The driving record of one or both drivers involved in a crash may affect the outcome of an injury claim, depending on who caused the crash and why the crash occurred.
It is important to note that Texas is an at-fault state, which means that you may only be eligible for compensation if you were not responsible for the crash. Although you may be able to recover reduced compensation in some cases if you were less than 50 percent responsible.
The driving record of an at-fault driver may help you build a strong case in your favor because it may prove the driver has a history of irresponsible driving.
How Can a Traffic Ticket Affect My Claim?
If the driver who caused your accident has received traffic tickets for speeding or driving in a reckless manner, you may be able to use this as evidence to prove the person is notorious for negligent driving. These old tickets may be especially helpful if the crash was caused by speeding, distracted driving or driver impairment.
The insurance company may try to pin at least partial blame on you if you have a history of speeding or other traffic citations, so it is important to disclose this information to your attorney as soon as possible so he or she is prepared for it. Disclosing this early on may be able to help protect the value of your claim.
What About Non-Moving Violations?
Citations for non-moving violations like parking violations may not be relevant to a claim. However, other non-moving violations such as a broken taillight or headlight may make or break a case.
For example, a driver with a warning or ticket on his or her driving record for driving with broken headlights may be found at fault, for example, if you crashed into the vehicle while attempting a left turn at night and did not see the vehicle due to its broken headlights.
Proving fault for accidents involving vehicles with broken taillights or headlights may be difficult. That is why old tickets for things that may have contributed to your crash may be beneficial to your claim.
How Do Prior Car Accidents Affect Claims?
If you have previously been involved in an accident, whether it was your fault or another driver’s, this part of your driving record may affect your claim.
If you were responsible for an accident, the insurance company may try to latch onto that to try and prove you are an irresponsible driver and should not be awarded compensation. However, this may not hold up very well if you have an attorney on your side to prove the negligence of another driver caused the crash you are now filing a claim for.
However, there is another aspect of prior accidents the insurance company may try to latch onto: prior injuries.
The insurance company will try and argue that the pain you are feeling after their insured driver crashed into you is because of old injuries that were caused by another driver during a previous accident. They would argue they should not be held liable for the cost of your medical care.
While there may be some truth to this, you may be able to present evidence to show that your old injuries were aggravated by the new crash or that the injuries you suffered in this collision are new. Seeking immediate attention after the accident may help establish a link between your current injuries and the recent collision. Medical records for your old injuries, how they were treated and how you recovered from them can also help to differentiate old injuries from new injuries.
Can a Suspended Driver’s License Affect a Claim?
If you were hit by a driver with a suspended license, you may be wondering whether you would be able to recover compensation for your damages by filing a claim with that driver’s insurance company. Fortunately, this may be possible.
Many people believe that a suspended license automatically means the person does not have insurance, but that is not true. The insurance company may not have the legal right to suspend a policy midterm even if the driver’s license is suspended unless the person missed paying the monthly premium or there was fraud or some misrepresentation.
Therefore, if you were hit by a driver with a suspended driver’s license, you may still be able to file a claim for compensation with his or her liability insurance.
Let Us Help. Call Today
Insurance companies are known for using many tactics to deny or devalue injury claims, even when evidence may be clear. Sometimes, insurance adjusters go out of their way to sift through a person’s background, including driving records, to see how they can deny a claim.
However, this may backfire if the driver who hit you is the one with a poor driving record. Let our experienced car crash lawyers in Fort Worth build a strong case for compensation on your behalf. We have the resources to thoroughly investigate Texas car crashes.
There are no upfront fees and we only get paid if you do.
Give us a call. We are ready to help. (817) 920-9000.