Brian White | May 16, 2022 | Car Accidents
Knowing what to do when you’re involved in an accident can be complicated, especially if you’re driving someone else’s car. This blog post will fill you in so that you can be prepared if you find yourself in this situation.
We’ll start with some simple instructions. Try to remain calm and call 911 to report the car accident. Then, wait for police officers and EMS to arrive at the accident scene. If possible, document the accident scene by taking photographs, making a video, and asking eyewitnesses for their names and contact information.
Notify the owner of the vehicle about the accident as soon as possible. They need to report the accident to their insurance provider. Texas requires all vehicle owners to have minimum amounts of liability insurance for their vehicles.
Who Compensates Me for Damages if I Was Driving Someone Else’s Car?
Car insurance generally covers anyone driving the vehicle, so long as the person has permission to do so. Therefore, if the owner permitted you to drive the car, the owner’s car insurance policy should cover the accident.
However, if the person who hit you was at fault, you would pursue a claim against that person just as if you owned the car you were driving. You can file an insurance claim with the other driver’s insurance company seeking condensation for damages.
Damages could include:
- Past and future medical bills and expenses
- Past and future lost wages and benefits
- Permanent impairments and disabilities
- Mental anguish and emotional suffering
- Loss of enjoyment of life
- Out-of-pocket expenses
- Diminished earning capacity
- Decrease in quality of life
If the other driver’s insurance company refuses to settle the car accident claim, you could sue the driver for damages. If the car owner has underinsured motorist coverage, you might be able to file a claim against the car owner’s insurance policy if the at-fault driver’s insurance coverage does not cover the entire amount of damages.
What Happens if I Am Partially at Fault for Causing a Car Accident While Driving Someone Else’s Car?
The car insurance generally remains with the car. Therefore, the car owner’s insurance company would be liable for any damages you cause while driving the car. Your compensation would be determined by the Texas proportionate responsibility statute.
Texas has adopted a modified contributory fault standard. If you are less than 51% to blame for causing the accident, you can recover compensation for damages. However, the court reduces the amount by your percentage of fault.
For example, if a jury finds that you contributed to the cause of the car accident by 30%, the amount of money you receive for damages is reduced by 30%. However, if you are 51% or more at fault for the cause of the car crash, you cannot receive any money for damages.
Can I Sue the Owner of the Car I Was Driving After a Texas Car Accident?
Owners have a duty to maintain their vehicles in good working condition. If the owner knowingly allowed you to drive their vehicle and did not warn you of a problem, the owner could be liable if you were injured because of a problem with the vehicle.
For example, suppose the owner knew that their tires needed to be replaced. While driving the car, a tire blowout causes an accident. The investigators determined that the condition of the tires contributed to the cause of the accident.
You might have a claim against the car owner for damages because they did not maintain their vehicle in good working order. Our car accident lawyers in Houston explore all causes of action that could result in compensation for your injuries. The attorney analyzes the cause of the car accident to identify each party who might be liable for your damages.
The Importance of Medical Care After a Car Accident
It is crucial that you seek medical treatment for your injuries after a car accident. Regardless of which insurance company might be liable for your damages, you cannot recover any money for your claim unless you can prove the car crash caused your injuries.
Therefore, do not refuse medical treatment at the accident scene. Do not tell EMS personnel that you are not injured. If they recommend going to the emergency room, it is probably wise to follow their recommendations.
If you do not go to the emergency room, follow up with a doctor as soon as possible after the car accident. Report all symptoms and follow your doctor’s treatment plan. Failing to seek prompt medical care after a car accident could result in allegations of failure to mitigate damages.
The at-fault party would not be responsible for damages that resulted from your failure to seek medical care after the crash. Furthermore, if you do not seek prompt medical treatment, the insurance company may dispute your claim that your injuries were caused by the car accident.
After an accident, take care of your health and seek legal advice to protect your right to compensation for damages.
Contact the Houston Car Accident at Attorney Brian White Personal Injury Lawyers For Help
Attorney Brian White Personal Injury Lawyers
3120 Southwest Freeway, Suite 350
Houston, TX 77098
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11811 East Fwy, Suite 630-06
Houston, TX 77029
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Houston, TX 77054