San Antonio is the second-largest city in Texas and the seventh-largest city in the United States.
That ranking will continue to rise as San Antonio continues to be one of the fastest-growing cities in the country.
San Antonio sees its fair share of accidents with an ever-growing population, both on the roadways and off.
If you’ve suffered a personal injury in San Antonio, don’t hesitate to consult with an experienced San Antonio personal injury lawyer.
You may be entitled to compensation for your losses.
San Antonio Injury Statistics
Unfortunately, San Antonio often ranks as one of the worst cities in Texas for drivers. ValuePenguin notes San Antonio is one of the worst cities for speed-related fatalities, second only to Dallas.
The article notes there is an average of 56 speeding-related fatalities every year, which is 35% more than other cities that are similar in size. These statistics show San Antonio ranks 72% higher than Austin.
Bexar County, where San Antonio is located, releases an annual mortality report. In 2019, of the 13,688 deaths investigated, 38% (5,201) resulted from an accident.
According to the most recent report by the Texas Department of Insurance, Division of Workers’ Compensation, private industry employers in Texas reported 187,600 nonfatal injuries and illnesses in 2019.
The Texas Department of Transportation reports that in 2019, of the 560,952 total crashes in the State of Texas, 50,796 occurred in Bexar County. This number is third only to Dallas and Harris Counties.
Alcohol-involved crashes continue to be a problem in San Antonio as well. According to the Texas Department of Transportation’s Crash Records Information System, there were 1,758 alcohol-related crashes in San Antonio in 2020, involving 11,499 people.
With such a significant number of accidents and injuries in the county, it’s no wonder that San Antonio residents need the help of experienced local personal injury attorneys.
What to Do After an Accident in San Antonio, Texas
If you were recently involved in a car accident in San Antonio, there are a number of things you can do to improve your chances of recovery.
First, don’t panic. Accidents are traumatic events, and it’s normal to feel nervous or fearful of what comes next.
To protect yourself and your rights, make sure you:
- Call the police;
- Tend to the injured, including yourself;
- Exchange contact information with the other people involved;
- Exchange insurance information with the other drivers involved;
- Get the contact information for any witnesses to the accident;
- Take pictures of the scene, including any vehicles;
- File a police report, if the police did not do so;
- File an insurance claim;
- Obtain witness statements; and
- Maintain any documents you receive in connection with the accident.
Gathering information is an essential aspect of preparing a personal injury case. Hiring a personal injury lawyer in San Antonio is the best way to ensure that you have the documentary evidence you need to support your claim. It is up to you and your attorneys to prove that you deserve the compensation you seek.
Some people are worried that it will compromise their case if they retain an attorney immediately following the accident. The sooner you involve a lawyer, the better. It’s easier to preserve evidence and speak with witnesses when the injury-causing event was recent.
Personal Injury Law in Texas
Personal injury claims make up a significant portion of the cases filed in Texas each day.
Personal injury cases are civil cases and are most commonly based on the legal theory of negligence.
A negligence case effectively allows a party injured by the misconduct of another person to recoup financial compensation for their injuries.
Elements of Negligence
Negligence is common throughout different types of personal injury cases.
Proving a negligence claim requires establishing four elements:
- Causation, and
Duty refers to your obligation to use a specific “standard of care” when interacting with other people.
Your duty can vary depending on your relationship to the person; you owe some duties to everyone and others you owe because of your relationship to a specific person.
Generally, the standard of care is that of a reasonably prudent person under similar circumstances. To prove that the person breached a duty, you must show that a reasonably prudent person in the defendant’s circumstances would have acted differently.
So to establish negligence, you must prove that the other party owed you a duty that they breached and that this breach caused you injuries.
Sometimes more than one person can be at fault for an accident. Texas follows a modified comparative negligence rule when it comes to assessing liability.
The rule reduces the damages you can collect proportionate to your share of the fault.
For example, if you were 40% at fault for the accident, you are eligible to recover 60% of your damages.
Although this rule allows at-fault parties to recover, it places a bar on recovery for anyone deemed 51% or more at fault.
When Do I Need to File My Injury Claim?
The time to file a lawsuit is limited by the Texas personal injury statute of limitations.
The statute of limitations differs according to the type of case.
Texas law imposes a two-year statute of limitations for personal injury cases. This law means that you have two years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit.
Failure to file within the two-year period may result in the inability to ever file your claim.
Hiring an experienced personal injury attorney is essential to ensuring you don’t miss these kinds of important deadlines.
Potential Damages You Can Recover in a San Antonio Personal Injury Case
Recoverable damages in a personal injury case usually fall into two categories—economic and non-economic damages. Your economic damages are made up of expenses that are relatively easy to quantify. That means there are verifiable losses that your attorney can calculate based on documentation like receipts and invoices. Examples of economic damages include:
· Medical expenses: Ambulance, emergency room, surgery, hospitalization, physical therapy, doctor’s appointments, diagnostic tests, rehabilitation, etc.;
· Lost wages: Your lost time from work due to your injuries, medical appointments, disability, etc.; and
· Property damage: vehicle repairs, vehicle replacement, rental car charges, or other property damage related to an accident, premises liability case, defective product, or dog bite.
General damages are those that are more difficult to place a value on because you won’t necessarily have documents or receipts to prove their value. These damages are very specific to your individual case. No two general damage amounts are the same. Examples of non-economic general damages include:
· Physical pain and suffering, including future pain and suffering;
· Emotional distress;
· Disfigurement or permanent disability;
· Mental anguish;
· Loss of enjoyment of life;
· Loss of consortium; and
· Psychological trauma.
In select cases, punitive damages may also be available. Punitive damages are also called exemplary damages and are reserved for cases that involve malicious intent, fraud, or gross negligence. The court may award punitive damages as a way to “punish” the defendant and deter them from similar behavior in the future.
Like some other states, Texas does have a “cap” on recoverable damages in certain situations. In medical malpractice cases, non-economic damages are capped at $250,000 per medical facility or doctor for each plaintiff. There is an overall cap of $500,000 for multiple facilities with no one defendant held liable for more than $250,000.
Texas also imposes a cap on punitive damages. The maximum amount is capped at $200,000 or two times the amount of economic damages plus the amount of non-economic damages up to a maximum of $750,000. The cap won’t apply if the defendant’s actions were charged as a felony.
Why Hire a San Antonio Personal Injury Attorney
Developing a strong case for financial compensation takes a significant amount of time and energy.
A personal injury attorney will be well versed in the law and will know what kind of evidence you need to get what you deserve.
Insurance companies are notorious for extending extremely low initial offers in the hope that the individual either is unaware of their options or just lacks the capacity to fight for more.
Personal injury attorneys have significant experience negotiating with insurance companies and won’t fall prey to their tactics.
Hiring an experienced San Antonio, Texas personal injury attorney might mean the difference between recovering the financial compensation you deserve and going home empty-handed.
Victims represented by an attorney are not only more likely to win financial compensation than unrepresented victims, but they are also likely to win significantly more money.
How Much Does a San Antonio Injury Attorney Charge?
At The Zimmerman Law Firm, we understand what financial hardships you may be currently facing with medical bills, lost time from work, and other related expenses. Our goal is to help you get through this situation, not add to your existing financial worries.
To alleviate your concerns about the cost of an attorney, we offer personal injury legal services on a contingency fee basis. What that means is you won’t pay anything if we do not get any compensation in your case.
If we successfully recover compensation in your case, you will not have to pay anything out of pocket. A contingency fee arrangement means we take a percentage of your settlement or jury verdict. After your settlement money comes in, we deduct the previously agreed upon percentage prior to sending you the remaining balance of your settlement.
We will discuss the contingency fee at the beginning, so there are never any surprises. The percentage will vary depending on the type of case you have and how complex it is. Contingency fees usually start around 33% and may go up from there.
Because our ability to get paid is directly related to whether we recover compensation in your case, you can rest assured that we will work tirelessly to get you the maximum compensation you are owed.
How the Zimmerman Law Firm Can Protect Your Rights
If you have suffered a personal injury in San Antonio, Texas you need the help of an experienced San Antonio, Texas personal injury attorney. The attorneys at the Zimmerman Law Firm, P.C. are a group of zealous, hard-working injury attorneys in San Antonio. We pride ourselves on fighting for the rights and financial compensation of injured Texans.
Injury Claims We Handle
The Zimmerman Law Firm has been serving the personal injury needs of Texans for decades. We represent victims in all manner of personal injury cases.
Our most common practice areas include:
- Car accidents,
- Truck accidents,
- Motorcycle accidents,
- Work-related injuries,
- Slip & falls,
- Dangerous products, and
- Child Injuries.
Our San Antonio personal injury attorneys will help you navigate what can be a difficult and time-consuming experience. We will help you through the process, step by step, and keep you up to date on your case. We will file motions with the court and communicate with opposing counsel and insurance companies, so you don’t have to.
We want you to have the time and capacity to take care of yourself and get your life back on track.
The Zimmerman Law Firm has been serving the needs of San Antonio and surrounding communities for decades.
We approach each case with curiosity and dedication, and we treat our clients with the same respect we show our family and friends. Our experienced injury attorneys will negotiate with insurance companies and opposing counsel, file motions with the court, and take your case to trial if necessary.
Our priority is your best interest, meaning we will fight for you in and out of court to get the best outcome for your case.
We represent our clients on contingency, meaning that you don’t owe us a dime unless we win your case.
Contact a Personal Injury Attorney in San Antonio, Texas
Our team of attorneys brings a significant amount of experience representing clients in all manner of personal injury cases. We will work with you to develop the best strategy for your case and fight to help you win the recovery you deserve.
And remember, we don’t recover our fees until you win your case.