The Bettersworth Law Firm

PROTECT YOUR RIGHTS! CALL NOW!

Call Us830-606-0404   888-392-0039

New Braunfels San Marcos San Antonio Sequin Austin
Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in New Braunfel personal injury lawyer

TX injury lawyerRecently, a serious crash in the 6500 block of Padre Drive, in south San Antonio, claimed the life of a 15-year old girl and caused significant property damage to a home and yard. A Ford Fusion lost control after hitting a curb, crashing through a wooden fence, hitting a tree and bringing branches down on the home. The remarkable fact about this accident is that police identified the driver of the Fusion as a 14-year old girl, who is now facing charges of intoxication manslaughter. This episode raises questions about Texas’ parental liability statutes, as many people do not have any idea that they might be held liable for damage that their children cause.

Property Damage Only

Texas, like most other states, does have a parental liability statute which states that parents can be held liable for the conduct of their children. However, the important thing to keep in mind about Texas’ particular law is that it only applies to property damage. If your child causes property damage, you as a parent can be held liable for that damage if one of two conditions applies. The first is if your child between the ages of 10 and 18 can be shown to have acted willfully or maliciously. The second is if your child’s conduct can be “reasonably attributed” to your negligent parenting. The owners of the home whose fence and tree were damaged in the Padre Drive accident could plausibly sue the young driver’s parents under this statute over the damage to their home.

The language used in both conditions is important. The key words are “willfully or maliciously” - meaning that if your child accidentally causes property damage, you will not be held liable - and “reasonably attributed.” The concept of ‘reasonableness’ is a difficult one to establish in law because it is so subjective, but in general, if a reasonable person would attribute your child’s conduct to your failure to parent them properly, then it is a good sign that you may be held liable for the damage caused.

...

b2ap3_thumbnail_rollover_20190215-172143_1.jpgRecently, a young Dripping Springs man was taken to a nearby hospital with serious injuries, after his car rolled over on Hamilton Pool Road. Lake Travis and Bee Cave police responded. Two men who happened to be passing played an integral role in getting the flaming vehicle upright, as well as extricating the driver from the flames, which is thought to have saved his life. While this young man appears to have been lucky, rollover crashes are among the most deadly types, and living through one can leave someone with significant medical bills. You may be able to seek compensation for yours if you believe that the accident was caused by another person’s negligent conduct.

Statistics Show Disproportionate Danger

Statistics from SaferCar, an initiative run by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), show that while rollovers make up a relatively small portion of car accidents each year (roughly 2.1 percent), that small number of accidents was responsible for almost 35 percent of all traffic accident deaths in the most recent data studied. Rollover accidents, especially multi-vehicle rollovers, have the tendency to be deadly because of the sheer weight and volume of matter being thrown around, and the extravagant way in which the vehicle can change position - if a car flips end over end, for example, it will understandably cause far more damage to anyone inside the vehicle than, say, a sideswipe collision.

Data from the NHTSA also shows, however, that in many rollovers, the occupants of the vehicle neglect to wear seat belts, which certainly adds to the fatality count. Without a seat belt, any damage done to the vehicle is acted upon the person in its cab, as one might guess; while restraints might not necessarily entirely protect someone from injury, statistics show a much lower proportion of belted drivers losing their lives in rollovers than those who neglected to buckle up.

...

TX injury lawyerOn the night of September 17, a truck crash pulled power lines down all across Bee Caves Road, closing the road and causing a power outage up and down Loop 360. While there were complaints about traffic blockages, the road remained closed until the middle of the day on Tuesday, the 18th, with Austin Energy and law enforcement wanting to ensure a thorough job was done on both the accident investigation and the repairs. It is to their credit that this was done because any failure could have opened both the company and the City of Austin to liability for injuries if any had resulted from the downed power lines.

Hard to Sue Governmental Entities

Normally, if someone is injured in an accident where the cause is traceable to another person’s (or company’s) negligence, the injured person would sue the other in civil court. However, governmental entities are a different matter, because they enjoy protection - and sometimes, complete immunity - from civil suits by residents of the state, under a principle called sovereign immunity. Both Austin Energy and the Texas Department of Transportation are publicly owned entities, which means that they are part of local and state governments, and would thus be covered by Texas’ sovereign immunity laws. Sovereign immunity law is based on the idea that if every citizen wronged by the state were permitted to sue, the state would have neither time nor money enough to govern.

Thus, in a state where sovereign immunity was total, someone who was injured as a result of the downed power lines might allege that Austin Energy did not work hard enough or fast enough to correct the problem, thus leading to their injury, and the state might conceivably have to pay damages. However, if someone truly was injured in such a fashion and the suit was denied, the injured person might be stuck with thousands in medical bills. Neither is an optimal situation.

...

The sooner you call, the sooner we can build your case, secure evidence and get maximum compensation for your injuries.

Texas Trial Lawyesr Association State Bar of Texas San Antonio Trial Lawyers Association
Back to Top