Brian White | November 16, 2022 | Car Accidents
If you are unsure whether you have to go to court after a car accident in Houston, TX, you are not alone. Drivers and victims of collisions are oftentimes uncertain about what steps they are obligated to take after the crash. When police and insurance providers become involved, people can feel overwhelmed quickly.
If you are involved in an auto accident, the issue of whether or not you will have to appear in court is dependent upon many different factors. However, the most likely outcome is that you’ll settle out of court. Continue reading to learn more.
Auto Insurance Requirements in Texas
In Texas, personal injury protection coverage, or PIP, pays for you and your passengers if a car accident you are involved with results in injuries – regardless of who is at fault. This coverage is included in all Texas car insurance policies, but you can choose to opt out of it.
Texas law requires that you carry at least $30,000 of liability coverage for injuries per person, up to a total of $60,000 per accident, and $25,000 worth of coverage for potential property damage. This breakdown of insurance is known as 30/60/25 coverage.
Most car accident claims start with insurance. Depending on who was at fault for the collision and the types of coverage available, it may be your own PIP coverage or a third party’s liability coverage. It’s best to speak with an experienced Houston car accident attorney to determine the best path forward and to allow them to negotiate on your behalf.
What To Do If You Receive a Complaint and Court Summons
You may receive a complaint and summons initiating a personal injury lawsuit against you following a car accident you were involved in, even if you were not at fault for it. Another driver may attempt to hold you liable and bring suit as a proactive way to do this.
It is always in your best interest to hire an attorney following a car accident in the event that a claim is brought against you. An attorney will file the required pleadings on your behalf and attempt to negotiate a settlement without involving the court. If the accident wasn’t your fault, your attorney will gather evidence proving who is liable.
Suing for Monetary Damages After a Car Accident
If you were not liable for the car accident, you can bring a claim to ensure that you are financially compensated for any injuries you have suffered. You can recover for a multitude of damages, including lost wages, pain and suffering, and emotional distress.
Hiring an attorney is extremely helpful if you need to file a personal injury lawsuit. They will help you calculate the full extent of your damages and argue on your behalf to ensure you take home fair compensation.
Settlement Negotiations Before Trial
Just because you file a lawsuit does not mean you will find yourself appearing in court. Filing an action is often the force victims need to convince the other party that they should negotiate with you to reach a settlement. Usually, car accident claims settle via negotiations.
Your attorney will create a convincing case and argument to present to your opposition to reach a fair out-of-court financial settlement. Going to court results in high costs to both sides, so you will likely be able to settle before your case escalates to trial.
When Will I Have To Go To Court After a Houston Car Accident?
If you are unable to reach a settlement with the at-fault driver or the insurance company, you may need to go to court. Likewise, if your opposition fails to follow the proper procedures to resolve your claim, it may be necessary to bring the case to court.
For example, an insurance provider who fails to handle your claim in a timely manner may be attempting to run out the statute of limitations, which would ruin your chances of recovery.
Additionally, the case may proceed to trial if settlement talks are unsuccessful. That may happen if the case is particularly complex, multiple parties are involved, your injuries are severe, or liability is at issue.
If you have been involved in a car accident and are interested in pursuing a claim, contact an experienced Houston car accident attorney today.
Contact the Houston Car Accident Lawyers at Attorney Brian White Personal Injury Lawyers For Help
Attorney Brian White Personal Injury Lawyers
3120 Southwest Freeway, Suite 350
Houston, TX 77098
Attorney Brian White Personal Injury Lawyers – East Fwy
11811 East Fwy, Suite 630-06
Houston, TX 77029
Attorney Brian White Personal Injury Lawyers – South Loop
2600 S Loop W, Suite 293
Houston, TX 77054