The Texas Personal Injury Guide was created by Chavez Law Firm to help injured residents of El Paso recover the full compensation they deserve after a serious accident.
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If you have been seriously injured in an accident due to someone else’s negligence, you may be eligible for compensation. A personal injury accident can shake up your life, and you deserve to see compensation for your injuries and damages. Our El Paso personal injury attorneys can guide you through your case to help you get a successful outcome.
After you have read about your personal injury case, please call Chavez Law Firm today to set up your free, initial consultation. We can go over the details of your case and discuss your next step to get compensation.
How El Paso Personal Injury Compensation Works
When you seek compensation, you are asking the liable party’s insurance company for an award to cover your injuries and damages. In a car accident, the liable party would be the other driver who hit you. In a negligent security case, it would be the property owner.
You can be compensated for the following:
- Medical expenses, both past and future;
- Lost wages/lost earning capacity, both past and future;
- And, pain and suffering, both past and future.
Medical expenses, lost wages, and lost earning capacity is an easier calculation to make than pain and suffering. That is because there are dollar amounts attached to the bills and paychecks, and you can more easily calculate those things. Pain and suffering is more abstract and difficult to put a dollar amount on. That number may be determined by a jury after they have looked at how much this accident has affected your life.
Rules of Modified Comparative Negligence
When there is a compensation award that has been decided, there is an additional factor that goes into how much you can collect. In every accident case, there are insurance negotiations that determine who was responsible for what and by how much. If someone was involved in a truck accident where that truck was driving erratically and they tried to speed to get around it, but ended up in an accident, they may be deemed partially at fault. Texas allows for injured parties to collect compensation even if they are partially at fault.
- Injured parties who are 0% at fault get full compensation
- Injured parties who are 1% – 50% at fault get reduced compensation
- Injured parties who are more than 50% at fault get no compensation
Let’s say, in the scenario above, that the driver of the truck was 80% at fault and the injured person was then 20% at fault. If the injured party were awarded $100,000 for their injuries, they would be able to collect $80,000.
Types of Personal Injury Accidents
The term “personal injury” is a sort of umbrella term. There are several kinds of personal injury accidents that we cover. They include:
Each case is highly individualized. When you are looking for a personal injury attorney, it is best to search for an attorney who has handled your particular case successfully. You do not want someone who has only just dabbled in your practice area. You want someone who knows the ins and outs of your case and will be able to do a thorough job of representing you. Your El Paso personal injury attorney should be a trial attorney and should be someone who you trust. This case will take some time and you do not want to pick someone who you cannot work with and who you do not think will do a good job representing your case.
El Paso Personal Injury Statute of Limitations
When you pursue a personal injury case, you need to be aware that you are on a time constraint. Starting from the date of your accident, Texas allows you two years to bring your claim or have it settled in civil court. While it might seem like you have those two years to wait to talk to an attorney, that is not a wise thing to do. Your case is time-sensitive in many ways. If you were to wait to talk to an attorney, you might find that your evidence has disappeared, your witnesses have forgotten fine details of your accident, or that you have made some mistakes that could ruin your case. An attorney will be able to step in and make sure that you do not make mistakes. If you did not have an attorney right away, you might have given the insurance company a recorded statement, effectively jeopardizing your chance at full compensation. The sooner you call an attorney, the better. If you miss your statute of limitations, you will no longer be able to file a personal injury claim.
Frequently Asked Personal Injury Questions
How Should I Choose a Personal Injury Attorney?
When you have been seriously injured, you need to look for an attorney with trial experience. Trial experience is crucial because a trial attorney can take the case all the way to trial, if needed. Additionally, a trial attorney is a bigger threat to the insurance companies and the big corporations out there who don’t want to fully and fairly compensate clients for the injuries that their negligence has caused.
Perhaps most importantly, you want to have an attorney with heart – somebody who truly cares for their clients and who truly believes in what they are doing. Here at the Chavez Law Firm, we believe in what we’re doing because we know that what we do makes our community safer and provides the best outcomes for our clients.
Do I Get Compensation for Emotional Damages?
Individuals with personal injury claims often wonder if they can recover for emotional distress or emotional anguish. The answer in Texas is yes. Emotional damages is something that we always look at in order to fully and fairly compensate clients who have suffered serious injuries.
Do I Have a Personal Injury Claim with Low Medical Bills?
When medical expenses are low, clients often worry that they may not have a good, valid claim in Texas. For example, a recent client of our firm, as a result of the negligence of their employer, actually had their hand cut off at work. The medical expenses from the hospital were very low, surprisingly. There were, however, other types of damages that we were able to prove, such as future treatment, future prosthetics and future care. This strategy put our client in the best position possible. In short, there is no minimum, in terms of medical expenses, that would make a case invalid in Texas.
Can I Have Preexisting Conditions and Injury Claims?
The other day we spoke with a client with a preexisting injury who wondered how it would affect their case. The answer is the defendant or the negligent party must pay for any difference or any worsening of the injuries as a result of their negligence. To put it very simply, it is not a barrier to getting fully and fairly compensated under the law.
That is something that we have a lot of experience with at the Chavez Law Firm. We ask our clients about issues such as this during our client intake, and we prepare for those types of situations throughout trial. If you have any questions related to a preexisting condition, please give us a call. We’ll be more than happy to answer your questions and help you out.
What is the Role of an Expert Witness?
Expert witnesses play a pivotal role in personal injury cases. For example, in a trucking case, one might need a crash reconstructionist with experience in putting together a trucking collision case. If it is a medical malpractice case, it is important to hire the correct type of medical expert to give an opinion in that case. If it is a case involving injuries in an industrial worksite, you need a forensic engineer who can talk about safety and the rules that the negligent party violated.
We know how to find and handle the issue of expert witnesses. If you have any questions, we at the Chavez Law Firm will be more than happy to answer your questions and help you any which way we can.
When Should I Be Seeking Medical Treatment After an Injury?
Sometimes clients arrive at our firm without having immediately received medical care after their injuries. It’s always best to seek immediate medical care; that is the gold standard. This means within one or two weeks at the latest. This gives us a snapshot early on of what injuries are involved and lets us trach whether injuries are getting better or worse over time.
If a person does not seek immediate medical treatment, we at Chavez Law Firm have experience dealing with those types of situations. We can guide and direct the client so that they get the treatment that they need in order to get the best outcome and full and fair compensation for the injuries that they have suffered.
Is There a Chance of Settling an Injury Case Before Trial?
Oftentimes I have clients who come in and they ask about whether or not they have to go to trial. They want to try to get their case resolved before going to trial. The truth of the matter is the vast majority of cases don’t go to trial and settle beforehand. The only time cases don’t settle before going to trial is because the insurance company or the big corporation is being unfair; they’re not fully and fairly compensating clients for what they have done to them.
At the Chavez Law Firm, we always prepare for trial because we know that when you prepare for the end result, you have a better chance of getting full and fair compensation for your clients.
Should I Accept the First Settlement Offer?
Clients often ask if they should accept an initial offer from an insurance company. It’s important for clients to consult with a lawyer before accepting an offer. Chances are the insurance company has lowballed the client, and lowball offers tend to remain such until you get a trial lawyer or a lawyer with a lot of trial experience on the case.
Insurance companies and big corporations know that a person without a lawyer in our legal system is at a tremendous disadvantage, and that’s why they give them lowball offers. They’re taking advantage of employees or people under those circumstances, so it’s never a good idea to take the initial offer from an insurance company. It’s never a good idea to go up against an insurance company or a big corporation without the services of an experienced trial lawyer.
What Are the Steps to File a Personal Injury Claim?
If you are seriously injured in El Paso, the steps for filing a lawsuit from the client’s perspective are very simple. First and foremost, find a lawyer with significant trial experience. That lawyer will know what to do and take you through the steps, which are, one, to file a lawsuit, serve the negligent party, and then you go through a process of paper discovery, deposition or testimony discovery of the bad guys or the black hats, and, at that point, you’re ready to go to trial. It’s a very simple process, in terms of the steps, and then we go to trial.
If you have any questions about what it takes to go to trial or what are the steps, please give us a call at the Chavez Law Firm. We are trial experienced attorneys with a lot of trial experience, and we’ll be able to answer all of your questions and help you in any way we can.
What is the Timeline for a Personal Injury Case?
Clients sometimes ask how long a case is going to take. The answer is it depends on where they are in terms of the treatment of their injuries. Some injuries take longer to treat, and some injuries take less. We need to wait until treatment is complete so that we have a complete picture of the injuries and their consequences.
What we always do at the Chavez Law Firm is push our cases. We push our cases as aggressively as possible, always taking into consideration the needs of the client and what is best for the client so that we can maximize their compensation and their recovery from those who have harmed them.
Will My Personal Injury Case Go to Trial?
It is not always clear early on if a case is going to trial. For one, we don’t know what the evidence is going to show or how medical treatment is going to go. What is certain is that the only time we go to trial is when the insurance company isn’t negotiating in good faith.
When that happens, rest assured that we will fully prepare for trial. If you have any questions about your personal injury case or how long your case could potentially take to go to trial, give us a call. We’ll be happy to answer your questions.
Call Our El Paso Personal Injury Attorneys Today
An injury can change your life and you deserve to get compensation in the fullest and fairest amount for your damages. If you are looking for skilled, dedicated, and supportive representation, please do not hesitate to call our El Paso personal injury attorneys to set up a free, initial consultation.