Why Tractor-Trailer Accidents Are More Complicated
Accidents involving large semi-trucks are much different from crashes involving two passenger cars. This is due to several factors, including:
- Truck accidents cause more catastrophic injuries. Trucks are larger and heavier than passenger vehicles, which can lead to more severe and even fatal injuries. Injuries might involve severe complications like brain damage, paralysis, amputation, or disfigurement, which can require lifelong treatment. These types of injuries are extremely expensive to treat.
- There are typically more parties involved. More than one at-fault party could be held liable in a truck accident. Beyond the truck driver, the trucking company, the cargo loader, the truck manufacturer, or other entities all may share legal responsibility for what happened, depending upon the facts. This makes it more difficult to figure out who among them owes money to the victim and how to properly apportion the liability. Each party’s insurance company might try to avoid paying their share by shifting blame to others, so you’ll need solid evidence, including a thorough accident investigation, to prove who was responsible.
- Trucks have higher policy limits on insurance. Most state and federal regulations require semi-trucks to carry higher policy limits than personal vehicles. This means that if you were injured in a truck accident, there is usually more compensation available to cover your losses than in a standard car accident. With the high stakes involved, along with the likelihood that insurers will deny liability or shift blame to avoid making payouts, you need sophisticated legal advice from our trusted Canton truck accident lawyer.
Do not try to take on a truck accident claim on your own. Let the skilled team at Geiger Legal Group, LLC help. We have the experience and the resources to go up against large trucking companies and insurers. Contact us now to learn how we can make a difference in your case.
How a Canton Truck Accident Attorney Can Help You
A skilled Canton truck accident attorney from Geiger Legal Group, LLC can help you overcome many of the challenges that come in the aftermath of a truck wreck. You can count on our team to:
- Investigate your accident to determine all potentially liable parties
- Gather the extensive evidence needed to prove your case
- Document the full extent of your losses
- Negotiate aggressively with insurance companies and legal representatives on your behalf
- Fight for your rights in court, if a fair settlement cannot be reached
Understanding Truck Accident Compensation
While specific dollar amounts depend on the details of your case, compensation should cover both current and future damages related to your trucking accident. Common types of compensation include payment for:
- Outstanding medical bills
- Future medical expenses
- Property damage
- Income lost during recovery from the accident
- Reduced ability to earn income in the future
- Pain and suffering
- Disability accommodations
If your loved one experienced wrongful death in a truck accident, no amount of money will ever appropriately make up for your loss. However, compensation might help you cover some expenses from the crash, including:
- Medical expenses
- Funeral and burial costs
- Lost companionship
- Lost wages
- Loss of services provided by the deceased
Do not accept any payment from an insurance company without talking to our qualified Canton personal injury attorney about the details of your case. Immediate settlement offers do not account for your total losses, and you do not want to risk signing away your legal rights to the full compensation you are owed.
How Is Fault Determined in a Tractor-Trailer Accident?
Truck accidents are often the result of driver negligence or intentional wrongdoing, such as fatigue, driving under the influence, distracted driving, or speeding. However, more than one party could be held liable in a truck crash.
The law requires that truck drivers and their employers abide by a higher set of standards than ordinary drivers. If they fail to do so and bring about a crash, they can be held liable.
Further, truck drivers are responsible for maintaining their vehicles and cargo. They can’t carry oversized loads without special permits, they must keep an accurate logbook of hours driven, and they must avoid roads that are too steep.
The driver’s employer might also be liable if the driver contributes to a crash. Employers might be held liable for negligent hiring or retention of truck drivers who are involved in an accident. This might apply if the truck driver lacked the correct license, was insufficiently trained, was on medication that could impair driving, or if the employer failed to do a comprehensive background check or allowed a driver to operate a vehicle despite red flags on their record. An employer could also be held liable for failure to enforce federal or state safety regulations.
Because different parties might be liable for the collision, it’s especially important to gather extensive evidence to prove your case. Some examples of evidence that can be used to prove fault include:
- Photographs of the accident scene, including road conditions, weather conditions, traffic lights, warning signs, construction, and loose gravel
- Witness accounts
- Expert testimony such as from accident reconstruction specialists
- Driving logs that show how long the truck driver was on the road and how long the driver rested, especially if either entry constituted a violation of regulations
- Delivery reports
- Maintenance records
- Manufacturer data including possible recalls
- Data from the truck’s computer
- Correspondence between the truck driver and the employer
- Pictures or videos of physical injuries and vehicle damage
- Medical records
When you trust your case to Geiger Legal Group, LLC, we will aggressively pursue all the evidence needed to craft a strong claim on your behalf. We have knowledge dealing with all types of common semi-truck accidents in Georgia and want to get you the compensation you deserve.
Statute of Limitations on Truck Accident Lawsuits in Georgia
According to Georgia law, a victim has a maximum of two years after the date of the accident to file a personal injury lawsuit. After this deadline expires, it is usually impossible to sue for any injuries from a truck collision.
However, it’s important to promptly consult with a semi-truck accident lawyer to ensure evidence is preserved before it is lost or disappears. The sooner a lawyer can begin working on your case, the better.
What to Do If You’ve Been Hurt in a Truck Crash
Always call 911 after an accident. Responding officers will conduct an investigation at the scene. Be sure to obtain a copy of the official accident report, which should also include who, if anyone, received a ticket for a driving infraction.
Get medical treatment. When you have been injured in a truck crash, your health is your first priority. If you did not get medical attention at the scene, see a medical professional as soon as possible to have your injuries evaluated.
Additionally, a physician can provide a medical report that is a critical piece of initial evidence if you decide to file a claim. This medical report can establish that a truck accident caused your injuries and they were unrelated to some underlying or preexisting conditions.
Collect evidence. Assuming you are physically up to it, document the accident scene as much as possible. Photograph your injuries, damages to your car and other vehicles, and all relevant road and weather conditions. Take pictures of skid marks, traffic signals, road construction, and signage in the area. Talk to witnesses and get their names and contact information.
Also, get details from the other drivers involved, including names, phone numbers, make and models of the vehicles, insurance information, license numbers, and the names of employers.
Be careful with your words in all interactions with other drivers, the police, and any insurance adjusters. Offhand comments can be used against you. Don’t admit fault for the accident, say you are sorry, or sign anything (unless required by the police).
Never speak with the other parties’ insurance or legal representatives without consulting with your lawyer first.
Get a Canton truck accident lawyer on your side. If you try to handle a truck crash claim on your own, it’s easy to overlook important details that will be vital to proving your case. An experienced truck accident lawyer can take care of all the technicalities so you can focus exclusively on recuperating from the wreck.
At Geiger Legal Group, LLC, our skilled truck accident attorney knows the tactics that trucking companies and their insurance carriers might try to avoid paying you damages for your ordeal. Our legal team can work quickly and efficiently to gather the evidence needed to protect your rights and demand the compensation you are owed.
How Much Does It Cost to Hire a Semi-Truck Accident Lawyer?
You don’t have to pay any upfront fees when you hire a Canton trucking accident attorney from Geiger Legal Group, LLC. That is because we work on a contingency-fee-basis, which means we only get paid if you recover truck accident compensation for your injuries. You won’t owe anything unless you win, and even then, the fees are based on a percentage of your total award.
Talk to a Georgia Personal Injury Lawyer Now
If you have been the victim of a trucking accident, you shouldn’t have to bear the brunt of financial hardships from the crash in addition to the physical and emotional trauma the wreck has already caused.
Our compassionate semi-truck accident lawyer at Geiger Legal Group, LLC is here to fight for the compensation you deserve.
Call us today to schedule your free consultation.