All motor vehicle accidents can result in serious injuries, but truck accidents are especially dangerous. The massive size and weight of a commercial truck or tractor-trailer can lead to catastrophic brain injuries, spinal cord damage, or even death.
Negligent drivers and trucking companies are often responsible for a number of these trucking accidents and are liable for damages. At the Law Offices of Ogle, Elrod & Baril, PLLC, we will use our knowledge and resources to fight for the compensation you deserve after your accident. We will identify the liable party and hold them responsible for fair compensation. Call 865-546-1111 today to schedule a free consultation with a truck accident lawyer in Knoxville.
Who Can I Hold Responsible for My Truck Accident?
Several different parties may be responsible for your crash. It may be that the truck driver engaged in negligent driving behavior, or perhaps the trucking company did not try to prevent driver fatigue. A faulty or defective automotive part may have caused your crash or made your injuries worse.
No matter how your crash happened, our attorneys will examine all aspects of your case to determine every potentially liable party. We will collect the evidence we need to hold them responsible for your damages.
Truck drivers, like all motorists, owe a legal duty of care to operate their vehicle safely. If the driver in your case shirked that responsibility and caused your wreck, we can hold them liable for your damages. We can prove the truck driver in your case engage in negligent driving in a number of ways.
If the truck driver fell asleep behind the wheel, for example, we will use trucking logs to prove that they violated federal trucking laws by not taking the required breaks. Additionally, we can talk to witnesses who may have seen the driver dozing off. We may also consult with a forensic expert to reconstruct the accident.
If the truck driver was speeding, we will consult an accident reconstruction expert to recreate the scene and determine the approximate speed of the vehicle at the time of the crash. We will also talk to medical experts to show that the speed of the truck caused your severe injuries.
If the driver was driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, we will turn to post-crash screening results or the police report from your crash to prove liability.
When a truck driver causes an accident, the trucking company is often also responsible for what happened. This is because of the legal concept of vicarious liability. Under this doctrine, employers are responsible for the actions their employees take while on the job. If the driver in your case was on the clock and acting within the scope of their job duties, their employer is also liable for the damage they caused.
If the driver exercised poor control over their truck, we may be able to show that their employer failed to provide adequate training before sending them out on the road. We may also be able to prove that the company engaged in negligent hiring practices by adding unqualified drivers to their staff.
If the truck malfunctioned during the accident, the trucking company may be liable for failing to complete maintenance inspections. We will present evidence documenting the number of inspections completed prior to the accident.
In addition to the truck and trucking company, other parties—such as vehicle manufacturers and vehicle part manufacturers—may also liable for your crash.
If your wreck occurred because of a road hazard, we may also be able to hold the government agency responsible for road maintenance liable.
How Much Is My Truck Accident Claim Worth?
Truck accident injuries can be serious. They may require long-term rehabilitation, multiple surgeries, and other intensive treatments. It can be difficult for accident victims and their families to afford these medical costs, especially if the victim is unable to work during their recovery. In addition to medical expenses and lost wages, a victim’s ability to earn income in the future may decrease due to permanent injuries.
Our attorneys will help you recover compensation for these damages, as well as money to pay for any pain and suffering or emotional distress you have endured because of the crash.
Often, the large size of commercial trucks means crash victims suffer more severe injuries. Because of the potentially catastrophic nature of your injuries, the value of your claim can be quite high. Our attorneys can help you seek the full value of your losses. With our help, you are less likely to leave money on the table during the negotiation process.
What Is the Claims Process Like?
To recover the compensation you need after a crash, we will file a claim for your damages with the insurance company of the truck driver, the trucking company, and any other responsible party. Before we do this, we will send a letter to the trucking company informing them of our intent to file a claim. In this letter, we will ask them to preserve any evidence related to your crash.
The trucking company has access to driving logs, employment records, the results of any post-accident drug or alcohol screens, and maintenance reports of each vehicle in their fleet. We need this evidence to prove what caused your crash and show which party was responsible. We must act quickly, however, to gain access to this evidence before the trucking company destroys their records.
After we acquire the evidence we need to prove what happened in your crash, we will file our claim. In this claim, we will request a fair amount of compensation to pay for your accident-related losses. We will also provide proof of your losses in the form of bills, receipts, medical records, employment records, and expert testimony estimating your future costs.
In many cases, the other party’s insurer will respond to this amount with a quick, lowball offer of their own. Our attorneys will continue to negotiate with them until we can agree on an acceptable amount of compensation. If the insurer is unwilling to offer a fair amount, we will file suit and argue your case in court.
Contact Us for Help With Your Claim.
No matter what it takes, the attorneys at the Law Offices of Ogle, Elrod & Baril, PLLC, can help you recover damages after a truck crash. Contact us today at 865-546-1111 to discuss your legal options and let us protect your rights.