Semi-trucks are necessary for the economy, but their sheer size and weight can lead to significant damage in an accident. For many drivers, accidents involving semi-trucks can result in catastrophic injuries and substantial property damage.
If you’ve been in an accident with a semi-truck, you may be wondering if you can sue to get the money you need to recover. If the accident wasn’t your fault, it is likely that you have grounds to file a claim, but it can get complicated by the circumstances of your accident. Continue reading to find out more about whether you can sue for being hit by a semi-truck in Colorado Springs.
Was the Semi-Truck Driver Responsible for the Accident?
If the truck driver was at fault, you likely have a case. Many accidents involving commercial trucks are caused by the truck driver’s carelessness, such as distracted driving, aggressive driving, fatigue, driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or speeding. Your attorney will investigate the accident to determine if the truck driver was driving carelessly and caused the accident.
Was Another Party At Fault?
Commercial truck accident cases can be complicated by the other parties that may have contributed to the accident. Several other parties may be involved, such as the trucking company, the shipping company, the local government, and more.
For example, if the driver fell asleep at the wheel, your attorney may discover that the trucking company pushed its drivers to ignore the rules for service hours, forcing the driver to operate their truck while drowsy. If this is the case, the trucking company is also at fault for the accident.
Trucking companies are also required to perform background checks on the drivers to determine if they’re safe behind the wheel. If an investigation reveals that the driver has a history of substance abuse and the trucking company hired them anyway, you may be able to sue the trucking company for your losses.
Other examples of multiple at-fault parties include the manufacturers of the truck parts in cases of mechanical failure, the truck owner if the truck is leased, and the local government if a road hazard caused the accident. An experienced truck accident attorney will be able to review the details of your case and help you determine who you should be suing for the maximum compensation amount possible.
Did You Suffer Serious Injuries?
You may be able to file a claim if you suffered serious injuries from the accident. Due to their size, accidents involving semi-trucks often result in more severe injuries than accidents with passenger cars.
In these cases, the medical expenses can be staggering, and you may have to deal with extensive medical treatments, mounting medical bills, and possibly the inability to work or enjoy hobbies in the future. If this occurs, you may be able to pursue compensation from the parties involved in the accident. An attorney can help you seek the compensation you’re entitled to for all expenses related to the accident and your injury.
You Have Rights if Your Injuries Lead to Significant Losses
The losses from your injury may include medical bills, loss of wages, property damage, and in some cases, non-economic losses like pain and suffering. In serious accidents, you may be left with an injury that affects your ability to work in the same job or enjoy hobbies or your life.
These losses are more difficult to prove and assign a dollar amount to; however, while pain and suffering, emotional distress, and loss of enjoyment of life are based on subjective testimony, your attorney will know if they’re appropriate in your case.
Another possibility is seeking punitive damages. Punitive damages are intended to punish the careless party for their actions. These damages are typically only seen in cases where the court determines that the at-fault party acted with malice and displayed consciously reckless behavior or ignored the safety and welfare of others. It is common to seek punitive damages in cases where the truck driver was under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
What if I Don’t Sue?
Even if you have the grounds for a lawsuit, you may not need to sue the truck driver or trucking company to get the compensation you deserve for your injuries. In many cases, an experienced attorney can negotiate with the insurance company to get your case settled out of court.
Settlements are faster and cheaper than court cases. Insurance companies prefer private settlements over the unpredictability of a jury, so they’re more likely to negotiate a fair settlement without going to court.
Unfortunately, some insurance companies will fight to reduce or eliminate their financial responsibility for your accident. If you or your attorney are unable to negotiate a fair settlement, or the insurance coverage limit isn’t enough to cover your expenses, you may need to file a lawsuit to get compensation.
How an Attorney Can Help You Sue After a Truck Accident
Whether you’re seeking a settlement from the insurance company or looking to sue the truck driver or trucking company, working with an experienced truck accident attorney is the best way to get the compensation you deserve.
Truck accidents are more complex than passenger car accidents, and your attorney will handle the work and hassle for you. Your attorney will request an investigation, gather evidence, and negotiate with the insurance company, so you can focus on getting better. If your case does have to go to court, your attorney will handle everything on your behalf and represent you before the judge and jury.
Call Heuser & Heuser, LLP. We’re On Top of It!
If you’ve been injured in a truck accident, you may be at a disadvantage trying to handle your case on your own. Instead of navigating the insurance claims or lawsuit process while dealing with your injuries, hire an experienced attorney to take on the burden for you. At Heuser & Heuser, LLP, our team of skilled attorneys has decades of experience with truck accident injury cases, and we’ll seek the maximum compensation for your injuries and losses. Call 719-520-9909 or fill out the online form to get your free case review. We’re on top of it!