You’ve likely seen images or videos of the destruction a big rig truck can unleash in an accident with a car. Rather than major damage, you instead suffered minor damage after a minor accident with a commercial truck. You and the driver both have insurance, so you may not think it makes sense to hire a truck accident lawyer. Before making a final decision, get all the facts on the matter.
Justifying the Cost
You may hesitate to hire a legal representative because you worry about paying legal fees. The settlement you stand to receive from a minor accident case may not exceed the price you pay for a lawyer.
Before making a final decision, consider having a doctor look you over. Because of the size of commercial trucks, even a minor accident could cause major injuries. You may not notice much damage to your car, but that does not mean you did not suffer major injuries. Neglecting to hire legal representation could cost you more than you realize if you later discover you suffered whiplash, a spinal cord injury or a concussion. The only way you may learn whether you emerged from the incident unscathed is with a physician’s help.
Reasons to Schedule a Consultation With a Truck Accident Lawyer
If you cannot decide whether to hire a truck accident lawyer, scheduling a consultation with a legal representative could give you peace of mind. That way, you protect your legal rights, know your claim’s worth, and address anxieties you experience about your situation. Here are instances where it makes sense for truck accident victims to meet with a lawyer for a consultation.
Trouble With the Insurance Company
After a minor motor vehicle accident, you may have major trouble with the truck driver’s insurance company. Perhaps the insurance provider responded with low-ball offers that do not cover your car repair or medical treatment bills. Depending on the severity of your injuries, you could have future medical costs and physical rehabilitation to consider. If the truck driver’s insurance company does not pay what it knows it should, you may be better off securing legal representation.
Multiple Liable Parties
Even though the truck driver was behind the wheel during the accident, another party could bear responsibility for the resulting damage. Truck accidents sometimes involve multiple parties. Other than the driver, the truck’s owner, the shipping company, the truck’s maintenance crew and the truck manufacturer could have a part to play in the collision. Your accident may involve several insurance policies. If poorly maintained roads caused the accident, you may even have a case against the local municipality in charge of roadway upkeep.
Because a single truck accident may involve multiple moving parts, a truck accident lawyer could be the only professional qualified to handle your case. Lawyers put their experience and resources to use in determining which parties bear liability for your accident. While your lawyer gathers evidence, you focus on recovering from your injuries.
Legal matters involve deadlines. Not only may you need to submit legal paperwork by a specific deadline, but insurance companies set deadlines on how long a person has to file a claim. States have statutes of limitations, which are deadlines for taking legal action against at-fault parties. If you cannot reach an agreement with an insurance company for a fair settlement, you may want to pursue a personal injury lawsuit. If so, you must follow state civil code and federal trucking regulations.
Nothing To Lose
You could receive a free phone or in-person consultation from a truck accident lawyer. Knowing you do not need to pay for the initial meeting could make your life and legal situation less stressful. After your consultation, the lawyer lets you know whether it would make sense to secure legal representation. Consultations are also when lawyers break down their rates and strategies for helping potential clients. If you turn your case over to a lawyer paid on a contingency basis, that means the fee comes out of your compensation or settlement. Usually, you do not commit to hiring an attorney if you arrange a consultation.
Reasons to Hire a Truck Accident Lawyer
After a consultation, you may want to move forward with hiring a truck accident lawyer. Here are several ways legal representatives help truck accident victims.
Even if you and your car sustained minor damage in a truck accident, you still deserve to get every penny of compensation the at-fault party (or parties) owe you. Working with a lawyer may increase your chances of receiving increased compensation. You may miss work while waiting on car repairs, or your injury may take longer to heal than your doctor expected. Either way, the time it takes for you to return to your usual routine may be longer than you think.
Say you skip hiring a lawyer and handle all aspects of your truck accident alone. Even if the accident site illustrates fault lies with the truck driver, your insurance claim still needs strong evidence. You may not know all the details, images, professional witnesses and documents to gather to strengthen your case and claim. This lack of knowledge could cost you more than you realize.
Could you bear partial blame for the truck accident? The insurance company or the truck driver’s employer could try to weaken your case and claim you bear responsibility for your injuries. If you do not know whether your state follows comparative or contributory negligence laws, you may now know how to proceed on your own.
If you stand to receive economic damages after your truck accident, you may also stand to receive non-economic damages, too. While you and your lawyer must do more than gather medical and repair bills to prove non-economic damages, the work could increase your compensation.
Examples of non-economic damages include emotional anguish, pain, reputational damage, humiliation, worsening of prior injuries, loss of enjoyment of life and loss of consortium. Injuries sustained during the truck accident could put you in a world of constant pain, making it agonizing to perform everyday tasks. For instance, you may experience shooting pain while making dinner for your family, standing, playing with your dog or climbing stairs. You may no longer engage in your favorite hobbies or activities because of your pain.
Trucking Industry Regulations
How many hours had the truck driver been on the road when your accident occurred? Commercial drivers must follow special trucking industry rules and regulations. These rules and regulations address weight limits, working hours and rest time. When drivers violate these rules, they put others on the road at risk.
Truck accident lawyers know the latest federal and state trucking industry regulations. The more violations, the better your chances of proving liability, which means you could receive more compensation. Not knowing regulations and violations while tackling your truck accident claim alone could mean you leave money on the table.
Schedule Your Free Case Review
You cannot afford to waste time after a truck accident, no matter how minor. Hensley Legal Group wants to help protect your rights and make sure liable parties pay for their negligence. To schedule a free case review, submit an online form. If you prefer, call us at 317-472-3333.