Houston Personal Injury Lawyer

Serious accidents alter the lives of those suffering from them. Medical bills pile up after necessary treatment, wages decrease or disappear entirely out of a reduced ability to work, and families are left wondering whether their lives will ever be the same again.

Knowing someone else’s negligence is to blame only makes matters worse. Luckily, there’s a legal respite for accident victims. Personal injury attorneys work with people who have suffered an accident due to reckless or negligent behavior.

At Lanier Law Firm, we want you to know that there’s help available to you. Our Houston personal injury lawyers have the experience and state-of-the-art resources needed to bring the negligent party to justice. We’re confident we can help you receive the maximum compensation possible for your injury claim.

Common Types of Personal Injury Cases

According to the American Bar Association, “Personal injury law, also known as tort law, is designed to protect you if you or your property is injured or harmed because of someone else’s act or failure to act. In a successful tort action, the one who caused the injury or harm compensates the one who suffered the losses.”

Some of the most prevalent personal injury lawsuits revolve around consumer products, medical malpractice, and vehicular accidents.

Car & Truck Accidents

Reckless, intoxicated, or distracted drivers often cause accidents. According to the Texas Department of Transportation, there were 68,932 crashes in Houston in 2019. That’s an average of roughly 188 crashes per day.

Collisions involving buses, semi-trucks, and 18-wheelers are particularly destructive and can cause fatal injuries.

Fire, Explosions, & Oil Field Accidents

While fires and explosions can occur anywhere, they’re especially likely to break out in old fields and oil rigs, notably when negligence is involved. Faulty machinery and safety policy violations can result in fires and explosions, as can inadequate training.

Product Liability

Talcum powder, or talc, and medical devices are two categories of products at the center of multiple product liability lawsuits.

When a harmful product or device has injured you, parties involved in manufacturing, distribution, or sale can be held liable for damages.

Getting Hurt from an Object or Equipment

Workers in fields and industries that rely heavily on equipment and machinery to do their jobs — mining, manufacturing, construction, and transportation, for example — are exposed to the potential for injury if they do not adhere to strict safety precautions. Malfunctioning equipment in particular can cause catastrophic injuries that may take years to heal.

Accidents on the Water

Water activities are an enjoyable pastime for many people in the Houston area. Water sports, such as boating, swimming, and kayaking, are prevalent because they can be relaxing and exhilarating.

However, water activities carry a significant risk of drowning or sustaining back, neck, and head injuries from diving boards, slides or other “attractive nuisances” that may not be maintained properly.

Exposure to Harmful Environment /Substances

The International Labour Organization’s “Exposure to hazardous chemicals at work and resulting health impacts: A global review,” which was released in 2021, stated that “[e]very year more than 1 billion workers are exposed to hazardous substances, including pollutants, dusts, vapours and fumes in their working environments.”

Whether it’s lead, asbestos, or a form of toxic vapor, exposure to harmful substances can result in many adverse health effects, some of which last a lifetime.

Falls, Slips, and Trips

A slip and fall accident can lead to severe injuries that require prompt medical attention. Some slip and fall accidents are fatal.

According to the National Safety Council, there were 38,600 deaths attributed to falls in 2019, and 88% of these fatalities occurred in the 65-and-older age group.

Often, a slip or fall results from a property owner’s negligence. Filing a premises liability claim with a Houston personal injury attorney will help you recover damages and play a role in making business premises safer.

Medical Malpractice

Most medical professionals in the Houston area execute their duties ethically and responsibly. However, negligence and carelessness on the part of a health care provider does sometimes occur. When it does, patients are exposed to potentially devastating consequences.

In a 2016 study, John Hopkins Medicine reported that medical errors cause 250,000 deaths in the United States each year, making medical malpractice the third-leading cause of death in the country. Many of these fatalities are avoidable. Victims of medical malpractice are entitled to compensation for their losses.

Common Causes of Personal Injury Accidents

Various factors can cause personal injury accidents, including (but not limited to):

  • Improper signage
  • Poor lighting
  • Unmarked hazards
  • Defective or dangerous products
  • Inadequate security
  • Unsafe property conditions (damaged or uneven stairs, wet floors, icy walkways, potholes, etc.)
  • Faulty electrical wiring

Each of these causes can be avoided if the responsible party takes diligent care of their property. To ensure the safety of others, property owners have a duty of care — a legal obligation — to uphold a standard of reasonable care. If they fail to do so, the cause of injury represents negligence.

oil field engineers working

Workplace Personal Injury Cases in Houston

Fatal occupational injuries in Houston may be much lower now than they were a decade ago, but even one death at work is too many. Where are we today? The following sobering statistics paint an accurate picture of Houston’s workplace accidents.

In 2020, Texas private-sector employers reported:

  • There were roughly 178,600 cases of nonfatal injury   and illness in the workplace.
  • The number of nonfatal occupational injuries and    illnesses involving days away from work totaled 68,750.
  • There were 3,400 head injuries, 6,250 back injuries, and 6,410 hand injuries

Of all workplaces in Houston, Texas, oil rigs and oil fields are the most dangerous. Blowouts occur on offshore drilling rigs and land-based oil wells, leading to severe and often fatal burns.

No better example illustrates the potential dangers of working in an oil field or around an oil rig than the Deepwater Horizon Disaster in 2010, in which 11 people died after a blowout caused the rig to sink in the Gulf of Mexico.

With the broad spectrum of potential accidents on offshore rigs as well as oil fields, there are numerous possible accidents:

Collisions in transit:
Often, these accidents happen as the company transports equipment and workers to the remote worksites.
Fires and explosions:
As Houston oil rig accident attorneys, we know how hazardous these sites can be. Both onshore and offshore worksites involve flammable gasses and vapors. These can ignite easily for various reasons — high-pressure line leaking, hot surfaces, open flames, friction heat, and lit cigarettes.
Ergonomic hazards at the worksite:
Oil fields, like many other workplaces, involve a lot of bending, pushing, pulling, twisting, and lifting. These intense movements do eventually take a toll on the worker’s body.

Oil field workers account for the highest number of severe workplace injuries. Out of 234,403 workers employed in “support activities for oil and gas operations” in 2016, 349 were severely injured. That’s a rate of 148.9 per 100,000, which is greater than the construction industry’s rate of 133.5 per 100,000 workers. Some of the common injuries sustained in oil fields and oil rigs include:

  • Severe burn injuries, including second- and third-degree burns
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Loss of limb/limb amputation injuries
  • Bone fracture injuries
  • Soft tissue injuries 
  • Bone fracture injuries
  • Spinal cord injuries, resulting in full or partial paralysis

It’s worth noting that Texas is the only state in the country that doesn’t require employees to carry workplace injury insurance or workers’ compensation benefits. That means you can file a personal injury claim to recover damages for your injuries.

Unfortunately, many victims of oil field accidents never get the compensation to which they are entitled. That’s because the companies responsible for these injuries often pressure workers to remain loyal to the company. In doing so, few victims are likely to seek legal help.

However, you should never feel more loyal to a company than you do to your health and your finances. Understand that you have rights and that the people responsible for your injuries must be held accountable. Let our legal team bring them to justice.

In one such case, our attorneys recovered financial compensation for a 51-year-old oil field worker who was permanently injured when he was struck by a fallen 800-pound casing pipe.

an agent marking car damage
a person talking to a doctor

Why is hiring a personal injury lawyer necessary?

While not required by law, a personal injury attorney can assist you in many ways. In addition to providing you with the information and legal guidance you need to go up against the at-fault party, they can also help you counter the bad-faith tactics for which most insurance companies are best known. At the end of it all, they’ll help you attain the financial compensation you so rightly deserve. This compensation may come in many forms, including:

Medical expenses

All present and future medical costs related to your accident, such as ambulance fees, hospital bills, or physical therapy sessions, should be calculated as part of your settlement offer.

Lost wages

When you miss work or can’t return to work after a serious accident, the value of this forgone income is considered.

Loss of earning capacity

This is a calculation of what you’re going to miss out on earning in the future.

Replacement services

These are “ordinary and necessary” services that an injured person can no longer do for themselves. Because they have to pay others to do them, these services are calculated as part of the final settlement offer.

Pain and suffering

In some cases, pain and suffering are used as a multiplier of your economic damages.

Wrongful death

Wrongful death compensation is awarded to the immediate family members of those killed due to negligence.

Punitive damages

Wrongful death compensation is awarded to the immediate family members of those killed due to negligence.

When should you contact a Houston personal injury lawyer?

The best time to reach out to a Houston personal injury attorney is after you seek medical care for your injuries. Even if you assume you’re just fine since no injuries are apparent, it’s still crucial to get yourself checked. You want these medical records if you intend to file a personal injury lawsuit later.

The sooner you contact a personal injury attorney, the better. You have two years from the date of your accident to sue the negligent party, as dictated by the Texas statute of limitations. However, critical elements to a successful case, like evidence and eyewitnesses, are best investigated as soon as possible.

At Lanier Law, we’ve made it our purpose to be an advocate for those who’ve been hurt as a result of someone else’s negligence. Our Houston injury attorneys fight hard to recover losses such as medical bills, lost wages, and other hardships associated with accidents. We’re proud to say that we have a proven track record, and we don’t stop until we win.

We work on a contingency fee basis, meaning you pay us only if we earn you a fair settlement. Ready to see what we can do for you? Contact us today for a free consultation regarding your personal injury case.

The Lanier Law Firm, P.C.