Houston Rear-End Collision Lawyers
When involved in a collision with an 18-wheeler, drivers and passengers of smaller vehicles often sustain life-changing injuries. Despite tighter government regulations on commercial vehicles, crashes involving 18-wheelers still happen, leaving thousands of Texans injured annually. Driver error, mechanical failure, and distracted driving all contribute to rear-end collisions. Injuries from accidents with large trucks have long-term physical and financial impacts on victims. Medical expenses, long-term care, and lost wages further complicated injury victims’ lives.
Although an injury victim may believe that the driver or trucking company is automatically liable, this is not necessarily true. Though Texas is an at-fault state, rear-end collisions cases involving large trucks are complicated. If an 18-wheeler rear-ended you, you must prove to a court that the other driver was negligent, even if you were the only one injured.
To help you fight for full compensation for your injuries, you need an experienced and knowledgeable Houston lawyer to gather proof and fight for you. The skilled team at Williams Hart understands how complicated the road to recovery is for Houston rear-end collision victims. We are here to fight for your rights and help you through this difficult time. To learn how we can help you today, call (713) 352-7071.
Do I Need a Rear-End Collision Lawyer
The legal burden of proof is on the victim to show that the other driver’s negligence caused the accident. An experienced Houston truck accident attorney will conduct a thorough investigation and find concrete evidence to support your claim in court.
In many cases, the victim is eligible to receive a lump-sum settlement without going to trial. The settlement you receive must be large enough to cover the cost of your injury-related expenses. It is always beneficial to have an experienced legal team on your side who can prepare an airtight case and negotiate with the companies on your behalf.
During the discovery process, an attorney can find evidence that most victims cannot find on their own. For example, we can subpoena phone records to see if the driver was texting or using his/her phone while driving. It is also possible to gather data from the ECM or black box of large trucks that show exactly when the driver applied the brakes. Logbooks and company records can show if brakes were maintained correctly or if the driver had been on the road for too long.
Why Hire Williams Hart to Handle My Case?
The dedicated legal team at Williams Hart has decades of experience holding negligent drivers and companies accountable. We know how physically and financially ruinous a truck accident can be, and we’ve won billions of dollars for injured Texans when they needed it most. Our team understands the tenacity and tact that it takes to win a truck collision case. We are ready to fight for you.
At Williams Hart, we believe that nobody should have to suffer because of someone else’s mistake. If a large truck rear-ended you, and you think that the other driver’s negligence caused your injuries, we are ready to help.
Rear-End Collisions Cases We Handle
There are many different causes of commercial truck accidents. However, some causes of rear-end collisions are more common than others. Thousands of significant truck accidents happen each year in Texas. Here are some of the most common causes of rear-end collisions:
- Sudden Stops or Lane Changes
- Distracted Driving (Especially When Using Cell Phones and Other Mobile Devices)
- Driver Fatigue and Falsified Driver Logbooks
- Brake Failure
- Absent or Malfunctioning Underride Guards
- Drug or Alcohol Intoxication
- Failure to Follow Traffic Signs, Stop Signs, or Traffic Lights
When a truck driver is involved in a rear-end collision, the trucking and insurance company will try different tactics to deflect blame away from themselves. They know that the rear driver is not guaranteed to be liable, so they use legal tactics to deflect blame. The following are some of the most used tactics:
- Claiming the Accident was Your Fault: If the company can convince the court that you were at least 50% at fault for the accident, you will receive no settlement in Texas. Even if they satisfy the jury that you were at fault for a percentage of less than 50%, your settlement will be reduced by that percentage.
- Claiming that External Circumstances were to Blame: Trucking companies sometimes try to blame the wreck on reduced visibility, poor roads, or inclement weather.
- Blaming a Third Party: Sometimes, companies will blame another car cutting them off or even the manufacturer of a defective automotive product for their driver’s negligence and the accident.
- Negotiating for a Reduced Sum: Insurance providers will often contact the injured party after a rear-collision accident and try and offer a reduced amount in exchange for a promise not to file a lawsuit. They may also record victims during these calls to try and secretly gather evidence against them. It is always recommended to seek legal counsel to negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf.
Trucking companies and their insurers will use their considerable financial and legal resources to fight any claims made against them. In Texas courts, after both sides present their cases, the jury decides what percentage each party is to blame for the accident.
Even if the trucking company knows their driver is responsible for the collision, they will still use their resources to assign some of the blame to the victim. For instance, if the settlement is $500,000, but you were assigned 20% of the liability, you would only receive $400,000.
Frequently Asked Questions
Individuals injured in rear-end collisions often have many questions after the crash. The fastest way to get answers to all of your questions is to call (713) 352-7071 to schedule a free legal consultation with the skilled Houston area truck accident attorneys at Williams Hart. Here are some of the most common questions our clients ask:
What if I Cannot Afford an Attorney?
Here at Williams Hart, we have served the Houston Metropolitan Area for over 35 years. We believe strongly in justice and victims’ rights, and we also believe that everyone deserves legal representation, regardless of financial circumstances. We operate on a contingency fee basis. Unless we win you compensation for your injuries or your loved one’s wrongful death, you won’t have to pay us a dime. Consultations to discuss legal options and determine your best course of action is also offered free of charge.
What Kind of Damages Can I Claim Compensation For?
If you were injured in a rear-end collision, you could be eligible to receive compensation for past and future medical costs, physical rehabilitation, psychological and emotional damage, psychological treatment, physical scarring, and disfigurement, lost wages and earning potential, lost consortium through wrongful death, and pain and suffering. A skilled attorney can help you receive full compensation and help you return to the quality of life you deserve.
If the Truck is Clearly at Fault, Why Do I Need an Attorney?
Under Texas law, it is not enough to prove that the other driver was at fault for your accident and injuries. You must be able to prove to a court that the accident occurred due to the other driver’s carelessness or negligence. A qualified lawyer will perform an investigation and subpoena driving data, logbooks, company records, and visual evidence to strengthen your claim.
According to a study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), throughout 2010-2015, 423 passenger vehicle occupants were killed each year because of rear-ending collisions with large trucks. The same study reports that over 5,000 passengers are injured in these types of crashes each year.
These types of collisions are quite common in Texas as well. According to the Texas Department of Insurance (TDI), 23% of all Texas crashes involving large trucks were rear-ending collisions. These accidents tend to be extremely severe and even fatal, and despite stricter trucking regulations imposed in 2011, fatalities involving l18-wheelers have risen over the last three years.
Contact a Houston Truck Accident Attorney Today
If you are hurt, you may unsure of what to do next. Although we cannot heal your injuries, Williams Hart has been successfully battling trucking and insurance companies and winning compensation for our clients since 1983. Our lawyers are passionate about serving the Houston community. We have the experience that you will want on your side when you go up against an individual driver or company. Even if you are unsure whether or not you have a valid claim, contact us to schedule a completely free legal consultation. We will help you navigate your options and decide on the best course of action. Rest easy knowing that we will conduct a rigorous investigation and that you won’t owe us a dime unless we win you compensation for your injuries. To get back your peace of mind, and repair your quality of life, contact us today at (713) 352-7071 or online.