If you have suffered some losses due to a truck accident and the damages incurred exceed the limits of your personal injury protection plan, you should seek compensation from the at-fault party. Before you can file a claim, there are a couple of facts to keep in mind:
The Commercial Trucking Industry Is Highly Regulated
Federal and state laws regulate and provide safety oversight in the commercial trucking space. The federal government, for instance, regulates the number of hours a truck driver should drive before taking a break. For example, a truck driver must take a 30-minute break after driving for eight consecutive hours. The other regulations include workplace drug and alcohol testing, medical fitness for job/duty requirements, and electronic logging devices mandate.
At the state level, the regulations vary from one state to another. For instance, some states such as Louisiana require the trucks to have a maximum weight of 80,000 pounds while others like Nevada allow up to 120,000 pounds provided you have a special permit. If an accident occurs and if you have violated any of the federal or state trucking regulations, making a claim could be a bit challenging.
It’s advisable to contact a truck accident attorney soon after getting involved in a truck accident. If you are in New Orleans, LA, you can consult the Law Office of John W. Redmann to help you navigate the incident.
At-Fault Parties May Be More Than One
Due to the broad nature of the trucking industry, filing a claim after a truck accident may attract several parties. For instance, a truck driver and the mechanic who serviced the truck may be accused of negligence. The truck owner or company may also be held responsible for allowing a faulty truck to operate on the road, while a third-party warehousing company may be to blame for overloading a defective truck.
When there’s such a drift in the claim case, you want to be prepared with all the evidence and supporting documents. If you are injured in a truck accident, for example, take pictures of the incident and be sure to seek immediate medical attention. Depending on your position or role in the entire incident, you also want to connect with the other side and gather relevant and helpful information.
Expert Legal Representation Is Vital
Truck accidents can be severe due to their size and impact on other road users. The large size of the industry with several parties being potentially involved means filing the claims and following through the court process can be very complicated.
Your truck accident attorney will play a key role from the first day you are involved in the accident to the very day the settlements are made. The attorney will ensure you have gathered all the necessary evidence and followed all the due processes required by law.
There are several other reasons to hire a truck accident lawyer. For instance, you’ll need an attorney to ensure you are saying the right things during court trials and to help you dodge scare tactics, which would otherwise see you settle too soon.
Like any other personal injury claim, a truck accident claim goes through the necessary processes from conducting communications, evidence collection, negotiations, and court trials. However, unlike car accidents, the truck industry is highly regulated, and several parties may be at fault. This makes the case lengthy and complicated, hence the need to work with an experienced truck accident attorney.