Truck accidents can be devastating. They can leave you with life-altering injuries, including permanent damage to your body and mind.
The first thing you should do after a truck accident is to get medical treatment immediately. This will provide your attorney with solid evidence that can be used to support your case in court.
The Initial Consultation
If you seek compensation for your injuries, your truck accident lawyer will gather information about the crash, such as witness statements and medical records. They will also collect documents, such as paycheck stubs and bank statements, that can accurately represent your lost money.
A thorough investigation will allow your lawyer to identify the liable parties in your case. These could include the truck driver, a parent company that hires drivers, vehicle parts manufacturers, or cargo companies. They may even identify maintenance companies or road-maintenance entities liable for the accident.
Usually, your attorney will negotiate a settlement with the trucking insurance company. They will likely start by offering a low figure, which your attorney will advise you to reject. They will gradually increase the offer until they reach a fair and just figure for you. If the trucking company refuses to settle, the matter will be trialed. Understanding truck driver gun laws is crucial for anyone involved in a truck accident lawsuit. To gain insights from an experienced lawyer about what to expect throughout a truck accident lawsuit, you may click here.
Once your attorney files a lawsuit on your behalf, the next step is called “discovery.” The discovery phase involves exchanging and requesting information that supports both sides’ claims and defenses. It can include written interrogatories, requests for the production of documents, and depositions.
Your attorney will ask your opponent’s legal team questions in a Q&A session known as a deposition. This can include questions about your health and medical history, job, and other aspects of your life. Your attorney will also depose witnesses to your accident and the medical professionals overseeing your treatment. These sessions are taken under oath and recorded by a court reporter.
Your attorney may also need to subpoena documents from businesses or organizations that aren’t parties in your case, such as wage loss records and truck trip recorders. These can reveal critical details about what led to the crash. Depending on the complexity of your case, this portion of the process can take up to a year.
Your attorney will work diligently to uncover the possible causes of your accident. This might involve having a professional accident reconstructionist recreate the order of events, have experts analyze onboard electronic recordings, and review eyewitness statements. Depending on the circumstances of your crash, it may also involve identifying other parties who hold liability, including truck drivers, trucking companies, cargo loading entities, and even local governments responsible for highway design or maintenance.
During the written discovery phase, your attorney can ask defendants questions under oath, and they can request many documents related to your case. These can include medical records before and after your crash, police reports, eyewitness statements, and any other documentation that will help your attorney prove the facts of your claim.
Your attorney can also have a professional accident reconstructionist analyze skid mark directions, points of impact, and angles and examine other evidence. This will help your attorney build a strong case against the party or parties that caused your accident.
Although most truck accident cases settle out of court, a patient will only go to trial if a reasonable resolution cannot be reached during negotiations. Insurance representatives may make initial settlement offers far below what a victim should receive for their claim. If this happens, a victim should prepare themselves for extensive negotiations toward the proper amount of compensation.
As the litigation track progresses, your lawyer will investigate the evidence, hire experts, double-check official reports, depose witnesses, and gather documentation of your physical, emotional, and financial damages. They will then send a demand letter to the party responsible for your accident.
The insurance company, as well as any individuals or businesses who are named in the lawsuit, will consider the facts and theory of your case. It will also consider what they would be expected to pay if held liable in a jury trial. This can inspire renewed interest in reaching an out-of-court settlement agreement.