Every day, people have their lives turned upside down because they’re victims in a wreck involving a semi-truck. Resulting injuries can change your life or the life of your family, including:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Broken bones
Here’s what you need to know about these catastrophic wrecks.
Defining Personal Injury
Personal injury is part of civil law. That means that it is not a criminal act. Personal injury claims must meet a certain set of elements, and they must be filed before the statute of limitations has expired. If you have an accident that meets the following criteria, contact an experienced personal injury attorney to determine if you can file a claim.
- A duty is owed. Truckers, such as those employed by J.B. Hunt, have the responsibility to obey all speed limits posted for trucks. On many highways, it is usually 10 to 20 mph slower than passenger vehicles. If the speed limit is different, it is posted with the other speed limit signs.
- The duty must be breached. Breached means broken. An example would be if there is a posted speed limit for trucks at night that says 50 mph, and the driver is doing 65 mph at night because he or she doesn’t want to be late on a delivery, that would be a breach of the duty.
The breach of duty must cause an actual injury. Because if there’s no injury, there’s no personal injury claim. If the driver is speeding at night, it is harder to stop the vehicle than it usually is (and even at the posted speed limit, it’s much harder to suddenly stop a semi-truck than a personal vehicle).
So, if the driver can’t stop to avoid a collision, that would be an actual injury that was caused at least partially by the fact that the driver of the truck was speeding.
- The claim must meet the "but-for" test. But for the fact that the driver was speeding, he or she would have been able to stop and avoid causing the wreck.
Making Your Claim
Bringing a claim against a massive company will not be easy which is why it is important to have an attorney on your side. An experienced trucking attorney will know how to deal with the insurance company.
Even if fault seems clear to you, it is not likely that the relevant company and their insurance company will admit liability in the accident. If you do have the evidence to prove that theywas at fault, there is a good chance that you will be given a settlement offer instead of bringing the case in front of a jury.
The value of the settlement will be determined by the damages sustained as a result of the accident. There are many considerations to make when estimating damages. There are immediate costs such as fixing your vehicle and treatment for any injuries sustained, but there are also some long-term damages that your attorney can help estimate. Long-term damages can include potential lost wages, recurring medical bills and changes to your lifestyle as a result of the accident.
Protect Your Legal Rights
If you or someone you love was affected because of a wreck involving a semi-truck, you need the help of a personal injury attorney who has a proven track record of experience with truck accidents.
You have legal rights that must be protected. Don’t leave your future in the hands of the insurance company. Protect your legal rights. Contact a personal injury attorney today.
*The content of this article serves only to provide information and should not be construed as legal advice. If you file a claim against J.B. Hunt Transport Services, or any other party, you may not be entitled to any compensation.