The trucking industry provides a vital service to us as a nation, not only for our national economy, but for us personally. For instance, we rely on our at-home delivery services now more than ever. Yet, even though these trucks play a crucial role in keeping packages and commerce moving, they unfortunately also result in some of the most catastrophic accidents on the road.
If you were in one of these deadly trucking accidents, you could be entitled to compensation for the injuries you endured and justice for the harm you experienced. This blog post will help detail what you need to know about these semi-truck accident settlements and how an experienced truck accident attorney can fight for an amount you deserve.
Common Causes of Semi-Truck Accidents
Semi-truck accidents can result from numerous factors.
However, the vast majority of them result from human-error and include:
- Truck driver fatigue
- Truck driver inexperience
- Driving while intoxicated due to alcohol, drugs, or prescription medications
- Distracted driving
- Inadequate truck maintenance
Understanding what caused the semi-truck accident is a crucial part of going after a maximum settlement amount. That is why speaking with an experienced truck accident attorney following your crash is imperative. A lawyer can promptly get to work figuring out what happened and who was at fault for your accident.
Going After the Wrongful Parties
Unlike passenger motor vehicle crashes, which usually involve two to three parties, trucking accidents can include many wrongful parties. As a result, negotiating a settlement offer following a trucking accident is often much more complicated.
Some of these wrongful parties can include:
- The at-fault truck driver
- The truck driver’s employer
- The owner of the truck
- The cargo company
- The cargo loaders
- The trucks manufacturer and maintenance team
Each trucking accident is unique. Consequently, each trucking collision needs an independent and thorough investigation to determine who the wrongful individuals are. However, an experienced truck accident lawyer can get to work promptly, identifying all the potentially liable parties for the crash and giving you a better chance of obtaining maximum compensation.
Fighting for a Settlement Amount You Deserve
Following a trucking accident, you may receive a settlement offer. However, before you accept this amount, you need to understand certain aspects of a trucking settlement offer.
A settlement is a contract where an injured individual accepts payment of money to release an entity or individual from legal liability for causing them harm. However, the key to these settlement amounts is ensuring that you, as the victim, get a fair offer.
An experienced truck accident attorney knows how important it is to figure out what happened in the crash, and identify all the responsible parties. They also know that to get a maximum settlement amount, they first need to determine and obtain evidence indicating how much money you should get as a result of the accident. Once they can figure out this amount, they can fight for the damages you deserve.
The amount of settlement money your lawyer may go after depends on certain factors, including:
- The extent of your injuries and how significant they are (for example, if they involved spinal damage or traumatic brain injuries).
- The cost of treating these injuries now and in the future.
- The types of treatments that are involved and will be involved in the future.
- The amount of income you have lost as a result of the injuries and will continue to lose.
- How many expenses you incurred because of the injuries or damages following the semi-truck accident.
- The amount of pain you suffered.
- Whether the injuries diminish the quality of your life.
- Whether the injuries are permanent.
- Whether the injuries included disfigurement, loss of a limb, or significant scarring.
- Strength of your witness testimony.
- Whether you saw a medical doctor following your accident, and followed their treatment plan.
Unfortunately, no lawyer can guarantee a specific amount of compensation following an accident. However, an experienced truck accident attorney can perform a thorough analysis, gather critical documents and evidence, and figure out the maximum amount of compensation you need to pursue.
Steps to Take to Help Get the Highest Settlement Possible
Many factors influence the amount of your semi-truck accident settlement.
Even though you cannot control every one of these elements, you can still take steps to put yourself in the best position to collect the highest settlement possible.
- See a doctor: Even if you believe your injuries are minor, you still need to get examined by a doctor. Not only can these medical professionals discover deadly injuries that take time to develop, but seeing a doctor and listening to their advice can put you in the best position to obtain the highest settlement offer. These doctors will create a medical report that could link your injuries to the semi-truck accident and explain the extent of your harm.
- Gather evidence and witness information: If possible, try to collect as much evidence of the accident scene as you can. This evidence can include pictures or videos of your visible injuries, damage to your car, skid marks on the road, and any other evidence that can help show what happened. Additionally, if people saw what happened, get their names and contact information. Their statements can help prove liability and damages.
- Do not agree to a settlement offer before speaking with an attorney: Many times, the insurance company representing the at-fault party may reach out to you and offer you a settlement amount. However, these first offers may barely cover your current expenses, let alone any future medical treatments and bills you will need help with. That is why it is in your best interest to let these insurance companies know that all communications will be through your attorney. This can help ensure that the insurance company does not try to pull one over on you, hoping that you jump at a chance to get easy money before realizing how much your case is worth.
- Contact an experienced truck accident attorney: Settlement negotiations are tedious, extremely detail-oriented, and may involve deceptive insurance companies that will try to do anything to deny your claim or provide you with as little money as possible. Do not fall for their tactics. Instead, let a knowledgeable truck accident attorney handle these complicated settlement negotiations and fight for a fair settlement amount.
If you were in a semi-truck accident, do not wait any longer. Contact an experienced truck accident attorney today and let them go after the settlement amount you deserve.