- Abilene Office
When Can You File a Personal Injury Claim in Texas?
Generally speaking, you can file a personal injury claim or lawsuit if you were injured and suffered measurable losses, or “damages,” as a result of another party’s negligence, wrongful conduct, or intentional misconduct.
As the person bringing the claim (known as the “plaintiff”), there are several things you will likely need to prove, including:
- The party against whom you are bringing the claim (the “defendant”) had a legal responsibility to exercise due care and prevent foreseeable injury, known as a duty of care
- The defendant failed to uphold or breached the duty of care through a negligent act or omission or by acting wrongfully
- You sustained an injury, leading to measurable economic and/or non-economic damages, such as medical expenses, lost wages, lost earning capacity, and pain and suffering
- The defendant’s negligent act or omission, wrongful conduct, or intentional misconduct was the direct or proximate cause of your injuries (known as “causation”)
Some cases, such as certain defective product lawsuits, may be brought on the grounds of strict liability. Under strict liability rules, you do not necessarily need to prove that the defendant was negligent or acted wrongfully, only that they are considered strictly liable by law for the incident that caused your injuries and resulting damages.
When To Hire a personal injury Attorney
As a general guideline, it’s best to contact a lawyer after an injury as soon as possible. There are a couple of reasons for this, the first being the statute of limitations. The statute of limitations is a law implemented on a state-by-state basis that allocates a specific timeline for when personal injury cases can be filed. According to the Texas Civil Practice & Remedies Code section 16.003 the state of Texas has a two-year timeline.
Beyond the statute of limitations, having someone on your side who knows the ins and outs of the legal system is crucial. The legal system around negligence, liability and personal injury claims can be complex. Insurance companies are experts in defending their best interest, have someone in your corner who will tirelessly defend yours!
Another reason it’s important to talk to a lawyer as soon as possible is once you sign a compensation agreement with an insurance company you will almost certainly be unable to recover any other damages, even if you find your injuries became worse later, which is a common occurrence for soft tissue injuries.
If you have suffered injuries due to the negligence of another, talk to our Abilene personal injury attorneys for help today!
What Is the Statute of Limitations on Personal Injury Cases in Texas?
Known as the “statute of limitations,” the deadline for filing a personal injury lawsuit in Texas is two years from the date of injury. In some cases, the deadline may be extended from the date on which the injury was discovered or reasonably could have been discovered, rather than the actual date of injury.
This is often the case in medical malpractice cases and claims involving occupational illnesses, when an injury or medical condition may go undiscovered for days, weeks, months, or even years.
While there are certain exceptions to the two-year statute of limitations, most personal injury lawsuits must be filed within this two-year window. If you wait too long and the statute of limitations expires, you will most likely lose your right to sue the liable party for damages. Your best option is to contact a personal injury lawyer in Abilene, TX, when you first think you may have a case.
What Types of Damages Can You Recover in a Personal Injury Lawsuit?
The fundamental purpose of filing a personal injury claim or lawsuit is to recover financial compensation for damages incurred as a result of an injury. While the compensation itself is monetary, the damages you have suffered do not necessarily need to be financial in nature for you to be awarded a settlement or verdict.
In fact, you may seek compensation for both economic and non-economic damages in a Texas personal injury lawsuit.
Depending on the specific details of your case, you may be entitled to financial compensation for the following damages:
- Medical expenses, including emergency care costs, ambulance and hospital fees, surgery, co-pays, physical therapy, medications, medical equipment, and more
- Future medical care costs, including ongoing treatments and rehabilitation, as well as future prescription medication costs and related expenses
- Lost income, wages, and benefits, including retirement and pension contributions, as well as future lost earnings due to disability, impairment, or incapacitation
- Pain and suffering, including both mental and physical pain and suffering, lost enjoyment/quality of life, emotional distress, trauma, and inconvenience
- Lost or diminished earning capacity due to permanent injury, partial or total disability, or significant impairment/limitation of a body member, organ, or function
- Mental health services, including counseling and therapy, for mental health conditions related to the incident/injury, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, and anxiety
- Miscellaneous out-of-pocket expenses related to the injury, such as in-home assistance with household tasks, childcare costs, and home modification expenses
At Hanna Allen, PLLC, our personal injury lawyers in Abilene understand that many people want to know how much their case may be worth. Unfortunately, it is impossible to accurately estimate the value of a claim without first reviewing the many details involved.
We encourage you to reach out to our Abilene personal injury lawyers today to learn more, including the potential value of your claim and the types of damages you may be able to recover, during a no-cost, no-obligation consultation.
Why Should You Hire an Injury Attorney in Abilene?
Navigating the aftermath of a serious accident or injury is stressful enough without the added hassle of dealing with the insurance company and fighting for a fair settlement. While you are not required by law to hire a personal injury attorney, study after study has shown that people who hire attorneys statistically recover better settlements than those who try to resolve their claims on their own.
When you trust your recovery to a skilled legal team, you send a message to the insurance company that you are not willing to settle for less than your claim is worth. And, if the insurance company still refuses to play fair, your attorney can represent you at trial.
At Hanna Allen, PLLC, our injury lawyers have over 150 years of combined experience representing victims of all types of accidents and traumatic events, including but not limited to:
- Car accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Truck accidents
- Birth injuries
- Dangerous premises and property hazards
- Nursing home abuse and neglect
- Defective products
- Workplace accidents and injuries
- Construction accidents
- Oilfield accidents
We have successfully represented catastrophically injured individuals, as well as the families of those wrongfully killed, throughout Taylor County, Jones County, and all of the surrounding areas. Our bilingual team can assist you in English or Spanish, and we provide complimentary consultations in person or by phone for your convenience.