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(English) RED LIGHT, GREEN LIGHT: Do’s And Don’ts After An Auto Accident.

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SCREEEECHHHHHH….CRASH!

You’re cruising on your morning commute when suddenly; a car appears out of nowhere and swerves right in front of you.  You slam on your brakes and yank your steering wheel to the side but then you hear that sickening crunch as you’re jolted forward. Both vehicles come to a stop.  You’re shaken and your heart is racing, and you’ve just been in an Auto Accident.

As skilled injury attorneys serving McAllen Texas, Brownsville Texas, and the surrounding areas, we see our share pexels-photo-110241of auto accident victims.  We think it’s important to occasionally remind the friends of our firm, what they should do when they are in an accident.  This directly affects the outcome of their insurance claim and potential lawsuit.  You not only need to know what steps to take for safety and for your own well-being, but also what steps to take to improve your chances of a successful insurance claim.

We of course hope that you will never be in an automobile accident. But motorcycle accidents, truck accidents, car and scooter crashes and SUV rollovers unfortunately happen every day.  Let’s pretend it just happened to you, and review our Do’s and Don’ts of after an Auto Accident.

Dos:

1. Check yourself for injuries and make sure you are not bleeding anywhere. If you are, try to wrap or cover the bleeding area immediately.  If you have passengers in the vehicle with you, you should check them for injuries as well.

2. Quickly scan the vehicle for any dangerous signs like sparks, flames or leaking liquids. You may need to exit the vehicle very quickly. If you cannot open a door try the other doors or get a window down.

Safety Tip: It is wise to keep something in your car that you can break a window with should you ever be unable to get a window down.

3. If anyone in either vehicle is injured, an ambulance should be called immediately.  No matter how small the damages to your car(s), the police should be called also. The police report is necessary if you are going to pursue any claim. Pain and injuries can show up a day or even several days after an accident.

4. Record the information from the other driver — their name, license tag number, address and insurance company. If they flee the scene, call the police immediately and the police will attempt to apprehend them.

5. Whoever is able, should take pictures of the scene right away.  Include the position of all the vehicles and any debris or items around you that could have contributed to or affected the outcome of the accident.  Do not move your vehicle and ask the other parties not to move their vehicle either.  (Unless your accident was simply a very light fender bender, or if your vehicle is posing a hazard to other drivers.)

If you are injured and unable to stand up/move around and take pictures, ask a bystander or spectator if they would take pictures for you.

6. If you are capable, immediately take notes about what happened. Estimate the speeds of both vehicles and note any conditions or situations at the scene of the accident such as debris on the road, a malfunctioning traffic light, a speeding driver, construction, etc. Anything you can think of should be noted. Insignificant details can become important later. When the police speak to you, be honest and forthcoming. It is in your best interest.

Don’ts

1. Don’t speak to the other driver or any of the passengers in the other vehicle, unless it is to obtain their personal contact, license, tag, and insurance information. Speak only to the police officer who arrives on the scene.

2. Don’t agree to settle the dispute privately, chances are that you’ll regret this later.  Our attorneys have seen time and time again; accident victims come to our law firm and wish to pursue a claim after the other party failed to cooperate or failed to pay them the amount of money on which they agreed.

3. Don’t make a recorded statement with an insurance company.  From the scene or immediately after you leave the scene, you should contact your auto insurance company.  The insurance representative will attempt to have you record a statement to wrap things up quickly. They want to document a binding record of events and injuries before you even know the whole story. Don’t let this happen to you. We have seen physical conditions develop days or even weeks after an accident.

You need to assess injuries and damages before you agree to anything, and the mental stress you are experiencing may affect your ability to give a proper statement of events.

4. Don’t sign any documents for the insurance company or accept any payments.  You may not be aware your rights, and speaking to a personal injury attorney can help your case.

Next steps:

In the weeks and months after the accident, keep all receipts and record all activity pertaining to the accident. Make sure you keep all of your medical records and all paperwork from every doctor visit or other practitioner visits such as chiropractors, physical therapists, massage therapists, MRIs, etc.

Summary Checklist:

Do: Check yourself for injuries.

Do: Scan the vehicle for any signs you may be in further danger.

Do: Call an ambulance if anyone in either vehicle is injured.

Do: Record the information from the other driver.

Do: Take pictures of the scene right away (whoever is able.)

Do: Take notes about what happened.

Don’t: Don’t speak to the other driver or any of the passengers in the other vehicle (unless it is to record the identifying information you need for insurance.)

Don’t: Don’t agree to settle the dispute privately.

Don’t: Don’t make a recorded statement with an insurance company.

Don’t: Don’t sign any documents for the insurance company or accept any payments.

Safety first:

Always wear your seat belts and always keep your auto insurance paid and up to date. It is extremely wise to carry uninsured motorist coverage because many accidents happen with the other driver had no or insufficient coverage. Our McAllen injury attorneys welcome your questions at any time.

(English) Drivers Beware: The Growing Issue of Texas Tailgaters

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Most people think that tailgating is a minor driving offense, but it’s more dangerous than it seems.

Not only does tailgating cause rear-end collisions, which make up 23% of all traffic accidents according to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, it has also caused serious and fatal accidents. Drivers on the road must follow other vehicles at a safe distance, and learn how to protect themselves from tailgaters.

Some drivers tailgate out of road rage, others are impatient, distracted, or careless.

In 2015, the Texas Department of Transportation reported that 25,436 accidents occurred because vehicles were following others too closely. Out of those incidents, 12 caused fatalities and more than 6,000 involved injuries.

While most tailgating drivers do not cause serious accidents, it’s important that drivers know what to do after an accident. Most importantly, anyone injured by a tailgating driver should contact a Tijerina of McAllen or Brownsville, Texas personal injury attorney to explore their options.

The Danger of Tailgating

It’s important to understand the dangers of tailgating behavior.  When a car follows another too closely, the tailgating driver shortens the amount of time and distance they have to stop before striking the car in front of them, if that car slows down or stops abruptly.

Stopping distance is linked to the vehicle’s size and weight. For example, a small passenger vehicle requires less time and distance to stop, than a semi-truck or even an SUV.

The biggest limitation made by tailgating drivers is how well they can see and react.  The driver needs time to see and process whats happening ahead of them, and then react to avoid a collision. With limited space between vehicles, a tailgating driver has a much small chance to react in time.

Tips for Protecting Against Tailgating Drivers and Sharing the Road Safely

ï Keep a Safe Distance: The Texas Department of Insurance recommends a safety cushion of two seconds between vehicles. This allows the following driver to predict movements from the  driver in front of them and avoid a rear-end collision.

ï Switch Lanes: If a vehicle is tailgating, a driver can change lanes to allow them to pass.

ï Extra Space for Poor Weather: Drivers in bad weather conditions will need more time to react in case they cannot see well, or the road is wet or icy.

ï Write Down a Tailgaters License Plate Number: When a vehicle is tailgating, and will not stop, memorize the license plate number, then pull off the road to safety. Contact the local police department and report the vehicle.

How a Tijerina of McAllen Personal Injury Attorney Can Help After a Tailgating Accident

Vehicles tailgating on McAllen roads are acting negligently. Therefore, if a tailgating driver causes an accident, they could be liable for injuries and damages.

A Tijerina personal injury advocate can help accident victims file a claim and get compensation from the tailgating driver. In these cases, a plaintiff may be able to recover damages for medical costs, lost wages, property damage, and pain and suffering.

After a serious accident, injured parties must contact a Tijerina Legal Group P.C. personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. Seek a consultation from Tijerina Legal Group, P.C. by calling 956-777-7777 or request more information online.

(English) Can a Texas Personal Injury Lawyer Sue Bars for Over-Serving Patrons?

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When a customer visits a local bar, they are accountable for their own actions. If driving, that means understanding their limitations and following the law by making sure that they never get behind the wheel while intoxicated or impaired.

The state of Texas expects anyone with a driver’s license to act responsibly, but establishments can also be responsible for damages when they serve alcohol to drunken drivers. In most states, bars or restaurants are required serve their guests responsibly.  They must watch customer behavior to make sure they are not becoming intoxicated. When a drunken guest leaves a bar and tries to drive, the seller must help them find another way home.  If the guest still drives away, the sellers call the police to tell them that the guest is driving drunk.  Texas personal injury lawyers consider these requirements when a victim is injured by a drunk driver, who was over-served at a bar or restaurant.

The Texas Dram Shop Act

If a drunk driver causes damages or injuries, a Texas personal injury lawyer may be able to hold a bar or restaurant responsible by utilizing the Texas Dram Shop Act of 1987.  This act means that courts hold alcohol sellers liable for accidents that resulted, at least in part, because of the over-service of alcohol.

The act states that a server of alcohol may be liable in a drunken driving accident case if:

• The seller provided alcohol after it was clear that the patron was intoxicated;
• The seller continued to provide alcohol even after it was evident the patron posed a danger;
• The intoxication of the patron is what caused the accident and injuries.

The Texas Dram Shop Act also protects passengers inside the vehicle with the drunken driver, and pedestrians struck by the driver’s vehicle.  Basically, the Dram Shop Act holds the bar or restaurant responsible, when they continue to serve alcohol to a person that was drunk and did not make sure that the guest got home safely.

McAllen Personal Injury

Restaurants are required to serve alcohol responsibly.

A bar or it’s employees may face criminal charges.

They could also lose their ability to serve alcohol. When a bar is associated with a drunken driving incident, the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission investigates to determine if there is any reason to take away the beer/wine or liquor permit.

A McAllen or Brownsville personal injury lawyer builds evidence after a drunken driving incident. An attorney interviews witnesses that can testify to the defendant’s behavior.

Texas personal injury attorneys investigate any and all evidence that will show that the driver was intoxicated.  For example, the driver’s Blood Alcohol Content is taken by police after the incident, and used as evidence.  They also find videos that show the driver slurring, staggering while walking,  or showing other signs of being drunk.  Especially if the bar or restaurant continued to serve them alcohol.

Hiring A Texas Personal Injury Lawyer

Those injured in a motor vehicle accident that involved a drunken driver in McAllen or Brownsville, Texas should contact Tijerina Law Group P.C. as soon as possible.

Our attorneys determine if the Texas Dram Shop Act applies, and work to make sure that the drunken driver is held responsible for injuries caused by their actions. Whether or not the bar or restaurant can be held liable, driver must be held accountable for their reckless behavior. The driver and/or alcohol seller may be required to pay compensation to all victims.

Contact Tijerina Legal Group, P.C. by calling 956-777-7777 or complete an online contact form to speak with a Tijerina personal injury team member for your McAllen or Brownsville, Texas Personal Injury case.

McAllen Personal Injury Lawyer

(English) McAllen Man Dies In Devastating Crash, But Who Is At Fault?

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A 28-year old McAllen man passed away in the hospital soon after his sports car flew off the highway one afternoon in San Juan. Police estimate the speed of the car to have been 100 m.p.h. and suspect that the driver was taking inhalants at the time of the accident.

The driver was ejected from his vehicle’s back windshield after the vehicle hit the guardrail, rolled over, and then crashed into a palm tree. Witnesses saw the man fly out from the car and land on a nearby grassy area, according to an article by Kristian Hernandez of The Monitor.

Inside the vehicle where inhalants and whippets paraphernalia (N2O cartridges also known as “whippets” in street slang), which led the police to believe that the man was under the influence at the time of the crash. Ultimately, speed and possible driving under the influence were the reasons for the tragic accident.

First responders found the man unresponsive, and the hospital declared him dead. He was not wearing a seatbelt and there were no other passengers in the vehicle at the time of the incident.

Driving While Using Inhalants Is Still A Crime

The use of inhalants is listed within the Texas statute (Texas Statute Section 485.001, Abusable Volatile Chemical) as an abusable chemical and could constitute a DUI.

However, for a person to be guilty of a DUI-DWI, there must be proof that the inhalant was hampering the individual’s ability to drive.

Had the driver struck any other vehicles or pedestrians at the time of the accident, a McAllen personal injury attorney would have been able to hold him (or his estate) liable for the injuries or deaths that he would have caused.

In this instance, it was a single vehicle crash, and no other victims reported.

While there is no liability for this particular accident (or further injuries), it does bring up the issue of reckless behavior and how it plays a role in a motor vehicle accident claim with a McAllen personal injury lawyer.

Reckless Behavior And Motor Vehicle Accidents

Texas Transportation Code Chapter 545 defines the proper use of a motor vehicle, including proper passing, speed, etc. Reckless driving is a criminal offense under Section 545.401. If a reckless driver were to cause an accident, they could be held criminally and civilly liable for the injuries and damages associated with that accident.

Furthermore, reckless driving opens the door to punitive damages for a personal injury attorney. Therefore, an injured party would not only receive compensatory damages (i.e. medical costs, lost wages, pain, and suffering), but their McAllen personal injury attorney may seek punitive damages too.

Finding Help from a McAllen Personal Injury Lawyer

If you are the victim of a motor vehicle accident – whether a reckless or drunk driver is to blame or not – contact an attorney right away. Tijerina Legal Group is here to work as your accident advocate. Our team will ensure you receive the compensation for your damages and hold those responsible answerable for their actions.

Schedule a complimentary consultation now with a McAllen personal injury lawyer at 956-777-7777 or contact our staff online.

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(English) The Back-to-School Season Means More Distracted Drivers On the Road

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Area schools are now in session again, which means drivers and pedestrians alike must be more cautious on the road. To help avoid any accidents, here are a few seasonal things to watch out for that you may not have considered:

Driver’s Ed, Student Drivers, and Learning Permits

A new crop of teenagers just turned 15 over the summer, making them eligible for driver’s education classes and the state’s minor restricted driver’s license. New drivers have strict rules, and tend to be cautious, but mistakes can happen. Forgetting to complete a mirror check, glancing down at the speedometer too many times, and reaching out for a drink can all lead to fender-benders and more.

Heavy Pedestrian Traffic

When school is in session, there are certain times of day when there are more cars on the road, and also more pedestrians on the sidewalks. Drivers may become distracted while looking at those who are walking or jogging along, or they may miss seeing them in a crosswalk while completing a turn. Either way, increased pedestrian traffic, especially of children, can lead to an uptick in auto accidents.

College Students and Their Driving Records

College students from different states and countries return to the city each fall, bringing with them their unique sets of driving skills. The result is a mix of defensive and offensive drivers, who will react differently to situations on the road. In addition, these students may not know the city’s 2011 ordinance that established a ban on text messaging while driving.

Wrecks That Interrupt Work Sites

Late summer is still construction season, which means that there are countless workers out and about every day. Construction zones, renovation sites, and businesses with street-side storefronts can all be affected by those on the road. Anyone injured on the job may be eligible for additional compensation, particularly if the site or business’s negligence played a role in the accident. For example, improper signs or barriers can contribute to wrecks, regardless of whether the driver was paying full attention to the road.

If an accident does occur for any of the reasons above, do not hesitate to hire a McAllen personal injury lawyer to navigate the fault and insurance process for you.

How to Find Help When You Need It

Were you involved in an accident involving a distracted driver? Tijerina Legal Group is here to help. Humberto Tijerina III is an expert McAllen personal injury lawyer, with the knowledge and skill to get you the compensation you deserve. For a complimentary consultation, contact our staff online or by calling (956) 972-0141 today.

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(English) When to Seek Representation in an Auto-Pedestrian Crash

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There have been numerous auto-pedestrian crashes in the area this year, including a fatal one earlier this month. Whether these accidents can be attributed to crosswalk design, visibility concerns, the driver, or the pedestrian, legal issues are sure to arise. Learn more about hiring an accident attorney in McAllen:

Gather Information at the Scene

Immediately following an accident, medical and public safety personnel should be called to the scene. After making sure all parties involved are in a safe place, exchange insurance information. Try to describe what happened to the police and insurance agents without claiming blame or placing it on the other person. Making any additional statements, even in passing to a friend or bystander, could have legal implications.

Begin to Determine Fault

Any time an accident occurs, the persons and authorities involved try to determine fault. However, many legal cases are not as straightforward as they may seem, especially when examined from different angles. For example, a person struck by an automobile may not be at fault. However, the driver may feel that circumstances were beyond his or her control, leaving the question of fault up in the air. If you were involved in an auto-pedestrian crash in any way, it is worth seeking legal representation to make sure your side of the story is heard.

Examine Insurance Coverage

Depending on a person’s individual policy and the outcome of an accident, insurance payouts may be required. Some auto policies cover all injuries to pedestrians, regardless of who is at fault. Other companies supply payments based on judicial decisions. The injuries sustained by a pedestrian may be quite severe or even fatal, so anyone struck by a vehicle should seek justice and full compensation. These types of accidents can also occur with those on skateboards, bicycles, and motorcycles.

When to Seek Expert Assistance

If you have been involved in an auto-pedestrian accident, you may need assistance navigating blame, insurance policies, and police procedures. Humberto Tijerina III, of Tijerina Legal Group, is an expert accident attorney in McAllen with many years of experience. Our staff is responsive and communicative, with a hands-on process that will never leave you in the dark. Whether you are fighting against a large insurance company for compensation or are trapped in a case whose odds are stacked against you, we can help. Contact us today online or by calling (956) 972-0141 for a complimentary consultation.

Personal Injury Attorney McAllen, child safety seats impact during car accident

(English) Child Safety Seats and Their Impact During Accidents

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One of the most successful safety innovations in the auto industry of the 60’s is safety seats designed for children and infants riding in vehicles.

The seats are designed to hold children in place in case of an accident, preventing them from being ejected from the compartment of the passenger seat or thrown into the instrument panel or even other sections of the vehicle.

Safety seats are customized to the anatomy of children and designed for child restraint without the need for force application, which can be harmful to vulnerable parts of the body.

All vehicles now come standard with lap and shoulder belts designed specifically for adults, hence they are unsuitable for young children.

A leading cause of death in the U.S, and particularly McAllen, are motor vehicle injuries. However, most of these deaths can be prevented and this is where child safety seats comes in.

Risk Factors for Teens and Children

Drunk driving, unbelted drivers, failure to use safety seats and incorrect use of restraint systems have been identified by various studies as the main risk factors for children and teens involved in road crashes.

Prevention of Motor Vehicle Deaths and Injuries in Children

  • Education programs, car seat distribution and car seat laws have been put in place to decrease deaths and injuries to child passengers while increasing the use of restraint.
  • The use of booster seats or car seats by children aged at least 7 or 8 years, according to a study, reduced fatalities by 17%.
  • It is also important to know the stages and how to properly buckle children in booster seats, car seats or even seat belts.

Rear-facing car seats are appropriate for children aged 2 years or less, forward-facing car seats for kids aged 2 to 5 years, booster seats for those at least 5 years (some states increased this to 7 or 8 years) and seat belts for adults and older children.

Jury Awards 34.4 million in a Car Seat Trial

Dorel Juvenile Inc., a car seat manufacturer, was ordered by a federal jury to pay the sum of $34.4 million to a family in East Texas for the life-threatening injuries and damages sustained by their child in 2013 during a car crash. The company was sued for negligence and failure to warn users of the impending danger while using its Safety 1st Summit seat in a forward facing car seat for children aged 2 years or less.

Personal Injury Attorney McAllen

We can’t stress enough the importance of using car seats to reduce the risk of personal injury to children in case of an auto accident. If you or members of your family have been hurt in an auto accident, contact a personal injury attorney in McAllen to help make a claim for the injuries or damages incurred. If you found this article helpful, please like or share it.

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(English) DUI Accidents and Their Impact on the Community

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Driving under the influence (DUI), is when a person drives after drinking alcohol and still has enough alcohol in their system to impair their abilities or register above the legal limit. The first DUI offense typically results in a 1-year loss of license and enrolling in an outpatient alcohol abuse program mandated by the federal government, or even probation. Multiple DUI offenses lead to prosecution under the Texas law. In a case where a DUI accident results in death, the driver is charged with vehicular manslaughter.

In 2011, according to reports by the Texas Department of Transportation, there were 169 DWI auto accidents in McAllen. The auto crashes resulted in the death of 2 and injury of 154 people. DUI is a major problem in the wider Texas area.

According to Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), of all the fatalities in the area, 40% result from driving under the influence of alcohol. Actually, Texas is ranked 4th by MADD for DUI accidents.

Top 4 Effects of DUI on the Community

DUI accidents do not just impact the drunk drivers, but also involve many people in the local community. Passengers in the vehicles involved in DUI crashes get injured in addition to being traumatized emotionally. Other passengers, drivers and pedestrians are also traumatized and injured in auto accidents.

  1. Family and Friends

Auto accidents as a result of DUI impacts the friends and family members of those involved in the accidents emotionally. They have to deal with the severe injuries sustained by their loved ones, or in worst case scenarios, death.

Although the drunk drivers are solely responsible for the accident, their friends or family members might feel guilty for letting them drive under the influence.

  1. The Drunk Driver

The driver responsible for the accident can also feel guilty and emotionally traumatized for causing injuries or even death to other persons. They also face legal problems for breaking the law. Other than losing their licenses, they also risk losing a spouse, job or even custody of children, let alone the costs and fines they have to face.

  1. The Economy

DUI auto accidents also affect the economy of the community, state and nation at large. In 2000, DUI crashes cost the US approximately $114.3 billion, including $63.2 billion in lost quality of life and $51.1 billion in monetary costs.

Over $71.6 billion were paid in bills of DUI crashes, making up 63% of the total costs incurred as a result of accidents. Although punishing offenders, reduced drunk driving, stricter sentencing and educating the youth on dangers of DUI have reduced drunk driving arrests, today more costs are incurred as a result of accidents.

  1. Ruined Lives of Millions

The pain of losing a loved one in an auto crash is one that never goes away. This is something that the friends and families of crash victims put up with for the rest of their lives.

Auto Accident Attorney McAllen

If you or a member of your family has been in a car accident resulting from someone driving under the influence, contact an auto accident attorney in McAllen to help make a claim for the injuries or damages incurred. The Tijerina Legal Group can easily be accessed in your time of need by calling (956) 777-7777.

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(English) Auto Accidents and Texting While Driving: Is it illegal in Texas?

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A vehicle collision with another vehicle, pedestrian, animal, or stationary object such as a tree, is deemed an auto accident. There are a number of factors that can cause or contribute to these accidents including speed and driver skill. However, the most dangerous form of driver distraction is probably texting while driving. As a McAllen personal injury attorney, we see the consequences of distracted driving and have outlined some details below that you should know about texting while driving.

What is Distracted Driving?

An activity that could sidetrack someone’s attention from the main task of driving, such as texting while driving, is distracted driving.

Is Distracted Driving Illegal in Texas?

Technically, Texas does not have a state-wide law prohibiting the use of cell phones while driving. However, more than 60 cities in Texas – including Austin, San Antonio, Brownsville, and McAllen – have banned the use of handheld devices while driving.

As a state, Texas prohibits the use of handheld devices in school zones, and also prohibits school bus drivers from using handheld device while driving. The unfortunate part is that this law only applies to a particular group of drivers, even though driving and texting at the same time affects everyone on the road. Other Texas-wide laws regarding distracted driving include:

  • During the first six months of driving, it is illegal for drivers with learners’ permits to use handheld cell phones while driving
  • It is illegal for drivers under the age of 18 to use wireless communication devices while driving

Potential Fines

Depending on the city, fines for simultaneously driving and texting range anywhere from $200 to $500, and are applicable to the following cell phone ordinances:

  • Ban on driving while texting
  • Ban on using wireless communications devices while driving
  • Ban on manual usage of wireless communication devices and ban on texting while driving

Texting while driving is particularly dangerous because it requires the driver’s full attention – manual, visual, and cognitive. It’s considered very dangerous throughout the United States, which is why many States and cities such as Brownsville and McAllen have laws in place against it. If you are a victim of an auto accident caused by another person texting while driving, you already have a strong case.

Contact Tijerina Legal Group P.C. today for a free consultation with an experienced McAllen personal injury attorney.

(English) Personal Injury Case: Settlement Vs. Trial

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Personal Injury Case Trial Court RoomHow do you determine if you have a personal injury case? Under Texas law, there are many categories of personal injury damages that allow an individual or multiple individuals to initiate a lawsuit. For example, wrongful death, medical malpractice, slip or trip and fall, lack of security, work-related injuries, boating accidents, and of course auto accidents. When a person is injured, if another party contributed to that injury in any way — directly or indirectly, they potentially can be held at least partially liable for those injuries. This is the basic premise of a personal injury claim.

Obviously, there are times when it is difficult to tell who or what may have caused an incident that led to injuries. This is when thorough investigation of all the facts of the incident must be done. Skilled personal injury attorneys know how to uncover details and leave no stone unturned. Injury cases are not easy to pursue in most cases. And so an injury attorney must be adapt at finding hidden facts and extracting information from unlikely or unwilling sources.

The first thing that many people ask is, will I need to go to trial? The truth is, in Texas and anywhere in America, the majority of personal injury claims are handled through settlement. Trials are very costly and time-consuming. Both sides of an injury lawsuit are motivated to resolve the case without going to trial. There are advantages and disadvantages of going through the legal trial process.

Sometimes, the plaintiff in the case may question why their injury attorney is pushing for a settlement. Why don’t we take this case to trial? Can’t you potentially get more compensation from a trial? Well, the truth is, trials are risky. Our McAllen, Texas injury firm shares with you here the differences between settlement and trial.

Benefits of Settlement

• It’s less risky than heading to court (you could lose and get zero)
• It’s less expensive (less time on the part of the attorney/law firm)
• It’s less time consuming and can happen faster, whereas trials can drag out over a year or more
• It’s not as hard on the plaintiff and their loved ones – not as emotionally and physically draining as a trial in court
• Get your life back to normal sooner/ Move on sooner

As you can see, a settlement is a sure thing – money in hand. And if a trial outcome is uncertain, your injury attorneys will recommend accepting a reasonable settlement.

It typically takes a year, or longer for a court date to be set for a trial. So if you are holding out for that, it means waiting longer to be compensated for your expenses, which may still be ongoing. Now consider that juries are individuals, with their own thought processes and belief systems. What seems obvious to you, or fair to you, may not be obvious or fair to them. You can choose to go to trial and risk LOSING.

Now, if your case is worth millions and your settlement offer is $650,000, then your injury attorney may decide that the trial is the only way to go.

A skilled injury lawyer evaluates each case

Obviously, your personal injury attorney wants to be successful. He or she wins when you win. So your lawyer will review all the details of your settlement with you and guide you in deciding whether accepting the amount is the right decision. Often, injury attorneys counter the settlement offer with an offer you WOULD accept, when the defendant’s offer is too low.

It pays to ask your injury attorney questions at the beginning of your case, to get their thoughts on potential settlement. Note that sometimes, even the most experienced lawyers sometimes call on outside help, by consulting mediators or facilitators to help resolve a settlement. When all attempts at mediation and settlement fail, then an injury case goes to trial.

Benefits of a Trial

• Possibility of receiving a higher/the highest possible amount for your claim
• A chance to document all details of your claim (for the record)
• The ability to appeal the decision

As you can see, wise legal counsel is critical in any type of wrongful death, auto accident, or injury claim. As McAllen personal injury attorneys, (serving both Mcallen and Brownsville, Texas) we’re experienced at helping the injured seek justice and compensation. The Tijerina Legal Group welcomes all inquiries and offers free case evaluations.