Dallas Car Accident Lawyers
Dallas has some of the most fatal car accidents in the nation. The extensive freeway system and huge
population concentrations result in accidents happening every day. If you a the victim of a car crash, it is important that you take the right steps to make sure you are properly compensated for all of your damages and injuries. You can start by finding a qualified, specialist attorney to take your case and guide you through the claim process. Do you need an attorney for a car crash in the Dallas area? Michael P. Fleming is Board Certified in Personal Injury Trial Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. Contact him now for a free consultation. Cases are handled an a contingent, “no-win, no fee” basis so you don’t pay anything unless a settlement is obtained for you.
What to do After an Auto Accident in Dallas
There are certain things you should do and not do if you are the victim of a motor vehicle accident injury. These are some of the most important:
- Call the Police. Calling the police will ensure that the accident and fault of the other driver is investigated and documented. The officer will interview the witnesses and diagram the accident scene. Also, the cop will often issue a citation to the at-fault driver. This can all be important in pursuing a claim with the insurance company. Also, if the other driver appears to be intoxicated, the police officer will likely test for intoxication and arrest them if they are drunk. 911 can also send you an ambulance if necessary.
- Exchange Information. Use your phone to take a picture of the other driver’s license, insurance card and the license plate on their car.
- Take Photos. Take photos of the damage to your car and the other car. This is important because sometimes, one car has relatively little damage and the severity of the accident can be shown by more extensive damage to the other car.
- Take Video. If the other driver appears intoxicated, take video of them if safe to do so.
- Call your Insurance. You can always begin your claim with your own insurance if you have full coverage. Otherwise, your damages will be covered by the other driver’s insurance.
- Call a Lawyer. At Michael P. Fleming & Associates, we have attorneys or support staff available 24 hours a day. If you have questions – even at the scene of the accident – you are free to call us for any advice.
Do not Talk with the Adjuster for the Other Driver’s Insurance Company
If you get a call from the adjuster for the other driver’s insurance, you need to know that they are skilled at saving money for the insurance company. For instance, they often ask if there are any injuries. That is not because they are concerned. The do this because often right after an accident, people are so excited or in shock that they do not realize they have an injury. The insurance company would then use a denial against them if a claim is needed. If you get a call from the other driver’s insurance company, simply refer them to your lawyer.
How Do I get Medical Treatment after an Accident?
If you are hurt in a car accident, go to the hospital emergency room. They will treat you regardless of your ability to pay. If you need further treatment and have no insurance, there are medical clinics that will treat accident victims and get paid when your case is settled.
How Long Does an Accident Claim Take in Dallas?
The length of time to settle an accident claim depends upon your medical treatment. You would not want to settle a claim until you are done with your medical treatment because if there is a settlement, you will sign a release and no more money will be paid if you need more medical care. It is important to always follow your doctor’s recommendations regarding the extent and type of treatment you receive.
What Can you Seek Damages for in a Car Accident Claim?
The elements of damages – the amount you can seek in a claim or lawsuit – are pretty much the same in a car wreck case as in any other personal injury claim. They include:
- Cost of Medical Care in the past. This includes all of your medical care starting from the ambulance ride the hospital through the time of settlement. Anything you were charged or, if you had health insurance, that it paid for on your behalf.
- Estimated Future Medical Care. Often, the doctors can estimate that you will need medical care in the future such as future surgery, therapy or other treatments. The doctor will estimate that amount and you can claim it as part of your settlement.
- Pain and Suffering. Texas law allows you to seek damage for the pain you experienced during and after the car accident, including any pain you experience during your medical care. It is up to the jury to decide what that amount should be.
- Disfigurement. Cases involving permanent disfigurement can involve anything from a scar to an amputated limb.
- Lost Wages. Any lost work (even if you use sick or holiday time) can be recovered in a car accident claim and includes time recovering and time spent getting medical care.
- Punitive Damages. Punitive or exemplary damages are awarded on top of your actual damages to punish the person who caused the injury through gross negligence. In the car crash situation, we seek punitive damages when the crash is caused by a drunk driver.
These are some of the major elements of damages in an automobile accident claim.
Michael P. Fleming is a highly experienced litigator who has argued and won a case before the U.S. Supreme Court. He is a Houston resident who was twice elected to serve as the Harris County Attorney. He is also an avid runner who has completed eight marathons, to date, including two in Ireland. Only a small group of Texas lawyers are Board Certified as specialists in both Personal Injury Trial Law and Real Estate Law. Michael is one of them. He also proudly holds his B.A. degree from the University of Saint Thomas and his J.D. degree from the University of Houston College of Law.