What is Personal Injury Protection (PIP)? PIP coverage is required by statute to be part of any auto policy written in Texas, unless it is rejected in writing. PIP covers everyone in the insured auto up to PIP coverage limits. PIP will cover every insured regardless of the vehicle they are in. PIP will cover losses incurred within three years of the date of an accident. PIP is available regardless of fault or other available benefits. If PIP benefits are not timely paid (within 30 days) attorney’s fees and interest are recoverable. PIP coverage will pay medical bills, reimburse you for out of pocket coverage and reimburse you for lost wages. You do not have to pay your insurer back for the money you received from PIP. The PIP carrier must pay “reasonable expenses that are for necessary medical services”. This means that the carrier can pay less than what the medical provider billed. PIP covers 80% of lost income. PIP coverage limits are often $2,500, but may be $5,000, $10,000 or even higher. PIP coverage is generally affordable and can help offset out of pocket costs. https://statutes.capitol.texas.gov/Docs/IN/htm/IN.1952.htm Medpay Medpay covers only medical expenses, and you may have to pay it back. Medpay has no statutory basis and no legal restrictions on its terms. The lawyers at Wham & Rogers can help with your PIP claim. Call us at 832-592-1108, or fill out a form on our contact page: https://www.whamandrogers.com/contact/ The information in this blog is not, nor […]
Tag: automobile accidents
Asleep at the Wheel — The Dangers of Driver Fatigue and how to Prevent it
How serious a problem is driver fatigue? According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, every year about 100,000 police-reported crashes involve drowsy driving. These crashes result in more than 1,550 fatalities and 71,000 injuries. The real number may be much higher, however, as it is difficult to determine whether a driver was drowsy at the time of a crash. https://www.nsc.org/road-safety/safety-topics/fatigued-driving A study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety estimated that 328,000 drowsy driving crashes occur annually. That’s more than three times the police-reported number. The same study found that 109,000 of those drowsy driving crashes resulted in an injury and about 6,400 were fatal. The researchers suggest the prevalence of drowsy driving fatalities is more than 350% greater than reported. http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/viewdoc/download?doi=10.1.1.684.6347&rep=rep1&type=pdf How does fatigue affect drivers? • slower reaction time • impaired judgment and vision • decline in attention to important signs, road changes and the actions of other vehicles • decreased alertness, preventing you from seeing an obstacle and avoiding a crash • increased moodiness and aggressive behavior • problems with processing information and short-term memory http://drowsydriving.org/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/Key-Messages-and-Talking-Points.pdf When do crashes due to fatigue occur? Most drowsy driving crashes happen between midnight and 6:00 a.m., when the body’s need for sleep is greatest, and in the mid-afternoon (during the circadian dip). • The driver is alone and more likely to be male. Drivers who drive alone or have no one to help them watch for the signs of fatigue are at higher risk. • Sleep-related crashes tend to […]
Why do I need to call a lawyer immediately after an accident?
What should you do if you have an accident? Call a lawyer immediately. 1. A lawyer can help make sure important evidence is preserved. In many cases, there may be video recordings of the accident or other evidence that can be preserved, if the request is properly and timely made. 2. A lawyer will be on your side, when virtually no one is. The insurance adjuster is not paid to help you. The adjuster is paid to save the insurance company money. We have received countless calls from people who were tricked or lied to by adjusters. 3. A lawyer can put pressure on the insurance company to handle matters in a swift and expeditious manner. Insurance adjusters know they can’t pull the wool over an attorney’s eyes they way they can with those unfamiliar with the system. 4. A lawyer can help you get the proper medical care promptly. Many doctors will not treat patients who have been injured in an accident. This is because health insurance companies don’t always pay doctors promptly for treating accident victims. 5. If you do not have health insurance a lawyer can help you find doctors who will treat you while your case is pending. 6. A lawyer can help get the hospital to bill your health insurance. Often the hospital wants to avoid billing health insurance and instead files a hospital lien. The lien is filed by the hospital in an effort to make more money from treating you. 7. A lawyer […]
From school kids riding on bike paths, to the avid bicyclists on the roads, there are a lot of bike riders in The Woodlands and Spring. Unfortunately, all too often, bike riders are struck by cars. Even wearing a helmet and other protective gear, a bike rider may suffer severe injuries if struck by a car. According to the NTSA, bicyclists accounted for 2.2 percent of all traffic deaths in 2016. Bicyclist deaths occur most often between 6 and 9 p.m. and in urban areas. The vast majority of bicyclists killed are male. The NTSA provides these pointers to avoid bike accidents: • Ride a bike that fits you—if it’s too big, it’s harder to control the bike. • Ride a bike that works—it really doesn’t matter how well you ride if the brakes don’t work. • Wear equipment to protect you and make you more visible to others, like a bike helmet, bright clothing (during the day), reflective gear, and a white front light and red rear light and reflectors on your bike (at night, or when visibility is poor). • Ride one per seat, with both hands on the handlebars, unless signaling a turn. • Carry all items in a backpack or strapped to the back of the bike. • Tuck and tie your shoe laces and pant legs so they don’t get caught in your bike chain. • Plan your route—if driving as a vehicle on the road, choose routes with less traffic and slower speeds. Your […]
Steps to follow if you are in an auto collision
Download In Case of Accident Brochure At the scene: • Make sure you are safe. If you are on the freeway, move to the shoulder if you can. Turn on your emergency flashers. • Unless the collision is extremely minor, call 911. • Do not admit fault or apologize. Simply ask if the other drivers and passengers are ok. • Do not say that you are uninjured. Due to the adrenaline, sometimes people do not realize they are injured until after they leave the scene. • The police officer will provide you with an information sheet with the insurance information for the other parties. • Get the names and contact information from witnesses. • If it’s safe to do so, take photographs of the vehicles and collision scene. If it’s not safe, or if you are taken by ambulance, take photos of the scene afterward or ask a friend to take photos. • If you are injured, allow the paramedics to examine you and if they recommend you go to the hospital, follow their recommendations. After the collision: • Seek medical treatment if you need it. Delays in seeking medical treatment will be held against you by the insurance companies. • Report the collision to the other driver’s insurance company and to your insurance company. • If you are injured, do not give a recorded statement without speaking with a lawyer. • If you are injured retain a lawyer as soon as possible to ensure your rights are protected. • […]
How dangerous is distracted driving?
Distracted Driving Is a Factor in 15% of injury crashes 10% of fatal crashes and 15% of injury crashes in 2015 were distraction-affected. In 2015, there were 3,477 people killed and an estimated additional 391,000 injured in crashes involving distracted drivers. Cell phone use causes as much impairment as driving drunk People are as impaired when they drive and talk on a cell phone as they are when they drive intoxicated at the legal blood-alcohol limit of 0.08%. Cell phone users are 5.36 times more likely to get into an accident than undistracted drivers. https://archive.unews.utah.edu/news_releases/drivers-on-cell-phones-are-as-bad-as-drunks/ Texting while driving increases the risk of crashing by 23 times Text messaging increases the risk of crash or near-crash by 23 times. Sending or reading a text message takes your eyes off the road for about 5 seconds, long enough to cover a football field while driving at 55 mph Texting and driving is 6 times more likely to get you in an accident than drunk driving. It takes an average of three seconds after a driver’s mind is taken off the road for any road accident to occur. Reading a text message while driving successfully distracts a driver for a minimum of five seconds each time. The average speed in the US is about 55 mph. Taking five seconds to read a text in this time means that the driver travels the length of a football field without looking at the road. When you text while driving, the time that you spend with your eyes off the road increases […]
Pedestrian Right of Way
The Woodlands and Spring has more than 160 miles of pathways designed for residents to walk or run. Many of pathways cross lanes of traffic, and unfortunately, pedestrians are sometimes struck by a vehicle while using the crosswalks. We are often asked who has the right of way on crosswalks in the The Woodlands and Spring. Texas law requires vehicles to yield right of way to pedestrians in the following situations: When a pedestrian is crossing at a crosswalk facing a “walk” signal; If there is no traffic control signal and the pedestrian is already crossing in the vehicle’s half of the roadway or close to a vehicle’s half of the roadway; When the vehicle is entering or emerging from an alley, building, private road, or driveway and the pedestrian is crossing entrance on sidewalk; A pedestrian who has legally entered a crosswalk does have the right of way as to oncoming vehicles. This applies to a marked or an unmarked crosswalk; A pedestrian has the right of way to cross the road, when it is safe to do so, at any part (i.e., at the middle portion of the street) of a roadway that is not controlled by a traffic light. [ 552.005 (b), Texas Transportation Code] However, even if a pedestrian is technically in violation of the right of way rules, a driver who hits a pedestrian may still be liable; drivers are required to keep a proper lookout, and must safely control the speed of their vehicles, […]