When The Going Gets Tough,
The Tough Get Bowen

Truck Accident Lawyers

On Behalf of | Oct 5, 2023 | Personal Injury

Were you seriously injured in a truck accident caused by someone else? The Bowen Law Firm’s truck accident lawyers are so sorry for what you are going through. We can’t know the pain you are experiencing, but we can shoulder the stress of pursuing a legal case for you. Our experienced lawyers have helped many people like you get the full and fair compensation they deserve for their truck accident injuries. Call us at 713-574-7777 for your free consultation today and let us get you started down the road to justice.

How to Tell if You Have a Case

As you recover from your accident injuries, you are likely not only recovering physically, but also coming to terms mentally and emotionally with your injuries and with the impact it may have on your future. It’s natural to feel overwhelmed right now, especially with the idea of adding an accident claim to everything else you are dealing with. If you don’t know where to start and aren’t even sure you have a truck accident case, let us help. Call for your free consultation today. Our knowledgeable lawyers know how to sift through the details of your case to give you guidance to make the right decision.

When looking at all the possibilities of accidents involving commercial trucks, one of the biggest causes of accidents between cars and 18-wheelers is error on the part of the truck driver. These encompass (but aren’t limited to) things like equipment problems, drug use, distracted driving, bald tires, defective brakes, and driver fatigue.

Trucking companies are required to test their drivers for drug and alcohol use to qualify for employment, and random drug tests are required for on-duty drivers. Trucking companies must also test a driver involved in an accident that results in a fatality.

The state’s department of transportation sets the regulations for truckers with regard to everything from inspections to issuing licenses, and state laws dictate speed limits and even sleep requirements for commercial truckers. There are many aspects to a truck accident case, as well as many potential liable parties. Call our truck accident lawyers to give you guidance and clarification on the specific aspects of your case.

The liable party’s insurance company is going to show up with a team of lawyers intent on protecting their interests, which include paying out as little as possible for claims. You need to know that it’s tougher to prove liability after an accident with a truck than it is for a car-to-car collision. Our truck accident lawyers have encountered cases just like yours and want to get you the full compensation you deserve. We are dedicated to protecting your rights and fighting to bring you justice. Call today for your free initial consultation.

What’s the Value of Your Truck Accident Case?

If you’re considering opening a truck accident case, it’s understandable to want to know what the case is worth. The answer will hinge on many factors, including the details of your specific case and the strength of the evidence against the liable party. Our lawyers know how to investigate and record evidence in truck accident cases to build a solid foundation for your case. The sooner they can begin, the stronger your case will be. If you have questions about the value of your truck accident case, contact our Truck accident lawyers today. We’re here to help you get the compensation you deserve.

What Type of Damages Are Available?

When pursuing damages in a truck accident case, two types will be considered. The first is economic. Like it sounds, this type has to do with damage you have incurred to your financial circumstances, by way of medical expenses and lost wages due to inability to work now and in the future. These things can be estimated based on information you already have, such as accident-related medical bills and pre-accident wage information.

Non-economic damages are more subjective, and they things like the emotional impact of the accident, pain and suffering, and loss of the quality of life now and in the future. These things may be more difficult to quantify but are no less important than economic damages.

Your truck accident lawyers know how to pull all of this information together to ensure that you receive as full and fair compensation as possible for your losses. Ask our truck accident lawyers if you have questions about the types of damages available for your case, including whether the circumstances make punitive damages an option. These are intended to punish the liable party if they acted in bad faith, for example, if they were blatantly reckless, dishonest, or intended to harm.

Is There a Limit on Damages for My Case?

Some states place a limit, or cap, on certain types of compensation. In some States, the limit on the time period allowed to file a truck accident claim is two years from the date of the accident. Some States have shorter time limits; therefore, you should hire a truck accident lawyer as soon as possible.

If the case is being brought against a government entity or employee, the window is even smaller and you may have only six months to file a claim. In addition, the claim cannot be filed against the state government as a whole, but must be filed against the specific government department or entity involved in the accident. If you have questions about filing a case against a party or department that is affiliated with the government, contact our truck accident lawyers as soon as possible for your free consultation.

Who Are the Liable Parties in a Trucking Accident?

The many potential liable parties involved in a trucking accident make truck accident cases more challenging than a collision that is between two cars. Here are some of the potentially liable parties:

  • The owner of the truck/trailer
  • A local government or contractor that works in highway maintenance or design
  • The cargo loader
  • The truck manufacturer/parts manufacturer
  • The truckdriver.

Even though the truck driver works for a trucking company, the driver can be sued if the accident was caused by speeding, distracted driving, or fatigued driving— behaviors which are considered negligent. The driver can also be considered at least partly negligent if the accident involved a maintenance issue or cargo that shifted, unbalancing the load. Both the correct loading of cargo and the inspection of the trucks are often responsibilities of the driver. Even if this is the case, your lawyer will likely consider including the trucking company in the claim or another liable parties, as the driver’s insurance may not be sufficient to provide adequate compensation.

Do I have a Case if the Driver Owns the Truck?

The short answer is Yes. The court will determine who is liable after assessing the relationship between driver and trucking company. Even if the driver is determined to be an independent contractor, this won’t necessarily excuse the trucking company from liability.

A few of the questions that factor in to deciding whether or not the trucking company is liable in addition to the driver are:

  • Is the arrangement between driver and trucking company exclusive, or can the driver have contracts with other trucking companies?
  • Can the driver refuse to haul a particular load, or must they accept all assignments?
  • Is the driver’s schedule set by the trucking company with regard to routes and hours?
  • How much control does the company exercise over the driver?
  • How is the driver paid by the trucking company?
  • Does the trucking company hide behind the driver’s status as an independent contractor to protect it from liability even despite the driver fulfilling all the same duties that would be performed by an employee?

Federal law states that the company that owns the trucking permit is responsible for the accidents of trucks that display the company name, sign, or DOT number. This is true whether the driver is an independent contractor or employee.

If you have questions about who the liable parties are in a trucking accident that you were injured by, contact our truck accident lawyers for a free consultation.

Making a Case for Success

While there are many elements of a trucking accident injury that make these cases unique, there are things that are important to remember whether your accident is with a commercial truck or a car. Keep these common mistakes in mind to help ensure you have the strongest truck accident case possible.

Don’t Skip the Medical Check

Right after an accident with a truck, some people don’t realize they are injured, and they put off going to the emergency room or skip it entirely. This is a mistake, both for safeguarding your health as well as for the strength of your case.

The stress and trauma of an accident can leave you somewhat desensitized because of the stress hormones flooding your body. While these were meant to give you a burst of energy in the days when running from a saber-toothed cat was a very real necessity, it can also make you less sensitive to pain right after an accident. If you skip the hospital as a result, the health risks can be significant. You are the primary concern immediately following an accident, so don’t talk yourself out of getting checked out by medical professionals right away.

Going to the hospital has the additional benefit of establishing a timeline and record of the accident. Believe it or not, the insurance company will probably capitalize on your failure to seek medical attention after an accident, using it as evidence that you weren’t injured to the degree you claim. If you wait too long, they may even get away with saying you weren’t injured on the day of the accident. Any injuries you do exhibit could have happened in the days or weeks following the accident, they might claim.

Don’t give the insurance company the wiggle room to get away with sliding out of paying you the compensation you deserve. Another way to prevent them from doing this is to avoid the mistake of giving them a recorded statement after the accident. They will almost certainly attempt to speak to you. The insurance company is not being friendly— they are working to gather information they can use to reduce the value of your claim or shut it down entirely. Even if a recorded statement you provide doesn’t necessarily reduce the value of your claim, they can use what you’ve said to make you think it will, and try to get you to commit a third mistake, accepting a lowball settlement.

When you are still trying to get your life back to normal after a traumatic accident with a commercial truck, you can count on feeling vulnerable. You will likely be healing emotionally as well as physically. The overwhelmed, vulnerable place you are in is not a place from which to deal with the insurance company. Your best bet is to not even speak to them. Our truck accident lawyers are experienced in anticipating and dealing with insurance company tactics. Call us today and let us communicate with them for you. We want to protect your rights and get you the full and fair compensation you deserve.

Call Our Truck Accident Lawyers

If you’ve been seriously injured in an accident with a commercial truck due to someone else’s negligence or carelessness, take care of yourself. Get medical attention right away and call our truck accident lawyers as quickly as possible. The Bowen Law Firm knows how to sort through the complex details of truck accident cases. We can’t take away your physical pain as you heal, but we can help take the strain of getting justice off of your shoulders. Call us today to get started. We have the knowledge and resources to conduct a solid accident investigation, plan your case strategy, and handle the paperwork. We’ll take on communications with the insurance company on your behalf, and if necessary, we’ll go to trial and fight to protect your rights. Call 713-574-7777 today.