Have You Been Injured in A Houston Car Accident?
- 1 Have You Been Injured in A Houston Car Accident?
- 1.1 How Do I Find the Best Houston Personal Injury Lawyer For My Car Accident?
- 1.2 Houston Roads Are Dangerous
- 1.3 Why you should hire an Injury Lawyer after a Car Accident in Houston TX
- 1.4 What Steps Do I Take After a Houston Auto Accident?
- 1.5 How do we help in the investigation after a car accident?
- 1.6 What Type of Questions to Expect When Speaking with a Car Accident Lawyer?
- 1.7 Houston Personal Injury Lawyer Near Me
Have you been seriously injured in a Houston car accident? Are you worried about mounting medical bills, missed time at work, and other financial losses incurred due to an injury caused by someone else’s negligence? The Houston roads are probably some of the un-safest in the country.
Due to frequent accidents that occur on the roads, a car accident victim should locate an accident lawyer conveniently located in Houston to discuss the incident, how our firm will investigate the claim, and the likelihood of success. It is our goal to thoroughly investigate your claim and determine whether your injuries were caused by an auto accident.
How Do I Find the Best Houston Personal Injury Lawyer For My Car Accident?
All personal injury lawyers are not the same. It is ESSENTIAL that you consider the following factors when deciding on a lawyer or law firm to represent you and obtain maximum compensation
- Does the lawyer or law firm have a reputation for holding insurance carriers accountable and taking cases to trial when necessary? Gerard Pusch is Board Certified in personal injury law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. He has tried over 100 cases to jury verdict. Very few lawyers or law firms can claim to have such experience. Anthony Pusch and Chi-Hung David Nguyen are both partners at the firm and have significant litigation experience battling the largest insurance carriers.
- Insurance carriers are well aware of which law firms or lawyers have a reputation for taking cases to trial when necessary. Attorneys who are known to not aggressively litigate cases are far more likely to receive low settlement offers. Insurance Claims Adjusters are in the business of risk management. If a lawyer lacks the experience, competence, or financial resources to battle Geico, State Farm, Allstate, Progressive, or other giant corporations, they will be viewed as “all bark but no bite.” The insurance carrier will not believe they face a huge risk by giving a low settlement offer. Nothing frustrates us more than seeing a personal injury lawyer leave money on the table.
- Avoid hiring a lawyer or law firm based only on a television commercial. The majority of our cases come referred to us by very satisfied former, and even current, clients. We have relied on word of mouth advertising to build our firm as opposed to a television or radio ad to bring in our next client. Our goal is to maximize the settlement value on each and every case our firm handles. We are literally judged by every last case and the results Pusch & Nguyen have obtained. If we opt to settle easily and leave money on the table, insurance carriers would base future offers off of such.
- Not all injury lawyers are the same. Many law firms or individual lawyers handle a wide variety of practice areas such as criminal law, family law, bankruptcy, and others. At Pusch & Nguyen, we handle various areas of ONLY personal injury law (i.e., motorcycle, car, truck accidents, premises liability, etc…). Many attorneys are attracted to adding personal injury to their practice as it is relatively easy to settle a claim, but leave money on the table. It is far more difficult to properly set up a claim or case to maximize the value and compensation for the injury victim. You would be surprised how many lawyers and firms settle far too frequently and either rarely or never litigate their cases. Actually, some lawyers regularly advertise on television, radio, and even billboards, who have never tried a personal injury case before a jury. Do you think those lawyers obtain fair settlement offers? The answer is often NO.
- Insurance carriers are large for-profit businesses and many are publically traded. The Allstate, State Farm, and Geico’s of the world answer to shareholders. They purposely undervalue claims and train their Claims Adjusters, even rewarding them at times, to settle claims cheaply. When they do this across tens of thousands of cases, they return millions of dollars to their shareholders. Your lawyer or law firm must have the financial resources and expertise to hold these corporate giants accountable. This is the ONLY way to achieve justice.
- Many Houston law firms trust Pusch & Nguyen to assist on their largest and most complex injury cases. We are proud of the fact that several Texas injury firms opt to bring our firm in to help maximize compensation on their biggest cases. We have built this reputation based on decades of experience and having obtained significant impressive results for victims of serious car accidents.
- We take personal attention very seriously. You cannot maximize the value of a claim or case without knowing your client on a personal level. At many of the biggest television law firms, a client never speaks with nor meets the handling lawyer. We remain accessible to our clients and make every last effort to get to know their personal stories and how this car wreck may have diminished their quality of life.
Houston Roads Are Dangerous
According to a survey, traffic in Houston is considered the worst in the state of Texas. It’s never easy dealing with the physical and emotional impact of being involved in a car accident. Making matters worse, victims of an accident often feel overwhelmed by what he or she should do after an auto accident.
With the number of car accidents in Houston on the rise, auto accident victims should reach out to an experienced personal injury lawyer who can listen and go over the process on what actions need to be taken and assist with arranging medical treatment. At Pusch & Nguyen, we understand the stress and anxiety that comes with feeling so vulnerable following a motor vehicle collision. Therefore, our law firm offers a free consultation to help get you started. We want you to feel comfortable that we have your best interests in mind and will take every step to protect your rights and maximize compensation. Our goal is for you to simply worry about getting better.
Why you should hire an Injury Lawyer after a Car Accident in Houston TX
Following a car accident, insurance companies have teams of lawyers and adjusters who begin working right away on evaluating the injury claim and finding any evidence to potentially limit a settlement offer and place minimal value on the claim. Their goal is to lowball the injury victim. Insurance companies have the necessary resources to challenge victims who choose not to have legal representation. This can be very difficult and have a negative impact on your claim. It’s important to have legal representation that has experience and resources to deal with these billion-dollar insurance companies. There are studies that demonstrate that an unrepresented accident victim nets 3x less compensation than those represented by a lawyer.
Hiring a lawyer for a car accident will give you peace of mind knowing an experienced trial lawyer is handling your personal injury claim and has the necessary resources when dealing with insurance companies or corporations. At Pusch & Nguyen, we are committed to providing all auto accident victims with compassion and professionalism when dealing with their auto accident cases.
Our car accident lawyers will aggressively fight the insurance company so our clients can receive the proper medical treatment and compensation for their injuries. Talk to a car accident lawyer about your accident. An experienced car accident lawyer at Pusch & Nguyen can explain this process to you. Call us today for a free consultation (713)524-8139.
What Steps Do I Take After a Houston Auto Accident?
One study shows that you have a 40% higher chance of having a car accident in Houston compared to Los Angeles. It is important that you know your rights, and how to defend them in the case of an unfortunate event. You may be curious as to what steps to take before the authorities arrive at the accident scene.
It’s important to first make sure you are in a safe position and you have not sustained a life-threatening injury requiring immediate medical attention. Contact authorities right away explaining an accident has happened and what type of services will be needed. Below are some other actions you may consider.
Collect as much information as possible
If you can, try obtaining the contact information of any witness. For example; license, car registration, car insurance information, and company identification card. You could also get the models of the vehicles involved in the crash. If you can’t, a police report will have all the necessary information.
If there were witnesses, having their contact information will greatly assist a car accident lawyer with their investigation.
Alert the police
It is crucial to inform the police about a car accident. Police will investigate the incident as well as ensure the safety of the victims and those traveling around the scene of the accident. The police officers will make a report on the accident and give a citation to the at-fault party that caused the accident. Your legal team will be able to access that police report when handling your claim.
Seek medical attention
After being in a car accident you may not see or feel physical injuries right away due to shock, but most victims do feel the effect of the accident days later. It’s important to receive medical attention immediately to ensure there are no internal issues that must be addressed. Further, visiting a hospital, or preferably an urgent care center, will document your potential injuries and will prevent the insurance carrier from stating your injury or injuries were not caused by the accident.
How do we help in the investigation after a car accident?
When you are involved in a car accident, the process of recovering your compensation for the losses incurred requires an investigation. During an investigation, your legal team will locate all available insurance coverage and evidence that document your injuries and the negligence exhibited by the adverse driver. Below are the steps taken when investigating:
Inspecting the scene of the accident:
The investigator gathers information about the accident and specific details that occurred; they investigate the accident’s location. Investigators will examine the location as well as the exact time the accident took place. Other factors that are considered at the time the accident happened would be weather conditions, and who informed the authorities when the accident occurred.
With present-day technology and the existence of security cameras on most street corners, we are often successful in obtaining video evidence of what actually occurred. Further, locating a witness who might have cell phone footage of the incident would also help the case.
In the event of an accident, there may be bystanders who may have witnessed the accident occur. These witnesses could give details that may be missing in a police report and help explain what he or she saw to help further explain the cause of the auto accident.
Once a case reaches a certain point, your attorney may file a lawsuit against the at-fault party’s insurance carrier. At this point, your personal injury attorney will hire professionals who will go over all the information that has been gathered from your legal team and investigators. When a case goes to trial, these qualified experts will speak on behalf of the client to present their expert opinion to a jury.
Experts are used to show what injuries a client received from the car accident and why he or she required a surgical procedure or may need such in the future. This is how we document future medical costs. Also, experts will be able to prove how much force, the distance traveled, the speed the at-fault party was doing, and the direction they were coming from.
This will be important because when explaining to a jury they will need as much detail as possible explaining how the client was injured and some of the long-term medical issues he or she will experience as a result of the accident.
This will also prevent the insurance company from ever saying that the victim did not require surgery or will not need such in the future.
What Type of Questions to Expect When Speaking with a Car Accident Lawyer?
When a victim has been injured in a car accident, it is in his or her best interest to reach out to an accident injury attorney. At Pusch & Nguyen, we understand how difficult this event can be for anyone and will give the compassion and attention our clients deserve. During the consultation, our attorneys will ask questions to gather as much information as possible so we can properly explain the process and what approach will happen next for our client.
Were there any injuries that occurred during the car accident?
In the event of a car accident, injuries can happen instantly or progress as each day passes. It is in the victim’s best interest to seek medical attention as soon as possible whether it be at the scene of the accident or seeking attention at a walk-in clinic. Determining what types of injuries, you or a loved one may have sustained will determine the direction in medical attention as well as your injury claim.
Was your vehicle totaled in the accident?
Knowing the extent of the damages and having documented images will assist the law firm in your auto accident. Determining the damages of your personal property will be evidence to present to the insurance company with documents showing your vehicle was damaged to the point that it was classified as totaled.
Did anyone receive a citation from the authorities?
At the scene of a car wreck, law enforcement will respond to investigate and identify the at-fault driver. Law enforcement will take statements from both parties as well as try to identify any witnesses that saw the accident occur. Upon their investigation, usually, a citation is given to the at-fault driver, and on occasion, an arrest will be made if the offense is outstanding. The attorney will get this citation and review the details to see if it can be used as evidence.
Who will pay for my medical bills?
Once you as the victim have hired an attorney, the law firm will collect all medical bill statements on behalf of the client. Your attorney will arrange for you to meet with medical professionals to assist you with your treatment. During those visits, the medical facility will receive a Letter of Protection (LOP) while you have an active lawsuit.
What Kind of Settlement should I expect from my auto accident?
Once a claim has been filed there are many different factors that go into what type of compensation someone will receive. Attorneys will need to be able to show proof that their client had bodily injuries from the auto accident and the pain and suffering from those injuries. Other factors that will be taken into consideration are as followed:
- Medical expenses
- Long term disability
- Future Treatments
- Lost Wages
- Mental Health Issues
What is the legal process after hiring an auto accident lawyer?
After consulting with a lawyer, papers will be signed stating you are being represented by a law firm to handle all legal matters pertaining to your auto accident. Thereafter, a letter will be sent to the insurance company letting them know you have hired legal counsel and all matters will be directed to the law firm and you wish the insurance company speaks with your legal team about your auto accident. Below are the steps taken during the process of an auto accident claim:
Filing a Claim:
A claim will be filed on the client’s behalf to the insurance company. The claim will contain information that has been gathered throughout the investigation, including all medical treatments the client is undergoing as well what bills the client has received thus far in the process.
Contact with Insurance Adjusters:
During the process, your legal team will be in contact with an insurance adjuster who is handling the auto claim. This is where negotiations begin. Your legal team will be sending additional information to the adjuster showing continued treatment and if additional treatment from a specialist is needed.
An experienced law firm will know how to handle adjusters and prevent low settlement offers. Adjusters also know when dealing with experienced law firms they will need to work harder.
Reviewing Settlement Offers:
Adjusters will send settlement offers throughout the course of these negotiations. Your legal team will have a solid number in mind that will be in the best interest of the client. Your attorney will speak with you throughout the negotiation period and explain what has been offered and what he or she thinks is best for you as the client. This can be a long process, but we will assure all clients we have their best interest in mind and will work hard to get the compensation they deserve.
A lawsuit will be filed when the adjuster and your legal team have exhausted all negations and can’t reach a settlement. The client will be notified that a lawsuit will be filed due to the adjuster not agreeing to the terms that have been presented by the law firm.
Once a lawsuit has been filed, the insurance company will assign a legal firm to represent them. The insurance company legal team has 30 days to respond to the petition. The defendant’s lawyer may also file an answer to” general denial’.
This is a standard legal answer; hence you should not be worried. This means that the defendant wants to be presented with the evidence of your liability claims. Our attorney will be well prepared when it comes to responding to such issues.
The Discovery Phase
This is a phrase with strict rules and procedures, and both parties are required to follow the rules. We get to this phase if the court fails to dismiss the case. The court is presented with motions and answers; from this, it will decide whether to continue or dismiss the case.
At this stage, the lawyers have hectic work as they will go deep into the investigation to gather evidence. Both lawyers will have to have evidence supporting their claims. The evidence may include camera surveillance, interviews from witnesses, digital evidence, and physical evidence. To obtain this, some procedures need to be followed.
- Interrogatories. These involve coming up with well-written questions that demand answers concerning your claims, protection, and identity of people who witnessed the accident.
- Requests for production. These are requests that have been written down demanding relevant documents and other physical evidence.
- Requests for admissions. These involve written requests that give individuals involved a chance to acknowledge or dispute certain statements.
The defendant party may also have the above requests presented to you. All you have to do is be well prepared and respond to such requests to avoid the penalties. For instance, if you do not respond to the request for admission in time, the court will be forced to believe that you have acknowledged the statement presented as true.
This will automatically mean that you give up your defense claim. Since the situation may be so delicate, you need to have a lawyer who shows commitment when it comes to responding to the request. Also, the lawyer should be competent in a manner that they can get work done on time.
During the discovery phase, we have deposition, and this is a simple procedure that involves a session of questions asked by the council that the witness must answer. The questions are directed to the other party or a witness who is usually under oath. In the courtroom, a court reporter oversees recording statements made by the witnesses or the parties involved.
It is crucial to have your attorneys during the deposition process; your lawyers will be able to advise you on what to speak about. Questions asked at depositions may include a person’s background.
Motions for Summary Judgment
After the two parties are done with their findings that may include the documented request and the depositions, any of the parties may file motions for summary judgment. In most cases, one of the parties may note that there are no important facts in dispute. Therefore, a motion for summary judgment is employed by the court as it plays a role in avoiding unnecessary trials.
A court usually grants a party a summary judgment in cases whereby the other party has been convicted for a crime, and the evidence cannot be disputed. From this, there would be no other questions of liability.
Mediation and Settlement Negotiations
The two parties may decide to settle the issue using a different method— mediation. This involves a third party who could be a lawyer or a former judge. The mediators are known to have special training; this will help make the parties get to sound decisions while negotiating.
For mediation to occur, it requires the parties to be in a room together with their lawyers and the mediator. Both parties can air out their claims. This helps the mediator to determine how the parties may resolve their differences. If the two parties come to an agreement, it marks the end of the case.
The mediation process usually starts with both sides and their attorneys together in the room with the mediator. If the mediation does not bear fruits, all the parties are advised not to use the information discussed against each other. The information discussed in the mediation room should not leave the room.
Failure to come to an agreement during mediation doesn’t mean that the negotiations should stop. Your attorney can continue with negotiations until the trial ends.
Even if mediation sessions are unsuccessful, your attorney can continue to engage in settlement negotiations with the other party until the end of a trial.
The Trial Process
The first part of a car accident jury trial is jury selection, which is also known as the voir dire in the legal world. During this phase of the trial, both attorneys and the judge may ask potential jurors in the courtroom, called the “jury pool.” Selecting the right jury is essential to any personal injury damage lawsuit. However, the jury selection process can be complex—even for attorneys!
Our attorneys know how to use necessary strikes (which can be peremptory strikes or strikes for cause) to make sure you have a strong jury. The jury any experienced personal injury wants is most likely to be sympathetic to their client’s injuries and rule in their favor.
The judge and the lawyer come to an agreement concerning the jury selection. Once this is done, the lawyers are given a chance to speak up in front of the jury. Once the lawyers and judge agree on a selected jury, both the parties can make a statement. This is the period when the attorney does not have to make an argument on their cases.
After the two parties give out their statements, they will also have to present the evidence to the jury and provide an argument on the other party’s claims. The plaintiffs’ lawyer presents their statement first; this process involves the lawyer questioning the chief witness who makes an appearance to give evidence. The following process takes place:
- Direct examination. Involves the plaintiff’s attorney interrogating the witness who is here to prove their case.
- Cross-examination. Here, the defendant’s attorney gets to question the witness.
After all the above steps taken by the plaintiff’s lawyer, the defendant’s lawyer also gets to present their case in the same manner.
The attorney may ask the witness questions during the direct and cross-examination. The lawyers are free to ask the witness questions about evidence. They are supposed to be equipped with statements and evidence that are in line with the rules. During the presentation, the attorneys should not hesitate to dispute the statements that violate the rules.
The judge gets to interpret the law to the jury. This interpretation is in connection with the proceeding case. After the jury hears all the evidence, the judge will read the jury instructions, which informs the jury of the law relating to the case. The attorneys can present a final statement to the jury before they go to the jury room for further discussion. When the jury reaches a judgment, they get to read it in the courtroom.
Houston Personal Injury Lawyer Near Me
Pusch & Nguyen is conveniently located in both southeast Houston on Gulf Freeway and southwest Houston on Bellaire Boulevard. We also have investigators that can come directly to you. Our goal is to be accessible to our clients and make this as easy as possible. We are community-focused and our principal lawyers call Houston their hometown.
Call us today! We would be honored to represent you and protect your legal rights.