If you have been injured in an accident that was caused by someone else’s negligence, you will need to file a claim with the at-fault party’s insurance provider. While every personal injury claim is unique to the people and the circumstances involved, the personal injury law basics remain the same across all claims and cases (when a claimant files a lawsuit against the at-fault party).
The Statute of Limitations
If the insurance company handling your claim refuses to negotiate a settlement with you in good faith, your dedicated personal injury attorney will likely advise you to file a lawsuit in pursuit of the compensation to which you are entitled. In the State of Texas, the statute of limitations (or the time limit) for filing your civil suit is two years from the date of the injury-causing accident. Because personal injury claims are complicated and because the process is often lengthy, this two-year window can close faster than you might imagine, and staying on top of this important legal restriction is paramount. If the party responsible for your injuries is a government entity (at the local or state level), the rules are even more exacting.
Shared Fault Rules in Texas
If you share some of the fault for the accident that leaves you injured, it does not bar you from seeking compensation for the percentage of fault that the other party bears. As long as the percentage of fault that is assigned to you does not exceed 50 percent, you are free to seek just compensation. For example, if you were speeding and are deemed 10 percent responsible for the car accident that leaves you injured, your settlement amount or court award will be reduced by that 10 percent.
While some states put caps on the amount of damages that an injury victim can receive in a personal injury claim or case, Texas is not one of them. The one exception to this is for medical malpractice claims, which do have damage caps.
In Texas, you can seek damages in your personal injury claim for all the following that apply:
Property damage (such as to your vehicle in a traffic accident claim)
Medical expenses that may need to address ongoing healthcare concerns
Lost wages that may need to address an altered career trajectory and lost earning potential
Physical and emotional pain and suffering, which can be one of the most difficult challenges you face
It is critical to your recovery that your personal injury claim carefully addresses every category of damage you experience.