Investigation

Once in a safe place, only if they're able to, victims can conduct a preliminary investigation to preserve as much evidence as possible. Injured people can photograph the accident scene, obtain video footage, and write down drivers' and witnesses' names.


Step 3: Go to the Doctor

Even if their injuries don't seem severe, victims should always visit the doctor and get the necessary medical treatment after a car crash. Besides being essential to their recovery, this step is important to the legal process.


People who file a lawsuit against another driver for a motor vehicle accident can use their medical records as evidence to support their claims and recover compensation for their personal injuries.


Step 4: Notify the Insurance Provider

Victims should also contact their insurance provider immediately and inform them of the accident, as these companies can cover repair costs or compensate policyholders for the total losses in some cases.


Step 5: Contact a Car Accident Lawyer

At-fault parties and insurance companies will work with Houston vehicle accident lawyers and legal advisors to try to reduce the compensation they'll have to pay victims or simply deny their claims.


Fortunately, victims are entitled to legal counsel, too. Liable parties will look for any errors on the plaintiff's side to defend their cases. Therefore, injured individuals should seek help from a car accident attorney to build a solid claim and increase their chances of winning.


Step 6: Collect Evidence

People injured in traffic collisions and their car accident attorneys must collect enough evidence to support the case. Legal experts can go through victims' medical histories and reports to determine how severe their injuries are.


Furthermore, a personal injury attorney can gather police reports, witness testimonies, footage of the scene, and other elements that serve to prove the other driver's negligence. They are also able to explain how to file a lawsuit for truck accident in Texas.


Step 7: Negotiate Settlement with the Insurance Company

An experienced car accident attorney will make a settlement demand on the victims' behalf and start negotiations to recover fair compensation. This process involves sending proposals and counter-offers back and forth until an agreement is reached.


Step 8: File a Lawsuit

If the case isn't settled, victims can file a lawsuit and go through the discovery phase. Both parties will be allowed to present evidence to support their claims and often exchange information or documents.


Step 9: Consider Mediation

Sometimes, courts order mediation before the trial. During this process, victims and at-fault drivers meet with a mediator and their legal representatives to try to reach a mutual settlement without litigation.


Again, both parties can make their proposals. The mediator will talk to each person to try to find a middle ground.


Step 10: Present the Case in Court

If both parties cannot reach a settlement through mediation, the car accident case must be brought before the jury.


Plaintiffs must present evidence to show that the other party was negligent. The at-fault driver and their legal team can choose a defense to try to dismiss the case or obtain a favorable outcome.


Then, the jury will evaluate the facts to decide who wins the case. If plaintiffs are granted compensation, jurors will determine how much money they can receive or if the amount should be reduced because they contributed to their injuries.


Note: In Texas, car accident victims can recover damages only if they're less than 51% at fault. If they contributed to the crash or their injuries, the compensation will be reduced by their percentage of liability.


Final Thoughts


Those who suffered injuries due to a driver's negligence or misconduct are entitled to compensation for their losses and damages. However, victims need to follow certain steps to make sure they're meeting the state's deadline, are able to recover solid evidence, and can win the case.


That's why people involved in these motor vehicle crashes should always contact a car accident attorney. Lawyers can help injured individuals understand Texas laws and fight for their rights.


Schuerger Shunnarah Trial Attorneys has a seasoned legal team equipped with extensive knowledge to guide car accident victims through the legal process and help them recover fair compensation. Contact us today for a free case evaluation. We'll go to war for you!

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