Sharing the road with commercial trucks can present several hazards. No matter how cautious you are, accidents are inevitable in some cases. When passenger vehicles are involved in an accident with a truck, it typically results in the passenger vehicle’s driver sustaining severe injuries and damages. A truck’s sheer size often means that these accidents lead to disastrous, catastrophic injuries and losses.
After an accident, your focus should be on recovery and protecting your health. If you’re uncertain whether you should hire a lawyer for your truck accident case, consider the following factors before choosing to deal with the insurance company without a personal injury lawyer by your side.
Reasons You Should Consider Hiring a Truck Accident Lawyer
Many truck accidents cause devastating injuries and costly damages. If you suffered an injury in a truck accident that happened through no fault of your own, you shouldn’t have to bear the weight of mounting medical bills and repair costs for your vehicle. A negligent truck driver, trucking company, or another entity whose negligence led to an accident should be responsible for their careless behavior.
An experienced truck accident lawyer is ready to represent your best interest and pursue maximum compensation for your injuries and losses. Read on to discover the benefits of hiring a truck accident attorney.
The Trucking Company has Specific Rules
Federal regulatory agencies and state agencies set strict standards and regulations that trucking companies and drivers must follow. These rules govern trucking companies and truck driver behavior.
These rules outline everything from how many hours truck drivers can spend on the road to the truck’s weight. Knowing and fully understanding these laws is essential – however, in most cases, even the average non-commercial driver knows these requirements.
Drivers in passenger vehicles have a higher chance of suffering injuries in a truck accident than in a collision involving another car. Having a truck accident lawyer familiar with the complex regulations trucking companies must follow is invaluable and can make all the difference in the outcome of your case if you decide to sue the trucking company or the truck driver.
The Insurance Company Will Undervalue Your Claim
The insurance company determines the liable party in an accident by gathering information from all drivers involved, police reports, and other relevant evidence. Once they decide who the responsible party is, the insurance company determines how much to compensate the accident victim.
Once the insurance company concludes its investigation, it will send an offer letter to the accident victim. As soon as you sign their offer letter, you give up your right to retrieve additional compensation or file a lawsuit.
Be sure to consult with a knowledgeable truck accident lawyer before accepting an offer from the insurance company. Keep in mind that the insurance company is trying to protect its bottom line by minimizing or deflecting liability. A truck accident lawyer can help demonstrate the full extent of your injuries and damages to your property to the insurance company and help you obtain the best settlement possible.
The Severity of Your Injuries and Damages
Accidents involving trucks are often devastating. If you suffered injuries requiring you to go to the hospital or lost a loved one in a crash after an accident with a truck driver, having an experienced truck accident lawyer advocate is invaluable. If the accident has left you with significant medical expenses or if your injuries force you to take time off work, a lawyer can handle the heavy lifting in your case and give you a chance to focus on recovery.
When there is a truck accident, multiple victims, negligent parties, or if you suffer emotional distress after a truck accident, you should also consider retaining legal representation. The trucking company will hire a team of lawyers to represent them; trying to fight for justice with the help of an attorney will likely result in a recipe for disaster.
More Than One Party May Have Contributed
The driver and the trucking company are the most obvious parties typically responsible for truck accidents. However, in some cases, multiple parties may cause your injuries. The truck manufacturer, the truck maintenance company, an equipment manufacturer, the shipping company, the cargo owner, or government entities are all examples of parties that you may hold liable in a truck accident.
An experienced truck accident lawyer can make sure everyone who should be liable for your injuries is found responsible and help you pursue compensation from them.
Additionally, a truck accident lawyer can help you recover non-economic damages for emotional suffering, pain, or loss of companionship that happened due to a truck accident. Insurance companies often overlook these types of damages to protect their bottom line. Your attorney can negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf and advocate for compensation that covers the full value of your losses.
Negotiations Can Become Complex
In truck accident claims, there are numerous legal issues to deal with. The process is rigorous and time-consuming, and handling these complex proceedings on your own can do your case more harm than good.
When an adjuster from the at-fault party’s insurance company asks for a statement, you should politely decline to avoid saying the wrong thing. Insurance adjusters are looking to get you to say something that will indicate that you were at fault, at least partly, for the accident.
Hiring a lawyer who considers your case’s unique factors and who can provide you with an appropriate legal strategy is the best course of action to obtain the compensation you need to recover.
A truck accident lawyer can handle all legal communications on your behalf, conduct research, gather evidence, and negotiate with the insurance company. If a truck accident left you with severe injuries and financial losses, let a truck accident lawyer give you peace of mind by building the strongest possible claim on your behalf.
Common Causes of Truck Accidents
When trucking companies or their drivers are negligent and fail to follow federal regulations, it can lead to a catastrophic accident. Forcing a truck driver to spend long hours behind the wheel may result in careless mistakes and lead to an accident that results in severe injuries and damages.
A passenger car involved in an accident with a big vehicle like a tractor-trailer or delivery truck often sustains more significant damage due to the sheer size and weight of the truck.
Some common causes of truck accidents include:
- Distracted driving
- Equipment failures
- Fatigued driving
- Aggressive driving
- Overloading cargo
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Improper vehicle maintenance
- Severe weather conditions
- Road construction or other hazards
- Negligent hiring practices
- The truck company fails to train drivers properly
- The trucking company fails to main trucks to a quality standard
- The company fails to observe and enforce breaks for drivers
If you were in an accident due to any of the issues described above, put your trust in a truck accident law firm. The right attorneys have extensive experience investigating the causes of truck accidents – let a professional review all the facts of your case, identify all liable parties, and help you understand your legal options.
Common Injuries Resulting From Truck Accidents
Large truck accidents often lead to catastrophic injuries and significant damages. If the accident doesn’t result in death for the driver of a small passenger vehicle, it will typically leave them with long-term injuries and damages that can take years to recover from.
Some of the most common truck accident injuries include:
- Spinal cord injuries
- Back and neck injuries
- Bone fractures
- Broken bones
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Neck injuries
- Severe burn injuries
- Back injuries
- Wrongful death
After an accident, you should seek medical attention as soon as possible. Once you’ve undergone a medical evaluation, consider contacting a truck accident lawyer about your claim.
Compensation Available to Truck Accident Victims
Several different kinds of compensation are available in car accident claims, the first category being economic damages. Economic damages are the easiest to calculate and include compensation for medical expenses, including future care, property damage costs, and lost wages including future wages.
If you lost a family member in a truck accident, you might recover funeral and burial expenses through a wrongful death claim. Sustaining a severe neck, back, or spine injury in a truck accident may impact your mobility, requiring you to change your home. A remodel of your home can be costly; however, you might recover the modification costs through a truck accident claim.
The second category of recoverable damages available in truck accident claims is non-economic damages. This category of damages is not as simple to quantify but compensates victims for mental anguish and emotional pain they’ve suffered after an accident. Victims of truck accidents may have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), nightmares, anxiety, or depression.
A truck accident lawyer can demonstrate the full extent of your losses after an accident and advocate on your behalf. The value of your settlement award will depend on several factors, including whether you need ongoing care and the extent of your injuries. After an initial case review, your truck accident attorney can provide you with an estimate of your potential settlement award.
If you received injuries in a truck accident, hiring a truck accident lawyer can make all the difference in the outcome of your case. A lawyer can discuss your legal options and advise you on the next best steps in your truck accident claim.
Why should I hire a lawyer if the insurance company offered me a settlement?
If the insurance company offers you a settlement shortly after the accident, it’s probably trying to get you to accept a settlement for less than what you need to pay for your medical care and cover your losses.
The insurance company understands that many accident victims need compensation quickly to move forward with their lives. Hence, adjusters receive training in tactics like telling you it is the highest settlement award you can get or that there is no time to consult with an attorney.
Remember you can always make a counteroffer or file a lawsuit against the negligent party; as soon as you accept a settlement offer, you effectively give up your right to pursue additional compensation in the future.
Will my truck accident case go to court?
Every truck accident case is unique, so there is no simple answer to this question. Most truck accident cases settle out of court; however, in cases where the victim of a truck accident feels that they are not being adequately compensated for their injuries, going to trial may be necessary.
Truck accident attorneys will aggressively fight for your best interest regardless of the circumstances of your case. Contact us to set up an initial consultation with a lawyer today.
How can a truck accident lawyer help my case?
A truck accident attorney serves as an advocate in your case. They will review all evidence in your claim, determine who the liable parties are, and work tirelessly to help you get the maximum compensation you need to recover.
Your lawyer will be responsible for handling all communications with the insurance company, dealing with pesky paperwork, and answering any questions regarding your claim. The advantage of having an experienced attorney on your side is invaluable and can help prevent you from accepting an offer that is less than what you deserve.
How can I accurately document my injuries after a truck accident?
Keeping a log or journal is a great way to document your injuries after an accident. In your journal, describe whether the injuries you sustained after a truck accident limited your everyday activities.
Contact your truck accident lawyer who will devise an argument on your behalf, showcasing how your inability to enjoy daily activities has dramatically affected your life. If your injuries cause emotional distress, trigger anxiety, PTSD, or depression, you should also receive compensation for any pain and suffering.
I was in a truck accident but feel fine. Why should I still see a doctor?
Even if you feel fine after an accident, you should schedule a medical evaluation with a doctor to ensure that you haven’t sustained any life-threatening injuries that may have delayed symptoms. Symptoms of severe injuries like whiplash or traumatic brain injuries may take time to present themselves.