Someone Is Suing Me for a Car Accident: What Should I Do?
Reed & Terry, LLP has built a decades-long reputation in the Houston area as injury attorneys who fight for car accident victims. Our law offices in Sugar Land, Richmond, and Katy, TX, have helped families all over Fort Bend and Harris Counties negotiate fair settlements and obtain favorable jury awards.
Some motorists are surprised when they are the target of a lawsuit after a car accident. Even if you followed the rules of the road, you could be sued for an auto collision. If you are being sued for negligence in a crash, our legal team wants to offer some tips on what to do next. In some cases, you may be able to file a counterclaim against the other driver.
What Steps Should I Take If I Am Being Sued for a Car Accident?
Here’s what you should do if you’re getting sued for a car accident:
1. Notify Your Insurance Provider ASAP
As soon as you are aware of the lawsuit, be sure to contact your auto insurance provider immediately. A representative from your insurance company will provide instructions on submitting a copy of the complaint and any other supporting documents.
2. Gather Evidence and Documentation
Your insurance provider will usually provide you with an attorney to represent you in the auto accident lawsuit. Provide the lawyer with any police reports, photos, and other evidence as requested. This evidence can be used to help determine who was at fault, the extent of the damage involved, and the true causes of injuries made in the claim.
3. Make Sure to Act Promptly
Respond to the accident lawsuit as soon as you are aware of it. You will have a limited timeframe in which to respond. Failure to respond to the lawsuit within the deadline could lead to a default judgment against you.
I Have Car Insurance. Why Am I Being Sued for an Accident?
Even if you have car insurance, there are a few reasons why you’ve been hit with a lawsuit:
- Your Insurance Provider Denies You Were Liable for the Crash - The evidence available may demonstrate that you were not at fault for the collision occurring.
- Disagreement Over Settlement Negotiations - If your insurance provider refuses to negotiate a settlement with the other driver, the other driver could file a lawsuit against you in order to seek more money after an accident.
- Proportionate Responsibility for the Crash - Shared liability laws mean that multiple parties could share fault for an accident.
- Coverage Limits on Your Insurance Policy - If the other driver sustained catastrophic injuries, your insurance policy may not be able to cover the medical expenses.
- Damages That Are Not Covered by Insurance Policies - Some types of damages may not be covered by auto insurance and other insurance policies.
What If I Don’t Have Car Insurance?
If you are being sued for a car accident and do not have any insurance, you will need to speak with a lawyer about building a strong case. The goal will be to establish that you were not at fault for the collision.
What If the Person Suing Me Is the Person Who Caused the Accident?
If the person suing you is actually at fault for the collision, this will typically be noted by your insurance company as they assess the crash. The available evidence can help establish which party or parties were responsible for the collision.
Even if you were at fault for the crash, an investigation may demonstrate that damage claims were exaggerated or that the other driver also acted negligently and contributed to the accident. For instance, the other motorist might have contributed to a crash because they were driving while intoxicated or texting while driving.
The Importance of Proportionate Responsibility
The issue of fault is especially important when it comes to Texas state law, which operates under a doctrine of modified comparative fault.
In simple terms, if a plaintiff is found to be 51% at fault for an accident, the jury will award the plaintiff nothing.
Can I File a Counterclaim?
Yes. It is possible to file a counterclaim if you are being sued for a car accident. This can help you offset the amount sought against you by the plaintiff. If the plaintiff is more at fault, you could seek restitution to cover any injuries or property damage you incurred from the crash.
Why You Need to Discuss Your Crash with Skilled Lawyers
Most people do not have enough insight into Texas state law whether they are being sued for a car crash or want to sue a negligent driver for causing an accident. Consulting a Houston-area car accident attorney about a collision is crucial for knowing what steps to take next and how to protect your legal interests during civil litigation.
How Our Car Accident Lawyers Can Help
Attorney Travis B. Terry and I have served the people of Sugar Land, Richmond, and Katy, TX, for decades. We handle all kinds of collision cases with complex or nuanced issues of liability and fault.
Our Insight as Accident Attorneys for Victims
As personal injury attorneys, we understand how cases proceed from the plaintiff’s side. If you feel that the person suing you caused or contributed to the crash, we can investigate to determine whether they were at fault, and help you seek restitution from the other driver.
Cost Won’t Be a Concern for Sound Legal Counsel
You don't have to pay a fee to get pointed in the right direction.
Our law firm offers free case reviews so you don’t have to worry about any upfront costs.
If we take your car accident case because there's evidence the other motorist is the liable party, you won’t owe our law firm anything unless we can reach a favorable settlement or jury verdict.
Being Sued for a Crash You Didn't Cause?
Contact Us for a Free Consultation
Are you are getting sued for causing a car accident in the Houston area? Do you believe the other driver is at fault or partially to blame? If you want some insight on what to do next, our legal team is here to help. Contact our injury accident attorneys to learn more.
About Jackson R. Reed
Attorney Jackson R. Reed has served clients since 1994. He is a member of the American Trial Lawyers Association (ATLA), the Texas Trial Lawyers Association (TTLA), the Houston Trial Lawyers Association (HTLA), and the State Bar of Texas.