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The Hart Law Firm

Our Attorneys Have Over 25 years of Experience, and Are Here to Answer All Your Questions After an Accident

You must be overwhelmed with questions after your Dallas car wreck.  Why not get the answers from a Texas board-certified personal injury attorney?

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  • How long will it take to settle my drunk driving accident claim?

    Filing a claim for compensation for your injuries after a drunk driving wreck can be a stressful time of life. You suddenly have worries about your health and how to pay the bills while you must be off work recovering. You most likely will quickly realize that the settlement process is anything but easy and will wonder how long it will be before you receive your check. This is a common concern of many drunk driving victims. Here, we try to take away some of the mystery about this burning question.

    How Long Will Your Drunk Driving Case Take to Resolve?

    Unfortunately, no attorney can give you a precise time period for when your claim will settle. However, he can give you a general idea of how long it will take based on his experience in settling other cases and the specific issues he sees in yours. Here are some factors that affect the length of time it can take to resolve your claim:

    Maximum Medical Improvement.

    Your maximum medical improvement is the point in your recovery where you have recovered as much as you will—whether or not you make a full recovery—or your doctor can give you a final prognosis. You need to wait until you reach this stage to settle your case so that you include any future medical bills and wage losses in your settlement.

    Disputes.

    Like with any car wreck claim, you have the burden of proving the other driver’s negligence and the amount of compensation you deserve. This means that you must prove that the drunk driving caused your wreck, which is not always the case. If there are disputes with the drunk driver’s insurance company as to the cause of the wreck or how serious your injuries are, this could delay settlement of your claim.

    Documentation of your damages.

    You must provide the insurance company with the documentation of your medical bills and your wages before settling your claim. While an experienced personal injury attorney can begin collecting this information right away, some of it cannot be obtained until after you complete your medical treatment and are ready to settle your claim. This can take time and delay the process.

    Severity of your injuries.

    If you suffered more long-term injuries or one that causes you to become disabled, the value of your claim will be higher. In these cases, the insurance company will spend more time investigating your case and may fight harder to deny or reduce your settlement.

    Insurance company.

    Unfortunately, some insurance companies have a reputation for taking longer to settle claims. They may request more documentation or delay the process in an effort to wear you down and get you to accept a smaller settlement.

    Have You Or A Loved One Been Injured By A Drunk Driver?

    If you've been injured by a drunk driver in Texas you need to speak with an experienced drunk driver injury attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Colleyville office directly at 817.380.4888 to schedule your free consultation.

    We help injured victims of drunk drivers throughout Texas including Arlington, North Richland, Grapevine, Bedford, Hurst, Euless, Irving and all points in between.

  • What is a third-party claim in a non-subscriber workplace injury case in Texas?

    Because employers are permitted to opt out of providing workers’ compensation benefits in Texas, you may work for a non-subscriber employer. If you do and are injured on the job, you will have to prove your employer’s negligence to be entitled to compensation for your injuries. To make it more likely that you will be fully compensated, youWork Related Injury The Hart Law Firm should pursue claims for negligence against any possible third parties.

    Third-Party Claims You May Have in a Non-Subscriber Workplace Injury Case

    A third-party claim is a legal claim for compensation that you have against a party other than your employer based on some type of wrongdoing on their part. When you file a non-subscriber workplace injury claim, you can and should pursue any claims that you have against any other parties. Common reasons that you may have a claim against another negligent party includes:

    Vehicle wrecks.

    If you must drive for your job and a negligent driver causes you to suffer injuries in a crash, you may have a separate claim against the negligent driver. Truck drivers, police officers, paramedics, and salespersons are a few of the workers who could suffer injuries when driving.

    Machinery and equipment.

    Many workers can be burned, electrocuted, crushed, caught between, or struck by defective equipment, like forklifts and heavy machinery, power tools, and other equipment. A victim may have a products liability claim against the manufacturer as well as a claim of negligence against his employer.

    Subcontractors and non-employees.

    In some workplaces, an employer could hire subcontractors or workers may be in contact with a variety of non-employees—salespersons, delivery drivers, and customers are a few. If workers suffer injuries due to the negligence of these third-parties, a claim for compensation should be filed with their insurance company.

    Property owners.

    If a worker is performing work at a private residence or other property, he could be injured due to a hazard, such as a slip and fall danger, that may give him the right to compensation from the owner.

    Have You Been Injured At Your Texas Job And Your Employer Doesn't Provide Workers' Compensation?

    If you've been injured on the job and your employer is non-subscriber you need to speak with an experienced work injury lawyer as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our our Colleyville office directly at 817.380.4888 to schedule your free consultation.

    We help injured victims throughout Texas including Arlington, North Richland, Grapevine, Bedford, Hurst, Euless, Irving and all points in between.

  • Should I give a recorded statement to the negligent truck driver’s insurance company?

    After a truck wreck that was not your fault, the truck driver will report the crash to his insurance company, and an insurance adjuster will be assigned to the claim. He will investigate the cause of your crash and obtain information about your injuries. He will most likely contact you—possibly while you are still in the hospital—and may ask you to do a number of things while evaluating your claim. One request may be to give a recorded statement. Should you agree to give one?

    Why You Should NOT Give a Recorded Statement to the Truck Driver’s Insurance Company

    A recorded statement is a question and answer session conducted by the insurance adjuster where your answers are recorded and later transcribed to create a written version of the session. Are you required to give a recorded statement in order to settle your claim with the insurance company? No, you do not have a duty to agree to this in order to receive the compensation you deserve for your injuries.

    You may not think that giving a recorded statement is a bad idea when you know that the trucker was the at-fault driver. However, many victims of tragic truck wrecks have significantly weakened their claims for compensation by giving a recorded statement. Here is how agreeing to this could hurt your case:

    Inconsistencies.

    You will be discussing your crash with many people, such as witnesses, police, and your doctor. If you agree to give a recorded statement, the adjuster will compare your answers to others you give while you are resolving your claim to see if there are any inconsistencies in what you have said. If there are any, he will use this information to deny or reduce your claim. In addition, inconsistent statements would make you less credible as a witness—also damaging your claim.

    Confusing questions.

    The insurance adjuster has extensive experience taking recorded statements and knows how to ask questions—sometimes in a confusing manner—to elicit the answers he wants in an effort to weaken your claim. You may inadvertently answer a question in a way that hurts your case without even knowing that you are doing this.

    Litigation.

    Your recorded statement—like other statements you make—can be used against you in court if you file a civil lawsuit. Portions of the recorded statement could be used with motions filed to try to get your case dismissed or in cross-examination at trial to show that you are not a believable witness.

    What Should You Do If the Insurance Adjuster Asks You to Give a Recorded Statement?

    If you receive a call from an insurance adjuster requesting that you give a recorded statement, you should politely inform him that you plan to retain an attorney before making any decisions. Then you need to immediately retain an experienced truck wreck attorney who can advise the adjuster that you will not be agreeing to this and can handle all your communications and negotiations with him.

    What happens if you already gave a recorded statement? You have not ruined your case. However, you need to hire a lawyer immediately to obtain a copy of the statement and minimize the damage that your statements may have caused to your right to compensation.

    Have You Been Injured In A Texas Truck Accident?

    If you've been injured in a truck accident you need to speak with an experienced truck accident injury attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Colleyville office directly at 817.380.4888 to schedule your free consultation.

    We help injured victims throughout Texas including Arlington, North Richland, Grapevine, Bedford, Hurst, Euless, Irving and all points in between.

  • How can I help my attorney in my case against a drunk driver?

    Once you retain an experienced attorney to represent you in a claim against a drunk driver, you may incorrectly believe that your job is done in terms of your claim. You may not realize that you are on a team with your attorney and that you can do things to help him represent you. However, when you work with your attorney, you may increase the strength of your claim and make settling your claim go faster.

    Ways to Help Your Attorney When You Are Injured by a Drunk Driver

    It is not difficult to help your lawyer build a powerful case of negligence against the drunk driver who caused your injuries. Follow these tips for assisting your attorney:

    Be honest.

    Your conversations with your attorney are protected by attorney-client privilege. It is critical that you are completely honest with your attorney and disclose any potentially harmful information, such as that you suffered a pre-existing injury to the same body part. When your attorney finds out damaging information from the other driver’s insurance adjuster or attorney, this weakens your claim and reduces your attorney’s ability to obtain a fair settlement for you.

    Provide a detailed description of events.

    Your attorney will need a chronological description of the events leading up to your crash. This will help him understand what happened and determine the value of your claim. Presenting this information in an organized fashion is helpful.

    Provide basic information.

    You want to provide your attorney with any information you have about the crash and your injuries. This can include providing him with a copy of the police report, pictures, medical records, contact information for the other driver and witnesses, and more.

    Respond to requests promptly.

    If your attorney requests information or documents from you, get this information to him quickly. He may not be able to move forward in your case until he receives it.

    Ask questions.

    It is important that you understand what is going on in your case and your attorney’s strategies. If you do not understand the status of your claim or what he is doing, ask questions.

    Follow your attorney’s advice.

    One of the best ways you can help your attorney is to follow his advice in regards to your claim. He is trying to build the strongest case possible for you, and you help him do this by following his advice on matters that could impact on this.

    Have You Or A Loved One Been Injured By A Drunk Driver?

    If you've been injured by a drunk driver in Texas you need to speak with an experienced drunk driver injury attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Colleyville office directly at 817.380.4888 to schedule your free consultation.

    We help injured victims throughout Texas including Arlington, North Richland, Grapevine, Bedford, Hurst, Euless, Irving and all points in between.

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  • What is the routine job defense in a non-subscriber workplace injury case?

    If your employer is a non-subscriber employer who opted out of providing workers’ compensation benefits in Texas, you must prove that your employer was negligent in order to hold him responsible for compensating you for your workplace injuries. However, unlike other personal injury cases, your employer would be liable if you can show The Hart Law Firm Represents Work Injury Victimsthat your employer was as little as one percent negligent in causing your injuries. Comparative negligence is one of a number of defenses that your employer is barred from raising.  However, your employer may still have defenses to your claim, and one of them is the routine job defense.

    What Is the Routine Job Defense?

    To understand the routine job defense, you need to know what you must prove to win your case for injuries caused at your job. You must prove the following:

    Your employer owed you a duty.

    This duty includes the requirement that your employer provide you with a reasonably safe work environment.

    Your employer breached this duty.

    Your employer failed to provide a safe working environment.

    Your employer’s breach of the duty caused your injuries.

    To prove this, you must show that your injury was foreseeable.

    You suffered damages as a result of your injuries.

    You incurred medical bills, lost wages, or other financial hardships because of your injuries.

    The routine job defense attacks the third element that you must prove. It claims that the job duty was so routine that the employer could not foresee that the employee would be injured doing the task and there was no way to avoid the injury. For example, if part of your job duty was to empty a wastebasket which you did for years without incident, your employer could argue any injury caused by doing this task was not foreseeable or preventable.

    Unfortunately, employers can abuse the routine job defense and try to argue that many injuries were not foreseeable due to the routine nature of the job. However, an experienced non-subscriber injury attorney will be able to help you refute this argument through the collection of evidence and expert witness testimony that establishes your employer’s negligence.

    Have You Been Injured At Your Texas Job And Your Employer Doesn't Provide Workers' Compensation?

    If you've been injured on the job and your employer is non-subscriber you need to speak with an experienced work injury lawyer as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our our Colleyville office directly at 817.380.4888 to schedule your free consultation.

  • How can I pay my medical bills and living expenses while my workplace injury claim is pending?

    Couple Worried About Bills The Hart Law FirmOnce your medical condition stabilizes after you suffer a workplace injury, your next major worry may be how to pay for the expensive medical treatments you will need, other bills, and living expenses during the months or longer when you are off work recovering. This can be even more stressful when you work for a non-subscriber employer because you will not be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. You may have to file a lawsuit against your employer to obtain the compensation you deserve. How do you pay your medical and other bills until you receive your settlement?

    How to Pay Medical Bills While Your Workplace Injury Claim Is Pending

    Figuring out how to pay your medical bills while your claim is pending may be more manageable than you think. Here are some options to consider:

    Your health insurance.

    If you have health insurance, your health insurance provider can pay your medical bills and be reimbursed for what they paid when your case settles or is decided at trial.

    Medical lien.

    A medical lien is a legal agreement between you and your medical providers where they agree to delay receiving payment of your medical bills until you receive your settlement. The agreement gives them a security agreement or legal right to receive their payment once your attorney receives your settlement money. An experienced workplace injury attorney can work with your medical providers and draft this agreement.

    Working with your doctors.

    Another alternative is for your attorney to help you work with your medical providers to reduce what you owe, make payment arrangements, or work out an agreement to wait until your claim is resolved to receive their payment.

    Paying Your Living Expenses While Your Claim Is Pending

    You may have a more challenging time paying your living expenses and bills when you have no paycheck coming in. If you are like most people, you probably have been relying on your paycheck to pay these monthly expenses. Here are ways to manage your bills until your settlement is completed:

    • You may have to prioritize what is paid and pay the essential expenses, such as your mortgage or rent, auto loan, insurance, utilities, and food.
    • You may qualify for lawsuit financing, which will give you a loan to use to pay your bills and expenses in exchange for a certain portion of your settlement. You need to be careful to work with a reputable company if you select this option and discuss it with your attorney before making any decisions. You should also have your attorney review any agreement before you sign it.
    • You may be able to work with your creditors to reduce your payments or delay payments while your claim is pending. However, this option is less feasible for the essential expenses listed above.

    Have You Been Injured At Your Texas Job And Your Employer Doesn't Provide Workers' Compensation?

    If you've been injured on the job and your employer is non-subscriber you need to speak with an experienced work injury lawyer as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our our Colleyville office directly at 817.380.4888 to schedule your free consultation.

    We help injured workers throughout Texas including Arlington, North Richland, Grapevine, Bedford, Hurst, Euless, Irving and all points in between.

  • Will I have to go to court in my case for compensation against the drunk driver who caused my injuries?

    drunk driving injury claims don't often go to trialOne reason you may be reluctant to file a claim for compensation after suffering injuries in a car wreck caused by a drunk driver may be fears about going to court. It may be frightening to think of testifying at a trial and emotionally draining to relive the experiences of the wreck. However, you should not let the fear of a trial stop you from filing a claim. The reality is that it is unlikely that you will need to take your case to trial to receive the full value of your claim.

    Reasons Why Drunk Driving Injury Claims Rarely Go to Trial

    While it is likely that your case will be settled rather than decided at a trial, this does not mean that your case will not go to court. If the insurance company will not offer a reasonable settlement, your experienced drunk driving wreck attorney will need to file a civil lawsuit on your behalf and litigate your case. This is not uncommon. However, in most cases, the insurance company will become more reasonable in its settlement offers before a trial date. Here are some reasons why it is unlikely that you will have to take your case to jury trial:

    Uncertainty of verdict.

    For both you and the insurance company, there is uncertainty about what will happen if a jury decides the case. There is no guarantee what a jury would do even if you have a strong case against the negligent driver. The insurance company knows that it could be required to pay you even more in a jury trial than in settlement. The uncertainty of the outcome often results in the parties to a drunk driving case reaching a settlement, and you probably will too.

    Expense.

    The cost of depositions, paying expert witnesses, and trial preparation are extremely expensive. By reaching a fair settlement, you and the insurance company can control the costs and the outcome of your claim. This can make it more beneficial for both sides to reach an agreement.

    Value of your claim.

    An experienced attorney who has a track record of success in settling and trying these cases will know the value of your claim as will the insurance adjuster for the negligent drunk driver. While there may be disputes about liability or the severity of your injuries, an understanding of what your claim is worth by both sides will help your case be settled either before or during litigation.

    Have You Or A Loved One Been Injured By A Drunk Driver?

    If you've been injured by a drunk driver in Texas you need to speak with an experienced drunk driver injury attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Colleyville office directly at 817.380.4888 to schedule your free consultation.

    We help injured victims throughout Texas including Arlington, North Richland, Grapevine, Bedford, Hurst, Euless, Irving and all points in between.

  • Should I sign a post-injury waiver from my non-subscriber employer after a workplace injury?

    When an employer decides to opt out of providing workers’ compensation benefits and becomes a non-subscriber employer, the employer loses certain defenses to a negligence claim raised by the injured worker. For example, an employer is 100 percent liable for compensating an injured worker if the employer is even one percent negligent in causing the incident. However, employers retain the right to ask workers to sign a post-injury waiver. Should you sign this agreement if your employer asks you to after a workplace injury?

    What Is a Post-Injury Waiver?

    A post-injury waiver is a legal document that is signed by a worker to waive his right to pursue a lawsuit against the employer. The waiver is often part of a settlement Workplace Injury The Hart Law Firmagreement where the employer agrees to pay the employee a certain amount of compensation for his injuries—in many cases for less than he is owed. Under Texas law, post-injury waivers must meet these requirements to be valid:

    • Cannot be signed by the worker before he has been injured in a workplace incident
    • Cannot be signed within the first 10 business days after the date of the initial workplace injury report
    • Can only be entered into by a worker voluntarily and with an understanding of the waiver’s effect
    • Cannot be signed until the worker receives a medical examination from a nonemergency care doctor
    • Must be a written document where the intent of the parties’ agreement is included in the document

    The post-injury waiver must be conspicuous, meaning it must be obvious to the worker that he is signing it. If the waiver is included on other paperwork, this requirement can be met by making the waiver portion larger or by using contrasting colors.

    Should You Sign a Post-Injury Waiver Following a Workplace Injury?

    If your employer asks you to sign a post-injury waiver, you should not agree to do so. You could be waiving your right to sue your employer for compensation for your injuries without receiving what you are owed in return. You never want to sign an agreement or other legal document in regards to your claim without the advice of an experienced workplace injury attorney.

    What happens if you signed a post-injury waiver? You may be able to get out of the agreement if the employer did not meet Texas’ requirements for making it valid. However, you will need the assistance of an experienced workplace injury attorney to do so.

    If you signed a post-injury waiver that is valid and try to file a lawsuit for your injury, your employer can raise the Post-Injury Waiver defense to attempt to get your lawsuit dismissed. Your employer could also raise this defense even if the waiver is not valid.

    Have You Been Injured At Your Texas Job And Your Employer Doesn't Provide Workers' Compensation?

    If you've been injured on the job and your employer is non-subscriber you need to speak with an experienced work injury lawyer as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our our Colleyville office directly at 817.380.4888 to schedule your free consultation.

    We help injured victims throughout Texas including Arlington, North Richland, Grapevine, Bedford, Hurst, Euless, Irving and all points in between.

  • What are my options for compensation if I was drunk and caused a car accident?

    While it is always dangerous to drink and drive, you as the drunk driver could also suffer injuries in a crash. You may be off work for months or longer while you recover from your injuries. You may be surprised to discover that you have avenues of compensation that you may not have realized existed.

    Your Options for Compensation as a Drunk Driver

    While generally a drunk driver will be liable for compensating the victims of an accident, this is not always the case. Just because you were drunk does not mean that this Drunk Drivingcaused your collision. However, you also need to be realistic and accept that you could most likely be found at least partially liable for causing the drunk driving wreck. However, here are possible ways to recover some of your losses:

    Other driver.

    If the other driver was partially at fault in causing your wreck, such as by also being drunk or texting behind the wheel, he could be responsible for compensating you at least partially. Texas follows the modified comparative negligence doctrine, which means that if a driver is 51 percent or more at fault in causing a wreck, he would be entitled to no compensation. A driver who is 50 percent or less at fault could receive a partial award based on his percentage of fault in causing the wreck. If the other driver was more than 50 percent at fault in causing your injuries, he would not be entitled to any compensation, and you could receive a portion of the compensation you deserve from him based on your percentage of fault.

    Your insurance company.

    If you purchased additional insurance coverage, such as collision, MedPay, personal injury protection (PIP) for medical bills and lost wages, and uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage, you may be able to file a claim with your own insurance company. You could be entitled to this regardless of your fault in causing the wreck.

    Dram Shop Claim.

    If you were sold alcohol at a bar or restaurant or purchased alcohol at a store when you were obviously intoxicated, the business could be liable for compensating you if you were injured in a drunk driving accident under Texas’ Dram Shop law. However, the business would only face liability for its share of negligence in causing your accident.

    Have You Or A Loved One Been Injured By A Drunk Driver?

    If you've been injured by a drunk driver in Texas you need to speak with an experienced drunk driver injury attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Colleyville office directly at 817.380.4888 to schedule your free consultation.

  • Can my employer require me to see a company doctor in a non-subscriber case?

    choosing your own doctor when you are injured at work The Hart Law FirmYou work for an employer who has opted out of providing workers’ compensation insurance and you suffered a workplace injury. What do you do next? If your employer provided workers’ compensation benefits, you could be required to be treated by a doctor chosen by the company. However, when you work for a non-subscriber employer, your choices for medical treatment are different.

    Can You Pick Your Doctor When Injured and Filing a Non-Subscriber Workplace Injury Claim?

    One of the rights you have when you work for a non-subscriber employer and are injured on the job is to pick your own doctor to treat your injuries. Your employer cannot dictate the physician that you see. However, this does not mean that your employer will not try to pressure to see a certain doctor. Do not feel that you must do so. If your employer was even one percent negligent in causing your injuries, your employer will be responsible for compensating you for your medical care—by a doctor that you choose.

    What Happens If Your Non-Subscriber Employer Offers Medical Care to Injured Employees?

    Some non-subscriber employers do offer medical care by their doctors to employees who are hurt on the job. In this situation, your rights are not as clear cut. The following rules could apply:

    • If you entered into a contractual agreement with your employer to receive medical care by a doctor to be provided by your employer, you could be required to be treated by a company doctor.
    • If your employer voluntarily offers medical care to injured employees but you did not enter into an agreement to use these services, you probably will be able to pick your own physician to treat your injuries.

    Have You Been Injured At Your Texas Job And Your Employer Doesn't Provide Workers' Compensation?

    If you've been injured on the job and your employer is non-subscriber you need to speak with an experienced work injury lawyer as soon as possible. Contact us online or call our our Colleyville office directly at 817.380.4888 to schedule your free consultation.

    We help injured victims throughout Texas including Arlington, North Richland, Grapevine, Bedford, Hurst, Euless, Irving and all points in between.

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