There are many factors that contribute to commercial truck accidents, including driver error, mechanical failure, unsafe roads, and mismanaged cargo. By fully investigating a crash, your attorney from The Brain Injury Law Center can secure the evidence necessary to successfully sue all those responsible.
The injuries that result from truck accidents are often catastrophic, including brain and spinal cord injuries that can change the trajectory of a person’s life or a family’s future. It is crucial that those who’ve suffered such injuries receive comprehensive care to maintain the abilities they have and recover as much independence as possible. A personal injury lawsuit may be your best path towards securing the resources you need and are entitled to receive.
If you are in need of representation right away, contact our Virginia offices by calling (757) 244-7000, or schedule a free consultation online at your earliest availability. For more information on who may be held liable in a truck accident lawsuit, read on.
Can I Sue Someone Personally After a Truck Accident?
Yes, you have the right to file a lawsuit against an individual after a truck accident. Personal injury lawsuits are civil (as opposed to criminal) legal actions that allow you to seek compensation for damages, meaning your injuries, losses, and pain and suffering.
Personal injury lawsuits require these four elements of proof:
- Duty of care: All drivers on the road owe a basic “duty of care” to one another. However, your attorney could argue that truck drivers have a higher duty of care because they are professionally trained to operate far more dangerous vehicles than the average passenger car.
- Dereliction of duty: The dereliction or neglect of a duty of care could be proven if evidence shows the driver was intoxicated or the truck was inadequately maintained.
- Direct cause: Your lawyer will illustrate how the negligence in Step #2 directly caused or contributed to the crash and your injuries and losses.
- Damages: To prove damages, your attorney may present receipts for medical bills, pay stubs for lost wages, as well as expert opinions to calculate future lost wages and the cost of healthcare needs.
For non-economic damages like stress, grief, PTSD, or family hardship, your attorney can translate those losses into monetary amounts the court can understand and award. The same is true in wrongful death actions, which must account for the financial loss of a person’s income, their end-of-life expenses like funeral costs, and the irreplaceable loss of their companionship and support.
Do I Sue the Truck Driver or the Truck Company?
Your legal options could include suing both the truck driver and the trucking company, as well as other responsible parties. Depending on the cause of your accident, you could file suit against:
- The truck driver for driver error or reckless behavior like intoxicated driving
- Trucking companies or contract agencies that employ the driver if they didn’t perform thorough background checks, failed to provide proper training, or overscheduled the driver
- Cargo owners and warehouse companies for producing unstable cargo or for improperly packing the cargo creating a danger during transport
- Truck manufacturers, fleet owners, or mechanics who allowed a defective truck onto the road
- Municipalities if the road itself created the unsafe conditions that caused your crash — examples include poorly maintained roads, unsafe inclines, hazardous construction zones, etc.
Even accidents largely caused by adverse weather like rain, ice, fog, or dusty/smoky conditions can be made worse by other contributing factors. Driver drowsiness, poorly maintained vehicles, and unsafe roads may share in the liability, meaning someone is still partially responsible for the damages you’ve suffered.
What Kind of Information Should I Have for a Truck Accident Lawsuit?
While you do not need to have this information in hand to pursue a lawsuit, the following information is extremely helpful, and could lead to swifter justice for you and your family:
- The date and location of the accident, plus any photos of the crash scene if you were able to take them
- Names and contact info of the other driver, any passengers or witnesses, and a copy of the police report
- All documents associated with your medical care (receipts associated with the ambulance, hospital, pharmacy, and any follow-up healthcare visits)
- Financial documents like tax returns or pay stubs that can show your lost income
- Invoices for auto repairs or the cost of alternative transportation
If you don’t have these items readily available, that’s okay — it’s your lawyer’s job to obtain the documents related to your case, not yours. Your attorney can gather publicly available information, secure your permission to access private medical records, and subpoena (legally demand) other forms of evidence that otherwise would be inaccessible, like internal trucking company communications.
In gathering and securing relevant evidence regarding your accident, your lawyer begins to build a case for negotiation and trial if needed.
Contact Experienced Truck Accident Attorneys
Who you can sue after a truck accident depends on who is liable, and determining liability is something a skilled attorney can achieve while investigating your accident.
At The Brain Injury Law Center, our attorneys are proven in their ability to successfully represent those injured in car, motorcycle, and truck accidents. Our truck accident case results specifically include:
- $10.22 million: Thought to be the largest personal injury verdict in Norfolk, Virginia, this jury verdict was for a case against Werner Transportation on behalf of a woman who suffered a mild traumatic brain injury (TBI) from the accident.
- $3.67 million: An Oklahoma case against a trucking company for a person with a mild TBI after a highway crash.
- $2.5 million: An award from a contracting company to our client who sustained a TBI from the collision.
By entering settlement discussions fully prepared to go before a judge and jury, your attorney from The Brain Injury Law Center makes it far more likely that you’ll receive a swift, substantial settlement as quickly as possible. If your case must go to trial, we will be there every step of the way to secure the highest possible compensation for you and your family.