Jim Adler | The Tough, Smart Lawyer

In rear-end accidents, is liability automatic? That is, if another driver strikes your car from behind, is that driver automatically at fault?

No, not in Texas, where blame for rear-end crashes can be shared.

It’s true that drivers who rear-end other cars often are at fault for failing to maintain a proper speed or for driver inattention. But such drivers may claim that actions of the car in front contributed to the crash.

For instance, did the front car stop illegally in a moving lane of traffic? Did it stop abruptly without reason or suddenly switch lanes in front of the other driver? Did the at-fault vehicle in the rear have a mechanical failure which kept it from stopping?

Rear-End Crash Blame May be Shared

Such questions must be answered before an insurance adjuster accepts liability for a rear-end crash. Depending on the answer, the blame may be shared — along with the costs. In order to increase the chance that blame is placed on the correct party, you should hire an attorney after a rear-end collision.

Just because automatic liability doesn’t apply for rear-end accidents doesn’t mean you can’t be compensated if someone hits your car from behind. If you or a loved one was seriously injured in a rear-end accident, such compensation may be vital to your financial future.

Compensation may not come easily from an insurance company. Insurers often try to deny, delay or underpay claims and instead keep that money for themselves.

But you can compel your insurer to pay what you deserve. How? You can engage an experienced personal injury lawyer from our law firm to handle your case.

Rear-End Accidents Can Be Costly

Your injury lawyer may start with “hard-ball” negotiations with the insurer to reach a favorable settlement for you, since rear-end accidents can be very costly. Or you may need an injury lawsuit to compel those at fault — or their insurer — to pay what you are rightfully owed for medical bills, lost wages and pain and suffering due to a rear-end crash.

In either case, you’ll need a rear-end auto accident lawyer to make your claim, in part by exhibiting why liability should be placed on the other driver, since automatic liability does not exist.

Here’s the law, according to Section 545.062 of the Texas Transportation Code:

“An operator shall, if following another vehicle, maintain an assured clear distance between the two vehicles so that, considering the speed of the vehicles, traffic and the conditions of the highway, the operator can safely stop without colliding with the preceding vehicle or veering into another vehicle, object or person on or near the highway.”

Yet this law doesn’t impose “automatic liability,” since it doesn’t account for arguments that the driver in front veered in front of the rear driver.

A car wreck attorney from our law firm can work hard to convince an adjuster or jury of the rear driver’s liability in your case. Similarly, that driver’s lawyer or insurer may insist you were at fault, or at least partly at fault, so that blame is reassigned or shared.

If an adjuster tries to apportion liability incorrectly and refuses to change his or her position, the case may go to a jury to obtain a liability percentage determination.

At that time, a jury then can apportion liability or negligence between more than one driver. That’s because Texas is a “comparative negligence” state, rather than an “all or nothing” state. When a jury finds negligence on both drivers, the jury apportions liability by percentages.

If the liability applied to you is over 50 per cent, you were mostly to blame and won’t recover anything financially.

If the liability assigned to you is less than 50 per cent, you can recover an amount equal to the other driver’s liability. That is, if a jury finds you were 25 per cent responsible for the rear-end crash, and the other driver was 75 per cent responsible, you can recover 75 per cent of the award.

Assigning Liability, Negligence Is Vital

Thus, assigning liability is vital to winning rear-end accidents cases. Your accident lawyer will have to deflect arguments that you stopped suddenly for no reason or in some other way contributed to the rear-end crash. He or she also must show that this car wreck was not an “unavoidable accident” or can be blamed on a “sudden emergency” such as a medical problem.

In a jury trial, 10 of the 12 jurors must agree with you as the plaintiff for your case to prevail. But even then, a verdict of “split liability” may be reached.

Because gray areas for arguments exist, you need a skilled injury lawyer to handle your case — and we have one for you. Our law firm has over 40 years of experience helping thousands of injured Texans get the payments they legally deserved after being injured by others’ negligence, and we can help you, too.

Before you talk to an insurance adjuster about your case, contact our law firm for help. The adjuster may try to get you to say things which undercut your case. Your rear-end accidents lawyer can protect you against such tricks and can fight for your rights to payments for your losses after a rear-end accident.

Contact us today for a free case evaluation.

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Testimonials

Erick Becker
Erick Becker
01:20 06 May 17
I am a Patrol Deputy for the Sheriff Office and while working one night, a drunk driver crossed the center stripe on the highway and struck my patrol vehicle head on with his pick up truck. Needless to say we (the drunk driver and I) were both lucky to survive, as the accident occurred at highway speeds. Following my release from the hospital, I knew that I would need to have someone represent me. My employer was happy to represent me in regards to prosecuting the driver for criminal charges but, can do little in respect to the recovery of financial losses for medical bills, pain and discomfort, time lost from work etc... This is how my relationship with Jim Adler and Associates began. Yep, you probably guessed correctly when you think of what made me choose the "Texas Hammer" to represent me. Those half obnoxious, half way entertaining commercials and radio announcements most Texans have been seeing and hearing on the TV and radio for years instantly came to mind. Yes, I wanted to "hammer" this S.O.B. for trying to kill me but, more importantly I was worried about the costs associated with the life long injuries I had sustained as a result of this drunk driver's negligent behavior. I contacted Jim Adler and Associates and so began our relationship. I was immediately surprised by the prompt attention and the expression of genuine concern for my well being that I received from the employees of Jim Adler's office. Now as you can imagine, lawyers are not a breed that is held in very high regard by people in my profession but, my experiences with Jim Adler's office and his employees have forced me to amend my way of thinking, at least on the civil side of the house anyway. I have to chuckle when I say that because my experience as a client of Jim Adler's firm has been exceptionally pleasant. So before I venture down one of the stereotypical and infinite number of rabbit holes associated with the relationship between members of law enforcement and lawyers; I will do my best to stay focused on my experience with Jim Adler & Associates. Upon being informed that my case had been accepted by Jim Adler's office; I was contacted by Iris Sanchez who informed me that she was to be my case manager and any questions, comments and concerns could be directed to her. I was pleasantly surprised to receive regular calls from Iris assisting with my medical appointments and future follow up appointments. Iris had informed me that Jim Adler's son, Bill Adler would be handling my case and I was even more surprised to receive several calls from Bill to discuss my case. Now you might be thinking "what's the big deal" with the person who is representing you contacting you? In reality, you are correct in that it isn't a big deal but, what is noteworthy and what separates Jim Adler's Office from the multitude of other lawyers is the genuine expressions of concern and the desire Bill Adler conveyed to me to do their best to help me. I felt an immediate connection and instantly realized I had made the correct choice in contacting Jim Adler & Associates to handle my case. One thing I think lawyers and police officers can agree on is the proverbial wheels of justice turn very slowly. Months go by and our professional relationship is never neglected. Through the unwavering attention of Iris Sanchez and Bill Adler himself, I never felt "out of the loop" so to speak and always had a clear understanding of where my case was at in regards to the legal process. In conclusion, I know my brief description of my experiences with Bill Adler and, his assistant Iris Sanchez, cannot provide the credit they deserve. Together they have done an outstanding job representing their firm/employer. If you are seeking a great firm to represent your legal interests and, take comfort in establishing a professional relationship that feels more like a friendship than a casual business acquaintance, then I highly suggest Jim Adler & Associates.
Tierra Clark
Tierra Clark
18:52 19 May 17
My lawyer Bill Adler and case manager Iris Sanchez are amazing! They constantly call and check on you . They keep you up to date through the process. They care about you as a person and not just a client. The wreck was a life changing experience that I've never been through before. I'm just glad I had the right people like Bill Adler and Iris Sanchez to help me through it. Truly satisfied.Thanks and God bless y'all!
Lorenzo Preston
Lorenzo Preston
17:23 26 Jan 17
Jim Adler only offer nothing less than a great experience. They are a very well-established organization. They are outstanding on keeping you up to date with cases. There's no beating around the bush with this organization as they are only straight forward with the whole process. They treat their customers like family as well as go above and beyond to fight cases for you only leaving you with nothing but the best experience. Easy 5-star rated organization. I would highly recommend this one organization you not look over.
Tori Barroga
Tori Barroga
14:17 11 May 17
I was dropped from a previous law firm regarding my case before I called Jim Adler. They immediately took up my case and worked hard on it - I was always up to date with each step they took and the benefits or consequences of each. In the end, I am highly satisfied with the outcome and would not have it any other way. It took some time but I truly appreciate and want to thank everybody who helped me on this journey and worked tirelessly on it.
Bernard Orozco
Bernard Orozco
17:16 23 Feb 17
I am very happy with Jim Adler & Associates. I did not know anyone who has ever used the Law Firm before. The staff is very friendly and treated me as if I were family. At times it got very stressful being without a job. They helped me when I was confused about the process. Mrs. Theresa Rodriguez stayed in contact with me constantly. Checking on me to see how I was doing and to let me know how things were going on there end. The Attorneys that handled my case know exactly what they are doing to take good care of me. Thank You so much Attorney's Mr.Michael Gomez and Mr.Trey Smith.
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