Unfortunately, there is not a one-size-fits-all answer to that question. While there is a general statute of limitations for personal injury claims, there are many case-specific exceptions to the general rule. Thus, if you have been hurt in a wreck or lost a loved one in a fatal crash, it is imperative that you take swift action to protect your legal rights.
A successful personal injury lawsuit requires many components. First, the plaintiff must “prove his case” against the defendant by establishing that the defendant owed the plaintiff a duty, that the duty was breached, that the plaintiff suffered damages, and that there was proximate cause between the breach of duty and the damages claimed by the plaintiff.
Once these elements are proven, the jury decides the amount of money due the plaintiff, and the trial court enters a judgment in the plaintiff’s favor. At that point, the defendant has the option of paying the judgment or appealing the case to a higher court. In most cases, it is the defendant’s insurance company that makes this decision (and many others). This is because a policy of insurance is a contract under which both the insured driver and the company have certain rights and responsibilities.
A recent case dealt with the consequences of a driver’s apparent failure to formally demand that an insurance company defend him in a state court lawsuit brought by a passenger who alleged that she was hurt due to the driver’s negligence.
Sometimes, a civil litigant does not have a choice as to where he will file his claim against the opposing party. Other times, the plaintiff does have a choice, and there may be a specific reason for her to choose one court over another.
Typically, the defendant has no say in determining the forum in which the matter will be proceed – except in cases in which there is diversity of citizenship between the parties and more than $75,000 in controversy. In such cases, the defendant has the option of “removing” a case filed in state court to federal court, where there is concurrent jurisdiction.
Just as a plaintiff chooses to file in state court for a particular reason, there is often an ulterior motive for a removal to federal court by the defendant.
Generally speaking, Texas law prevents those who are entitled to receive workers’ compensation benefits from filing a negligence lawsuit against their employer or co-workers. Of course, who exactly is or is not an “employer” can be the subject of great dispute.
Recently, a Texas appeals court was called upon to weigh in on the question of whether a garbage company to which a temporary staffing agency had assigned a worker was the worker’s “employer” for the purposes of the exclusive remedy provision of the workers’ compensation statutes.
Insurance policies can be very difficult to understand – so difficult that even lawyers and judges sometimes disagree about the meanings of certain terms or clauses.
A recent case involving the construction of multiple policies of insurance following an automobile accident illustrates the point.
As most people know, a common place to have an accident is in or near a construction zone. For this reason, it is wise to slow down and leave plenty of room in front of one’s vehicle when driving in such areas.
Rush hour traffic also can be a frequent occasion for an accident because there are more vehicles than usual on the road, many drivers are distracted, and a disproportionate number of automobiles tend to speed.
Recently, an east Texas court was called upon to determine whether a jury made a mistake with regard to assigning fault in a multi-vehicle accident that occurred near a construction zone in rush hour traffic.
Under Texas tort law, a person who is hurt due to the negligence of another individual, a business, or a governmental entity has the option of filing a civil lawsuit seeking compensation for damages such as pain and suffering, lost wages, and medical expenses.
In order to establish a prima facie case of negligence, the plaintiff must provide proof of four distinct elements: duty, breach of duty, causation, and damages.
Once this hurdle is met, other issues, including the amount of damages necessary to fully compensate the plaintiff for his or her injuries, must be decided. One of the most common issues that arise in Texas car accident cases is that of proportionate responsibility.
If you’re old enough, you may remember when a certain national pizza chain guaranteed that your pizza would be delivered within 30 minutes. If it took longer than that for your pizza to arrive at your front door, it was free.
The pizza company ended that marketing campaign many years ago, and it has long been rumored that one of the primary reasons was that the company had faced multiple lawsuits from accident victims who claimed that the guarantee encouraged pizza deliverymen to drive unsafely in order to avoid giving away free pizza.
Now, a Texas teenager has reportedly filed suit against an internet sales giant, alleging that she was injured by a driver attempting to honor that company’s two-hour delivery promise.
Motor vehicle accidents are not planned. As the recent east Texas accidents highlighted below reveal, a crash can happen in a split second, sometimes under highly improbable circumstances, forever changing the lives of innocent motorists, passengers, and even pedestrians in the process.
Those who are injured (or whose loved ones perish) in a traffic accident caused by another party’s negligent or reckless conduct have a right to file suit in a court of law against the responsible party.
While monetary compensation cannot bring back lost loved ones or undo a permanent disability suffered in a crash, a settlement or judgment can help ease the financial strain caused by a serious accident or a loved one’s wrongful death.
The Court of Appeals for the Twelfth Court of Appeals District at Tyler, Texas, has now made a decision in a truck accident case that we first brought to your attention last summer. The case, which arose as a result of a truck-car accident in Gregg County, resulted in a jury verdict of close to $4 million in late 2015.
The defendants – the owner and driver of a cable “spooling” truck – filed their notice of appeal more than a year ago, seeking relief from the trial court’s order entering judgment upon the jury’s verdict. Continue Reading