What Does A Truck Accident Lawyer Do?
If you suffered injuries in a truck accident, you might be entitled to compensation. However, in order to obtain financial compensation, you need to understand who can be held liable for the accident. Tennessee is no stranger to devastating truck crashes. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), over 1,200 people died in truck accidents in Tennessee between 2008 and 2018. A truck accident lawyer can investigate your crash, identify liable parties, gather evidence, negotiate with insurance companies, and handle all other aspects of the claims process to help you pursue the compensation to which you are entitled. Consider speaking with our Nashville truck accident attorneys at Labrum Law to discuss your case by calling us at (615) 338-9500 and schedule a free case review.
How Can a Nashville Truck Accident Lawyer Help?
In most cases, when a truck driver is involved in an accident, the trucker's employer – the trucking company – will do everything to avoid liability and save money. Trucking companies hire some of the most aggressive lawyers to defend them against liability claims and lawsuits filed by accident victims.
People who suffer injuries in truck accidents should consider having legal counsel on their side to stand up to large trucking companies. If you were a victim of a truck accident, you might want to visit with a lawyer to learn more about your rights and ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve. An experienced truck accident lawyer will handle all aspects of your claim and prove liability. Your attorney will communicate with trucking and insurance companies to represent your best interests and ensure that you do not settle for less than your claim is worth.
Determining Liability for the Trucking Accident
Determining liability in a truck accident case is more complicated than establishing fault in a collision involving two passenger cars because there can be multiple liable parties. Even if it seems that the truck driver is the only at-fault party, you could potentially be able to hold other parties responsible for your injuries and damages.
The following parties may be held liable for causing or contributing to your truck accident:
- The truck driver
- The trucking company that employed the trucker
- The company responsible for shipping and loading the cargo
- The manufacturer of the 18-wheeler, tractor-trailer, semi-truck, or another truck
- A government agency responsible for road maintenance
A trucking company can be held liable for the crash if it classified the truck driver as their employee. If the trucker works as an independent contractor, they may have a more difficult time holding the trucking company liable for the accident, however it is still possible depending on the facts and circumstances of your case. An experienced truck accident lawyer will investigate your accident and determine if the company misclassified the trucker in an attempt to avoid liability for crashes.
Building a Strong Case
While you focus on your recovery after a truck accident, a trucking accident lawyer will do all of the following things to build a strong case on your behalf:
- Investigate the crash and gather all available evidence, including photos from the accident scene, video surveillance footage, the driver's logbooks, data from the vehicle's black box, expert testimony, and other pieces of evidence.
- Compile your medical bills and documentation of other expenses related to your injury.
- Identify all liable parties in your case.
- Handle all communications with the trucking company, insurance companies, and other parties.
- Negotiate a fair settlement with the insurance company.
- If the insurer refuses to settle for a reasonable amount, take your case to trial.
Your truck accident attorney will prepare and file all relevant paperwork in your case so you can rest and focus on getting better.
Proving Your Truck Accident Case
While seeking compensation after a truck accident might seem like a straightforward process, an injured victim may face a number of challenges when fighting for financial compensation. One of the potential challenges is proving the other party's negligence.
If the truck driver's negligent conduct caused the collision, your lawyer must prove the following elements of a personal injury claim:
- The trucker owed you a duty of care;
- The truck driver acted negligently and breached the duty of care;
- The breach resulted in the truck accident; and
- You suffered injuries and losses in the crash.
Once you establish these elements, you may be entitled to compensation for the economic and non-economic damages incurred in the collision with a large truck.
Negotiating with Insurance Companies
According to a report by the FMCSA, the average total cost per victim after an accident with a truck trailer is over $780,000 for incapacitating injuries or nearly $130,000 if the injury is non-incapacitating. These costs include medical bills, property damage, and compensation for diminished/lost earning capacity.
Because truck accidents often lead to catastrophic injuries and devastating financial costs, insurance companies may be reluctant to pay the full amount despite the fact that trucking companies must purchase higher liability insurance coverage than drivers of passenger vehicles.
Dealing with an insurance company in the aftermath of a truck collision can be a frustrating and overwhelming process. An insurer may attempt to make a settlement offer that would not cover all your reasonable expenses and losses. For this reason, you might need a skilled truck accident lawyer by your side to handle negotiations with the insurance company and fight for the settlement amount you deserve.
If no settlement is reached, your lawyer may recommend filing a lawsuit against the trucking company, insurance company, or other liable parties to recover the maximum amount.
Consider Seeking Legal Counsel Today
If you or someone in your family sustained injuries in a truck accident, you might face physical, financial, and emotional burdens while recovering from injuries. Consider contacting a knowledgeable attorney to help alleviate some of your hardships in the aftermath of a truck crash. Speak with our Nashville truck accident lawyers at Labrum Law to review your particular situation and start building a strong case to pursue the compensation you need to pay your medical bills and make a full recovery. Call for your free consultation today and visit with our legal team at (615) 338-9500.