Have you recently lost a family member in a car accident in Houston, TX? You may be entitled to compensation for the loss of your loved one’s life. Contact a Houston fatal car accident lawyer at Attorney Brian White & Associates, P.C., to learn more about your rights after a fatal car accident that took your loved one away from you. Your first consultation is free.
How Can Brian White & Associates Help My Family After a Fatal Car Accident in Houston, Texas?
Each year, over half a million car crashes occur in the state of Texas. And Houston’s roads are some of the most dangerous in the country. If your loved one’s fatal accident occurred on a local Houston thoroughfare, you need a personal injury attorney that’s familiar with the conditions.
At Brian White & Associates, P.C., we have more than 45 years of experience fighting for injury victims and their families. We understand how devastating fatal car accidents can be, and are prepared to do everything in our power to help you recover compensation from those responsible.
Here’s how our personal injury lawyers in Houston, Texas, can help you with your car accident claim:
- We handle all the details. Our law firm is a full-service law office. When you need to file a claim to recover compensation for your loved one’s wrongful death, we manage the details so you can honor your loved one’s memory.
- We develop an end-to-end legal strategy. From gathering accident reports and filing an insurance claim, to negotiating settlement offers, and through preparing your fatal car accident case for trial, our years of experience have helped us streamline our fatal car accident representation.
- We work with the sharpest experts in Houston and throughout Texas. Whether we need accident reconstructionists or medical experts, we find Texas’ most reliable and respected expert witnesses to support our personal injury lawsuits.
Our compassionate Houston car accident attorneys are ready to work hand-in-hand with you to ease the pain of your loved one’s untimely passing. Reach out to us today for a free consultation.
How Common Are Fatal Car Accidents in Houston, Texas?
Unfortunately, many car accidents in Houston have tragic ends. And, statistics show that fatal crashes and the total number of deaths resulting from these collisions has been on the rise in recent years.
In 2019, there were a total of 240 fatal car accidents reported in the city of Houston. 253 people lost their lives in these collisions. That represents a 28% increase from the year prior, when there were only 188 fatal crashes in Houston.
Who Can File a Wrongful Death Lawsuit After a Fatal Crash in Texas?
Although every relative may be dear and precious to you, under Texas law, you may only recover compensation for the wrongful death of specific categories of relatives.
The right to recovery is held by the deceased’s closest biological relatives, including:
- The surviving spouse
- Children (biological and legally adopted)
In some cases, if there are no beneficiaries in the categories outlined above, or if they fail to file a claim within three (3) months following the death, the executor of the decedent’s estate may file a claim on behalf of other beneficiaries. Any recovered compensation would be distributed in accordance with a will, if one exists, or Texas succession law, if no will exists.
What is My Fatal Car Accident Lawsuit Worth After a Wreck in Texas?
It’s not easy to talk about the worth of a single human life. It’s even more difficult to try to estimate a value of a cherished family member.
Several factors influence the worth of a wrongful death case, including:
- The age of the deceased
- The earning capacity of the deceased
- The deceased’s health condition at the time of their death
- The deceased’s income at the time of their death
- The age and circumstances of the dependents of the deceased, if any
- The deceased’s education and training
The death of a younger person in relatively good physical health will support a higher compensation value than an elderly person in declining or ill health, for example.
Likewise, the loss of a young person with a high income or high earning capacity and several young dependents may support more compensation than an elderly person with the same income but no dependents. The pain and suffering attributable to a young spouse and minor children after a fatal car accident can be valued quite highly.
How Could Texas’ Comparative Fault Rules Affect a Lawsuit After a Fatal Crash?
Texas operates under a modified comparative fault system. This means that anyone who contributes to an accident shares liability for the costs and consequences. Sharing blame is not an automatic bar to recovery. Rather, accident victims can recover compensation as long as they share some – just not most – of the blame. The right to compensation is lost once someone’s proportionate share of the blame is more than 50%.
This is true in wrongful death actions, as well. If a person killed in an accident contributed to their fatal crash, their role will affect any legal claims their surviving family members decide to pursue. So, if you’ve lost someone in a fatal car or truck accident in Houston, your ability to recover compensation might be adjusted downward – or lost entirely – depending on how much fault they’re assigned.
For instance, let’s say a fatally-wounded victim is assigned 30 percent of the blame for an accident. When their family goes to file a wrongful death action, their damages will be reduced by 30 percent.
Insurance adjusters will work hard to blame the victim after a fatal crash – after all, they’re not around to defend themselves. So, it’s important to gather evidence (photos, police reports, medical records, witness statements) and bring in experts to fend off those allegations. Our Houston car accident lawyers have the knowledge, experience, and resources necessary to protect your loved one’s name and help you secure all of the money you deserve.
What Are the Causes of Fatal Car Accidents in Houston, Texas?
Many car crashes and thousands of vehicle accidents are caused each day by distracted driving. While we frequently see policies and public information campaigns surrounding texting and driving, drivers can be distracted by all manner of devices.
- Cell phones
- GPS navigation devices
- Children’s tablets or built-in passenger screens
- In-car radio
Any device that causes a driver to take their eyes off the road can cause a crash. Not all irresponsible drivers are distracted. Some are simply unable to function.
Drunk driving accidents are also responsible for fatal head-on collisions and other types of fatal car accidents.
Drinking and driving isn’t the only kind of driving under the influence that can cause fatal car accidents. Some dangerous drugs prescribed by doctors can cause people to drive in their sleep!
How Long Do I Have to Pursue Compensation After a Fatal Wreck in Texas?
The statute of limitations for wrongful death actions in the state of Texas is generally two years. However, the clock doesn’t necessarily begin to run on the date of the accident. Rather, it begins the moment an accident victim dies. So, you’ll have up to two years from the date your loved one passes on to initiate a legal claim for damages against those responsible for their avoidable death.
Contact Our Houston Fatal Car Accident Lawyers for a Free Consultation
If you lost a spouse, parent, or child in a fatal car accident, get in touch with an experienced personal injury attorney at Brian White & Associates, P.C. We have years of experience helping families just like yours recover the compensation provided to them by Texas law.