Although San Antonio is known for its miles-long River Walk, a pedestrian promenade lined with restaurants, shops, and bars, the city depends on cars as its primary mode of transportation. Residents and tourists who use cars to get from one destination to another run the risk of sustaining serious injuries in a traffic accident.
Car accidents often cause substantial injuries that can lead to long-term difficulties, including injuries that can permanently change the shape and direction of your life. Often, you may struggle to get the support and assistance you need to move forward after your car accident.
An experienced San Antonio car accident attorney, however, can help give you a better understanding of how much compensation you will need to cover the full cost of your injuries. Contact Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, today for your free consultation.
Sibley Dolman Gipe: Our Past Results
At Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, we have extensive experience representing the victims of severe car accident injuries.
Our past claims include multiple high-dollar awards, including:
- $1.58 million to an auto accident victim who suffered herniated discs
- $1 million to the victim of a car accident with multiple injuries
At Sibley Dolman Gipe, we offer small firm personal attention with big firm results. Our lawyers cannot guarantee the results of any San Antonio car accident claim, but we do work with our clients to help provide them with the support they need to maximize their claim results.
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After you suffer serious injuries in a San Antonio car accident, contact an experienced San Antonio car accident attorney as soon as possible. At Sibley Dolman Gipe, we endeavor to provide a high standard of service to all our customers, offering the personal touch that our clients expect from smaller law firms while offering the bargaining power and determined support of a much larger firm.
For our clients, we offer a range of services, including:
- Investigation of your claim, your accident, and your injuries. We will investigate every element of your claim to ensure that we can identify all parties that may have contributed to the accident. If the other driver’s insurance company tries to claim that you caused the accident, we will seek out evidence that will help establish who bears liability for your injuries. We will also go over all evidence related to your medical expenses and injuries, which can help establish how much compensation you should seek in your claim.
- Advice concerning the value of your claim. We cannot guarantee the compensation the insurance company will offer or that you will ultimately receive for your injuries. We can, however, help you break down the compensation that you should receive and give you a better idea of how much compensation you should expect.
- Assistance dealing with the liable driver’s insurance company. Dealing with the insurance company that covers the liable party—or, in the case of multiple liable parties, separate insurance companies that may cover each one—can prove the most stressful part of the San Antonio car accident claim process. At Sibley Dolman Gipe, we will help communicate with the insurance company for you, including handling settlement negotiations on your behalf.
- Representation in court. If you have to take your San Antonio car accident claim to court, a lawyer can prove incredibly important in presenting your claim in the best possible light and increasing the odds that you will receive a favorable verdict.
Following a San Antonio car accident, you may find yourself dealing with substantial injuries, many of which can cause you to suffer long-term limitations in every area of your life.
Those limitations may look different depending on the type of injuries you suffered and their severity as well as your personal lifestyle.
- Traumatic brain injury. Traumatic brain injury can cause immense suffering. Victims may suffer from headaches and double vision, but they may also have to deal with memory loss, including challenges with both short-term and long-term memory. Many victims of traumatic brain injury also struggle with difficulty in focus and concentration, which can make it difficult for them to handle work tasks while keeping their attention on the task at hand. That lack of focus and concentration can also interfere with the victim’s leisure activities, including watching movies, reading books, or simply watching sporting events. Victims may also struggle with personality changes or difficulty with emotional regulation, which can transform the way the victim interacts with other individuals.
- Spinal cord injuries. Not only do spinal cord injuries often mean complete or partial paralysis below the site of the injury or decreased mobility because of injuries suffered by the victim, but these injuries can also lead to immense, ongoing medical expenses. Many spinal cord injury victims find themselves facing more than a million dollars in medical costs in the first year after the accident alone. Spinal cord injury victims may also have ongoing medical expenses related to physical and occupational therapy, which may become lifelong requirements following those injuries.
- Amputation. In the immediate aftermath of an accident that causes a traumatic amputation, the victim may need to learn how to cope with a missing limb. Often, victims go through substantial occupational therapy while they relearn how to walk or perform tasks with one hand that once required two. Limb amputations can keep victims out of work long-term as they relearn how to perform those activities or may result in a victim needing to change his occupation to accommodate his new limitations. Even once he learns to cope with the limitations offered by a missing limb, an amputee can expect to replace his prosthetics every three to five years, which can pose a considerable, recurring expense.
- Burns. In some cases, car accidents can lead to burns or severe road rash, which presents many of the same symptoms as a severe burn. Even minor road rash can present as a deep wound that strips away several protective layers of skin. In more severe cases, road rash and burns may strip away the skin and the tissue beneath. Often, burns lead to disfigurement, including permanent scarring. Burn victims also have a high risk of developing severe complications while recovering. Because burns and road rash remove the protective layer of skin that helps prevent bacteria from entering the body, burn victims face a high risk of infection. To help protect against that risk, burn victims often spend considerable time in a special burn unit at the hospital, where controlled care helps prevent potential infectious material from entering the area. Unfortunately, these units also have strict visitor requirements, which can lead to increased isolation and expense during recovery.
- Broken bones. Victims with broken bones following a car accident can have a long road to recovery in front of them. Sometimes, broken bones, especially severe broken bones, can require surgical treatment to increase the odds of complete healing. Victims with multiple broken bones may have extreme complications during the recovery process, including the need for assistance to engage in basic self-care tasks. In some cases, broken bones can cause ongoing pain and considerable limitations for the victim.
If you suffered severe injuries in a San Antonio car accident, contact Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, to learn more about your right to compensation and how the conditions that led to your car accident may affect your San Antonio car accident claim.
Locating the Liable Party in a San Antonio Car Accident
If you suffered serious injuries in a car accident, the police likely arrived at the scene of the accident, took statements, and created a police report that may have established liability for the accident. That does not necessarily mean, however, that the police report fully establishes all liable parties or even accurately assigns fault in the accident.
At Sibley Dolman Gipe, we investigate our clients’ claims and evaluate them to get a better idea of who may bear liability for the accident. Liable parties in a San Antonio car accident may include:
A driver who behaved negligently on the road. Did the driver who caused your accident drive while distracted or inebriated? Did a driver ignore the rules of the road or drive aggressively? If the driver who caused your accident engaged in negligent behavior behind the wheel, that driver may clearly bear liability for the accident and any injuries that you sustained.
The driver’s employer. Did you suffer injuries in an accident with a driver on the clock at the time of the accident? In some cases, the driver’s employer may share liability for the injuries you sustained. The driver’s employer may share liability for pushing the driver to drive in unsafe conditions or maintaining policies that increase accident risk, including too-tight deadlines for deliveries. The driver may also share liability for failure to properly maintain a company-owned vehicle, if a lack of vehicle maintenance led to the accident, or for employing a driver who has a history of causing accidents on a regular basis.
A mechanic that recently worked on the vehicle. Mechanical failure can substantially increase the risk of severe accidents on the road. Brake failure, for example, can make it impossible for a driver to come to a safe stop, while a steering failure can make it very difficult for a driver to control the vehicle.
If mechanical failure occurs because a driver fails to properly maintain his vehicle, the driver will bear liability for any accident caused due to that failure. On the other hand, if mechanical failure occurs after the driver took the car to a mechanic, and the mechanic certified it as roadworthy, the mechanic may share liability for any injuries that occur because of the mechanic’s negligence. The mechanic may bear liability for failing to properly repair the vehicle when the driver placed it in his care, or he may bear liability for causing damage to the vehicle while conducting other repairs.
The vehicle manufacturer. In some cases, the vehicle manufacturer may commit errors that lead to severe accidents, including failing to recall a vehicle with known errors or sending out vehicles that have the potential to malfunction severely. Brake failures in new vehicles, vehicles that suddenly burst into flames on the road, or vehicles that have sudden steering failures, for example, may all serve as examples of manufacturer error. If a manufacturer’s error leads to a serious accident, the manufacturer may bear liability for the accident and for any injuries suffered by the victims.
To determine who may have caused your accident, an experienced San Antonio car accident attorney may look at multiple factors related to your accident: any witness statements, the police report, video footage that may exist of the accident, and your statement about what led to the accident.
What Compensation Should You Expect After a San Antonio Car Accident?
A San Antonio car accident claim cannot turn back the clock on your car accident and prevent your injuries. Such a claim can, however, provide you with much-needed compensation that can make it easier for you to rebuild your life after the accident. Compensation for your claim can help you manage your medical bills, take care of your other expenses, and support yourself as you recover.
At Sibley Dolman Gipe, we cannot guarantee the compensation you will receive for your injuries. We can, however, help break down the compensation you may ask for in your San Antonio car accident claim.
Compensation for medical bills for injuries sustained in the accident. For many San Antonio car accident victims, whether you received care at Methodist Hospital, University Hospital, or one of the other care providers in the area, medical bills can represent one of the most immediate expenses associated with your San Antonio car accident claim.
You may find yourself facing extreme challenges as you manage your medical costs, which may include:
- Emergency medical treatment
- Surgeries and procedures to treat your injuries
- A stay in the hospital
- Time in a long-term care facility
- Durable medical equipment, including a wheelchair, crutches, or braces for severe injuries that result in mobility losses
- The cost of physical and occupational therapy
- Psychological therapy associated with your accident and injuries
Compensation for wages lost because of your accident. Lost wages can present as much of a challenge when filing a San Antonio car accident claim as your immediate financial losses and the payments you have to make. Your injuries can prevent you from working either short-term, immediately after your accident, or long-term, depending on the extent of your injuries and their impact on you. You can include compensation for the wages lost because of your injuries as part of your San Antonio car accident claim.
Compensation for pain and suffering. In addition to compensation for tangible financial losses associated with the accident, you can pursue compensation for the less-tangible elements of pain and suffering: the ways in which your injuries have negatively impacted many areas of your life.
Generally, your attorney will help assign pain and suffering based on a percentage of the medical expenses you faced related to your accident. Your attorney will discuss the various challenges you may have faced because of your injuries, including both the physical pain and the emotional anguish that may have resulted from your injuries.
Compensation for pain and suffering often varies significantly and can prove a point of contention as you work to negotiate a settlement with the liable party’s insurance company. Having an attorney on your side can prove crucial to helping you attain the best possible result.
Do you have questions about your legal rights following a San Antonio car accident? Contact Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers for your free consultation. Meanwhile, our lawyers answer some general frequently asked questions below.
1. If the other driver receives a ticket after my car accident, does that affect my San Antonio car accident claim?
In some cases, the ticket received by the other driver can make it easier to establish who caused the accident and, therefore, who bears liability. Your lawyer may, for example, use the ticket to establish evidence of reckless driving behavior, including speeding or running a red light. A ticket can also serve as an indication that the other driver drove while intoxicated or while distracted.
However, the ticket will not always clearly establish fault in a car accident. Sometimes, a driver may plead no contest or not guilty. If the driver ends up not having to pay the ticket, your attorney may not use the ticket as evidence in court.
2. Who has to pay my medical bills after a San Antonio car accident?
Following a San Antonio car accident, you, as the injured party, will need to make arrangements to pay your medical bills. You will receive medical services based on your specific needs and the decisions you make about your care, and you will need to pay the bills accordingly. However, you can use several options to help decrease the financial weight that you may face following your car accident.
You may choose to:
Use your health insurance. Health insurance serves as an important measure that can help individuals suffering serious injuries and high medical bills deal with the costs associated with their injuries. Your health insurance provider will cover many of the costs associated with your medical care, from emergency medical treatment to the cost of long-term care. For victims who suffer long-term limitations and the need for ongoing medical care because of their injuries, health insurance can also provide the ongoing financial support they need.
Make sure you talk to your health insurance provider about the extent of your coverage and how it will apply after a car accident, especially if you plan to file a claim. Your health insurance provider can help you evaluate your coverage as well as provide information about copays and deductibles, which can make it easier for you to make decisions about your care. You may also want to ask about the specific coverage you have for the services you know you will need.
Look into hospital programs that help with the cost of care. Many hospitals, especially university hospitals, have programs in place designed to help patients pay for the cost of care. Often, those programs will base their assistance on your income or ability to pay. They may also take your specific needs, including the cost of your care, into consideration. Talk to your doctor or ask a patient representative at the hospital what assistance the hospital may offer to make it easier for you to cover the cost of your medical bills, especially after your insurance has already covered its portion of your care.
File a San Antonio car accident claim against the driver or entity that caused your accident. A San Antonio car accident claim will not require the liable party from your accident to pay your medical bills directly. Instead, that claim will lay out your expenses and losses related to the accident. When the liable party or, more often, the liable party’s insurance issues payment for your San Antonio car accident claim, you can then use those funds to cover your medical expenses and pay for your other bills.
3. How much does it cost to hire a lawyer to deal with a San Antonio car accident?
After a car accident, you may have a lot of financial worries. You have already seen your medical bills piling up, and you may not have the ability to cover your other bills, especially if you have to stay out of work during your recovery.
At Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, we start with a free consultation, in which we go over the circumstances that led to your car accident and make sure that you understand your legal rights. Then, we accept our clients on a contingent fee basis. For many clients, this substantially alleviates financial stress related to an inability to work or bills piling up in the aftermath of a serious car accident injury.
Instead of asking yourself what it might cost to hire a lawyer, consider what it might cost to go into your car accident claim without legal representation. Many of our past clients have found that working with us significantly increases the compensation they ultimately receive for their injuries, as we seek compensation they may not even have considered as available or help uncover all parties that may have contributed to an accident.
4. Should I accept a settlement offer from the insurance company after my San Antonio car accident?
A settlement offer often arrives from the liable driver’s insurance company within a short period of time after your accident. You may not have left the hospital yet, and you may not know the full extent of your injuries or what they will cost long-term. Insurance companies often prey on that lack of knowledge, as well as your lack of awareness of your legal rights, when they issue that settlement offer.
Frequently, the settlement offer does not reflect the full cost of your injuries. Instead, the insurance company may try to issue a low settlement: one that reflects neither the limits of the policy nor the damages you suffered. Accepting that offer could prevent you from obtaining future compensation down the road.
Instead, talk to a lawyer before accepting an offer from the insurance company. A lawyer can go over how much your injuries have cost you and give you a better idea of what to expect, which can help you make a more informed decision about when to accept a settlement offer.
5. What should I do to protect myself after a San Antonio car accident?
In the immediate aftermath of a car accident, you may not know what to do next. Most people know that they need to stay at the scene of the accident and wait for the police to arrive, but what comes next?
First, make sure you seek medical attention. A doctor can help evaluate your injuries, diagnose them, and issue the necessary treatment. Often, people walk away from car accidents thinking that they did not suffer severe injuries, only to discover much later that they have serious back and neck injuries that should have received treatment at the time of the accident.
Next, follow your doctor’s recommendations. Many people believe that, as they start feeling better, they no longer need to adhere to specific limitations or restrictions. Those restrictions, however, exist to help maximize the odds that you will make a full recovery after your accident. If you ignore your doctor’s instructions, you may end up inadvertently making your injuries worse. While the driver or other entity that caused your accident will still bear liability for the immediate aftermath of the accident, including your immediate medical expenses, if you ignore your doctor’s instructions, you may bear liability for any complications caused by your own negligence.
Finally, get in touch with an experienced San Antonio car accident lawyer as soon after your accident as possible. An attorney can help go over your legal rights and prevent you from inadvertently accepting a low-ball settlement offer.
6. How soon after a car accident do I really have to get in touch with an attorney?
Many people have seen commercials or television shows that portray an actor calling his attorney from the scene of the accident. Already irate, he explains what happens and why he needs immediate legal help, and his lawyer hurries into action.
You do not necessarily have to call your lawyer from the scene of the accident. You should, however, get in touch with our San Antonio car accident attorneys as soon after your accident as possible.
Keep in mind that:
- Memories fade quickly after car accidents. Witness testimony becomes increasingly unreliable as more time passes after your car accident. By contacting an attorney early, you can collect witness statements while they remain fresh in the witness’s mind.
- The city may quickly clean up any damage from the accident. The city will quickly sweep away any debris from the accident itself. If a feature of the area, including screening bushes or a pothole, contributed to the accident, the city may quickly clean it up to avoid future accidents. Unfortunately, those swift actions can also make it more difficult to collect evidence. The sooner you retain an attorney, the sooner the attorney can collect images of the scene or bring in expert witnesses to take a look.
- Video footage is not stored indefinitely. Often, security camera footage gets overwritten on a regular basis. By hiring an attorney quickly, you can get access to security camera footage of your accident site, if local businesses have security cameras in relevant areas, before that footage disappears.
7. I did not go to the doctor immediately after my car accident, but later discovered that I had severe injuries. Can I still file a San Antonio car accident claim?
You can file a San Antonio car accident claim after your accident as long as you remain within the statute of limitations. However, you should keep in mind that the longer you wait to seek medical attention, the harder it may become to prove when your injuries occurred. The liable party’s insurance company may try to prove that your injuries occurred after the accident caused by the driver it covers. Get in touch with our San Antonio car accident attorneys as soon as you realize the extent of your injuries to learn more about the steps you need to take to file your claim.
If you suffered serious injuries in a San Antonio car accident, an experienced attorney can help guide you through your San Antonio car accident claim and help you learn more about your rights. Contact Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers today at 833-552-7274 (833-55-CRASH).