Texas is an At-Fault State
Texas is an "at fault" state as far as auto accidents are concerned.
This means that each driver is responsible for any damage they cause to another vehicle or person through the operation of their vehicle.
Low Insurance Minimums
To provide a safeguard for those injured in an accident, Texas requires a minimum amount of third-party insurance coverage to pay for driver-caused damage to others.
These minimums are:
- $30,000 for bodily damage per person injured,
- $60,000 for total bodily injury when two or more individuals are injured,
- $25,000 for any property damage
These are pretty low amounts. A serious accident will easily exceed these amounts and leave the at-fault driver with a huge financial burden.
Accidents MUST be Reported to Police Under Certain Conditions
Under Texas law, when an accident occurs, if there is injury or death or severe enough damage that a vehicle cannot be safely driven away, it must be reported to the local police or sheriff.
Further, state law requires that every driver needs to have proof of insurance in their vehicle. If the police find, either at a traffic stop or because of an accident, that a party does not have proof of insurance in their vehicle, there are fines and other penalties.
No Law to Report to Insurance Company
There is no law that any accident be reported to your insurance company, however. But most insurance contracts contain reporting requirements that need to be followed.
As a point, because of the low coverage limits cited above, it is wise to have uninsured/underinsured driver insurance. This will pay for your injuries and damage should the driver who caused your accident have little insurance coverage and no financial ability to pay for their damage to you and your vehicle.
Filing a Lawsuit
Should you be the victim of a car accident, you have the option of seeking a claim against the other's insurance policy or also filing a lawsuit against the driver for compensation for medical bills, damage to your car or other property, pain and suffering among other possible claims.
Beware that under Texas law, you have a two-year statute of limitations to file a claim.
A lawyer should be your guide here.
For more information on your particular situation, call our office at 956-399-1299 or fill in our online form for a free consultation.
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