Compensation for a Truck Accident Claim
To the victim of a truck accident, nothing should take precedence over regaining health and restoring life to the way it was before the crash. Unfortunately, commercial truck lawsuits may involve many hassles. Dealing with an insurance company requires numerous phone calls, piles of paperwork, and the stress of not knowing the outcome of your case. All of these things can distract you from your recovery and spending time with your family.
That is why if you or a loved one is injured in a tractor-trailer accident, you should seek help from the experienced lawyers at Arnold & Itkin LLP. We simplify your life by handling all negotiations with the insurance company, and our lawyers can greatly increase your chances of obtaining fair compensation. With a truck accident attorney from our firm to protect your rights and properly handle your claim, you can feel confident that your future is in good hands.
A Truck Accident Victim's Right to Compensation
If the negligent actions of a truck driver, trucking company or another party caused an accident in which you suffered damages, the law protects your right to be compensated. In particular, a truck accident lawyer can help an accident victim recover economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages include all costs associated with an injury now and in the future. This can include:
- Medical care;
- Lost income and impaired ability to earn an income; and
- Property damage to your vehicle and its contents.
The non-economic damages available to an 18-wheeler accident victim may include:
- Physical and emotional pain and suffering;
- Change in lifestyle;
- Loss of enjoyment of life; and
- Loss of consortium.
In the event of a fatal big rig accident, surviving family members may be awarded damages intended to compensate them for their loss. These types of damages may include:
- Medicals bills;
- Funeral costs;
- Loss of future earnings and benefits such as pension and retirement;
- Loss of companionship; and
- Punitive damages, intended to punish the defendant.
Insurance Coverage Carried by Trucking Companies
Due to the inherent danger of operating a large truck such as an 18-wheeler or big rig, any vehicle that weighs over 10,000 pounds and operates between state borders must have at least $750,000 worth of liability coverage, although many trucking companies choose to carry more. A tractor-trailer carrying hazardous materials must carry $1 million worth of coverage, while a commercial truck carrying liquid hazardous materials is required to carry $5 million. If a truck only operates within state borders, it must then abide by the state's insurance requirements.
Even though a minimum of $750,000 may seem like a lot, trucking companies and their insurers strive to minimize the value of an injured party's claim. Furthermore, there is the issue of insurance limits, which means an insurance company only has to pay up to a certain amount of damages. For example, if a settlement or verdict is for an amount greater than the insurance limit, the insurance company may only have to pay up to the amount of the limit.
A skilled truck accident attorney will therefore explore all of the potential parties that may be liable for damages to ensure that the amount of compensation you receive is sufficient to address your losses. Some potential defendants in a trucking accident may include:
- The trucking company;
- The truck driver;
- Drivers of other vehicles;
- Repair facilities;
- Parts manufacturers; and
- Government entities responsible for road maintenance.
Truck accidents often cause serious harm and property damage to victims. This makes recovering compensation to pay for medical bills and other losses of the utmost importance. Doing so requires the help of an experienced lawyer who understands the law and knows how to hold trucking companies and their insurers accountable. If you would like to learn more about our firm's services and how we can assist you, we welcome you to call for a free consultation. We represent clients throughout the U.S. and have recovered hundreds of millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements for the injured and their families.