Anderson Truck Accident Lawyers You Can Count On
We handle claims involving crashes caused by tractor-trailers and big rigs
Knowing what to do after a serious truck accident caused by a commercial truck driver in Anderson, Indiana can be confusing. Different state and federal laws apply to accidents caused by tractor-trailers, delivery trucks and other commercial vehicles. There may be more than one at-fault party. The company the truck driver works for can be difficult to deal with after your accident.
When this happens, it’s critical that you have an experienced attorney on your side that knows what to do when it comes to commercial truck accidents. Otherwise, you might not get the money you deserve for medical care, vehicle repairs, lost income and other accident-related expenses.
Our dedicated legal team at Vaughan & Vaughan can help you every step of the way. Founded in 1913, our law firm has more than century of experience standing up for the rights of injury victims and their families. We know how the legal system works in Madison County and throughout Indiana. We have an in-depth understanding of the state and federal laws that apply to commercial truck accidents, including Title 49 of the Code of Federal Regulations. You can count on us when it matters most.
How did your accident happen?
Accidents caused by commercial truck drivers often occur because the driver was behaving in a reckless manner or there was negligence on the part of the trucking company. Some of the most common causes of commercial truck accidents include:
- Distracted driving, whether it’s talking to a dispatcher, looking up directions on a GPS or eating while driving.
- Texting while driving, which is against federal law for all drivers nationwide with a commercial driver’s license (CDL).
- Inexperience, especially in cases involving inexperienced truck drivers who misjudge their speed on a sharp curve or follow another vehicle too closely, often resulting in a jackknife, rollover or rear-end accident.
- Poor maintenance, especially in accidents involving defective brake lights, tire blowouts and improperly working brakes.
- Speeding, especially in cases involving highway truck accidents on interstates like I-69 or other roads frequently used by long-haul truckers.
- Falling asleep at the wheel, especially when truck drivers don’t take mandatory breaks as required by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration under federal Hours of Service (HOS) regulations.
Is this how your truck accident happened? Or did a truck driver do something else that resulted in your crash? Whatever the cause of your collision, don’t simply assume you will be fairly compensated just because a truck driver caused your accident. Be prepared for a tough legal battle for the financial compensation you deserve. Talk to an attorney as soon as possible to learn more about your legal rights.
What makes truck accidents different?
Different state and federal laws apply to accidents involving commercial truck drivers. Even who investigates such accidents can often be different than other motor vehicle accidents. In certain circumstances, federal investigators from the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) might be part of the accident investigation along with state and local police, especially in cases involving serious injuries or fatalities.
Perhaps the biggest difference involves important evidence related to your accident. In many cases, trucking companies have exclusive access to important accident data, including the truck driver’s Hours of Service (HOS) logs and data from the truck’s black box, also known as an event data recorder (EDR) or electronic control module (ECM). A truck’s black box, for example, records exactly how fast the truck was going at the time of your accident, along with when the driver last took a break and if the driver applied the brakes before your collision.
Trucking companies know this is valuable information that could determine the outcome of your case. The same is true with the trucking company’s hiring records (especially if the company knowingly hired a reckless driver), trucking company inspection reports (especially if there were any safety violations) and the truck driver’s driving history (especially if the driver previously caused other accidents).
Trucking companies are often reluctant to release information. They also know they only have to keep data for a short period of time (often a few months) before they can legally destroy it. This is why it’s critical that you have an experienced lawyer on your side. Your attorney can demand access to information and carefully review data in search of evidence in support of your claim.
What are my options?
Depending on the circumstances of your crash, you often have several options available when it comes to obtaining the money you deserve for your truck accident:
- Accept a settlement offer for your accident
- Ask for more money and negotiate a better settlement offer
- File a lawsuit or take other legal action demanding the money you deserve
The key to your case involves proving someone’s reckless or negligent behavior caused your accident. This is because Indiana has a fault-based insurance system. This means the at-fault party in a motor vehicle accident is responsible for compensating injury victims.
Normally, you obtain such money from one at-fault party, often the insurance company for the at-fault driver. Commercial truck accidents are different. In some cases, you may be able to be compensated by more than one at-fault party. Such individuals or companies may include:
- The truck driver
- The trucking company the driver works for
- The owner of the truck’s trailer in the case of a tractor-trailer accident
- The owner of the truck’s cab if it’s a different company
- The company that loaded the truck’s contents, especially if the contents shifted and caused your accident
- The company that manufactured the truck, especially if a defective product or mechanical defect caused your accident
Whatever the circumstances of your crash, an experienced attorney can explain the legal options available to you, then help you decide which approach makes the most sense based on your specific circumstances.
Take a stand after your truck accident. Contact our law firm in Anderson.
The clock is ticking after your truck accident. You only have two years from the date of your accident to file a lawsuit or take other legal action in Indiana. If you miss that deadline (known as the statute of limitations) you could miss out on your only opportunity to get the money you deserve for your accident expenses.
Don’t wait to take legal action. Talk to us right away. The sooner we can start working on your case, the better. That’s because the evidence you need can be destroyed or lost long before the statute of limitations expires. Whether it’s accident data in possession of the trucking company, accident debris at the crash site or statements from eyewitnesses who saw what happened, we will work tirelessly to find the facts you need to build a strong legal case.
Discover what we can do for you. Contact us and schedule a free consultation at our law firm’s Anderson office after your commercial truck accident. We’re conveniently located on Columbus Avenue near East 38th Street.