Truck Accidents vs Car Accidents: Most Important Differences in Claims
Car accidents are terrifying — a truck accident is significantly more frightening given the size differences between automobiles and trucks. Chances are victims who are involved in a truck accident are going to suffer more serious injuries than those who are involved in a car accident. This is not the only concern victims have however, because the claims process for getting compensation for your injuries is more complicated when a truck is involved.
Car Accident Claims Process
When you are involved in an accident on the roadways of Nevada, you file a claim with the insurance company of the person responsible for the accident. Generally, this will be the other driver — there are exceptions of course which can complicate a car accident claim. For example, if you are involved in an accident with a rideshare driver, the process may be slightly more complicated. Another complication could be if the driver responsible for the accident had a mechanical problem resulting from a manufacturing defect. These minor complications pale in comparison as to the claims process for a truck accident.
Accident Claim Filing Complexities When a Truck is Involved
While it is perfectly normal to feel the only two parties involved in an accident involving a truck and a car are the two drivers, leaving the person responsible one of those two, this is not always the case when it comes to truck accidents. Here are some possible scenarios which demonstrate who may be partially responsible for an accident.
- Truck Driver — if a driver is speeding, using their cell phone, or fails to stop at a red light, chances are they are the only party responsible for the accident. This would make the claim process relatively straightforward; victims would file their claim with the driver’s insurance company.
- Parent Truck Company — truck drivers must adhere to guidelines set out by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) including proper rest periods. Truck drivers must also undergo rigorous training before being allowed on the roadway. Should the employer fail to conduct proper training, fail to ensure the drivers are aware of regulations, or fail in other ways, they may also be partially responsible for the damage caused by a driver. In this instance claims would be filed with the driver’s insurance company as well as the employer’s insurance company.
- Freight Brokers and Loading Companies — truck accidents are sometimes a result of poorly stocked loads which can result in rollover accidents. Overloading a truck can also result in various problems including the driver losing control of the truck. In cases where this occurs, the resulting insurance claims can be extraordinarily complex. The driver, their employer, and the freight broker or loading company may be all partially to blame for any injuries which are suffered by victims of the accident.
- Truck or Parts Manufacturer — we have all heard and read about various problems with parts of vehicles malfunctioning. Defective brakes, airbags, tires, and other mechanical failures can be at the root of a truck accident. When a defective truck part is partially responsible for the cause of an accident, there may be numerous parties involved which means numerous insurance companies. This further complicates the claims process.
- Mechanics and Other Service Providers — when a driver gets behind the wheel of his vehicle, he is depending upon the vehicle being properly serviced. When brakes or other mechanical parts fail due to bad, or non-existent maintenance, an accident can occur. From a claims filing standpoint, this is problematic on several levels — victims not only have to deal with the truck drivers insurance company, but may also have to deal with the insurers for the owner of the truck, the maintenance company insurance, and others.
Proving Who Liable for Injuries
As you can see from the various scenarios laid out above, the number of insurance companies who could ultimately require you to provide documentation following a truck accident can be overwhelming. In any type of accident, obtaining evidence is crucial. When a truck is involved, there may be additional evidence available to victims, including the “black box” located in the truck. There may also be video tapes including those found on business security cameras or traffic cameras installed by a state or municipality. These pieces of evidence must be requested as soon after an accident as possible to ensure they are not erased or otherwise modified prior to your truck accident attorney having access to them.
Multiple Defenses — Truck Accident Claims Are Challenging
There is a high probability if you are injured in a truck accident you will get a quick settlement offer. There are several reasons for this but primarily, the insurance company hopes you will accept an offer and not seek legal help. This step can save insurers hundreds or thousands of dollars in future claims. Remember, once you have accepted a settlement after a truck accident, all potential claims are considered settled. That means you get no compensation for future medical bills, lost wages, or other costs you may incur while you are recovering from your injuries.
Dealing with a single insurance company following a car accident is challenging — the at fault drivers insurance company is going to do everything in their power to minimize your claim including shifting some blame for the accident to you, claiming your injuries are a result of a pre-existing condition, or simply stating their customer was not at fault for the accident. These challenges are far more difficult when you have multiple insurance companies, often with policies covering millions of dollars in damages, trying to protect their bottom line by denying or minimizing the claims of a truck accident victim.
Contact an Experienced Truck Accident Attorney Today
When you have been injured in a truck accident, you need a strong advocate who is willing to look at all the facets of your case and make sure everyone who is responsible is held to account for your financial losses. After you have seen a medical professional to assess your injuries, your next call should be to contact the experienced and effective personal injury lawyers at Gina Corena & Associates at 702-680-1111 for a free consultation. Let someone who has the knowledge and experience serve as your advocate during this difficult time.