If you were in a car accident without a license in Texas, police will likely issue you a ticket when they respond to the crash. On your first offense, the penalties will be relatively light.
Even so, it is essential you do not leave the scene or try to convince the other party not to call the police after a car accident. That can lead to much more serious consequences for both you and your potential injury case.
What do Texas Driver’s License Laws Say?
Under Texas law, everyone who drives a motorized vehicle on public roads must have a valid driver’s license and must have it on them while driving. Violating this statute can result in a misdemeanor criminal charge. As noted, a first offense usually leads to relatively minor penalties, but multiple or repeated offenses can lead to jail time and significant fines.
All 50 states have similar laws in place to ensure that every driver meets a minimum standard of training and experience before they get behind the wheel. Getting a driver’s license is a privilege that constitutes an agreement between you and the state that you will follow certain laws. Failure to abide by these rules could impede your right to drive.
Are There Criminal Penalties for Driving Without a License?
If this instance is the first time police have caught you driving without a license, you will likely receive a ticket and a small fine. A second offense usually also only brings a fine, although it may increase in cost compared to the first ticket. A third offense, however, will likely result in a fine of as much as $500 and between 72 hours and six months in jail.
You also may face other charges, depending on if you were partially responsible for an accident.
What are the Civil Liabilities for Driving Without a License in Texas?
Driving without a license does not automatically ruin your chances of securing funds if another driver caused your accident. You can still file a third-party liability insurance claim or a personal injury lawsuit. However, you should expect them to raise the issue and say you contributed to your injuries and damages. This accusation could damage your case and reduce the value of your settlement, so you should consider legal aid before filing your claim.
If the other driver claims you caused the accident, not having a license does not mean you have to accept liability for the crash. However, it is not uncommon for a judge to see it as negligent behavior if you also drove carelessly or recklessly and ultimately caused the accident. While driving without a license will likely not support a successful civil case against you on its own, it can make recovering damages difficult.
How a Personal Injury Lawyer at Our Firm Can Help Protect Your Right to Recovery
As mentioned, just because you were driving without a license at the time of the accident doesn’t mean that you caused it. Still, it may be difficult to stand up for yourself against an insurance company or possibly a judge or jury. So, a car accident attorney from our firm can work on your behalf to prove that you are entitled to seek financial recovery.
You can expect us to take on the following responsibilities for you:
- Collecting and analyzing evidence: We can create an evidence file that contains the police report, photos and video of the scene of the accident, your medical records, and eyewitness accounts.
- Proving the other prove the other party was negligent: The other driver involved could have been under the influence, distracted, or violated a traffic law.
- Evaluating your damages: We can determine how much your damages (e.g., medical bills, lost income, property damage, and pain and suffering, etc.) are worth.
- Staying in touch with all involved representatives: We can keep track of every phone call and email between you and the other party’s representatives.
- Negotiating an appropriate settlement: If the other party’s insurance company doesn’t offer you a sufficient settlement, we can negotiate with them until they do.
- Adhering to the statute of limitations: Texas law generally gives car accident victims two years to file a lawsuit; our lawyers can make sure you file it on time.
- Represent you in court: If we can’t settle your claim, we can make your car accident case in court.
Call D. Miller & Associates, PLLC™ for Help After a Car Accident in Texas
Miller & Associates, PLLC™ can help you understand your options for filing an insurance claim or a civil lawsuit after a Texas car accident. We can review your accident and explain the strength of your case, even if the other driver did not have a license or you were the one driving without the license.
We have been serving injury clients throughout Texas since 2002. Let us help you now. Call us today at (713) 850-8600 for a case evaluation.
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