Injured by a Driver in Another State
Any car crash is stressful, but a car accident with an out-of-state driver has particular challenges. Liability and other car accident laws differ from state to state, so it can be difficult to unwind the complexities when you are upset and confused in the aftermath.
If you have been in a car accident with a driver from another state, seeking legal representation is vital. The Dallas car accident attorneys at The Francis Firm will untangle the legal issues in your out-of-state car accident and get you the compensation you need to recover.
Below are details about what to do when in an accident with an out-of-state driver, and how to handle a car accident in another state.
What if You’re in a Texas Accident with a Driver From Another State?
First, remember that Texas law always applies to Texas car accidents, regardless of where the at-fault driver is from. This state’s insurance requirements also trump those of the other driver. No matter the driver’s state of residence, Texas will have jurisdiction over the accident.
Second, Texas is an at-fault state. This means the negligent driver covers the damages and injuries of car accident victims. Because the accident happened in Texas, its laws were followed after the incident. So, you will need to tell your auto insurance company about the accident. Then, get the other driver’s auto insurance information. Finally, the claim should be filed with their insurance company.
However, some out-of-state residents will try to avoid paying for the accident they caused in Texas. If that happens, you need a Dallas car accident attorney to file a lawsuit. It’s especially helpful to have an attorney for an out-of-state driver accident. The driver may not understand Texas’ insurance requirements, so your attorney can keep things straight.
What Is a Car Accident in Another State?
Another common situation is being in another state and getting in an accident. An out-of-state auto accident is just what it says. If you live in Texas and are in an accident in Oklahoma, it’s a car accident in a different state. When this happens, there are two big questions a Southlake car accident attorney can answer:
- Where should you file the auto insurance claim?
- Where should you file your personal injury lawsuit?
In many cases, if you are hurt in an out-of-state car crash, you may file a lawsuit in the state the defendant lives in or where the crash happened. For instance, let’s say you live in Dallas and drive to Birmingham, Alabama, to visit friends. A drunk driver hits you in Louisiana. That driver is from Alabama.
You may be able to sue the at-fault driver in Louisiana, where the crash happened. Alternatively, your attorney may recommend suing the driver in Alabama, where he lives. While this may be inconvenient for a Texas resident, the law does not let you file a suit in Texas unless the driver gives his permission.
Car Accident Laws in Other States
We have covered what happens in a Texas accident with an out-of-state driver. But if you are from Texas and are hit by a driver in another state, the accident is handled under that state’s laws. Therefore, your auto insurance claim or accident lawsuit must be filed under the laws of the state you were in when it happened.
It is always essential to contact a Fort Worth car accident attorney when you’re from Texas and in an accident in another state. Your attorney will know how to handle the case according to the other’s state's laws and regulations.
Common Issues with Car Accidents in Another State
If you’re a Texas resident and are in an out-of-state car accident, there could be minimum insurance liability amounts. In Texas, all drivers must carry at least $30,000 in liability insurance per person and $60,000 per accident. However, when you are in another state, your auto insurance company must provide higher insurance limits if other states require it.
If you are in another state for a few days and someone hits you, your auto insurance will cover you. However, if you intend to stay in another state for more than 30 days, you must contact your auto insurance company and adjust your policy. Most states would say your auto insurance isn’t valid if you were in another state for more than 30 days.
When you move to another state and don’t change your auto insurance, it also may be invalid if you are in an accident. Remember to register your vehicle and auto insurance policy in your state. If you don’t, there will be problems if you’re in an accident.
After a car accident, you should call your insurance company. Tell them you had an accident in another state. If the insurance provider thinks the other driver caused the accident, it may file a claim. You could get phone calls from the other driver’s insurer. It would help to use caution when talking to the other driver’s insurance company.
Having your Francis Firm car accident attorney handle all insurance company conversations is best. Unfortunately, they will probably attempt to undermine your case and get you to say something, making it harder to collect compensation.
Additional Tips for Car Accidents in Another State
The information above shows several things to remember about out-of-state car accidents. Wherever the accident happens, remember to take these steps to ensure your health, safety, and legal options:
- Check if anyone in the out-of-state accident is hurt and whether you can move them. If there are significant injuries, call 911 for an ambulance. Every state has laws requiring you to provide medical assistance to the injured after a crash.
- Call the police. States have laws saying you must call the police if there is an injury or property damage over a certain amount. Calling the police after any car accident in a different state is a good idea. Get the police report and give it to your lawyer.
- Exchange contact information with other drivers and witnesses. Your attorney will need to follow up with them.
- Call your auto insurance company. It’s even more critical to get in touch with your insurance company if the accident is in another state.
- Call your lawyer and tell them you were in an out-of-state car accident. Most personal injury attorneys can handle an out-of-state case, but they must know from the start.
- Talk to your attorney about covering your medical expenses while the case is pending. A personal injury attorney might set up a medical lien that compensates your doctors after the case settles.
Contact Our Car Accident Attorneys Now
After a car accident in another state, you may be overwhelmed with confusion and stress. Who can help you figure out the many legal and medical questions involved? Whether you’re in a car accident in Texas or another state a Dallas car accident attorney at The Francis Firm can help you determine liability and obtain compensation. There’s no need to handle the confusing details of an out-of-state car accident when you have one of our attorneys protecting your rights. Contact us today for a free consultation.