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San Antonio Personal Injury Attorney Serving Victims and Consumers
The Law Office of Jeramie Gertz offers comprehensive legal representation to people who have been harmed in preventable accidents or by violations of consumer protection laws. We take the time to carefully understand each client’s specific goals and needs. Serving San Antonio and surrounding areas, personal injury lawyer Jeramie Gertz can investigate the details of your situation, guide you through settlement negotiations, and advocate vigorously for your rights at trial if needed.Bringing a Negligence Claim after a Car Crash in Bexar County
In most cases, accidents are the result of someone’s careless behavior, or negligence. To establish negligence, a plaintiff needs to prove by a preponderance of the evidence that the defendant owed a duty of reasonable care to the plaintiff, the defendant breached the duty, the breach caused the plaintiff's injuries, and actual damages resulted. For example, a truck driver owes a duty of reasonable care to operate his vehicle in a way that does not create foreseeable risks for others on the road. If a truck driver violates federal hours of service regulations and causes a crash because of his exhaustion, the driver is likely to be found negligent.
Often, a defendant argues that the modified comparative fault rule should apply to limit or eliminate liability. If a plaintiff is 50% or less at fault for an accident, he can potentially recover damages in an amount proportionate to the defendant’s degree of fault. However, if a plaintiff is found to be 51% or more at fault, he will be barred from recovering any damages. This makes it critical to counter any allegations of comparative fault by a defendant, and a knowledgeable injury attorney can craft an appropriate strategy if this argument arises in your case.
In some situations, multiple parties are determined to be partially at fault for a car crash. Generally, there is no joint and several liability, which means that each party is only responsible for the plaintiff's damages in an amount equal to that party’s percentage of fault. However, a liable defendant may be held jointly and severally liable for all of the damages to be recovered by a plaintiff if the defendant has been assigned a percentage of responsibility greater than 50%.Assert Your Rights under Texas Consumer Protection Laws
There are both common law and statutory remedies for consumers harmed by the deceptive or unfair trade practices of a business. Under the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act (DTPA), you can bring a civil lawsuit against a business that engaged in a deceptive practice that caused you financial or other harm. You will need to prove that you were a consumer, the DTPA applies to the defendant, the defendant committed an act considered wrongful under the DTPA, and this act caused your damages.
Under Section 17.50(a) of the DTPA, a consumer may sue when any of the following produces mental anguish or economic loss:
- A false, deceptive, or misleading action that is specifically described in Subsection 17.46 of the law and relied upon by the consumer;
- A breach of implied or express warranty;
- An unconscionable act or course of conduct; or
- A violation of Article 21.21 of the Insurance Code.
Each of these is a different claim, and a business' actions may give rise to some or all of them. Under Subsection 17.46, for example, the DTPA specifies 27 practices and acts that are misleading, deceptive, or false. These include misrepresentations, which are actionable under the DTPA regardless of the business' intentions or whether it knew that the statement was false.
Most common law defenses available in breach of contract or tort claims are not applicable to a DTPA claim. Moreover, even if an “as is” clause applies to a consumer purchase, this may not bar the right to compensation. Under Texas case law, causation still may be established if the parties lacked equal bargaining power, the clause was not an integral part of the bargain between them, or fraud was involved. The assistance of a consumer protection attorney is vital in a dispute over the language of a contract, since its legal nuances may determine the outcome of a claim.Consult an Experienced San Antonio Personal Injury Lawyer
If you are harmed by careless or deceptive conduct, you should retain an aggressive trial attorney who can negotiate a favorable settlement or take your case to trial as necessary. Personal injury attorney Jeramie Gertz represents San Antonio residents and others who have been harmed by the negligent or fraudulent conduct of other individuals or businesses. He also is a dedicated consumer protection attorney who understands the complex laws and sophisticated claims in this area. He represents victims and consumers in Bexar, Maverick, Medina, Comal, Kendall, Bandera, and Atascosa Counties. Contact us at (210) 807-4444 or through our online form [link to contact page] for a free consultation.