Any collision with a large truck can be a highly distressing experience. Your immediate concern should be calling 911 to report the crash and getting help for your injuries. Even if you don’t think you were hurt, allow the paramedics to examine you to rule out any issues. Sometimes injuries don’t show symptoms right away, but may cause pain and other problems later. If you do develop new symptoms within a few days or even weeks of your accident, see a doctor and mention the crash in case it’s related.
But in many situations, the occupant of a smaller vehicle, like a car, has severe and immediately noticeable injuries after a truck accident. Unfortunately, even the many safety features in a typical car – seatbelts, airbags, a strong roll cage – don’t offer as much protection against the size and weight of a large truck. The motorist in the passenger vehicle may easily suffer many serious injuries, including broken bones, concussion or brain injury, internal injuries, lacerations and blood loss, and many other issues.
If you or a loved one have recently been in a truck accident, you may be faced with staggering medical bills, missed time at work, pain and discomfort, and in addition to those problems, a large car repair bill. The truck driver or other parties may have been responsible for your accident, but convincing the relevant insurance company to pay you a fair settlement isn’t always easy. You need the help of an experienced Georgia truck accident attorney like Ali Awad, founder of the CEO Lawyer Personal Injury Law Firm. Our dedicated staff will thoroughly investigate your accident and negotiate with the insurance company to help you access the compensation you deserve. Your initial consultation is always free, so please contact us right away to learn more about your options.
Proving Fault in a Semi Truck Accident
We usually advise people to preserve evidence by taking pictures at the scene of an accident, but if you’re seriously hurt after a collision with a semi truck, you may not be in any position to do this. You may also find it difficult to articulate what happened when giving a statement to the police, especially if you have a head injury or are in a lot of pain. Or, you may be taken to the hospital so quickly that you don’t have a chance to tell the police anything. Sometimes this means that the officer has little to go on except what the truck driver tells them. In most truck-versus-car accidents, the semi driver has no or minor injuries due to being well-protected in the truck cab, and they may also believe the accident wasn’t their fault.
For all these reasons, the driver of a passenger car may run into difficulties when making an insurance claim against the driver or trucking company. The insurance adjuster may seem friendly if they call you after your accident, but remember that they are not your friend. Their job is to find an excuse not to pay your claim, or to pay as little as possible, regardless of what your actual damages are. Be sure to contact a truck accident lawyer before settling with the insurance company to ensure you are properly compensated for all your damages.
Once you’ve received medical treatment, the next priority should be to contact a Georgia truck accident lawyer. We can send a team to investigate your accident immediately, while you recuperate at home or in the hospital. Often we’re able to recover evidence such as video from traffic cams or doorbell cameras, statements from witnesses the police might have missed, and pictures of the scene and vehicles. Because some types of evidence don’t last long – the scene will be cleaned up for other motorists, video footage is often erased every 24 hours – the sooner you speak to an attorney, the stronger your case will be. In the meantime, don’t speak to the insurance company until you’ve had a chance to seek legal advice.
Establishing Liability in an 18 Wheeler Accident
Even if you know you did nothing wrong, you may not immediately know who was actually at fault in your accident. Most people assume it was the truck driver, and often, that is the case – but not always. Sometimes other parties caused or contributed to the accident. For example, some truck drivers may load their own trucks, while others never touch the freight.
What does this have to do with your accident? The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Association (FMCSA) found that about 4 percent of large truck accidents (around 6,000 trucks in the data studied) involved a cargo shift. Improperly loaded cargo can cause accidents in many ways, often creating situations the driver can’t control. It puts stress on truck components like the frame, axle, and wheels, which could cause them to fail at a crucial moment. Poorly anchored cargo may shift or move around as the truck moves, leading to more balance issues. This may make the truck harder to control, cause the trailer to swing out, or even increase the risk of the trailer flipping. For all of these reasons, it may appear to you that the truck driver was at fault in your accident, but it’s also possible the responsibility lies with a third party that loaded the truck.
The above is just one example of a way that third parties may cause or contribute to truck accidents. Others may include defective truck components or a lack of maintenance on the trucking company’s part. Your Georgia truck accident lawyer will investigate and help you put together the pieces of what happened.
What if the Insurance Company Blames You for the Tractor Trailer Accident?
Unfortunately, this is a common strategy. The insurance company representatives may realize that they probably can’t prove you were entirely at fault, but that isn’t strictly necessary. Under Georgia’s modified comparative negligence statutes, if they can prove you were even partially at fault, they can pay a smaller amount of damages. The way this works is that each party in a court case is assigned a percentage of blame. If the other party can convince the jury that you made a mistake that contributed to the accident, such as failing to signal or going a few miles over the speed limit, you may be assigned 10 or 20 percent of the blame. You can still collect damages as long as you’re less than 50 percent responsible, but your award will be lowered by the 10 or 20 percent responsibility you had. Although many cases settle out of court, how the insurance company perceives their odds of winning in court will affect their willingness to pay a higher settlement, so fault is still a crucial factor.
As a result, it’s in the insurance company’s best interest to look for any reason to claim you were at fault. It’s in your best interest to avoid helping them. Don’t talk to the insurance company yourself – they may twist your words to imply something you never said. Instead, call a lawyer right away and let us gather evidence in your favor and negotiate with the insurer on your behalf.
Get Help From the Learn More From the CEO Lawyer Personal Injury Law Firm Truck Accident Lawyer
If you’re recovering from a truck accident and have questions about seeking compensation, please contact the CEO Lawyer Personal Injury Law Firm for a free consultation. If we accept your case, we never charge any fees until we win. Call today at 833-254-2923 or visit us online.
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Frequently Asked Questions
After a personal injury, you're bound to have legal questions. The CEO Lawyer Ali Awad can provide you with answers to these questions, just as he's given answers to his millions of curious social media followers. Take a look at some of the most common personal injury law questions for general information, and then reach out to one of our seasoned attorneys for specific guidance on your case!
To quickly resolve matters following an accident, insurance companies will offer you less than you deserve in compensation for your injuries. Many victims feel pressured to accept these offers as the bills begin to pile up, but that is rarely a good idea. The insurance company is looking to protect its bottom line; and will offer injured victims less than they deserve. An experienced personal injury attorney understands how to negotiate with the insurance company and can look out for your best interests by getting you the compensation you deserve after an injury. If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, it is important to avoid negotiating or providing recorded statements to the insurance company without first seeking help from a qualified personal injury attorney.
Do You Have a Personal Injury Case?
The best way to determine if you have a personal injury case is to speak with a knowledgeable attorney. Our legal professionals have the expertise to evaluate your case and determine a strong legal strategy so that you can obtain the greatest amount of compensation possible under the law. We will enlist investigators, assistants, and other specialists to collect accident reports, speak with witnesses to your accident, and put together a plan. While you focus on your physical recovery, we will remain committed to fighting for the compensation that you deserve.
Georgia's Personal Injury & Accident Firm
Accident victims have a limited time to file a personal injury lawsuit. This time period is referred to as the statute of limitations, and in Atlanta, it lasts only two years. This means that if you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, you have only two years to pursue a personal injury suit. If you wait too long to reach out to an experienced attorney, you might be forever barred from seeking the compensation you deserve.
What to Expect From Your Initial Consultation With a Personal Injury Attorney?
During your initial consultation with CEO Lawyer team, we will go over the important details of your personal injury accident, which include the nature and extent of your injuries, how your injuries have impacted your ability to earn a paycheck, the cost of your medical treatment, and whether further medical treatment will be required. We will answer any questions you might have, as well, in regards to our experience, our track record of success, and what to expect from the legal process.
Many personal injury victims wonder if they will be able to afford the legal fees required to pursue a lawsuit. CEO Lawyer injury and accident attorneys will not ask for any type of upfront fee unless we are successful in obtaining compensation for you. That means that if you have been harmed in a motor vehicle accident, slip and fall accident, defective product accident, or any other type of personal injury accident, you can absolutely afford to contact our law office today for assistance. In fact, you cannot afford to wait. Reach out today.
We understand that some accident victims might have already obtained the assistance of an attorney but may be dissatisfied with the services provided. We are standing by and prepared to help you change legal representation, regardless of where you are in the process.
Speak to an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney Today
If you or a loved one has been injured in any type of personal injury accident, you should not hesitate to speak with the experienced attorneys at CEO Lawyer personal injury law firm. Call, email, or fill out our online contact form today so that we can begin helping you pursue the compensation you deserve.