Property Damage in Houston Personal Injury Cases
Property damage is often a component of an accident. If someone damaged your property intentionally or through negligence, you might be eligible for compensation.
Compensation can come from insurance companies or directly from the person who caused the damage. To recover compensation, you must identify the parties responsible for your property damage.
If your property has been damaged or destroyed, then make sure you seek the advice of an experienced property damage attorney.
What is Property Damage?
There are two types of property under Texas law: real property and personal property. Real property is land and things attached to the land, like a house. Personal property is all other movable property, like your laptop or car.
Property damage can come about in a multitude of ways. If your property gets damaged or destroyed, it is important to identify who will be responsible for paying to repair or replace it. Several parties can potentially be held responsible for property damage. If you target the wrong party for your claim, you could severely hurt your chances of getting proper compensation.
Insurance companies usually afford two potential options for property damage: homeowner’s policies and auto policies. If you suffered property damage from a car accident, then you will likely look to auto insurance for coverage. If you suffered property damage on your land or another’s, then you will likely look to homeowner’s insurance for coverage.
Your accident circumstances will determine where you should aim your claim or lawsuit.
Common Examples of Property Damage
As stated above, property damage can occur in a multitude of ways. Some common examples include:
- Car Accidents
- Fire Damage
- Acts of God
- Graffiti, vandalism, or some other intentional act
This is a partial list of common property damage situations. Successful property claims win either the repair or replacement cost of damaged property.
How Does Texas Law Calculate Property Damage?
If your property was damaged, you will have to determine the value to replace or repair it to recover compensation.
Your damages will typically be the difference in the market value of the property before and immediately after the damage or accident.
You will obtain proof of this value through quotes or estimates from professionals who specialize in repairing the damaged property.
Important Information You Will Need for Property Damage Claims
Make sure you have proof that you own the property that was damaged or destroyed. This can apply to vehicles, homes, or other property. Evidence of your own insurance policy offers proof that you own the property that was damaged or destroyed. If you rent your home, then you may need to file your claim on a renter’s insurance policy.
Make sure you know where your property was damaged. The location and circumstances of your accident are critically important to winning your case. Understanding the location can also help you determine who can be held legally responsible.
Make sure you know the value of the property that was damaged or destroyed. This value can become important in determining what the appropriate repair or replacement costs will be. Understanding the value of your property will help an insurance company or court understand how much compensation you should receive.
What is the Statute of Limitations in Texas for Property Damage Claims?
A statute of limitations refers to a time limit that the court will give you to file a claim. Each state has different statutes of limitations for the different types of claims (civil and criminal) that can be made.
In Texas, you have up to two years from the date your property was damaged to file your lawsuit in the appropriate court. If your lawsuit isn’t filed within two years, then you are likely barred from ever filing a claim.
There are a few situations where the statute of limitations can be extended in Texas, which include:
- The defendant is out of state for any part of the two-year period,
- If the property owner is under a legal disability such as being a minor or declared legally incompetent.
These situations allow the court to put the clock on hold until the issue is cleared.
Contact a Houston Personal Injury Lawyer for Help
If your property was damaged by another, then make sure you get legal help. You have limited time to make your claim. If you have questions about making a claim or filing a lawsuit, then contact our Houston law office. Call us today at (713) 500-5000.
A lawyer can help you identify liable parties and avenues for compensation for your property damage. They can also help you estimate the value of your property damage.