Commercial trucks are typically larger than your average personal vehicle. As such, accidents involving them can result in catastrophic injuries and long-term damage. A report shows that 74% of fatal passenger vehicle crashes involve a large truck.
Have you or a loved one been injured due to the negligence of a truck driver? You may require a professional to help you handle the case and ensure you get the compensation you’re entitled to. And that’s what truck injury lawyers do best.
Is the truck driver liable, or is it the driver’s employer? Truck accidents are more complicated than ordinary auto crashes. As such, you need experts to establish the causation and liability. The owner of the truck, the cargo owner, or even the truck maintenance company might be liable. So many factors will determine if you get compensated.
Here are some ways a truck injury lawyer can help you in such situations:
Determine Who Takes Liability in the Truck Accident
Determining liability is not often straightforward in truck accidents. The trucking company may try to cover up their mismanagement and, through their insurance company, blame you for the accident. And since you’re already dealing with the stress and pain that comes with the wreck, you might not have the strength to challenge responsible parties.
‘An experienced lawyer from portals like injured.ca can help you investigate the accident scene and put together the legal documents that you need to prove your case.
A truck accident lawyer can:
- Collect evidence
- Talk to witnesses
- Seek the help of accident reconstructionist to prove how exactly the accident occurred
- Get the police report from the accident
- Check the truck driver’s driving record
- Check the trucking company’s policies for violations of any federal law
Build a Strong Case
The lawyer can start by gathering police reports from the accident scene to prove liability. The officer who visited the accident scene will have taken an initial look at the crash, collected statements from witnesses, and issued a report based on that information.
The police report shows that a particular person, including the truck driver, is liable for the accident. This might be due to violations like tailgating, over speeding, a blind spot accident, or ignoring traffic rules.
In addition, witness evidence might not be enough to prove your use. In such an instance, an injury lawyer might have to bring in an expert to determine the cause of a crash. An expert will look over the vehicles involved to know if there is any mechanical failure to help establish liability.
Another way your truck accident lawyer might help is by digging into the driver’s record for accident history. Even if that information reveals minor collisions, you can still use it to build a compelling case. Besides, a trucking company may be liable if your lawyer discovers that they have employed a driver with an accident history.
If the truck has a black box (where it stores data), your lawyer can get more information on what may have contributed to the accident. For instance, a truck may have dashcam recordings or GPS coordinates that indicate the driver’s recent stops or how fast the truck was traveling.
Negotiate with Insurance Companies
When a severe accident occurs, it’s crucial to call your insurance company. The rule of thumb is to contact them within 24 hours of the accident. However, each company’s policy varies. So check your policy document for details.
You’re shaken from your accident, and you didn’t make the first call to your insurance company on time. Insurance companies may take advantage of this situation by attempting to get additional details from you in a recorded phone call. They may then use this call as evidence to reduce your claim. Even the slightest hint of being at fault can damage your compensatory payout. You can escape this trap by saying as little as possible during your first call. Get your lawyer’s advice before saying anything. Your attorney will brief you on the specific information to give the insurance company.
Fight Tooth and Nail for Your Compensation
After gathering the necessary evidence, your attorney can help you negotiate your final settlement to see that you get what you deserve.
In cases where you don’t have to file a lawsuit, it may be simply beneficial to negotiate a settlement with your insurance company. A truck accident lawyer can help deal with, collect, and collate solid evidence in such instances. Check the lawyer’s reviews and history of past cases. Are they tenacious? Do they have the drive to fight tooth and nail for your compensation no matter the opposition? They have to be shrewd negotiators who can effectively negotiate with the insurance company’s team of claim adjusters.
For instance, if the trucking company has been negligent in its duty of care and this resulted in an accident by one of its drivers, your attorney will ensure they share liability. A trucking company must:
- Verify their driver’s history
- Adhere to federal regulations in their policy
- Ensure all company-owned vehicles are well maintained
After a truck accident, trying to handle the claim on your own may be daunting–from struggling with a pile of evidence to negotiating with insurance companies. A truck accident lawyer can identify liable parties, handle all aspects of your case, and take the chance to court if necessary. Getting professional help will allow you to focus on healing or taking care of a family member that got injured due to the accident.