Texas Aviation Accident Lawyer

Here to Help You Understand Your Rights After an Aviation Accident

Airplane accidents occur less frequently than car wrecks and air travel has been known to be one of the safest modes of transportation. However, the probability of a significant injury or death occurring from an aviation accident that will require an aviation accident lawyer is significant due to the dangerous nature of air travel. According to the National Transportation Safety Board in 2018 there were a total of 1,347 U.S. civil aviation accidents and 231 of those accidents were fatal resulting in 395 fatalities. Aviation accidents do not only consist of commercial airplane crashes, but they also include:

Helicopter Accidents

Helicopter crashes have been the talk of the town after the tragic helicopter crash that resulted in the death of NBA superstar Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna Bryant, and seven others. The US Helicopter Safety Team reports that there were 122 total US helicopter accidents in 2019.

Private Flight Accidents

Private flights are somewhat of an anomaly for aviation accidents considering they have been held to be significantly more dangerous per hour of travel than car travel.  A 2010 NTSV report indicates that there was about 1 fatality per every 100,000 hours of private air travel compared to 1.1 fatalities per every 2 million hours of car travel. This suggests that private air travel is about 19 times more dangerous than car travel.

Hot Air Balloon Accidents

Hot air balloon accident injuries occur from hard landings and hitting objects such as trees and power lines during landing. Contact with power lines is the most common cause of death in hot air balloon accidents nationwide.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) oversee and investigate aviation accidents to understand what went wrong and how to prevent similar issues from occurring in the future. Aviation accident lawsuits are unique because they usually involve going after major airlines and corporations that require experienced and quality legal representation. It is important to consult an experienced aviation accident lawyer immediately after an accident to preserve crucial evidence and flight information as well as to know your legal options.

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Who Can Be Held Liable in an Aviation Accident?

In every aviation accident there must be someone who is liable, and more than one party can be responsible at once. If you have been injured, your personal injury attorney will explain the best cause of action and who will be liable, but it is also important for you as a victim, to understand who may be held responsible for your injuries. Examples of parties that can be liable for an aviation accident are:

  • Common Carriers: Common carriers are airlines or aircraft companies that open their flights out to the public as willing to carry all passengers who buy a ticket. Because of this willingness to host the public for transportation, common carriers are held to a higher standard of care than private carriers are. The FAA regulates common carriers and the strict standards that they must abide by.
  • Private Carriers: Private carriers operate under less strict regulations than their common carrier counterpart. However, if you are the owner of the aircraft, you could be held personally responsible for the negligence of a pilot or a mechanic.
  • Manufacturers: Manufacturers can be held liable for an accident if the claimant can prove that the cause of the accident was a defective product produced by the manufacturer. This is known as strict liability and it is meant to hold the manufacturer accountable for the products they produce.
  • Owner/Operators: Aircraft owners/operators are often held liable when their negligent acts result in an accident. In private flight situations, the owner of the aircraft can be held liable for the negligence of the pilot through the theory of vicarious liability. Vicarious liability is when the employer is responsible for the acts of their employees.
  • The Federal Government: If accident is caused by traffic control error, then the federal government can be responsible through the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

What Compensation Can I Recover in an Aviation Accident?

The same way multiple parties can be liable for an accident, multiple parties can also be entitled to compensation for the negligence of another. The most common party that is known to receive compensation in an aviation accident are the passengers, but other parties such as the pilot, flight attendants, and people on the ground affected by the accident may receive compensation for their injuries. In a personal injury action, a plaintiff can recover several types of damages including:

  • Medical Costs: You can receive compensation for both current and future treatment for injuries resulting from the crash. Treatment costs include anything related to your injury such as hospital bills, physical therapy, ad prescription drugs. If a loved one has been injured or killed in an accident you may also be entitled to compensation to cover their medical expenses.
  • Lost Income: Catastrophic aviation accidents can cause you to miss an extended amount of work or render you incapable of doing work. You can receive compensation that covers any wages that you lost because of your injuries. You may also be entitled to any future lost wages that are reasonably certain to occur.
  • Property Damages: You can recover the fair market value for all property lost in a personal injury accident.
  • Pain and Suffering: Pain and suffering damages can be recovered if your injury from the accident results in severe pain or discomfort. This can be for pain and suffering during and after the accident.
  • Loss of Enjoyment of Life: Compensation for loss of enjoyment is an attempt to compensate the injured party for things that they can no longer enjoy like hobbies and day-to-day activities.
  • Loss of Future Financial Support and Household Contributions: If a loved one dies in an aviation accident you can be entitled to lost future support from them as well as the costs for a funeral and emotional anguish.
  • Loss of Consortium:  These damages apply to wrongful death aviation accident cases when a loved one has passed away due to injuries related to the aviation accident. They are intended to compensate for the loss of companionship when a loved one passes away.

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Our aviation accident lawyers here at Thompson Law are committed to getting you the compensation you deserve when you get injured in an aviation accident. Dealing with an aviation accident is something that you do not have to do alone, and our Texas aviation accident lawyers will assist you every step of the way.

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Our aviation accident lawyers never charge an hourly rate, and there are no fees unless we get a settlement for you. If we are not able to obtain a settlement on your behalf for any reason, you will not owe our law firm anything. Call us today for a FREE CASE EVALUATION.

Aviation Accident FAQs

What Should I Do When Injured in an Accident?

Get medical treatment! Your health and safety are the most important thing, and your first priority should be seeking immediate attention from a hospital or doctor. Not sure that you’re injured or how serious your injury might be? You should still seek immediate medical attention if you are in an aviation accident, car accident, truck wreck or any other type of accident.

Getting immediate medical treatment does two things: First, it makes sure that any injuries you sustained are properly diagnosed and treated and second, it helps eliminate any doubt that your injuries were caused by the accident. Often, the shock and adrenaline of an accident can mask symptoms of injury, but making the mistake to skip getting checked out can have serious consequences. By seeking prompt medical treatment, you protect both your health and your ability to seek compensation for medical bills and time off work, with the help of your attorney.

Why Do I Need a Personal Injury Lawyer?

A competent and skilled personal injury lawyer is almost always necessary to get full and fair compensation for injuries you have sustained in an accident. Most defendants, whether individual drivers, airline companies, or commercial vehicle operators, are covered by liability insurance. Those insurance companies are not obligated to protect or take care of you. They are there to take care of the defendant (their customer) who caused your wreck or accident.

An expert personal injury attorney should be able to help you not only force that insurance company to pay for the injuries and damages the defendant caused, but will also do their best to make sure that you are compensated for every category of damages you may be entitled to, some of which you may not even be aware of: medical bills, future surgical costs, time off work in the past or time you may have to take off in the future, as well as the pain, suffering, and impairment that many injured people experience.

Thompson Law Guarantee

Thompson Law receives an attorney fee and you pay no legal fees as our client unless we pay you. Thompson Law has 350 years of combined experience in legal representation and has won over $1.8 billion dollars in cash settlements for our clients. We master the art of managing client cases with empathy, compassion, respect and, of course, prodigious skill. Contact us today for a free, risk-free consultation to discuss your accident and your options.

State law limits the time you have to file a claim after an auto accident. If you have been injured in an accident, call now to get the help you need.