Who can you sue if you are a victim of a truck accident?
If you have had a truck accident in Los Angeles and need to sue a responsible truck driver to recover damages, do not hesitate to contact our expert injury and traffic accident attorneys at Lluis Law. We have been dealing with this type of events for more than 50 years and helping victims obtain justice.
Accidents with trucks in the United States and California are quite frequent, because these vehicles are permanently on the road and travel thousands of miles throughout the country transporting all kinds of products.
To get an idea of the cases of truck accidents reported in the country. In 2015 the number of people killed due to accidents with trucks was 3,800, not counting the thousands of people who were injured in these very dangerous events that, generally, involve other smaller vehicles.
There is a fundamental difference between truck accidents and car accidents in general. In accidents involving a truck or trailer, victims can sue the responsible driver, the insurance company for which they work, the manufacturer of the trucks and even a government agency if the accident was caused by poor road conditions.
The other difference is that truck manufacturers and trucking companies must comply with certain regulatory guidelines to market and operate these vehicles. Among them are: the working hours limits of the drivers, the safe weight that the truck can transport and the constant training and control of the drivers.
On the other hand, state and federal laws require that both owner companies and truck operators have insurance policies with sufficient coverage to cover expenses greater than those required by motorists.
To obtain compensation, injured persons must file a claim or claim and prove that the driver of the truck acted negligently or violated any of the rules of the federal or state traffic law. Truck drivers as well as bus drivers are governed by a series of very specific rules to avoid causing accidents.
Truckers also have a duty to take care of the rest of the passengers while driving, because it is assumed that they can be dangerous vehicles if they are not driven with sufficient care. In some way, other drivers (motorists, motorcyclists and cyclists) are exposed to negligent or reckless truck drivers.
If a driver injures another person for violating traffic regulations or driving recklessly, he must be sued because there is a presumption of negligence. In a court, the injured person must show that it was the negligent conduct of the driver that caused the accident and the injuries.
To win the trial and obtain reasonable compensation, it is quite likely that you need a truck accident lawyer with sufficient experience and knowledge about these cases, which can demonstrate the negligence of the driver, as the trucker’s insurance companies and the companies the owner of the truck will seek legal assistance to avoid paying or paying less.
Company that owns the truck
Injured people also have the option of suing the companies that own the trucks, when there is a presumption of negligence on their part. In this case, the compensation to be charged may be higher because the companies have more money and the coverage of their insurance policies are usually millionaire.
However, first we must prove that the company acted negligently in failing to comply with its obligation to adequately train the driver or perform the required maintenance of the vehicle to avoid any failure. There are safety standards that companies must meet, for example, hire drivers with the credentials required to drive trucks.
The behavior of the trucker on the road is a sufficient reason to sue a company, because it is assumed that who drives a truck is a person who is ready to do so but also does not represent a danger to the rest of society. A company should not hire imprudent, inexperienced, drunk drivers, violators of the law or with a history of bad driving.
Maintenance companies or the manufacturer
It is also possible that the trucker or the company that owns the trucks did not have the fault of the accident, but rather the company that carried out the maintenance of the vehicle or the manufacturer of the defective part or part that caused the accident. In such a case, the lawsuit would be against these companies.
The experienced truck accident lawyer can be very helpful for the victims because it will facilitate the process of identifying the possible perpetrators.
Most common causes of truck accidents
Many can be the causes that can cause a truck accident, but among the most frequent in the United States are:
- – Driver tiredness.
- – Drive distracted.
- – Ingest alcohol or drugs.
- – Overload of the truck.
- – Defects in the design or manufacture of the truck (or parts).
- – Lack of maintenance or proper inspection of the vehicle.
- – Imprudence of the driver
- – Inexperience of the driver
How can a lawyer help me win?
Just as truck accidents are far from automobile accidents in terms of compensation amounts and those responsible, hiring an expert truck lawyer is another variable to consider more since it can greatly influence the chances of recovering more or less damage.
To victims of truck accidents who decide to go alone to file a claim or demand, insurance companies offer them liquidation offers far below those that have legal representation. The reason is very simple: people without representation of a lawyer, are at a disadvantage to defend themselves or fight for just or reasonable compensation.
California is governed by the Comparative Negligence Rule, which serves to establish the degree of liability of drivers in an accident with injuries, including the victim. Therefore, the compensation obtained will depend on this norm. The task of identifying the person responsible is not simple and the assignment of fault is not, so you probably need a specialist lawyer.
With adequate legal assistance, the victim can increase the chances of winning and get better compensation, because his lawyer:
- – Prepare the case with the support of researchers and accident experts.
- – Request police reports.
- – Get the medical records.
- – Obtain the testimonies of the eyewitnesses of the accident.
- – Negotiates with the insurance company of the responsible party under equal conditions.
- – Find the opinion of medical experts.
- – Present the case to the insurance company or the court.
- – Assists the victim at each stage of the process while recovering from injuries.
What damages can be recovered?
It is not easy to determine precisely how much the compensatory damages will be recovered after the accident. But it is possible to infer the type of damage that can be recovered:
- – Medical bills (includes costs of ambulances and transport to consultations, special medical equipment, exams, surgeries and therapies)
- – Lost wages
- – Pain and suffering
- – Emotional stress
- – Loss of capacity to generate future income.
If you or a family member were injured in a truck accident, you can count on Lluís Law’s law firm. Our experienced truck accident and personal injury attorneys can help you with your claim or claim for damages. Do not hesitate to contact us for a free consultation. Our telephone number is (213) 320-0777.
Address: 205 South Broadway, Suite 1000 Los Angeles, CA 90012. Tel: (213) 687-4412 Fax: (213) 687-3441.