The long-term consequences of a truck accident can be devastating, affecting your physical health in the short term and your finances in the long run. In order to get the compensation you deserve and need, however, you first have to prove negligence on the truck driver’s part. Here are some tips that can help you do just that.
1. Talk With A Lawyer
The first thing you should do after being in a truck accident is to talk with a lawyer. An experienced attorney will be able to evaluate your case and help determine whether or not negligence played a role in the accident. As already mentioned, if you’ve been hurt in a truck crash, the only way to get compensation is to prove negligence, and an experienced attorney can help you get justice for what you’ve been through. Oftentimes, this comes down to who was at fault for the accident, and your lawyer will know how to investigate and build a case to prove that the truck driver was negligent. Seeking legal assistance is important since the company that employs the truck driver will likely have a team of lawyers representing them and their interests, which might make things a bit more difficult for you. However, there are still other things you can do on your own.
2. Look For Evidence Of Unsafe Driving
The simplest way to prove that the truck driver is liable for the accident is to prove that they weren’t following the rules of the road. This can be done by looking for evidence of unsafe or careless driving, such as speeding, swerving, or tailgating. It could also be that you had the right of passage and the truck driver hit you, in which case you would want to look for skid marks or other evidence at the scene of the accident. All of this can be used to show that the truck driver was negligent and ultimately caused the accident. If you have access to the truck’s black box, that can also be helpful in providing evidence of unsafe driving. Additionally, if there are any shops or other establishments in the area that have security cameras that might have captured the accident on video, that footage can also be used as evidence.
3. Provide Your Medical Files
In order to get compensation for your injuries, you’ll need to provide medical documentation detailing the extent of your injuries. This will likely include things like hospital records, doctors’ notes, and X-rays. This is important not only in terms of getting compensation but also in terms of proving that your injuries are a direct result of the accident. If you don’t have this documentation, it will be much more difficult to get the compensation you need and deserve. However, even if you don’t have it currently, it should be pretty easy to get a hold of a copy of your medical records in most places. All you need to do is contact your doctor’s office or the hospital where you were treated and request a copy of your records. Some hospitals even provide this option online which means that you don’t have to spend any time on the phone or in person.
4. Gather Any Other Evidence
In addition to the evidence mentioned above, there might be other types of evidence that can be used to prove negligence in a truck accident. This could include things like eyewitness testimony, photos of the scene of the accident, or even the police report. If you have any of this type of evidence, it’s important to gather it up and provide it to your lawyer so that they can use it in your case. It’s also important to take pictures of any and all damages to your vehicle, as well as a copy of the car repair bill. A lot can be deduced from the damage to your vehicle, which is why it’s important for your lawyer to see it as well. Any and all of this evidence can be helpful in proving negligence and ultimately getting you the compensation you need and deserve.
5. Gather Information About The Truck Driver
In order to prove negligence, you’ll need to gather information about the truck driver. This includes their name, contact information, license number, and insurance information. You should also try to get a copy of their driving record, if possible. This can be helpful in showing that they have a history of unsafe driving or accidents, which can be used to prove that they were negligent. While this wouldn’t prove beyond a doubt that they were responsible for this accident as well, it will certainly help to strengthen your case since it would show that they have a history of this type of behavior.
6. Hire An Expert Witness
If you want to really strengthen your case, you can hire an expert witness. This is someone who can review the evidence and provide testimony as to what they believe happened. This could be someone with experience in accident reconstruction or even a trucking safety expert. While this isn’t required, it can certainly help to bolster your case and increase the chances that you’ll get the outcome you want from the case. In some states, courts have a list of pre-approved expert witnesses that you can choose from. That said, your attorney is also more than likely to have their own list of experts that they recommend – especially if they’re experienced in handling this type of case.
7. Understand The Statute Of Limitations
Finally, it’s important to understand the statute of limitations for filing a personal injury claim. This is the amount of time you have to file a claim after the accident has occurred. In most states, this deadline is two years from the date of the accident. However, there are some exceptions to this rule so it’s important to check with an attorney in your state to find out for sure. If you don’t file your claim within this timeframe, you’ll likely be barred from doing so. In other words – after the statute of limitations has run out, no matter how obvious it is that the truck driver’s negligence was the cause of the accident, you would not legally be allowed to pursue the matter anymore.
As you can see, there are a few different things that you need to do in order to prove negligence in a truck accident. However, as long as you have a good lawyer by your side, you’ll find that you won’t need to deal with most of these yourself. Your lawyer will be able to handle the majority of the work for you, which will take a lot of stress off of your shoulders, and enable you to focus more on your recovery.