If you’ve been involved in an accident with a large commercial truck, you’ll quickly discover that it is far different than a normal auto accident and that you’ll likely need to consult with a Dallas truck accident attorney.
When a 30,000-pound 18-wheeler collides with a regular vehicle, the magnitude of these accidents can be far more devastating than your run-of-the-mill auto accident. You may be dealing with life-altering injuries, your car may be completely totaled, or worse, you may have to cope with the loss of a loved one.
If you want to ensure the at-fault truck driver and the trucking company are held responsible, you’ll need to know what rights you have and how best to proceed. However, trucking accidents are more complex than standard auto accidents. There are federal and state trucking laws at play, and if your losses are particularly severe, you’ll likely be facing a team of defense lawyers that will try to shift the blame away from their drivers in order to save the company money.
Here are five reasons why you should at the very least consult with an attorney after a trucking accident, specifically one who has experience in handling these complex claims.
You Need to Level the Playing Field Against Trucking Companies
Many semi-trucks and commercial trucks are part of big brands and companies, some of which have a nationwide and even international reach. Because of this, these companies will most likely have legal teams and insurance policies to make sure they don’t lose much profit if something happens. Unless you’re a millionaire, most people simply do not have the same legal and financial resources to match them. That’s why having an experienced personal injury attorney can make the legal proceedings of a trucking accident much easier, as they’re going to be able to represent you against the at-fault party’s legal team and can help level the playing field.
They Might Try to Short-Change You
Protecting their bottom line and avoiding court are goals of many of these companies and sometimes they offer a lower settlement than what is fair. They know that this tactic might work if you’re out of work or struggling to pay all the mounting medical bills. This is where hiring a Dallas truck accident attorney can pay off in spades.
An attorney can help develop and demonstrate the full extent of your injuries and the resulting damages. This includes both economic damages (lost wages, medical bills, etc.) and non-economic damages (pain and suffering, mental anguish, etc.). Most importantly, an attorney will review settlement offers and won’t let you sign off on anything until you understand the full extent of your losses and how they might impact the rest of your life.
There Are Complex Federal and State Trucking Laws At Play
Federal regulatory agencies and state agencies both have specific rules governing trucking companies and truck driver behavior. These rules cover all manner of subjects, from how long drivers can go between breaks to special rules under hazardous driving conditions to who can be held liable in the event of an accident.
Knowing these rules and laws is essential if you want to put together the strongest claim possible against the truck driver, their employer, and anyone else who might be liable for damages. Not all personal injury attorneys are familiar with these complex regulations, however. A personal injury attorney with experience in handling these cases is well-versed in all the relevant statutes and regulations surrounding truck accidents, which means they’re in a better position to handle your claim compared to your average personal injury attorney.
You Might Need to Hold Multiple Parties Liable
The most obvious parties who could be held liable for damages in a truck accident claim are the driver and the trucking company they work for, right? However, depending on the circumstances of your accident, there may be additional parties who are liable for your injuries, including:
- The owner of the truck and trailer;
- The owner of the cargo;
- The shipping company;
- The truck maintenance company; and
- The equipment manufacturer, among others.
To make sure everyone who may be liable for your injuries is held accountable, you want a knowledgeable truck accident attorney who will thoroughly investigate your claim and determine how many parties may be responsible for your accident.
They'll Handle Negotiations So You Can Focus On Recovering
Truck accident claims are a time-consuming, rigorous legal process. There are many legal issues to deal with, paperwork to be done, and lots of lawyers and insurance adjusters to talk to. If you’ve recently been involved in a truck accident, you’re likely not in any condition to handle these complex proceedings. You need to focus on healing and getting back to normal, as best you can.
As you’re recovering, your truck accident attorney can handle all the necessary legal communication, gathering evidence, performing legal research, and negotiating a possible settlement while preparing your case for trial (should that become necessary). They’ll keep you informed while you recuperate, and they can answer any questions you might have along the way.
Discuss Your Case With an Experienced Dallas Truck Accident Attorney
At The Law Offices of Tim O’Hare, we understand the emotional, physical and financial toll that an accident can take on the whole family. If you were struck by a truck driver, and have questions about your case and whether or not you’re entitled to compensation, Dallas truck accident lawyers are here to help.
Our attorneys are well-versed in navigating complex trucking laws and have recovered millions in truck accident payouts for our clients. Contact us to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.