When Does a Texas Personal Injury Case Have Multiple Defendants?

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When Does a Texas Personal Injury Case Have Multiple Defendants?

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Some Texas personal injury cases have multiple defendants. When there are multiple defendants in a Texas lawsuit, a judge or jury is asked to allocate fault between all the parties involved. The outcome of a case is not quite as clear as it usually is when only two parties are involved.

Percentage of Fault Can Have a Big Effect on the Plaintiff’s Recovery: 

The percentages of fault determined by the judge or jury can have a significant effect on how much money the plaintiff eventually recovers for the case. Most importantly, a personal injury victim must be determined less than 51% at fault for an accident to recover damages. If a personal injury victim is determined to be partly at fault, but less than 51% at fault, the damages they can recover are reduced by the percentage they are found at fault. If one Defendant is found more than 50% at fault in a Texas personal injury case with multiple defendants, that one Defendant may be “jointly and severally liable” for the entire verdict. 

Allocating Fault Between Multiple Defendants: 

A jury is typically asked to allocate fault for the accident amongst the defendants in a Texas personal injury case with multiple defendants (and the plaintiff if applicable). The defendants are asked to pay damages per the percentage of fault they are assigned. If we lived in a perfect world, every negligent party in an accident would carry the appropriate insurance with the necessary coverage amounts. Since we don’t live in an ideal world, many defendants found guilty have insufficient insurance coverage to compensate the plaintiff for damages. The plaintiff assumes the risk that the Defendant will have the means to cover the cost of the damages caused. 

When Does a Texas Injury Case Have Multiple Defendants? 

When a personal injury victim files their petition outlining how they were wronged, they also list the Defendant (or the person responsible for their injury/suffering). In some cases, the Defendant is not a person, but an entity, and in some cases, there is not one Defendant, but multiple Defendants. For example, a car accident with multiple vehicles involved would result in multiple drivers listed as Defendants, or a personal injury in a commercial space that was receiving repair services from an outside company may result in multiple Defendants (the company that leased the original property, the company providing repairs that led to the injury, the manager or owner of the company if the accident was due in part to their negligence or they failed to respond appropriately and caused further damage, etc.) 

If you need help recovering damages after an accident, you can turn to Hudson Law Firm for experienced and knowledgeable Carrollton personal injury attorneys. We put Personal back into Personal Injury Law.