Even if you were not hurt in a car accident in Texas, you can still file a car accident claim. For example, you may file a claim seeking financial compensation for your property damage and emotional distress. Texas is a fault state, meaning that the insurance company of the driver or party at fault for the motor vehicle accident will be responsible for your losses.
Compensation You Could Recover
All drivers in Texas are legally required to carry minimum amounts of liability insurance. This type of insurance pays for others’ damages in a car accident, not the policyholder’s. The minimum required amounts of insurance are $30,000 per person and $60,000 per accident in bodily injury insurance and $25,000 in property damage insurance. The amount that you can recover in compensation for a claim that does not involve injuries will depend on the extent of your losses and the coverage available.
If you file an insurance claim for only property damage after an auto accident, you will be eligible to recover up to the maximum on the at-fault driver’s insurance policy. The amount that you receive will depend on the value of your property losses. The insurance company will send an analyst out to inspect your vehicle in person. You also have the right to bring your car to a third-party mechanic for an evaluation. You may be eligible to recover the costs of vehicle repairs, or the pre-crash value of your car if it was totaled in the accident.
If you file a claim for emotional distress related to a car accident in Texas, this coverage will come from the other driver’s bodily injury liability insurance. Insurance can cover any treatments you require for your emotional distress or mental anguish, including psychotherapy, medications, doctor’s appointments and time taken off of work. If you are diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder after a car crash, for example, the other driver may be responsible for paying for your related expenses.
Time Limit to File a Claim
If you wish to bring a claim against one or more parties for the damages you suffered in a car accident, you must do so within Texas’ time limit or you will most likely forfeit the right to file. The courts in Texas take the filing deadline seriously and will only hear a claim brought after the time limit in very limited circumstances. This is why it is important to act quickly and consult with an attorney soon after your crash.
In Texas, the time limit to file a claim for any losses associated with a car accident, including property damage, physical injuries and emotional distress, is two years. This deadline applies to anyone seeking to repair or replace damaged or destroyed property, including a vehicle after a car accident. Note, however, that if you are holding a government entity responsible, the law gives you just six months from the date of the crash to file.
What if the At-Fault Driver Is Uninsured?
Despite it being illegal in Texas, many people drive without auto insurance every day. If you are involved in a car accident with an uninsured driver, you may have to turn to your own insurer for coverage instead. Most uninsured drivers do not have the funds to pay for property repairs and other expenses out of pocket. If this is the case, call your own auto insurance company to discuss coverage. You need optional types of insurance to cover your own bills, such as collision, comprehensive or medical payment insurance.
You may also be able to file a lawsuit against a third party, such as the city government for a roadway defect that contributed to your accident. If your case involves an uninsured driver or other complications that get in the way of recovering fair financial compensation, consult with a car accident lawyer in San Antonio for assistance.