Articles Posted in Truck Accidents

dump truckMost Texas car accident cases settle out of court, but some do go to trial. Usually, this is because the parties have vastly different opinions as to issues such as liability, comparative fault, and damages.

Sometimes, the jury’s verdict will reflect a middle ground between the parties’ respective positions, but it is also possible that the defendant will have to pay a much larger judgment than anticipated or that the plaintiff will receive only a very modest judgment despite allegations of serious injuries and large medical expenses.

Facts of the Case

oil pump jack
East Texas truck accidents can be very difficult. Truckers and trucking companies fight liability as fiercely as possible in most cases.

Sometimes, there may be others who could potentially be liable in a truck accident case – for example, a party who failed to properly secure a load that later spilled and caused an accident – but these defendants, too, pull out every possible defense to avoid liability. Fortunately, these tactics are not always successful.

Facts of the Case

roadway at sunsetIn an east Texas car accident lawsuit, a jury has three options:  find that the defendant was totally at fault, decide that the plaintiff alone caused the accident, or determine that the parties shared in the blame for the accident.

When both the plaintiff and the defendant are found to have contributed to a crash, the plaintiff can only recover compensation if he or she is less than 50% at fault. In such cases, the plaintiff recovers damages in proportion to the defendant’s fault. Recently, a jury in a truck/motorcycle crash found that the plaintiff had suffered damages of $7 million, but, since the plaintiff himself was 75% at fault in the wreck, he received nothing.

Facts of the Case

yellow semiIn an east Texas auto accident case, the plaintiff has the burden of proof. Unless he or she can convince the jury, by a preponderance of the evidence, that the defendant was negligent, he or she cannot recover money damages.

The trial court judge is tasked with determining which evidence proffered by the respective parties is admissible. Disputes often arise concerning specific pieces of evidence, including whether or not a certain witness should be allowed to testify or whether a particular document should be allowed into evidence to be considered by the jury.

A party who is aggrieved by the trial court’s decision has the right to an appeal – usually, after the case has been tried and a verdict entered.

big rig
When someone is hurt due to the negligence of a trucker or trucking company, the burden is on the injured person to prove each element of his or her Texas truck accident case by a preponderance of the evidence. This includes proof of not only the defendant’s duty to the plaintiff and the breach thereof but also the plaintiff’s damages, such as medical expenses (past and future), pain and suffering, and lost income.

Usually, proving medical expenses and lost future earnings requires the testimony of an expert witness. Without this important testimony, the plaintiff’s case can be substantially undervalued.

Facts of the Case

cellular telephone

First, the good news:  according to data maintained by MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving, a nonprofit organization founded by the mother of a child who was killed by a drunk driver), the annual death toll from drunk driving crashes has been steadily declining over the past few decades. When the organization was founded in 1980, over 20,000 people per year were killed by drunk drivers, but now the number of annual fatalities is less than half of that number.

Now, the bad news:  a new menace, distracted driving, now claims between 3,000 and 4,000 lives annually across the nation and injures close to another 400,000 individuals.

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car accident sceneIf you or a family member has recently been involved in a motor vehicle accident in east Texas, you probably have a lot of questions, beginning with, “How long do I have to file a claim?”

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.

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garbage truck

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.

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pointing fingersUnder 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.

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online shopping

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.

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