In Georgia, car accidents are more common than truck accidents. However, truck accidents can and do happen, often leading to catastrophic injuries and fatalities. In most cases, the people who sustain the worst injuries are those operating other vehicles involved in a collision with a large truck.
Accidents involving semi-trucks, 18-wheelers, and other commercial trucks are legally complex, and insurers and trucking companies will try to use that to deny you compensation. Our experienced Atlanta truck accident lawyers at the SHElaw firm® can help you recover the compensation you deserve.
What Should You Do After a Truck Accident?
Knowing the proper steps to take when involved in a truck-related accident is important.
The first thing you should do in this situation is to call 911 and report the accident. You want to ensure that emergency personnel respond to the scene of the accident and administer aid.
If you feel fine but notice others are in need of assistance, you may exit your vehicle to render help. However, you’ll need to be fully aware of your surroundings to protect yourself while you’re by the road.
Exchange names, insurance information, and contact information with the truck driver while you wait for the police to arrive. Be sure to get the name and contact information of the trucking company. You should be polite while also being careful never to accept blame or apologize for the accident.
Document the Scene, Speak With Witnesses
If you can move around, use your cellphone to take photos and videos of the accident scene. Take photos of the accident from every angle. Be sure to capture any visible injuries, damage to vehicles, and skid marks and debris. The images will come in handy in a courtroom if you need to take legal action.
Other individuals who witnessed the accident could help you prove your case. Speak to anyone who saw what happened and exchange contact information with them.
You may notice surveillance cameras at the accident scene. Write down the location of those surveillance cameras just in case you need to request footage.
Seek Medical Attention
Even if you’re feeling fine after an accident, you’ll need to seek medical attention. Sometimes, people feel alright at first, but it’s because their body is in shock. You might not realize you’ve sustained severe and potentially life-threatening injuries, such as internal bleeding or a concussion.
Medical professionals can evaluate you and treat any injuries you’ve sustained. Additionally, medical records provide evidence that the accident caused your injuries.
Contact an Attorney
At the SHElaw firm®, we take great pride in providing our clients with the experienced and aggressive legal representation they need. We understand the laws surrounding motor vehicle accidents involving trucks and are here to help you through this situation. Call us today for a free consultation!
What Are the Laws Regarding Truck Accident Liability?
In Atlanta, Georgia, individuals operating trucks must follow specific rules and regulations that go above and beyond the traditional rules of the road for regular motorists. Truck companies and drivers who break the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration rules can be held responsible.
Several parties could be held liable in a truck accident lawsuit, including the person operating the truck, the company that hired the truck driver, and the company that loaded the truck.
The employer’s responsibility is to provide quality training to their employees before allowing them to get on the road and operate such a large vehicle. The company and its owner might be held liable. Companies can also be held liable if they hire truck drivers who aren’t qualified or have a record of unsafe driving.
How Can an Atlanta Truck Accident Lawyer Help?
Our skilled truck accident lawyers can help with the following:
As your attorney, we’ll begin the process by performing an investigation. The in-depth investigation involves:
- Reviewing surveillance footage and photos.
- Speaking to witnesses.
- Even recreating a model of the scene to get an idea of how things happened.
Filing a Claim
If you have a legitimate case, we’ll work with you to file a claim against the truck driver, their company, and the insurance company. We will handle the necessary paperwork and make sure your case is filed on time.
We can negotiate on your behalf with the insurance company. Many insurers will devalue your claim or deny it altogether. We’ll fight to win you a favorable settlement. This will allow you to avoid the courtroom and make sure you receive the compensation you deserve.
When a settlement can’t be reached, we are prepared to move forward with a lawsuit. Our lawyers have extensive trial experience, and you can rely on us to represent you in court.
What Types of Compensation Can I Receive?
Georgia courts may award are three categories of damages in a truck accident case.
Economic damages include compensation for costs that can be quantified in real dollar amounts, such as:
- Medical expenses
- Decreased earning capacity
- Nursing costs
- Property damage
- Lost wages
Non-economic damages include those that cannot be easily quantified in real dollar amounts, such as:
- Mental anguish
- Physical disability
- Loss of consortium
Punitive damages are the extra financial damages awarded by the courts only in rare instances where there’s extreme recklessness by the owner or operator, such as accidents resulting from drunk driving or the willful intent to cause harm.
How Much Is My Truck Accident Claim Worth?
It is incredibly challenging to determine what any truck accident claim is actually worth. The value of your claim will depend on several different factors, which include your injuries and property damage. However, with the help of the experienced Atlanta truck accident lawyers from the SHElaw firm®, you can be sure that your case is in the best hands.
Our lawyers can help you get an accurate estimate and are determined to help you recover the maximum amount of compensation that you are entitled to for the injuries and damages suffered in a truck accident.
Call us today at 470-378-1162 to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.
Is There a Deadline for Filing a Claim?
In the state of Georgia, there is a strict deadline for filing a truck accident case. You must file a personal injury case within two years of the accident date. In the case of a fatal accident, the family must file a wrongful death case within two years of the death.
How Is Fault in a Truck Accident Determined?
We can help determine the fault in a truck accident by performing an in-depth investigation that involves requesting the black box from the truck, reviewing the truck driver’s activity log, going over the surveillance camera, reviewing phone records, and using photos as evidence.
Georgia uses the comparative negligence doctrine. This reduces your compensation if you are partially responsible for the accident. For instance, if you were found to be 30 percent at fault, you can only recover 70 percent of the total costs. You cannot recover any compensation if you are found to be 50% or more at fault.
Can a Lawyer Prove the Truck Driver was Negligent?
We’ll do what we can to prove the truck driver was negligent. When you hire our firm to represent you, we’ll go above and beyond, performing in-depth research on the case to discover accurate findings that we can use in the courtroom.
Your lawyer must prove 4 key elements in order to show the truck driver was negligent.
- Duty of Care: Truck drivers have a duty to follow traffic law and FMSCA regulations and behave as a reasonable person would.
- Breach of Duty: Your lawyer must show how the truck driver breached or violated the duty of care.
- Causation: Your lawyer must show that the truck driver’s careless or reckless actions caused the accident and your injuries.
- Damages: Your lawyer must demonstrate that you suffered harm/losses such as injuries and expenses.
Who Can Be Held Liable?
Numerous people can be held liable for a truck accident in Georgia, including:
- Truck Driver
- Trucking Company
- Company Who Loaded the Truck
- Vehicle or Parts Manufacturers
Every situation is different. Request a consultation with us today to discuss your case!
Common Causes of Truck Accidents
Truck-related accidents can occur for countless reasons. However, these are some of the most common:
- Driver Fatigue
- Distracted Driving
- Reckless Driving
- Drunk Driving or Drug Use
- Oversized or Improperly Secured Freight
- Poorly Trained or Inexperienced Drivers
- Lack of Truck Maintenance
- Equipment Malfunction
- Poor Road Conditions
Injured in an Atlanta Truck Accident? Call Us Today!
We will carefully evaluate your case and advise you on your legal options. We work on a no-win, no-fee basis, so you don’t have to worry about any upfront fees.