The legal team at Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, has earned national recognition for the high-quality legal services that our attorneys provide. Our work has been featured on NBC, Fox, and ABC, and our past success has earned us a reputation in the legal community for zealous advocacy and professionalism.
We focus our practice on personal injury law, representing individuals who have sustained injuries in preventable accidents, and we have experience negotiating favorable settlements with at-fault parties and their insurance companies, as well as litigating cases all the way to trial. Whether you have suffered injuries in a vehicle accident, slip and fall accident, or another type of accident, or if you lost a loved one due to the negligence or reckless actions of another party, our San Antonio personal injury lawyers can help you determine your eligibility to pursue a San Antonio personal injury claim and seek compensation for the full cost of your injuries.
When you work with Sibley Dolman Gipe, you get the resources and legal experience of a major law firm combined with the compassion and accessibility of a small, local firm. We pride ourselves on providing the best representation possible to our clients, and we always pursue maximum compensation on their behalf.
We offer free, no-obligation consultations to prospective clients, during which they can discuss the details of their injuries, ask questions about their legal options, and determine their eligibility to pursue damages. We also take cases on contingency, which means that we don’t collect attorney fees unless we win your case. We have offices located across the country, including in San Antonio, and we are ready to help you today. If you or a loved one has sustained serious injuries in an accident caused by another party’s negligence, contact us today to schedule a free consultation with an experienced member of our legal team.
Why Hire Us?
At Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA, we have experience representing injured individuals in their personal injury claims and successfully recovering compensation, both through settlement negotiations and litigation. Our attorneys have won numerous legal awards due to our firm’s success and trial skills, including recognition from America’s Top 100 High Stake Litigators, Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum, and Super Lawyers. To get an idea of the quality of legal services that we provide, we invite you to review testimonials from our past clients, which we proudly post on our website.
Sustaining injuries in a preventable accident often prove traumatic. Don’t attempt to handle your personal injury claim alone; instead, retain an experienced personal injury lawyer to take over settlement negotiations and ensure that you don’t miss out on any available compensation. If the at-fault insurance company has already offered you a settlement, don’t accept it without first consulting an attorney.
Oftentimes, the settlement offer will increase immediately upon retaining a reputable personal injury lawyer. Insurance companies know that an attorney will know how to calculate the true value of a personal injury claim and that you’re now taking your case seriously. Don’t miss out on recovering maximum compensation; contact Sibley Dolman Gipe today to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation.
When you retain an attorney, you want one with experience handling personal injury claims in the past. At Sibley Dolman Gipe, we have experience settling personal injury claims for favorable amounts, as well as pursuing litigation when necessary. While we cannot guarantee a favorable result in your case, we can point to our past results as an indication of the top-notch legal representation that you get when you retain Sibley Dolman Gipe.
Some of our recent results include:
- We recovered $3.2 million through pre-trial mediation on behalf of a client who sustained traumatic brain injuries in a semi-truck accident.
- We recovered $1 million on behalf of the family of an individual who died in a rideshare accident.
- We recovered $415,000 the day before trial was set to begin on behalf of a client who sustained severe injuries in a motorcycle accident.
These are just some of our past case results; we invite you to review all of our published case results on our website. If you or a loved one has sustained injuries in a preventable accident, contact us today to determine your eligibility to pursue compensation for your losses.
What Is Personal Injury Law?
As explained by the American Bar Association, personal injury law—commonly referred to as tort law—is designed to protect individuals who have suffered personal injuries or property damage from someone else’s careless or reckless actions or failure to act. These individuals qualify to seek compensation through a personal injury lawsuit, which is a legal claim filed in civil court that seeks to prove liability for the accident that resulted in the claimant’s injury and to determine the value of the expenses and impacts that the claimant has suffered.
What Types of Cases Give Rise to a San Antonio Personal Injury Claim?
Personal injury law is a rather large umbrella, covering injuries that stem from several different types of accidents. Read on for a brief overview of the most common types of claims that Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers assist clients with. This list is not exhaustive, however. If you sustained an injury in a different type of accident, the best way to know if we can help you with your case is to contact us for a free case evaluation.
Motor Vehicle Accidents
More than 15,000 people sustain serious injuries in motor vehicle accidents on Texas roadways each year, and more than 3,600 are killed, according to the Texas Department of Transportation (TDOT). The vast majority of motor vehicle accidents are the result of human error, also known as negligence.
Examples of negligent driving behavior that can lead to an accident include:
- Distracted driving. Driver distractions include texting and other cell phone use, eating or drinking, visiting with passengers, as well as external distractions, such as previous accident scenes, billboards, and people in other vehicles. There are three types of distractions: manual distractions that cause the driver to take his or her hands from the wheel; visual distractions, which draw the driver’s eyes from watching the road; and cognitive distractions, which take the driver’s mind off the task of safe driving.
- Impaired driving. 25 percent of the individuals who were killed in Texas motor vehicle accidents were in a vehicle that was driven by a driver who was under the influence of alcohol. Impaired driving can also involve the use of illegal drugs, prescription medicine, and over-the-counter medicine.
- Fatigued driving. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration explains that driver fatigue is the result of mental or physical exertion that impairs a driver’s performance. While any driver who has not had a sufficient amount of sleep is capable of experiencing driver fatigue, long-haul truck drivers and those who work the night or swing shift are most likely to experience the dilemma due to being awake and driving during the late-night hours when the body is instinctively wired for sleep. The deficits to a driver’s skills when fatigued are similar to those experienced by impaired drivers, including failure to maintain one’s own lane of travel, difficulty controlling speed, and impacts on a person’s ability to exercise good judgment.
- Speeding. Speeding is a major cause of collisions in the U.S. and is considered a factor in around one-quarter of all motor vehicle accidents. Speeding reduces both the time a driver has to see a hazard in the roadway and respond by depressing the brakes, as well as the effectiveness of a vehicle’s safety features, such as the seatbelts and airbags. At the same time, it increases the distance needed to bring the vehicle to a safe stop as well as the severity of a crash.
- Tailgating. Following another vehicle too closely, also referred to as tailgating, is the main cause of one of the most common types of motor vehicle accidents, the rear-end collision. Drivers who tailgate deprive themselves of both the time needed for the driver to perceive a hazard as well as the time needed to bring the vehicle to a safe stop.
- Failure to yield the right-of-way to other drivers, which is common at red lights, stop signs, and when pulling out of parking lots or private driveways onto a roadway. This is one of the main causes of intersection accidents, including the often-catastrophic broadside (T-bone) collision.
Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers represent clients who have sustained injuries in motor vehicle accidents involving:
- Passenger cars
- Spinal cord injuries
- Commercial trucks
- Rideshares or taxis
- Buses or trains
- Pedestrians or bicyclists
- Aircraft or watercraft
- Drunk driving
- Burn injuries
Premises liability is an area of personal injury law that pertains to the legal responsibility that commercial and private property owners have—along with the agencies who manage public property—to ensure that the property is free from hazards that can cause injury to guests.
The accidents that can give rise to a premises liability case include:
- Slip and fall accidents. This is the most common type of premises liability claim and is the result of a guest slipping and falling or tripping and falling due to debris or clutter in the walkway, loose floorboards, torn tile, broken handrails, poor lighting (particularly on staircases), and potholes in the parking lot.
- Swimming pool accidents.
- Elevator/escalator accidents.
- Dog bites.
- Negligent security. Property owners are not only responsible for protecting their guests against hazardous property features, but also for protecting guests against criminal acts causing physical or emotional injury, such as robbery or assault.
Surely you have heard about recalls and settlements pertaining to defective auto parts or drugs that produce unreasonably dangerous side effects. These are both examples of product liability cases. Everyone in the manufacturing chain—including the manufacturer, wholesale distributor, and retail supplier—has the legal responsibility to ensure that the products they manufacture and distribute to the public are safe when used as labeled.
As explained by Cornell Law School’s Legal Information Institute, three types of product defects can result in a product liability claim, including:
- Manufacturing defects: This is the most obvious type of product liability claim, as the product fails to work as intended due to a defect that was acquired in the factory where it was produced.
- Design defects: This type of defect is inherent in the design of the product and exists before the product is ever manufactured.
- Defects in marketing: This type of defect involves issues such as inaccurate labeling instructions or failing to list the risks that a consumer faces when using the product.
Generally, product liability cases are also strict liability cases, meaning members of the manufacturing chain are liable for defects even if they exercised great care to avoid hazards that can harm consumers.
Nursing Home Negligence
Nursing home negligence is a failure of nursing home staff to provide a standard of care that is under federal nursing home reform laws. They convey nursing home residents the right to respect and dignity; to be involved in one’s care plan; to have basic needs, such as food, water, and heat; and to receive medical care. Nursing home negligence can take several different forms, including neglect; physical, emotional, medical malpractice or sexual abuse; or financial exploitation.
According to the National Association of Nursing Home Attorneys, about 5 million elders are abused in the U.S. each year, with many of these individuals being residents of nursing homes when the abuse occurred. One of the main causes of the abuse and neglect of nursing home residents, the organization reports, is understaffing. An estimated 90 percent of nursing homes in the U.S. are staffed at levels that are too low to provide adequate care for all residents.
Workers’ compensation is a no-fault insurance policy that most employers in Texas are required to purchase for their employees. This policy provides medical and wage-loss benefits for individuals who were injured in a workplace accident or have suffered an occupational illness due to conditions in the workplace.
If you have suffered an injury or become ill in a workplace accident or condition, the experienced workers’ comp attorneys at Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers can help you with your claim.
We can help with:
- Appealing a claim denial
- Late payments
- Looking over your claim to ensure you have the needed information
- Answering legal questions
- Exploring your ability to receive benefits or seek compensation through a personal injury lawsuit—an option that is only available in limited circumstances, such as if your employer did not have a workers’ comp policy despite state laws or if your injury resulted from the actions of a third party (someone who is not your employer or your coworker).
If you are the surviving spouse, child, or parent of a person who died as the result of someone else’s careless or reckless actions, you can pursue compensation for the financial losses and emotional distress you experienced from the loss through a wrongful death lawsuit. Like a personal injury claim, a wrongful death lawsuit is a legal claim filed in civil court that seeks to prove who was liable for the accident that caused the death.
Many news stories in recent years regarding child sexual abuse by individuals affiliated with organizations such as the Catholic Church and Boy Scouts of America have prompted many states to change their laws to allow the survivors of child sexual abuse to have more time to file a personal injury claim and seek damages for the physical and emotional toll the abuse has taken on their lives. In Texas, state lawmakers extended the maximum age limit for adult survivors of child sexual abuse to file a claim. The maximum age was increased by 15 years, from 33 to 48.
Childhood sexual abuse has been associated with higher levels of:
- Feelings of guilt, shame, or self-blame;
- Eating or sleeping disorders;
- Dissociative patterns;
- Sexual problems; and
- Difficulty maintaining healthy relationships, including fear of intimacy or difficulty establishing interpersonal boundaries.
Let our experienced attorneys help you understand how you can obtain compensations for the long-term impacts that the sexual abuse you suffered as a child caused you to incur.
Several natural disasters in recent years have resulted in major damages and costs for individuals throughout Texas. For example, winter storm Uri is expected to cost the state around $295 billion in lost income and a long-term reduction in economic output, but the damages weren’t only to the state’s economy. Individuals endured damage to their homes and health from the storm as well. If you suffered property damage from Uri or any other type of natural disaster, we can help you as you seek compensation for your losses.
Serious Injuries Result in Serious Impacts
According to Texas State Health Services (TSHS), injuries are the leading cause of death for individuals under the age of 45, and the third-leading cause of death overall. Each day, 32 people in the state die of their injuries, with motor vehicle accidents causing the largest amount of these injuries.
For every death, many other individuals will survive their injury but will be left with expenses and impacts on their quality of life. The experienced personal injury lawyers from Sibley Dolman Gipe are ready to fight for your right to compensation after your San Antonio accident and bring our aggressive advocacy and extensive resources to your case.
If you’ve been injured in an accident that was the result of someone else’s careless or reckless actions or a failure to act, we don’t need to tell you that your injury will impact every part of your life. What we can tell you, however, is that there are legal options for obtaining compensation. Read on for some of the questions often asked by those who need answers from a San Antonio personal injury lawyer.
Frequently Asked Questions About San Antonio Personal Injury Claims
Here are the answers to several general questions our clients often ask. For answers to questions about your specific case, request a free consultation with our San Antonio personal injury lawyer today.
What is the time limit for filing a personal injury claim in San Antonio?
For most personal injury cases, the statute of limitations is two years after the date of the injury. However, some circumstances may extend this deadline, such as in cases involving injury to a child or childhood sexual assault. There are also cases in which the filing process is different and the deadlines are shorter, such as those involving fault by a governmental employee or agency.
How do I prove who was at fault for the San Antonio accident that caused my injury?
Proving who was at fault for your injury is the foundation for a personal injury claim.
Your lawyer proves fault by showing:
- The at-fault party owed you a duty of care. The duty of care is defined as the way a reasonable person would act in the same set of circumstances. For example, a driver on the roadway owes a duty of care to other roadway users to operate his or her motor vehicle safely and legally.
- There was a breach in the duty of care. The breach is the action that the at-fault party took that violated the duty of care. Using the car accident example, a breach in the duty of care would be any behavior that is unsafe or illegal, such as speeding, driving while impaired, or failing to yield the right-of-way.
- The breach led to the accident, which resulted in your injury and caused you to experience expenses and impacts on your quality of life.
What can I seek compensation for after a San Antonio personal injury?
Texas allows injured individuals to pursue the recovery of both economic and non-economic damages. In personal injury law, damages mean a payment made in compensation for harm. Economic damages, therefore, are payments made in compensation for the out-of-pocket expenses you incurred because of your injury.
Expenses that are commonly included in economic damage claims are:
- Medical expenses, such as the cost of emergency treatment on the scene or in the emergency department, transport to the hospital, hospitalization, diagnostic testing, prescription medication, physician and surgical services, physical therapy and rehabilitation, and the provision of assistive devices such as crutches or a wheelchair.
- Lost wages if your injury prevents you from working.
- Loss of future earning capacity if your injury prevents you from earning in the same capacity as you did before the injury.
- Property damage resulting from the accident.
Non-economic damages are payments made in compensation for the impacts your injury has had on your quality of life.
Examples of the impacts that are commonly included in non-economic damage claims are:
- Physical pain and suffering.
- Emotional distress.
- Loss of the enjoyment of life, if your injury prevents you from participating in activities you previously enjoyed.
- Loss of consortium, which is a damage collected on behalf of the injured person’s spouse for the loss of physical intimacy and companionship often experienced after one incurs a serious injury.
How do I know how much my case San Antonio personal injury claim is worth?
Your attorney can establish the value of your case by considering:
- The expenses you have incurred or likely will incur in the future are added together. This is your total economic damage claim.
- The total amount of your non-economic damages will depend on the severity of your injuries. The more severe your injuries are, the more non-economic damages your claim will likely warrant.
- The total value of your case is the economic and non-economic damages amounts added together.
In some cases, you may also qualify to seek punitive damages. This type of damage is sometimes awarded in personal injury cases, not to compensate you for expenses and impacts, but rather to punish the defendant for particularly reckless behavior. Punitive damages are capped at the larger of $200,000 or two times the amount of economic damages plus an equal amount of non-economic damages up to $750,000.
If I file a San Antonio personal injury lawsuit, do I have to go to court?
Not necessarily. The vast majority of personal injury cases are resolved before they ever see the inside of a courtroom. Many cases are resolved through a settlement agreement, and your case may settle in this manner. However, because there is always a chance a case will involve litigation, work with an attorney who feels comfortable taking cases to trial. You want an attorney with litigation experience so that the at-fault parties know that if they don’t offer a fair settlement, you won’t be afraid to proceed to trial.
What is the average San Antonio personal injury settlement?
Personal injury cases are valued according to the unique aspects of each case. It is up to the claimant to determine—with the guidance of his or her attorney—whether to accept a settlement that is offered. Because of these factors, there really is no average settlement in a personal injury case. There are, however, factors beyond the severity of your injury that can impact the value of your case.
Those factors include:
- How much insurance the at-fault party has. Insurance pays most personal injury settlements and awards. While it is possible to file a lawsuit against an uninsured person and even to obtain a judgment on your behalf, it will likely be very difficult to collect that award, as most people cannot afford to pay for injury-related expenses out-of-pocket. Another important service that your attorney will provide for you is a determination of all liable parties and all insurance resources that are available for compensation.
- The clarity of liability. In Texas, you may file a lawsuit against another at-fault party even if your own actions were partially to blame, as long as you don’t bear more than 50 percent of the responsibility. However, your award will likely be reduced by the percentage of responsibility you bear.
- Your patience. Settlement negotiations with the at-fault party’s insurance provider take a lot of time. Insurance companies are in the business to make money, and one of the ways they do that is by paying the least amount possible to claimants who were injured by their insured. While you may receive a settlement offer early into the process, the offer will likely not reflect the true value of your case. The fairest offer generally comes just before the case goes to trial. When you retain an attorney, the settlement offer will often increase immediately, as the at-fault parties know that an attorney won’t settle for unfair compensation.
Do I have to pay taxes on my San Antonio personal injury settlement?
According to the Internal Revenue Service, personal injury settlements and awards are not considered income and are not taxable.
There are some exceptions, however, including:
- Punitive damages. Because punitive damages are not actually related to the expenses and impacts of the injury, this portion of your award can be subject to income tax.
- Medical expense deductions. If you deducted your medical expenses and later obtained compensation for medical expenses, you must pay back the deduction.
I lost my spouse in a San Antonio motor vehicle accident. Is there compensation available for me?
Usually, yes. The family members of an individual who died as the result of an accident that was caused by someone else’s careless or reckless actions can file a wrongful death lawsuit. This claim generally must be filed within two years of the date of death by a family member such as the spouse, parent, or child of the deceased.
Recoverable damages include:
- Lost earning capacity.
- The loss of care, maintenance, service, support, advice, and counsel provided by the deceased to his or her family.
- Emotional distress.
- Loss of love, companionship, support, and society.
- The loss of the inheritance that the deceased’s heirs would have likely been privileged to if the deceased had survived his or her injuries.
Punitive damages are occasionally available in wrongful death cases to discourage outrageously reckless or careless behavior. If a court awards punitive damages, this portion of the award is divided among family members in proportion to the loss and suffering each one was subjected to because of the death.
Often as a companion to a wrongful death lawsuit is a survival claim meant to award the estate of the deceased for damages that he or she could have legally recovered if he or she had survived the accident.
Those damages include:
- Physical and emotional pain and suffering that the deceased experienced from the time of the injury until the time of death.
- Medical expenses related to the treatment of the deceased’s final injury.
- Expenses associated with the funeral service, burial, or cremation paid for directly by the estate.
If I was injured at the workplace, do I have a choice of workers’ comp or filing a lawsuit?
Generally, no. Most workplace injury cases are compensated through workers’ compensation benefits. The provision of the insurance policy dictates that this is the primary source of compensation in this type of case. The only way you will be permitted to file a lawsuit to obtain compensation for your work-related injury is if either you were injured by a third party (someone who is not your employer or your coworker) or if your employer failed to provide a workers’ compensation policy. An experienced personal injury lawyer can help you to understand if the option of a personal injury lawsuit is available in your case.
I can’t afford a San Antonio personal injury lawyer. Do I need one?
Actually, yes, you can afford our San Antonio personal injury attorneys, and yes, you need to call us for help with your claim.
Many people think they can’t afford a lawyer and are tempted to try and pursue compensation for their injuries without having an experienced personal injury lawyer on their side. This is often a mistake, as most people who do not have training and experience in the legal process often struggle to understand the various procedures and requirements involved in the process.
The attorneys at Sibley Dolman Gipe understand that the last thing you want to do when you’re facing medical expenses and wage loss is worry about how to afford an attorney. We are pleased to offer two client-friendly services that ensure that anyone in San Antonio who needs the assistance of an experienced personal injury lawyer can afford one.
Those services include:
- A free, no-obligation case evaluation, which is time for you to speak with an attorney and obtain answers to your legal questions as well as to learn more about the firm, the attorney, and the process of obtaining compensation.
- A contingent-fee payment plan. What this means is that you owe nothing for your attorney’s services until there is a successful outcome in your case.
Your attorney can also provide you with:
- Guidance about your legal options.
- A valuation of your case that is based on the expenses and impacts you have incurred or will likely incur in the future.
- A determination of all sources of liability and all insurance resources that can be used to compensate you.
- Timely filing of all court-required paperwork as well as attendance and representation at all pre-trial conferences and hearings.
The collection and organization of evidence and witness testimony to prove your case.
Advice on the pros and cons of accepting a settlement offer.
- Litigation, including making opening and closing statements, presenting evidence, and examining witnesses.
- Assistance with collecting your award or settlement.
Let the experienced San Antonio personal injury lawyers at Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers help you make sense of your legal options. We can handle the legal complexities of your personal injury claim while you focus on your physical and mental recovery. For your free case evaluation, contact us online or by calling 833-552-7274 (833-55-CRASH).