When you are involved in a car accident in Texas, you may be confused about what to do. Our experienced car accident attorneys will explain your options.
At The Time Of The Accident
When you have a car accident, the most important thing is making sure everyone is okay. If there are any injuries, call for medical help and call the police. If there are no injuries, exchange information with the other driver.
Include the following:
- Insurance information
- Phone number
- License plate number
- Driver’s license info
Tip: Use your phone to photograph these items. This is more convenient and there is little to no room for error.
Photograph the scene from every angle and include street signs and landmarks to identify where you are. If you are unable to, ask someone else to take the pictures.
Call your insurance company as soon as possible. If there is under $1000 worth of damage and little or no injury to anyone, you may not have to go further.
If Things Change
There are times when you discover that you misinterpreted the situation. You may discover that there is costly damage to the vehicle that you were unable to see at the time.
Sometimes, you don’t immediately feel an injury. The jarring your body goes through in a collision can strain the spine and the neck. Sometimes there are injuries that take a while to show up. This changes the situation.
When you have an accident that now looks like there are substantial damages, the law says you have 10 days to file a Driver’s Crash Report (CR-2). If you fail to do this, you could be held responsible for paying court costs and up to $500.00 in fines.
In Texas, a driver has to prove that they are financially able to handle their responsibilities. Most people do this by buying car insurance. Texas has a minimum coverage law and people refer to it as 30/60/25. That is $30,000 coverage for one (injured) person. $60,000 coverage for two (injured) people and $25,000 for property damage. There are other ways to prove financial responsibility, but insurance is the usual way and it is less complicated. This is the minimum, but there is no maximum. When you file a claim, the insurance company must act on it within 15 days. They must acknowledge the claim and request any further information that is needed to process your claim.
Getting An Attorney
As you can see, time is not always on your side. Things can appear to be different than they are. It is a good idea to contact a car accident attorney when you have an accident to further learn your options, as it is always better to be safe than sorry.
In addition, it is important to be responsible. But, you cannot always count on the other driver to be responsible as well. Most attorneys offer a free consultation and it is always a good idea to know where you stand and to be prepared in case things change.