The legal team at Pastrana and Garcia Injury Law knows that emotional recovery after a tragic accident can be difficult, and navigating the legal system can be confusing and overwhelming. Locally based in Pflugerville, the firm is accessible to clients in and around Austin seeking legal assistance.

Managing Partner Cristina Garcia is a powerful force in the legal industry and helps her clients work toward recovery. Born and raised in Mexico before moving to Pflugerville, Garcia has dual licenses to practice law in both Texas and Mexico. In addition, Garcia is bilingual and bicultural, which allows her to deeply understand a wide range of perspectives and experiences.

Garcia, along with Steven Pastrana and their legal team approaches clients with expert knowledge of the law as well as a deep sense of empathy. Garcia said she and her team are skilled in guiding clients through legal processes and helping them on their journey to recovery.

Recovery from emotional distress

Drivers who have been involved in a car accident such as a hit-and-run, distracted driving accident, drunk driving accident or 18-wheeler accident know these tragic accidents can come with intense emotional distress that can interrupt clients’ relationships, work and life overall.

Garcia said although clients’ testimonies about emotional distress such as nightmares, trouble sleeping and anxiety over getting into a vehicle is important, Texas law puts the burden of proof on individuals to prove they are victims of mental anguish.

To do this, clients need to get a doctor or counselor to testify to clients’ experience on the record.

“The way we can prove [emotional distress] is when clients are open to counseling,” Garcia said. “...They need to get therapy, they need to get counseling. Otherwise there's not enough evidence to prove the mental anguish in their cases.”

Garcia said she recommends clients connect with their primary care provider or therapist to begin the counseling process, however she understands that not all individuals have existing relationships with medical professionals. For those without a doctor or health insurance, the Pastrana and Garcia team can provide a list of resources for clients to look through and find what best fits their needs.

While counseling is an important part of proving mental anguish in the legal process, Garcia said the firm will never force someone to go to therapy—clients always have a choice. The legal team can simply point clients in the right direction if they are in need of help.

Proactive protection through insurance

Business Development Director Chris Chappell said although there is no foolproof way to prevent accidents, individuals can take proactive precautions to ensure they don’t end up in a bad situation.

Auto insurance is one of the most important factors in protecting oneself from the legal aftermath of an accident. Texas drivers know that especially during high-traffic seasons such as spring break, the roads can be more difficult to navigate safely.

“During that time, you have a lot of younger drivers who tend to be less experienced drivers and also tend to have less money for full coverage insurance,” Chappell said. “It's a compounded problem with a young driver, the inexperience and the finances, and they're in a hurry to get somewhere.”

Garcia said that one thing clients can do is check on their auto insurance coverage and see what they’re covered for. It’s important to not only account for personal liability, but also to have protection against underinsured or uninsured drivers.

Clients who suffer injuries as a result of a negligent, uninsured driver and have the applicable uninsured motorist (UIM) coverage, can recover compensation for:
  • past and future medical expenses
  • pain and suffering
  • lost wages/earnings
  • permanent disability or injury
  • property damage
Reach out for a legal consultation

While accidents are ultimately unavoidable, there are steps individuals can take to protect themselves and others on the road. In the event of a tragic accident, it’s important to have a skilled, empathetic legal team that will help clients recover emotionally and financially.

Individuals seeking legal assistance can call 512-474-4487 for a free consultation 24/7. Pastrana and Garcia Injury Law is located at 305 N. Heatherwilde Blvd. Ste. 240, Pflugerville, and serves a range of areas including Bastrop, Georgetown, Hutto, Kyle, Leander, Lockhart, Pflugerville, Round Rock and Taylor.

To stay informed on legal recommendations and the importance of personal injury lawyers, visit the Pastrana and Garcia Injury Law Instagram, Facebook and blog.

The above story was produced by Senior Multi Platform Journalist Summer El-Shahawy with Community Impact's Storytelling team with information solely provided by the local business as part of its "sponsored content" purchase through our advertising team.