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Even if you are the safest driver in the entire Dallas-Fort Worth area, you run the risk of being involved in an accident simply because you share the roads with other drivers. Normally, if you are involved in an automobile accident and you sustain a personal injury, you are entitled to pursue a claim for your entire amount of damages against the other driver. However, if the person has inadequate insurance or personal assets to compensate you, you may be out of luck.

Under Texas law, drivers are only required to have a minimum amount of automobile insurance coverage, which includes $30,000 for bodily injuries per person (with a maximum of $60,000 per accident), and $25,000 for property damage. Therefore, if a driver causes a serious accident and only has the minimum insurance required under Texas law, a seriously injured accident victim can only recover $30,000 for his or her injuries, unless the driver has other significant assets that could be collected. In addition, many drivers simply ignore the insurance requirements and do not carry coverage at all.

In that situation, you may be able to receive compensation under your own insurance policy. Your policy may contain coverage accidents caused by uninsured or underinsured motorists. In that case, you will make a claim with your insurance company for damage. However, your insurance company has an interest in paying out as little as possible in damages, which may mean that you need to speak with an attorney.

If you have been involved in an accident in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, and you believe you need to speak with an attorney to ensure you are fairly compensated, call the Dallas automobile accident attorneys at The Barber Law Firm. We will provide you with a free consultation on your case, and if we choose to accept it, you pay us nothing until we obtain damages for you.

There have been huge numbers of automobiles recalled in the U.S. in the last couple of years. Some recalls have been for minor issues, while some have been for huge and potentially deadly defects, including defective airbags and defective ignition switches. In spite of the huge numbers of recalled vehicles, only a small percentage of those vehicles have actually had the repairs done. There are many reasons car owners may choose to ignore recall notices, including a lack of time to get the repairs done, as well as underestimating how serious the problem with the vehicle is.

If you ever receive a recall notice for your vehicle, it’s vital that you get the repair done as soon as possible. If you fail to get your car repaired, you could potentially endanger the health and safety of you and your passengers, even if the vehicle is not in an accident. For example, some vehicles were recently recalled because they could catch on fire even when not in use.
Another problem with failing to get your car repaired is that if you were to sell it, and it was not repaired, you could open yourself up to legal liability for your failure to have it repaired. For example, if you knew it was recalled but you failed to do anything about it, you sold the vehicle to another person, and then he or she was in an accident because of the defect that you did not repair, you could potentially expose yourself to liability.

Yes, recall repairs can be a pain to take the time to deal with. However, they are free, and in some cases the dealership may be willing to provide alternative transportation if you need it while the repair is being done. If you are ever in an accident because of a defective automobile, call the Dallas-Fort Worth motor vehicle attorneys at the Barber Law Firm.

Uber Accidents

December 1, 2015

Rideshare companies like Uber are just as ubiquitous as taxis these days in most cities including Dallas. Uber connects people needing a ride with drivers of private vehicles who have been vested and provide taxi services under the Uber brand.

The concept has exploded and competitors like Lyft and Sidecar have followed suit with their own variations. But what happens when there is an accident?

In the past couple of years, ridesharing companies have been publicly criticized for failing to provide sufficient insurance coverage in the event one of their vehicles is involved in an accident. Under current law and pursuant to the policies of the ridesharing company, the available insurance coverage depends on whether or not a driver has been matched with a passenger. If a ridesharing driver is waiting to be matched and gets into a serious accident, it’s likely that the ridesharing company will not provide coverage, and instead rely on the driver’s personal policy. If the accident occurs while a paid ride is being provided, the ridesharing company’s insurance policy most likely will apply to cover the accident.

Uber infographic illustrating coverage triggers for drivers.

(Image source: Uber Blog, February 2014)

An interesting scenario was raised on this topic at from the perspective of the Uber driver:

Consider this insurance horror story:

Someone pulls up an app on their phone, types in the address of where they need to go, and orders your car. You turn around and drive to pick them up.

While you’re driving, you look over to your phone to make sure you’re still heading in the right direction. While you’re looking the other way, you hit a car. It’s not a big accident (luckily), but it’s bad enough that the other driver calls the police (and you have to cancel your pick-up).

The police get there, they take down all of your info, including the fact that you were driving for a company called “Uber.” You submit your claim to your auto insurance company and go about your life.

A few days later, your insurance company calls you. Unfortunately, your claim has been denied because you were performing a business activity. You’re now on the hook not only for your own car repairs, but the other driver’s, too. Oh, and by the way: your car insurance policy has been canceled.

You contact Uber to see if their insurance policy is going to cover the damages. Nope, says the woman on the other end of the phone. Since you didn’t have a passenger in the car, they’re not liable. Consider yourself lucky you didn’t hurt anyone.

Adam Cecil, The insurance secret that Uber doesn’t want you to know, blog

Some states are starting to pass legislation that requires insurance coverage in certain situations involving ridesharing companies. However, the legal issues are far from settled. Currently in Texas, accidents involving ridesharing companies are evaluated on a case-by-case basis and coverage depends on the circumstances.

If you are a driver with a rideshare company or a passenger who’s been hurt in an accident involving a car in the service of a rideshare company, call us to talk about your options. The Barber Law Firm has experience representing cases with specialized circumstances like these.


Uninsured MotoristIt’s a worst-case scenario. You’re in an auto accident that results in a serious injury and substantial property damage, and the person who caused it is an uninsured motorist. You automatically assume you’ll be on the hook for thousands and thousands of dollars. While this type of situation is definitely a huge hassle, you may have options you didn’t realize. The motor vehicle attorneys with The Barber Law Firm want to help explain what you can do if you or someone close to you is involved in this type of accident.

First, Call the Police and Get Medical Treatment

It is obviously imperative that you call the police so they can investigate the accident scene. If you’re hurt, seek medical attention as soon as possible. If you don’t, there is a chance that you will suffer complications. While you may be able to obtain compensation for the original injury, you may be responsible for paying your own medical expenses should additional problems occur as a result of not seeing a doctor promptly.

Make Sure You Have Uninsured Motorist Insurance

This is actually a step you should take before you are involved in an accident. Do it now if you can. Your insurer, must, by law, offer both uninsured motorist and underinsured motorist coverage. It is very important that you always accept this coverage whenever you purchase a policy – even though it is more expensive, you’ll find that added cost will be more than worth it should you ever be involved in this type of accident. You may be able to pursue compensation for accident-related medical bills, loss of income due to missing work, and other losses you have suffered.

Make Sure the At-Fault Driver is Uninsured

The other driver may have given you an expired insurance card at the accident scene, but that doesn’t mean you should automatically assume he or she is an uninsured motorist. Get that person’s contact information and call their insurance company just to be sure. There is a possibility that person may have simply forgotten to put his or her new card in the vehicle. Even if that person does not have coverage from that particular insurer anymore, there is still a chance he or she is insured elsewhere.

If you ever find yourself in this type of unfortunate situation, it is vitally important that you call an experienced attorney as soon as you can. At The Barber Law Firm, our professionals will be available to listen to the details of your accident and be able to tell you how we may be able to help. Contact us online or call 866-986-1529 to speak with one of our representatives. If you’ve ever been involved in an accident with an uninsured motorist, tell us your story by clicking one of the social media buttons on this page.

Negotiating with Insurance AdjusterIf you were in an automobile accident or another kind of accident, you might have had offers from the insurance company to settle your claims. The insurance company may have made what you think is a great offer. They might have dispatched an insurance adjuster over to your house quickly after the accident with an offer to sign right away.

Nevertheless, you should not agree to the initial offer an insurance adjuster makes to you after an accident. An insurance adjuster’s job is to limit the payment of the insurance company– not to provide you a fair offer. Also, if you were injured in the car accident, it may take several months or years for your treatment to be finished. If you negotiate right away, you can’t go back later on and request more money when your medical costs end up being higher than you thought.

Instead, the insurance company should really be negotiated with. You may want to first have an idea of what your claim is worth. This information is very dependent on your particular situation, but you should take into consideration all of your costs, consisting of damage to your automobile, medical costs and lost earnings. You might additionally consider inquiring about damages for pain and suffering or some other non-monetary damages you have. Keep that dollar figure in mind throughout your discussions.

When the insurance adjuster produces the offer, it may be laughably minimal. Ask the adjuster to give you some information on how they or she calculated that offer, and take notes on the information you gain. Then, write a letter to the adjuster which responds to each of the elements the adjuster pointed out in ascertaining the settlement. In the letter, emphasize each of the strongest statements you have for a larger settlement. After the insurance adjuster has had a chance to receive and process the letter, try to renegotiate. Anytime you do agree, put the settlement in writing.

Depending on the situation involved in your accident, you may be able to obtain compensation from the insurance company of the other driver, your insurance company, the driver himself, the owner of the car, or the employer of the driver who caused the accident. You may be entitled to compensation not only for the damage to your vehicle, but also your medical expenses (including future expenses expected to occur as a result of the accident), lost wages, and other expenses.

It’s likely that the insurance company of the other driver will contact you and offer you a settlement. They will encourage you to take the settlement quickly, and you may feel pressured to do so. After all, you most likely have bills coming in as a result of the accident, and you probably want to put the matter behind you. However, the insurance company is not looking out for your best interests. Instead, they want you to settle at the lowest amount possible in order to maximize profit for their company. If you have future medical expenses or other out of pocket expenses, it’s not possible to obtain compensation for those after you have settled the case.

The Barber Law Firm handles personal injury claims on a contingency fee basis, you don’t pay unless we win your case.

In a contingency basis, the clients pay their lawyer by having an agreement that a certain percentage of the amount from the client’s claim could be given to the lawyer as his fee. On the side of the client, it would be very convenient to have the contingency basis because they don’t have to worry about the lawyer’s fee whatever the outcome of the case may be.

Although Texas law requires drivers to maintain only a minimum amount of liability insurance (designed to pay for damages you cause to other drivers), many Texans choose to get “full coverage”, which will also pay for your own damages you cause. Full coverage policies also typically cover damages from theft, weather conditions, or fire. Many automobile owners mistakenly believe that if they have full coverage automobile insurance they will not have to pay any amount if they are involved in a car accident. This is not always true.

If you choose to purchase full coverage automobile insurance, you should closely examine the policy to find out what the limit is that will be paid out for each accident, and what happens if an accident you cause exceeds that limit. You may find out that you have to pay any excess costs. You also will be responsible for your deductible. In most full coverage policies, when a vehicle is a total loss, the insurance company will only pay out the current market value of the car. If you or another driver happens to owe more on the car than its current market value, you will be responsible for making up the difference, which in some cases can be significant.

There are also other expenses vehicle owners incur that will not be covered by full coverage, such as normal wear and tear and expenses related to failing to properly maintain a vehicle. Full coverage insurance may also not pay for the theft of some items from your vehicle, such as stereo systems, GPS units, radar detectors, DVD players, and more. You should ask your insurance company or examine your policy to determine which items are insured.

Have you been involved in an auto wreck in the Dallas area? If so, contact The Barber Law Firm. You may be able to recover from the other driver for your medical expenses, damage to your vehicle, and more. Call us today for a free consultation.

Under Texas law, people who drive in Texas are required to maintain automobile insurance. The minimum insurance limits allowed are $25,000 for each injured person, with a total of $50,000 per accident. This coverage is required so that if you are at fault in an accident, the other party involved in the accident can have medical expenses and other damages paid.

However, although automobile insurance is required, many Texans do not purchase it. When that person causes an automobile accident, the other party often does not have a way to recover for property damage and medical expenses. For that reason, I highly recommend that drivers purchase uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage.

Uninsured motorist coverage pays for damages caused by a driver with no insurance, and underinsured coverage pays for damages caused by a driver with an insufficient amount of coverage to pay for the damages suffered in the accident. Typically, uninsured / underinsured (also known as UM/UIM) motorist coverage does not add a large additional premium cost to the insurance policy, and the coverage can become invaluable in the event of an accident.

If you are involved in an accident with an uninsured motorist, and you do not have uninsured motorist coverage on your vehicle, it may be difficult to recover. In some situations, the driver may have a sufficient amount of assets that you can pursue in a personal injury lawsuit. However, this is usually not the case – if the individual had a lot of assets, he or she would most likely have automobile insurance.

Have you been injured in a Dallas automobile accident that was caused by another driver? If so, contact Dallas automobile accident attorney Kris Barber to learn more about your legal options.

The Barber Law Firm

Despite the financial responsibility law that requires Texas drivers to buy insurance, millions of motorists in the Dallas metroplex are skirting the requirement by using counterfeit proof-of-insurance cards or canceling coverage once they get their licenses renewed.  Officials are finding that the law, designed to ensure that minimum liability coverage is in place to pay for injuries and damages caused by the driver, is difficult to enforce.

Alarmingly, a recent analysis released by the Texas Department of Insurance shows that 26 percent of vehicles in Dallas County are uninsured. That amounts to around 482,000 cars and trucks—the highest number of uninsured vehicles in any of the state’s large urban counties.  An additional 4.1 million cars and trucks lack basic liability coverage and are in violation of the state law that requires insurance.

Local cities and the state are doing their best to combat the problem.  For example, in cities like Arlington, Dallas, Garland, Irving, and Mesquite, uninsured vehicles may be towed if a driver is stopped for a violation and found to have no insurance.

When a driver is involved in an accident or stopped for an infraction, an officer can enter the license plate number or VIN into the TexasSure system to verify insurance coverage. This is a massive database containing the names of all insured drivers and their insurance companies that is linked to license plate VIN numbers. Drivers without insurance are ticketed, subject to a fine of up $350 for the first offense, and up to $1,000 for the second offense.  Multiple offenses without action on the part of the owner can lead to arrest.

At the state level, the Insurance Department is sending letters to approximately 100,000 drivers who are believed to have insurance policies, but do not have their vehicle registration numbers matched up with an insurance company in the TexasSure state database.  These individuals are being asked to verify their coverage by mail, e-mail or telephone. Once the information from those drivers is compiled, the state will send warnings to millions of drivers without insurance that they are breaking state law.

Despite these efforts to force all drivers to carry insurance, responsible drivers are saddled with carrying extra insurance to protect themselves from drivers without coverage to the tune of nearly $1 billion each year.  That additional insurance such as Uninsured Motorist Coverage (UM), Underinsured Motorist Insurance (UIM), and Personal Injury Protection (PIP) can mean the difference between being able to afford medical treatment for injuries from an auto accident and not.

For more information on auto insurance claims and your case, call The Barber Law Firm car accident lawyers

All drivers in Texas are required to carry minimum liability coverage of $25,000 per injured person, and up to a total of $50,000 for everyone injured in a motor vehicle accident.  Alarmingly, it’s estimated that up to 20% of drivers in Texas are uninsured at any given time.

Even when the other driver has auto insurance, many times the minimum amounts are not enough to cover all damages.  In addition to the minimum coverage amounts, Texas drivers can purchase additional collision coverage, personal injury protection (PIP), medical payments coverage (MedPay), and uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage (UM/UIM).

If you’ve been in a car accident that was not your fault and the driver of the other vehicle has no liability insurance, the only recourse may be to pursue a claim against uninsured motorist coverage (UM) on your own auto insurance policy.  Uninsured motorist coverage is insurance you buy to protect yourself in case you’re in an accident with an uninsured driver.  Texas law requires that every auto insurance policy automatically include UM coverage, unless the buyer (you) rejects that coverage in writing.

If the negligent driver is underinsured, the driver’s automobile insurance policy may not provide enough coverage for your monetary damages.  Similar to uninsured motorist coverage, you may have to pursue an additional legal claim against your own underinsured motorist coverage to pay for injury and property damages that exceed the at-fault driver’s insurance coverage amounts.

If you’ve been in a car accident and find yourself in this situation, but are unsure about whether the other party’s liability coverage is adequate, it’s wise to consult a Dallas personal injury lawyer who can help you sort through the insurance issues and the complex insurance claim filings that follow most wrecks.

The Barber Law Firm, Dallas


What Our Clients Say

“The Barber Law Firm helped my friend and me get through the nightmares of dealing with the insurance companies to get the health treatment we both needed, along with taking care of the damage to the car. I would highly recommend The Barber Law Firm to anyone that is in search of legal aid. Thank you for helping us through those tough times!”
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The Barber Law Firm, PC, is a personal injury law firm serving Dallas, TX and surrounding areas. Our job is to put you at ease as we navigate the legal channels of your Dallas personal injury case. Visit our homepage.


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