Last year, we talked about
four common car accident myths that you are safe to ignore. However, those four were only a small fraction
of all the fictions you might have heard presented as facts. In fact,
you might have understandably believed some of these untruths. We’re
here to help clear the air once again with four
more car accident myths you’ve probably heard but shouldn’t believe.
Myth #5: You’re Guaranteed Some Compensation If You Aren’t At-Fault
This is a myth for most drivers in Texas. After a
car accident, Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance coverage will kick in and
pay for medical expenses, lost wages, and other covered damages, no matter
who caused your crash. However, PIP insurance is not mandatory, and you
can waive it. In fact, you probably did because PIP insurance has its
downsides. In many cases, PIP coverage caps do not provide nearly enough
to take care of all damages after a car accident, making the option undesirable.
If you don’t have PIP coverage, then you will need to hold the other
driver and their insurance provider accountable for your damages. This
means you can stand to get a much greater amount of damages recovered
in the long run, but you also have to fight for it.
Myth #6: Police Reports Will Prove Fault
Did the police show up to document your car accident shortly after it happened?
That’s great news! The responding officers should write a report
about what they saw and include any valuable statements from the parties
involved. Yet, there is nothing that guarantees the report they write
will prove fault. Most of the time, a police report is factual and avoids
speculation. A police report only becomes useful to your claim when it
is in the hands of a talented car accident lawyer who knows how to make
the most of what is written down.
Myth #7: Rear Cars are 100% Liable in All Rear-End Accidents
Were you rear-ended by a negligent driver while waiting at a stop sign?
You might think you’re in some strange luck because it should make
sense that they and they alone are liable for the crash. But the truth
is drivers who rear-end other drivers are not always entirely liable for
the accident. A front vehicle that cuts off other drivers, brakes erratically,
merges dangerously, and so forth could be found partially or totally liable
for a rear-end accident. If you were hit from behind, you need to take
steps to prove the rear driver wasn’t paying attention enough to
brake in time. Oppositely, if you hit an erratic driver from behind and
never had a chance to brake fully, then you could argue that the rear-end
collision was their fault.
Myth #8: Hiring a Lawyer is Expensive
This might be the biggest myth on this list. Hiring a personal injury lawyer
is not expensive. In fact, it can cost
nothing depending on how your case pans out. Personal injury attorneys charge for
their services on a contingency fee basis, which means they do not collect
any payments for attorney fees unless they win their client’s case
by securing a settlement, verdict, or award in any amount. If your case
ends out of your favor and you aren’t paid for your damages, then
you don’t pay your personal injury attorney. Furthermore, contingency
fees are based on a percentage of the money secured for the client. For
example, if your injury claim is settled for $100,000 and your attorney
was working for a 30% contingency fee, then they would be paid $30,000.
In other words, you don’t have to pay for your attorney upfront
and you never have to pay them more than you can afford.
Reliable Personal Injury Representation in Austin, Texas
At The Stewart Law Firm, PLLC, we are proud to be the trusted legal team
for the wrongfully injured throughout Austin. If you’re feeling
confused by all the myths and half-truths surrounding car accidents, you
can come to us to help you make sense of what happened, and to help you
decide what to do next. You may be able to file a successful car accident
claim against the driver that hit you with our help. Call us at
512.271.5112 to learn more about your rights and options.