Commercial vehicles are everywhere and can be involved in collisions just like any other car. However, the companies that own these vehicles are likely to put up a fight when it’s time to pay for the damage caused by their drivers.
Trying to hold a business accountable for its actions can be challenging. These corporations tend to employ entire teams of attorneys to defend their interests, making it hard for accident victims to take on these giants on their own.
An Indiana truck accident lawyer can be your best ally in such a situation. The attorneys of Vaughan and Vaughan have the resources and expertise to take on big corporations and protect your rights in cases involving commercial vehicles.
What Is a Commercial Vehicle?
Many of the vehicles we see on the road are owned by businesses or agencies. These commercial vehicles bring their goods and services to people and other businesses. Any vehicle that is owned and operated for business purposes can be considered a commercial vehicle.
Examples of commercial vehicles include:
- Fuel Trucks
- Delivery Vans
- Cargo Trucks
- Mail Trucks
- Construction Vehicles, cement trucks, dump trucks
- 18- Wheelers, semi trucks, tractor trailers
- Buses, Cabs, Taxis, and rideshares
Sometimes the rush to deliver on a tight schedule can cause the drivers of these cars to make mistakes. Other times a lack of maintenance or a faulty vehicle part can cause a crash.
If you’ve been hurt in a collision with a delivery truck or other commercial vehicle in Indiana, an experienced attorney can help you find the cause and work to hold the negligent driver or other responsible parties accountable for your injuries and property damage.
Liability in Commercial Vehicle Crashes Can Be Complicated
Different types of negligence can cause a commercial vehicle accident. The driver may not be properly trained to drive the vehicle, which is often more difficult to handle than a typical passenger car. Or the driver may have been speeding, distracted while driving, or under the influence of alcohol or other drugs.
The company that owns the vehicle can also be negligent. It may have failed to provide proper training for the driver. Or it may have given the driver an unrealistic delivery schedule. The company is also responsible for maintaining its vehicles properly and promptly making necessary repairs.
But proving negligence after an accident involving a commercial vehicle can be difficult. Neither the driver nor the company is likely to admit responsibility. An Indiana commercial vehicle attorney can evaluate and present the evidence to prove your claim of negligence.
The Insurance Company Isn’t on Your Side
When you are looking for payment for your damages and losses, the insurance companies aren’t likely to be much help, either. They are mainly concerned with keeping payouts as low as possible to improve their profit margins.
In some cases, they may appear to be friendly and helpful, but the goal is to minimize their liability and payouts as much as possible. There are some signs that you may be getting the runaround from the insurance adjuster.
If you don’t feel you are being treated fairly, it can benefit you to seek legal representation from a commercial vehicle accident lawyer in Indiana.
Some signs that you may need help from an attorney include:
- Saying you’re to blame for your own injuries
- Giving false information regarding your legal protections
- Ignoring your calls and emails
- Requiring you to fill out pointless, lengthy paperwork
- Pestering you with calls and emails in an attempt to get you to settle for an inadequate offer
- Persuading you to participate in recording a statement
- Misleading you about the policy’s conditions
- Asking you leading questions to make you legally vulnerable
- A complete denial of your claim
When you are injured in an accident involving a commercial vehicle, it is important to realize that insurance companies are in the business of preserving their bottom line. An Indiana commercial vehicle accident lawyer can help protect your rights and ensure you get the compensation you deserve.
Statute of Limitations for a Commercial Car Accident Claim in the State of Indiana
The statute of limitations is described in Indiana Code section 34-11-2-4. The amount of time you have to file a personal injury lawsuit in Indiana is two years. This means that if more than two years have passed since the date of your accident, you will be barred from filing a lawsuit.
It is important to remember this time limit because there are multiple steps to take before you can file your lawsuit, and these steps can take time. There are certain circumstances under which the statute of limitations might differ, meaning that you could have either more or less than the 2-year time limit to file your lawsuit.
To best preserve your right to collect compensation, it is important to seek legal advice from a commercial vehicle accident lawyer in Indiana right away in order to determine whether or not you still have time to take legal action or collect compensation from the insurance company.
Compensation Available After a Commercial Vehicle Accident in Indiana
If you’ve been hurt in a car crash in Indiana, you could be eligible for financial compensation. This can include damages for:
Depending on the severity of your injuries, these expenses can add up quickly. Medical bills can include things like hospital stays, doctor visits, physical therapy, medications, mobility devices, and home health care.
Your medical bills may be overwhelming if you have suffered TBI, spinal cord injuries, amputation, or other severe injuries. To ensure your ability to collect fair compensation for your medical expenses, working with a commercial vehicle accident attorney in Indiana is important.
Your car and personal belongings were likely damaged in the crash. You can be compensated for the costs associated with replacing or repairing your lost property.
The time you were unable to work due to the treatment and recovery from your accident-related injuries should be compensated. This can also include the loss of future earnings.
Diminished Earning Capacity
Diminished earning capacity is a legal term used to describe the decreased ability of an individual to earn money due to an injury or illness. This can be caused by physical impairments, mental health issues, or other factors that limit a person’s ability to work and make money.
When someone has suffered a serious injury in a commercial vehicle accident, they may be eligible for compensation for their diminished earning capacity.
Pain and Suffering
In some cases, a victim may be eligible for compensation for the physical and emotional pain they have suffered due to their injuries. This can include compensation for mental anguish, loss of enjoyment of life, and other non-economic damages.
After a car accident, it can be difficult to know how to proceed. We’re here to ensure you get the recompense you need after all your losses. In order to determine the appropriate amount of compensation, your Indiana commercial truck accident lawyer will examine the specifics of your case.
How an Indiana Commercial Vehicle Accident Attorney Can Help Your Personal Injury Claim
Your lawyer will take on many roles and duties as your legal advocate. Motor vehicle accident victims often have their hands full, simply trying to meet physical recovery demands and handling their day-to-day expenses and tasks.
The benefits of having a personal injury lawyer handle your accident claim include:
- A lawyer can take on all of the legal details, handle correspondence, and communicate with the other parties involved.
- If you’ve been injured in an auto accident involving a trucking company or other commercial vehicle in Indiana, a lawyer can help you understand your legal options and defend your rights.
- We can assist you in compiling and arranging evidence to support your claim. They may also send a letter to remind the defendant that tampering with evidence is illegal to preserve the critical information needed to prove your case.
- An accomplished lawyer will be well-versed in the Indiana statutes and rules pertaining to incidents involving commercial vehicles and will be able to effectively advocate on your behalf.
- Lawyers can assist you in negotiating with insurers to obtain a satisfactory payment for your injuries and other losses.
- If your matter gets to trial, your attorney can represent you and fight for your best interests as your advocate.
If you hire a commercial car accident attorney in Indiana, you can relax knowing that your case is in the hands of a competent advocate while you focus on getting better.
Lawyers Can Help Gather Critical Evidence
Even if your claim does not go to court, having the right evidence can help prove your claim and act as a motivator for the insurance company to pay its fair share.
In the event of a commercial automobile accident, lawyers would often gather a wide range of evidence to use in constructing a case for their client. The following are examples of possible evidence:
The officer’s account of the incident, including such details as the time, place, and weather, can be invaluable. Details such as who was cited or arrested and what their accounts of the events were, will also be included.
Photographs and Videos
Accident scenes, damaged automobiles, and injuries are frequently documented by attorneys with the aid of photo and video evidence. This can come from dash cams, witness cell phones, surveillance video, or traffic cameras in the area.
This can be useful in proving the full extent of the injuries and damage suffered to obtain compensation.
Statements from Witnesses
Lawyers will also try to interview anyone who observed the incident unfold. These statements might be used as evidence to prove fault or provide insight into what transpired.
The injured party’s medical records, detailing the nature and severity of their injuries, the care they got, and their prognosis, will be gathered by the attorneys representing them. This is crucial for proving financial losses such as medical bills and time off work when filing a lawsuit.
EDR and Black Box Data
Some semi trucks, delivery vehicles, government vehicles, and other commercial vehicles have black box data in the form of an EDR. The EDR is also known as an Electronic Data Recorder and it may include information about the driver’s behavior or the car’s functions in the moments prior to the crash.
Expert Witness Testimony
Lawyers may hire specialists in several fields to submit reports, such as those of accident reconstructionist specialists and medical professionals.
Insurance Policy Documentation Review
Documents from the responsible party’s insurance policy will also be examined by attorneys in order to determine the extent of their client’s financial protection.
Keep in mind that the attorney will adjust the evidence-gathering method based on the specifics of your case and the type and amount of evidence required.
Contact a Commercial Vehicle Accident Law Firm in Indiana Today
A truck accident involving a commercial vehicle can be complicated. The driver of the commercial vehicle may have been negligent, but the company that owns the vehicle and hired the driver may also share some of the blame.
It’s important to have a legal team on your side to ensure that the right parties are held accountable and that you receive the maximum compensation possible.
The personal injury attorneys at Vaughan & Vaughan can help you to identify the liable parties and fight for your financial recovery. Contact us today for a free case evaluation to learn how we may be able to help you.