How Do You Know If You Need To Hire A Dallas Car Accident Lawyer?
The simple answer to whether you need to hire a Dallas car accident lawyer is that you should always consult a car accident lawyer about an auto accident. Some of the simplest car accidents can become complex legal matters. Other the other hand, some accidents will lead to little if any legal action.
The long answer to the question is more complicated and depends on whether you and/or a passenger suffered an injury, your vehicle sustained property damage, any lost wages due to an inability to work, etc. The answer becomes even more complicated when other issues arise like severe injuries. That’s precisely why you should consider taking up a free consultation offer and meet with a Dallas car accident lawyer about your case.
Proving Fault in a Car Accident
Fault, also called negligence, determines whether you will be paid for your injuries. In Texas, negligence is defined as the failure to act as a responsible person would have in the same and/or similar circumstances. This means the person at fault for the accident did not act as a reasonable person would have and that was why they caused the accident. In court, you must prove negligence.
The legal elements of negligence include:
- Duty to protect from harm.
- Breach of legal duty.
- Injuries were caused by the at-fault driver.
In a perfect world, the other driver and their insurance company will admit fault and you will be paid. In the real world, drivers who are at fault will often blame someone else for the accident, including you.
State law allows a jury or judge to compare your fault and the other driver’s fault in an accident. Modified comparative fault permits you to collect money if you were 50 percent at fault for the accident. However, if you were more responsible for the accident than the other driver, you cannot collect any damages.
If you know or suspect the other driver or their insurance company will deny responsibility, you need a car accident lawyer. It doesn’t matter if you have the truth on your side or not, you must prove your side of the case. This means hiring a lawyer to represent your interests.
Out-of-Pocket Expenses for Your Car Accident
Out-of-pocket expenses are damages you suffered because of the car accident. These damages vary by case, but they typically include things like:
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Damaged vehicle
- Damaged property
- Rehabilitation bills
- Decreased earning capacity
You may feel comfortable settling with the insurance company or other driver if your out-of-pocket expenses are low. For instance, your expenses are less than $2,000, you may not need a lawyer. However, you need an auto accident attorney if your out-of-pocket expenses is more than $15,000.
Without a lawyer, an insurance company will play tricks to get you to agree to less money than you need.
Length of Time to Recover from Your Injuries
You can recover from some minor injuries easily. They do not require time away from work. More serious injuries such as a herniated disk or broken bone require a longer healing time. If your injuries were devastating, then you may not fully recover. Permanent injuries may decrease your future earning capacity.
If you have injuries that are considered permanent or takes a long to recover from, you need a lawyer’s help. You have to think about future income and lifestyle. You might have no idea how much it could cost to live with a permanent disability or serious injury for the rest of your life.
Our Dallas car accident lawyers will calculate your future damages to ensure you have enough money to pay for bills and other expenses.
Settling a Case vs. Going to Court
In both situations, you would use the help of a car accident lawyer. An insurance company may be willing to settle. However, they will always be willing to settle for a lower amount than you need. How much should you settle for? Without expert legal advice, you will not know if you have gotten a good deal. If you settle for too little, you are stuck with your future expenses. Settlements mean you cannot sue in court later. You give up that right by taking the money.
Going to court requires proving the negligence elements. Proving elements like legal duty and cause by sound easy, but they take a lot of work. For instance, evidence must be gathered. Witnesses must testify. An expert witness might needed to help prove your case.
Hire a Dallas Car Accident Lawyer to Help
You will have the peace of mind of not having to deal with insurance companies and at-fault drivers who don’t want to pay. If you have serious injuries, you should definitely get in touch with a car accident lawyer.
You need a legal team ready to fight for you, we can be that legal team. Contact our lawyers about your accident today by calling us at 214-305-8277 to schedule your free case evaluation.