Our Abogados de Accidentes de Camiones en Fort Lauderdale Answer Your Truck Accident FAQs
Seeking financial compensation for a truck accident is different from seeking financial compensation for other types of vehicle collisions. To protect your rights, you need to know how to stand up to the insurance companies, and you need a team of experienced abogados de accidentes de camiones en Fort Lauderdale on your side. If you have been injured in a collision in Palm Beach, Martin, and Broward counties, as well as other parts of South Florida, involving an 18-wheeler, tractor trailer, or other large commercial truck, these FAQs will help you make smart decisions so that you can maximize your financial recovery.
FAQs: Truck Accident Statistics
Q: How common are commercial truck accidents?
Commercial truck accidents are alarmingly common. Each year, there are more than 40,000 commercial truck accidents in Florida alone. At Searcy Denney, we routinely represent clients who have been injured in accidents involving commercial trucks in Palm Beach, Martin, and Broward counties, and we have recovered millions of dollars in compensation from trucking companies and their insurers.
Q: What are some of the most-common causes of commercial truck accidents?
While many of the most-common causes of truck accidents are similar to those for accidents involving passenger vehicles, commercial trucks present some unique risks as well. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the leading causes of truck accidents include:
- Alcohol and drug impairment
- Cell phone use and other driving distractions
- Cargo loading and tie-down errors
- Driver decision, recognition and performance errors
- Driver fatigue
- Driver inexperience
- Tire failures, brake failures and other truck defects
Q: What percentage of commercial truck accidents result in serious or fatal injuries?
espite the fact that commercial trucks account for just four percent of all registered vehicles, commercial truck accidents are responsible for 11 percent of all traffic fatalities. Truck accidents also result in serious non-fatal injuries at a disproportionately-high rate, primarily due to the significant weight of these trucks and the extreme forces involved in trucking collisions.
Q: Are truck accidents more common on highways, in cities or in rural areas?
According to data from the NHTSA, approximately 33 percent of truck accidents occur on interstates, freeways and expressways. Including highway crashes, approximately 61 percent of trucking collisions occur in rural areas, while 38 percent occur in cities and other urban locations.
FAQs: What to Do After a Truck Accident
Q: What should I do at the scene of a truck accident?
t the scene of the accident, your first priority should be to seek medical attention for your injuries. While it is helpful to take photos and collect witnesses’ contact information if you can, these tasks are secondary to making sure you see a doctor as soon as possible.
Q: What should I do once I get home after a truck accident?
When you get home after a truck accident, it is important to try to relax. You have been through a traumatic experience and you need time to decompress. Make sure you know what you need to do for your injuries and when you are able to do so, try to write down as many details as you can remember about the accident.
Q: What information do you need in order to file my claim?
It depends on what you have. If you have the truck’s license plate number, we can use this to identify the owner. If you have a copy of the police report, this will be helpful as well. If all you know is where the accident happened in Palm Beach, Martin, or Broward county area, or in other parts of South Florida, our abogados de accidentes de camiones en Fort Lauderdale can conduct an investigation to gather the evidence we need to file your claim.
Q: What should I do if someone contacts me about my truck accident?
If an insurance adjuster or anyone else contacts you about the accident, you should politely let them know that you are waiting to speak with an attorney. You are not required to speak with anyone and you do not want to say anything that could be used against you.
FAQs: Seeking Financial Compensation for Truck Accident Injuries
Q: How are truck accident cases different from cases involving passenger vehicles?
Truck accident cases tend to be more complex that cases involving collisions between passenger vehicles. There may be additional factors involved in the crash (such as cargo loading errors or truck defects), and there are unique legal issues involved in pursuing a claim against a commercial trucking company. As a result, in order to protect your rights, it is important to work with attorneys who have specific experience in truck accident litigation.
Q: If the truck driver was at fault, can I sue the trucking company?
In most cases, yes. Trucking companies are typically liable for their drivers’ mistakes, and in some instances they will be directly responsible for causing a collision (for example, if they force their drivers to spend too many hours behind the wheel). If the truck driver is an independent owner-operator, your case will most likely involve a claim against his or her insurance company.
Q: What if my accident was the result of a cargo loading error or truck defect?
Cargo loading errors and truck defects are common factors in commercial trucking accidents. If our investigation reveals that one of these factors played a role in your accident, we can seek to hold the shipping company, trucking company or truck manufacturer accountable.
Q: What are my rights if multiple vehicles were involved in the accident?
If you were injured in a multi-vehicle pileup or a chain-reaction collision involving a commercial truck, determining liability will require a comprehensive investigation. If you suffered serious injuries and multiple drivers were at fault, you could potentially have a claim against each negligent driver’s insurance company.
FAQs: Calculating Your Injury-Related Losses
Q: How much am I entitled to recover?
The amount you are entitled to recover depends on the severity of your physical and psychological injuries. If the truck driver or trucking company was 100 percent at fault, you are entitled to compensation for all of your current and future injury-related losses. This includes financial losses such as medical expenses and lost wages, as well as non-financial losses such as pain and suffering.
Q: How do you calculate future medical expenses and lost wages?
In order to calculate your future medical expenses and lost wages, we will need to have a comprehensive understanding of your medical condition, your long-term treatment needs and the limitations you are likely to experience result from your injuries. To gain this understanding, our abogados de accidentes de camiones en Fort Lauderdale will work with trusted physicians who are experts in diagnosing and treating severe traumatic injuries.
Q: How do you calculate financial compensation for pain and suffering?
Typically, your compensation for pain and suffering will be calculated using a multiplier of one-and-a-half to five times your financial losses. So, if your financial losses total $100,000, your compensation for pain and suffering would likely be somewhere in the range of $150,000 to $500,000. But, insurance companies often use other methods as well, and you will need to work with your attorney to determine what constitutes an appropriate award in your case.
Q: What factors can reduce my compensation award?
The primary factor that can reduce your compensation award is your own level of fault in the accident. Under Florida’s pure comparative fault law, if you were 50 percent at fault in the accident, you would only be entitled to recover 50 percent of your financial and non-financial losses.
FAQs: Choosing a Truck Accident Attorney
Q: Are there benefits to choosing a local truck accident attorney?
Yes. If your truck accident occurred in Palm Beach, Martin, or Broward county, or in other parts of South Florida, there are certainly benefits to choosing a local attorney to represent you. For example, a Fort Lauderdale truck accident attorney will be familiar with the local roads, will be able to refer you to local doctors and will be available to meet with you at your home or in the hospital to discuss your case.
Q: What other factors should I consider when choosing an attorney?
While there are benefits to choosing a local attorney, you should not choose your legal representation based solely on the firm’s geographic location. Other factors you will want to consider include:
- Size of the Firm – Are there multiple attorneys and staff members available to assist with your case?
- Relevant Experience – Does the firm have a record of success in truck accident settlements and litigation?
- Personalized Representation – Will the firm provide representation that is customized to the facts of your case?
Q: Do truck accident lawyers handle cases on contingency?
Typically, yes. At Searcy Denney, our abogados de accidentes de camiones en Fort Lauderdale handle all cases on a contingency-fee basis. Your initial consultation is completely free, and we do not collect any fees or costs unless we recover just compensation.
Q: What types of questions can I ask during my initial consultation?
You should feel free to ask any questions you would like during your initial consultation. Our attorneys will be happy to answer questions about their experience, our firm’s case results, steps you should take (and mistakes you should avoid) and what you can expect during your truck accident case.
Contact Our Abogados de Accidentes de Camiones en Fort Lauderdale
Have you or a loved one been seriously injured in a truck accident in Palm Beach, Martin, or Broward county, or in another part of South Florida? If so, we encourage you to contact us to schedule your free initial consultation. To speak with one of our experienced truck accident lawyers in confidence, call 800-220-7006 or request an appointment online today.