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What to Know If You Are Hit by an Unlicensed Driver in Texas


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What to Know If You Are Hit by an Unlicensed Driver in Texas

Picture this: you’re driving home after a long day, and suddenly, you’re involved in a car accident. The other driver reveals they don’t have a valid driver’s license. What now? Attorney Greg Baumgartner of Baumgartner Law Firm will guide you through the complexities of dealing with an unlicensed driver in Texas, explaining your rights, the risks involved, and what to know if an unlicensed driver hits you in Texas.

 Additionally, we’ll discuss how a car accident attorney can help you deal with the legal maze.

Highlights of What to Do When Hit by a Driver Without a License

  • Unlicensed drivers pose a significant risk to traffic safety and may face legal consequences, including fines, and liability for damages if the crash was their fault.
  • After an accident with an unlicensed driver, it is important to contact the police, exchange information professionally, and document the scene.
  • Insurance issues may arise and should be addressed.
  • A car accident attorney can provide valuable assistance by investigating the incident, negotiating with insurance companies, or representing you in court.

Understanding the Unlicensed Driver

In Texas, a driver operating without an up-to-date license does not necessarily assume liability for any car accidents they may be involved in. Nevertheless, these unlicensed drivers have the right to pursue financial compensation should their vehicle end up being damaged or they become injured because of such an accident, according to Texas law.

It is imperative that one understands the risks and legal consequences associated with motor vehicle crashes involving this type of driver before taking part on the roadways within Texan borders.

The Risks Associated with Unlicensed Drivers

Unlicensed drivers pose a serious risk to traffic safety as their lack of training and failure to follow regulations have been linked with 20% of fatal car crashes. In Texas, the numbers are even more staggering. 26% percent of all deaths related to road accidents involve an unlicensed driver, 1.1 % had invalid licenses or denied ones, 5 % have never gotten one in the first place, and 6.7 hold suspended/revoked permits, respectively.

In Houston, Texas last year alone, we had over 67,000 car accidents, according to the TDOT.

Even though they may get a ticket, that will not help you if you were hurt in an accident with an unlicensed driver.

Unlicensed drivers in Texas face legal repercussions for operating a vehicle in Texas without a valid driver’s license. They may also have problems if they cause a wreck and are not covered by liability insurance.

Careless or Reckless Driving

In Texas, driving recklessly is described by Transportation Code 545.402 as carrying out a vehicle in such a manner that exhibits an undeniable disregard for other people or property. Careless driving, according to the same code 545.401, means managing a car with willful and/or negligent negligence toward the safety of individuals or belongings.

A driver involved in either carelessness or reckless behavior can experience fines alongside potential jail time plus suspension from license operation privileges – all this may also be complemented by civil liability because he’s responsible for any damage due to their transportation doings potentially much worse if it’s committed while being unlicensed.

Insurance Issues When in an Accident with Someone Without a Driver’s License

Complicated insurance issues can arise when accidents involving unlicensed drivers occur in Texas. Speaking of the same, these drivers are usually not insured, and thus it is hard for any injured party to receive compensation from the other driver if they caused the wreck.

Texas negligent entrustment law might make it possible to claim through the owner’s liability policy if an unlicensed driver was operating someone else’s vehicle at the time of an accident.

Unfortunately, some insurers don’t cover such occurrences, which could leave victims seeking compensation out in the cold as far as their claims go despite being legitimately entitled, making this situation even more difficult for those harmed due to another driver’s negligence or lack thereof when behind the wheel.

The driver may be excluded from the owner’s liability policy. Or otherwise not covered by insurance. If they are not the vehicle owner and are using the car with permission, they might be covered by the car owner’s liability coverage. Contact a personal injury lawyer for answers.

Traffic Ticket for the Operator without a License

In Texas, driving without a license is deemed a misdemeanor and can incur punishment by local law. In Houston, this could lead to fines of up to $200 for first-time offenders.  As well as the possibility of stiffer penalties for repeat offenses.

Steps to Take After an Accident with an Unlicensed Driver

In the event of an accident involving a driver without a valid license, swift action must be taken to protect your rights and interests. This includes calling law enforcement, sharing relevant information with each other, and collecting evidence at the scene. Taking these steps is essential for ensuring you get justice after such an incident.

It’s important to keep all details related to the unlicensed motorist and their vehicle when dealing with this situation. Remembering pertinent data like contact numbers or registration plates can help.

Contacting the Police

Reporting the crash to law enforcement is a critical step since it creates an official record of what happened and may be used as proof in any future legal cases. The police will inspect the site of the accident and give a citation for infraction if they find that the other driver was without an appropriate license.

A copy from authorities can prove quite beneficial when trying to ascertain facts regarding your incident or making claims for recompense.

Exchanging Information

Once everyone’s safety is ensured, obtaining the other driver’s contact and insurance details, such as their name, number, or which company they are insured with, is key. Even if a valid license isn’t present, this info can be useful for getting compensation down the line.

Be cautious when talking about what happened in regard to the accident, and stay away from admitting guilt since it might affect your case negatively.

Documenting the Scene

Gathering facts from the scene of the accident is significant in backing up your case. This includes taking pictures of the damages to your automobile, photographs taken at the crash site, and collecting contact information for any witnesses present, as well as getting short video statements from them, which will aid in verifying what happened.

It is also vital to seek medical attention when needed and secure all related medical documents connected with this incident since these can be essential aspects while demonstrating how serious one’s injuries were, plus the costs incurred.

Insurance Claims and Compensation Issues

When a person is involved in an accident with an unlicensed driver, working through the claims process and receiving any necessary compensation can be difficult. It often requires dealing with your insurance company as well as considering legal action by filing for a personal injury lawsuit or requesting uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM/UIM) coverage.

Getting a consultation with a personal injury attorney near you is a good idea.

To simplify things, let’s review each of these options closely to help you find out what works best for you.

Working with Your Own Insurance Company

Frequently, the unlicensed driver does not have insurance coverage for an accident.

If you have Uninsured Motorist coverage, filing a claim with your insurance provider after an accident involving an unlicensed driver is something you can do. This kind of protection may pay for medical bills and other damages that stem from the incident. In effect, UM coverage helps if the other driver is not insured or your injuries are severe, and they do not have enough liability insurance to cover all your damages.

It’s necessary to contact your insurer straight away while also providing all applicable details about the collision. Complying fully with any inquiries made as part of their investigation will ensure things progress smoothly throughout this process.

Pursuing a Personal Injury Lawsuit

When an accident occurs involving a driver without a license, it is sometimes necessary to file a personal injury lawsuit to obtain compensation for any resulting damages. A knowledgeable attorney can assist with this process by gathering evidence and establishing the other party’s liability while also defending against claims of negligence on your behalf.

A consultation with one such lawyer specializing in personal injury cases will provide insight into your rights and potential options when dealing specifically with Texas law regarding unlicensed drivers involved in accidents.

However, it is difficult to retain a personal injury law firm if there is no liability insurance or UM coverage under your auto insurance.

Obtaining UM/UIM Coverage

For added protection, you can get Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist (UM/UIM) coverage from your insurance company. This type of policy is meant to provide for medical expenses, property damage, and other potential losses caused by a motor vehicle accident with an uninsured or underinsured driver involved. In such instances, it even covers lost wages as well as any additional damages incurred.

Neglecting UM/UIM coverage could put you in the difficult situation of having to cover all associated costs following an incident like this on your own—something that nobody should have to go through alone. If you would like some extra assurance that these kinds of bills will be taken care of regardless of who was responsible for the crash, make sure not to hesitate to ask your insurer about obtaining such provisions today!

How a Car Accident Attorney Can Help

A car accident attorney can provide invaluable assistance in managing the challenges posed by an incident involving an unlicensed driver. The lawyer may play a key role, from investigating what happened to negotiating with insurance companies and representing you legally so that any compensation due is justly awarded.

Looking at it more closely, here’s how your legal professional could help: they can investigate the crash, negotiate on your behalf when dealing with insurers, and act as your advocate during court proceedings for fair recompense.

Investigating the Accident

A competent car accident lawyer can provide comprehensive legal support, including thoroughly investigating the incident. The attorney will collect evidence such as photographs from the scene, witness testimony, and an official police report to demonstrate that another party is responsible for what happened in this case. He or she may also protect you against accusations of culpability.

These details are crucial when building a solid argument with which to pursue compensation for damages caused by this collision/accident.

Negotiating with Insurance Companies

An experienced car accident attorney can provide you with the help and guidance needed when managing an insurance claim. They will utilize evidence to come up with a beneficial negotiation strategy which can be submitted as part of your case.

Through negotiations, they strive for fair compensation from the applicable insurers to properly account for all damages caused by this crash. A skilled lawyer protecting your rights safeguards you against any unfair practices or settlements offered by these companies.

Representing You in Court

In the case of a car accident, having an experienced and knowledgeable attorney to help with your claim can make all the difference. Your lawyer will present evidence collected during their investigation as part of your compensation case in court.

An experienced injury attorney will cross-examine witnesses and counterarguments from any defense attorneys involved, then provide powerful closing statements that could see you receive a positive result for your situation. Having this type of legal support by your side is essential regarding vehicular accidents.

Frequently Asked Questions

What happens if someone hits you and you don’t have insurance in Texas?

If another driver hits you in Texas and lacks insurance coverage, your legal options for seeking compensation remain open. You can submit a claim with the at-fault motorist’s insurer or take them to court. All facts must be considered before deciding what is best in this situation.

Is driving without a license an offense in Texas?

In Texas, driving without a valid driver’s license is prohibited. If it is a first offense, the consequences are likely to be a small fine. Repeated offenses can have harsher penalties.

Can an unlicensed driver be insured in Texas?

It is possible to be insured in Texas without a driver’s license. Factors such as the driving record of the designated primary driver are likely to affect insurance rates. This individual does not necessarily have to reside with you so long as they meet other requirements for being listed on your car insurance policy.

What happens when you let a driver without a valid driver’s license drive your car in Texas?

In Texas, if you let an unlicensed driver use your car and cause an accident, you may be sued under a negligent entrustment theory. Yet, to be sued, the person pursuing the case would have to prove the accident was the fault of the unlicensed driver.

Contact a Car Accident Attorney at Baumgartner Law Firm for Accidents in Houston

Navigating a car accident involving an unlicensed driver in Texas can be complicated, and it is important to have all the knowledge of your rights, potential risks, and legal outcomes. Taking action as soon as possible by hiring a specialized car accident attorney with experience dealing with these matters should be done first for protection purposes.

Seeking fair compensation requires being well-informed about your rights and options. Getting an attorney will ensure that everything is handled properly.

Call Baumgartner Law Firm at (281) 587-1111 for a FREE Consultation!

Often, a person borrowing a car with permission will be covered by the owner’s liability insurance coverage. If this is the case, call your insurance company and let them handle the claim against you.

Related blog posts:

I Was Hit By A Driver Who Does Not Have Insurance- What Can I Do in Texas?

A Guide to Texas Motorcycle Laws

Uber Insurance Policy Limits in Texas

Car Accidents and Lapsed Insurance in Texas

Underinsured Motorist Coverage in Texas

How Texas Car Accident Injury Claims Are Different With Company Vehicles

How to Get and Read a Houston Accident Report

Areas Severed:

Houston, Sugar Land, Conroe, The Woodlands, Cypress, Spring, and Tomball.

About Our Law Firm

Baumgartner Law Firm is a Houston personal injury law firm headed by Greg Baumgartner.

Our firm was established in 1985 and has helped thousands of injury victims get maximum compensation for their cases. If you have been injured in an accident in Houston, TX, contact us for a free, no-obligation consultation. (281) 587-1111.

Since 1985, Baumgartner Law Firm has limited our law practice to serious personal injury cases. Our legal team has won maximum compensation for thousands of accident victims and recovered millions of dollars for real people like you. The practice areas we focus on are the following:
·     Auto & Car Accidents
·     Catastrophic and Severe Injuries
·     Construction Site Accidents
·     Daycare Negligence & Child Injury
·     Dram Shop Lawsuits
·     Drunk Driving Accidents
·     Lyft Accidents
·     Motorcycle Accidents
·     Personal Injury
·     Truck Accidents
·     Uber Accidents
·     Work Injury
·     Wrongful Death

Helping these areas around Houston

Houston, Sugar LandConroeThe WoodlandsCypressSpring, Humble, KatyAtascocita, Kingwood and Tomball.