Semi trucks are everywhere. The shipping of goods in these vehicles plays an essential role in our economy. However, while necessary, these vehicles also increase the danger of being out on the road. Because semi trucks are far larger and heavier than the average passenger vehicle, their ability to cause damage in a crash is extensive.
At the law offices of Vaughan & Vaughan, our team of Indianapolis truck accident lawyers can help you recover the money you need after a crash. Our law firm has been in the business of helping accident victims get fair compensation for their injuries for more than a century. Contact our Indianapolis semi truck accident lawyers by phone or through our online form to schedule a free case evaluation today.
Determining Liability Following a Semi Truck Accident
Determining liability is a critical step in seeking justice and compensation after a semi truck accident. It involves identifying who is responsible for the collision and proving their negligence or wrongful actions. To determine liability, a semi truck accident lawyer will thoroughly investigate the circumstances surrounding the accident.
A lawyer will consider various factors to determine liability, such as driver negligence, improper truck maintenance, violations of federal regulations, or the actions of other involved parties. They will gather evidence to build a strong case and establish the negligence or liability of the responsible parties.
Determining liability is crucial because it allows the injured party to hold the at-fault party accountable for their actions. It also increases the chances of obtaining fair compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, and other losses resulting from the accident.
Damages You Can Claim Following a Semi Truck Accident
After suffering an injury in a semi truck accident, identifying all the damages you are eligible to pursue is critical. Without identifying all the damages that apply to your case, you will be unable to recover the full value of your claim.
Fortunately, hiring an Indianapolis semi truck accident attorney can help. Your attorney will be able to review the losses you suffered and determine all the damages that apply to your case. All recoverable damages are split among three primary categories.
Any losses caused by your accident that negatively affect your finances are categorized as economic damages. Some of the economic damages available in many semi truck accident cases include:
- Medical costs
- Future medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Diminished earning ability
- Property damage
- Any money paid to accomplish daily tasks that your injuries prevent you from completing yourself
Every other loss resulting from your 18-wheeler accident falls into the broad category of non-economic damages. Non-economic damages are far more personal and often profoundly impact the life of a truck accident victim.
Some of the non-economic damages available in many semi truck accident cases include:
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of companionship (wrongful death in the case of fatal crashes)
- Emotional distress
- Mental anguish
- Permanent disability
- Lowered quality of life
- Loss of consortium
Punitive damages differ significantly from economic and non-economic damages. Instead of focusing on the losses incurred by the accident victim, the purpose of punitive damages is to punish the at-fault party for the role they played in causing the accident. Punitive damages are designed to work as a deterrent, preventing similar behavior in the future.
These damages are only available in extreme cases. In order for a judge to award punitive damages, the liable party must have intended to cause harm or acted with gross negligence.
Don’t Let the Clock Run Out Before You File Your Semi Truck Accident Lawsuit, Indiana
When attempting to recover damages by suing the liable party after a semi truck accident, you must pay attention to the amount of time you have to file a lawsuit. According to the personal injury statute of limitations, accident victims have up to two years to file a lawsuit against the negligent party. Missing this deadline will likely bar you from pursuing compensation.
Although this time limit is typically quite rigid, certain exceptions apply. Depending on the details of your case, you may be able to sue the liable party long after the standard deadline. That’s why it is essential that you speak with an experienced truck accident attorney about your case, even if you believe you are no longer eligible to recover damages.
Of course, the deadline for filing can also shift in the other direction. The circumstances surrounding your accident could significantly shorten the amount of time you have to submit your lawsuit. Hiring a semi truck accident attorney as soon as possible after your crash is the best way to avoid losing your right to claim damages because of an unexpected deadline.
Understanding the Severity of Semi Truck Accidents
Semi truck accidents are not your average car accidents. These collisions involve massive vehicles weighing up to 80,000 pounds, making them much more dangerous and severe. The sheer size and weight of these trucks can cause catastrophic injuries and damage, resulting in devastation and even fatalities.
The severity of semi truck accidents is amplified by the force of impact they produce. Due to their weight and momentum, these trucks have a much longer stopping distance and take longer to come to a complete stop. When a collision occurs, the force of impact is much greater, causing more extensive damage to both the large commercial vehicle and any other cars involved.
In addition, the cargo that semi trucks carry can also contribute to the severity of accidents. If the cargo is hazardous materials or flammable substances, it can lead to explosions or chemical spills, posing an even greater risk to everyone involved. You may be able to sue the trucking company in this case.
Hire a Semi Truck Accident Lawyer
It’s important to understand the severity of semi truck accidents because it highlights the urgent need for legal representation and compensation.
The injuries sustained in these accidents can be life-altering, requiring extensive medical treatment and rehabilitation. Additionally, the financial burden of medical bills, lost wages, and property damage can be overwhelming.
How do Semi Truck Accidents Happen?
Semi truck accidents can occur for a variety of reasons, and understanding how they happen is essential in navigating the legal system after such a traumatic event.
- Driver fatigue: Trucking companies require long hours on the road, which can lead to drowsiness and a decrease in reaction time, putting both the truck driver and other motorists at risk.
- Distracted driving/driver error: Whether it’s texting, eating, or simply not paying attention to the road. Semi trucks require more time and distance to stop, so any distractions can have severe consequences.
- Poor vehicle maintenance: Malfunctioning brakes, worn-out tires, or faulty lighting systems can all lead to dangerous situations on the road. Additionally, overloaded or improperly loaded trucks can affect the vehicle’s stability and make it more difficult for the driver to control.
- Speeding: The size and weight of these trucks make it harder for them to slow down or stop in time to avoid a collision. If a driver is going too fast, it increases the likelihood of an accident and makes the impact more severe.
Understanding how these commercial vehicle accidents happen is crucial in holding the responsible parties accountable and seeking compensation for the victims. A trucking accident attorney can help gather evidence and build a strong case to fight for the justice and compensation victims deserve.
What a Semi Truck Accident Attorney Can Do for You
Navigating the legal system after a semi truck accident can be overwhelming and complex. That’s why one of the most significant benefits of hiring an experienced Indianapolis semi truck accident lawyer is their ability to handle the legal aspects of your case, allowing you to focus on your recovery and healing.
Guidance and Support
A semi truck accident lawyer will provide guidance and support throughout the entire process. They have extensive knowledge of truck accident law and understand the complexities involved in these types of cases. They will explain your rights and help you understand the legal options available to you, ensuring that you make informed decisions.
Handling Communication and Negotiation
A lawyer will handle all communication with insurance companies on your behalf. Dealing with insurance companies can be intimidating and overwhelming, especially when you’re recovering from serious injuries.
Your lawyer will navigate the claims process, ensuring that your claim is properly evaluated and that you receive the full compensation you deserve.
Investigating the Accident
Our team understands the complexities of the trucking industry and will hold the responsible parties accountable for their actions. This includes not only the truck driver but also the trucking company, maintenance providers, and any other parties that may have contributed to the accident.
In the event that a fair settlement cannot be reached through negotiations, a lawyer will be prepared to take your case to court. They will present a compelling case in front of a judge and jury, fighting for your rights and maximizing your chances of obtaining the compensation you deserve.
Peace of Mind
Ultimately, hiring an 18-wheeler accident lawyer provides peace of mind and ensures that your rights are protected throughout the legal process. They will handle all the legal complexities, advocate for your best interests, and work tirelessly to secure the compensation you need to rebuild your life after a devastating accident.
Choosing the Right Semi Truck Attorney for Your Case
Choosing the right semi truck accident lawyer for your case is an important step in navigating the legal system and seeking the compensation you deserve. With so many options available, it can be overwhelming to know where to start. However, there are a few key factors to consider that can help you make an informed decision.
- Experience: Look for a lawyer who has experience with semi truck accident cases and has a proven track record of success. They should have extensive knowledge of truck accident law and a deep understanding of the complexities involved in these types of cases.
- Resources: Semi truck accident cases often require extensive investigation, gathering of evidence, and high-quality testimony. Ensure that the lawyer you choose has the resources and network necessary to build a strong case on your behalf.
- Communication: Look for a lawyer who is responsive, attentive, and communicative. You want someone who will keep you updated on the progress of your case and answer any questions or concerns you may have along the way.
- Trust your instincts: It’s important to choose a lawyer who you feel comfortable with and can trust to advocate for your best interests. Schedule a consultation to get a feel for their approach and determine if they are the right fit for you.
By considering these factors and doing your research, you can find the right semi truck accident lawyer in Indianapolis who will fight for your rights and help you navigate the legal system with confidence.
Schedule a Free Consultation With an Indianapolis Semi Truck Accident Attorney Today
Navigating the legal system after a semi truck accident can be overwhelming, but it’s important to remember that you don’t have to go through it alone. Seeking the help of an experienced Indianapolis semi truck accident lawyer can make a world of difference in your case.
A personal injury lawyer will have the knowledge and expertise to guide you through every step of the process. They will protect your rights, gather evidence, and build a strong case on your behalf. They will handle all communication with insurance companies, ensuring that your claim is properly evaluated and that you receive the full compensation you deserve.
Remember, you don’t have to face the legal system alone. With the help of an experienced semi truck accident lawyer, you can navigate the complexities of your case with confidence and seek the justice and compensation you deserve. Contact Vaughan & Vaughan today by giving us a call or filling out the contact form on our website.