When Does Modified Comparative Fault Apply in Texas?

There is shock, frustration, and suffering after a car crash, regardless of what caused it. Without having to worry about insurance companies, rising medical expenses, and the possibility of lost wages due to time off work, you will have a lot less on your plate to worry about.

If you've been in a car accident in Texas and plan on filing a claim, you should know a few basics about the state's rules and regulations, such as the time limit on doing so (two years from the date of the accident) and how to file a report of the accident.

Remember that there are several kinds of car crashes, and you'll need to take a different strategy for each if you want your rights protected and your fair share of the compensation you're due. If you've been in a car accident in Dallas and you're wondering who's at fault or how Texas law may affect your case, we encourage you to get in contact with us.

The Rasansky Law Firm has built a reputation for excellence and reliability among its clientele over the course of three decades. If you've been in a car accident in Texas and need advice, please get in touch with our attorneys and staff.

Accident Reporting in Texas

When Does Modified Comparative Fault Apply in Texas?All motorists involved in a collision in Texas must report the incident promptly to the local police, depending on their respective city or municipal regulations. Otherwise, Texas drivers should report auto accidents to the local sheriff's office when in doubt.

It's especially important to contact the authorities if the accident resulted in injuries or fatalities or if the damage to at least one of the vehicles involved prevents it from being safely moved from the roadway.

Texas does not require policyholders involved in a car accident to inform their auto insurance, though most policies do require the policyholder to report their accident as quickly as possible. The sooner the insurance company is informed of an accident, the sooner it can investigate or defend a claim. 

Plus, an insurer may deny coverage for a collision if the insured fails to report the incident within a "reasonable" period of time. In fact, depending on the circumstances surrounding a crash, an insurance provider may allow less than one week to report or file a claim after a car accident.

Even if your wreck was very minor and did not meet the Texas standard for a reportable collision, you should still notify your auto insurer. Being proactive assures that your insurance will provide coverage if necessary.

Auto Accident Liability Across Texas

Roughly a dozen jurisdictions have a no-fault system for vehicle accidents, which means that after a collision, drivers use their insurance coverage to submit a claim for injuries and some out-of-pocket expenditures, regardless of who was at fault. 

By contrast, the state of Texas is a fault or at-fault state. Basically, if you are injured in a car accident in Texas, you have access to a myriad of options. You may either file a claim with the at-fault driver's insurance company or file a lawsuit against the other driver.

Like other states, Texas requires all drivers to have a minimum amount of insurance coverage. If motorists aren't able to maintain insurance minimums in the Lone Star State, they must prove their financial ability to cover a claim out of pocket in the event of an accident.

What Liability Statute Does Texas Follow?

If another motorist was wholly responsible for the vehicle accident that you were involved in, the resolution to the problem is often uncomplicated: that driver (via their insurance company) will reimburse you for your medical costs, missed earnings, and any other damages that you sustained. But what happens in the aftermath of a collision when things aren't that cut and dry?

When many parties are determined to share culpability for an accident, Texas uses a version of the comparative fault standard known as modified comparative fault.

For instance, if a case involving a vehicle accident goes to trial, the jury will be asked to determine the total monetary value of the plaintiff's losses and assign each defendant a proportion of responsibility based on the evidence presented. In addition, the jury will be asked to determine the degree of culpability that each defendant bears. In other words, according to the laws of comparative negligence or modified comparative blame, the amount of damages awarded to a plaintiff is decreased by an amount that is proportional to the plaintiff's level of culpability in the incident.

What is the Modified Comparative Negligence Standard?

Imagine that the judge and jury come to the conclusion that the total amount of your damage award should be $100,000. This figure would cover all of your out-of-pocket medical costs, lost earning potential or income, damage to your vehicle or property, and so on. However, the jury also came to the conclusion that you were 20% culpable for the accident (maybe you were driving too fast for the current weather circumstances, or you forgot to signal). In that case, you would receive a total award of $80,000.

Contact a Car Accident Attorney in Dallas

It is imperative that you contact a Dallas car accident attorney as soon as possible if you are dealing with the aftermath of a significant automobile collision. It's possible that you may get compensated for impending financial obligations, depending on the circumstances.

At the Rasansky Law Firm in Dallas, our team has more than three decades of expertise assisting clients who have been injured in incidents caused by careless and reckless drivers. In addition, our customers get trustworthy legal assistance from our group of highly experienced and highly regarded lawyers who work together as a team. We are willing to investigate the particulars of your accident in depth and assess the various legal alternatives available to you.

Contact our injury accident lawyers in Dallas at (214) 617-1886 for a free case review 24 hours a day, seven days a week if you were harmed in a vehicle accident in the state of Texas and have concerns about how to proceed with your case. We are here to take your call 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Remember that you do not owe us anything unless and until we successfully win your case and you get the money you are due.

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Note: The information that was utilized in this post was gathered from the use of secondary sources. This information used has not been confirmed or independently verified. If you locate any information that is not correct, please contact our firm as soon as possible so that we can make the appropriate corrections. If you find any information that is false, we will remove or correct the post immediately after it is brought to our attention.

Disclaimer: As a valued member of the Dallas community, Rasansky Law Firm’s goal is to improve the safety of all residents in the great state of Texas. These posts should not be viewed as a solicitation for business and the information included herein should not be taken as medical or legal advice. The photos used in this post are not representative of the actual crash scene.

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