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TRUCK ACCIDENT SETTLEMENT
Birmingham Truck Accident Lawyer
Enlist the help of a Birmingham 18-wheeler accident lawyer to guide you through the process of pursuing the compensation you need.
When a semi-truck driver hits you, your injuries, expenses, and trauma are likely massive, and you need help. At the Henry Dailey Law Firm, we always put your wellbeing above all else. Our team of dedicated attorneys is here to help you reclaim your life after your truck accident.
Once you’ve chosen to pursue personal injury compensation, we will meticulously examine the evidence to determine what caused the wreck, who is at fault, and what amount you should request in your claim. To get started, contact a Birmingham truck accident lawyer.
Causes of Truck Accidents in Birmingham
When you’re preparing a claim for a semi-truck wreck in Birmingham, knowing the cause can help us piece together other parts of your case, such as fault. If we know the details of how your accident happened, we can then move on to determining who caused it.
For instance, let’s say you’re driving near an 18-wheeler on I-20, and you’re trying to pass to get to your exit. Suddenly, the trucker moves into your lane without using a signal, and you’re been hit. In this case, the driver didn’t check his or her blind spots, and you’re hurt because of that carelessness.
The truck driver isn’t always to blame, but determining what caused the truck accident can help you quickly find who’s at fault and who will need to compensate you for your injuries. Below are a few of the most common causes of 18-wheeler accidents:
- Inadequate Training – A truck driver might make a costly mistake because he or she wasn’t trained adequately. Accidents caused by failing to signal or check blind spots often fall under this category.
- Negligent Driving – When you’re driving something as large as an 18-wheeler, speeding can be deadly. A trucker may be handling tens of thousands of pounds of cargo, and stopping at high speeds can cause jackknifing that will leave innocent people injured.
- Drowsy Driving – Unfortunately, many truckers are encouraged to keep tight schedules, and long hours behind the wheel without breaks may leave them exhausted and inattentive. When that happens, they may make a mistake that leaves you injured.
- Driving Under the Influence – Some 18-wheeler drivers may take risks with your safety by using alcohol or drugs on the road. These substances can cause truckers to drive erratically and have slow reaction times.
- Road Hazards – In some cases, while the semi-truck might have hit you, the accident might have been caused by dangerous road conditions. Potholes and other damage can cause even the best drivers to lose control. Claims against government agencies are difficult, so call a lawyer if you believe road hazards caused your crash.
Fault in Commercial Truck Wrecks
Quite a few entities could hold some blame for your Birmingham semi-truck crash. Of course, the truck driver is the most common person held liable in these kinds of claims. Usually, negligent truckers were engaging in unsafe driving practices, such as distracted driving, impaired driving, aggressive driving, or drowsy driving.
The trucking company may also be liable if it failed to follow safety regulations or perform industry-standard vehicle inspections. This can work out in your favor because the trucking company will often have access to more funds and better insurance than individual truckers.
The trucking company could also be held liable for the actions of its workers, as long as those workers were acting within the scope of their employment. A trucker who was negligent and accidentally hit your car may not be the only one liable for your expenses.
The parts manufacturer and vehicle technicians are also an option to consider. They might have installed defective parts or failed to notify the trucking company of parts that were recalled. In any case, having a Birmingham 18-wheeler accident attorney at the ready can help ensure that all of the liable parties are held accountable in your claim.
How Alabama Law Might Affect Your Truck Crash Claim
As you prepare your case and determine who’s responsible for your accident, keep in mind that your claim will need to be protected. Insurance companies and trucking businesses won’t be happy to pay for your bills, so you can expect substantial pushback. You may also have some trouble with laws that could harm your injury claim.
For example, Alabama residents have only two years to file their 18-wheeler crash claims. If your accident has just happened, this may seem like plenty of time, but keep in mind that the insurance company or negligent party may drag out your case.
If you’re considering a lawsuit, you may need a tractor-trailer crash lawyer in Birmingham to help you file quickly and protect your opportunity to sue. If you don’t, your claim may be dismissed with no recovery.
Even if you file your claim on time, you’ll need to be careful when dealing with the other side. They want to protect their profits, so they’ll try to put the blame on you for the accident. Unfortunately, under Alabama’s pure contributory fault rules, this can work if you don’t have a lawyer to fight for you.
The Insurance Company and Your Claim
The insurer of the trucker who caused the crash will likely attempt to place the blame on you. Alabama recognizes pure contributory fault rules, meaning that if you are found to be even 1 percent at fault for the accident, the trucker or trucking company’s insurer won’t be liable in your injury claim.
Because Alabama is a “fault” state for insurance purposes, the person liable will be the one who has to pay for the damages. The insurance adjuster may ask you to make a statement regarding the accident. You are not legally obligated to do so, and you can simply tell the insurer to contact your attorney instead.
Insurance companies can be tricky when it comes to settling Birmingham truck accident claims. The difference between a devastating loss and a huge win could be enlisting the help of a truck accident lawyer in Birmingham.
Identifying Your Injuries
Some of the most cataclysmic damages we’ve seen in Birmingham have been due to 18-wheeler crashes. When you’re hit by a semi-truck, your injuries could come from two places: the force of the impact and the cargo the truck may be carrying. These trucks could be hauling dangerous materials like gasoline, which means you’re at high risk of serious harm.
Common injuries associated with truck accidents include the following:
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord damage and paralysis
- Organ damage
- Broken bones
- Third-degree burns
When your Birmingham semi-truck attorney works with your physician to gauge the severity of your injuries, we will consider how the damage has impacted and will continue to impact your life.
What Are Your Injuries Worth?
Your hospital stay and other medical bills are only a fraction of what you’re entitled to after you’re hurt in a Birmingham truck crash that wasn’t your fault. You deserve further compensation for the economic losses and non-financial damages that could haunt you moving forward. Seeking these damages can be complicated, however, and you may need a lawyer to help you determine their value.
Future rehabilitation services, prescription medications, and medical equipment should all be factored in. On top of these, be sure to consider the pain and suffering you’ve been through because of these injuries. When you’ve suffered at the hands of a truck driver, you should be fully compensated.
In addition to the medical costs, the following damages will also be assessed when deciding an appropriate amount of compensation to demand in your claim:
- Loss of Wages – Wages you’ve been unable to earn since the date of the accident, as well as reductions in your future earning potential, have a significant impact on the size of your award.
- Loss of Companionship – Compensation for loss of companionship could apply if your truck accident injuries are so severe that they have negatively affected your relationships.
- Loss of Enjoyment of Life – When you are no longer able to participate in activities you once found pleasurable, this damage may apply.
- Mental Anguish – High levels of stress and anxiety following the truck crash could entitle you to include emotional trauma in your claim.
- Replacement of Damaged Vehicle – If your automobile was hit by a semi-truck, it was more than likely totaled. Replacement or repair costs should almost always be taken into account.
Truck accident injuries usually result in life-changing consequences. To help ensure your claim addresses every way in which your injuries have impacted your life, consult with a truck accident lawyer in Birmingham.
Birmingham Truck Accident FAQ
What if the semi-truck that hit me was from out of state?
You will still be able to seek compensation if the truck isn’t local. Even if the trucker who hit you is from another state, what matters is that the claim is filed in Alabama, where the accident occurred.
Should I accept the insurance company’s settlement offer?
You are under no obligation to accept the insurance company’s offer. In fact, doing so is not likely advisable because, as a for-profit business, the insurer is going to offer you as minimal a payout as it can get away with. Speaking with a Birmingham 18-wheeler accident attorney can help you grasp the magnitude of the settlement you are actually entitled to.
How long do I have to sue?
You have two years to file a personal injury claim in Alabama. If the commercial vehicle is government property and the state must be named in your suit, then you will have less time to file before you will no longer be able to pursue damages.
If I file a claim, will I have to go to court?
Not necessarily. Many claims can be settled during the negotiation process with the aid of a Birmingham semi-truck collision attorney. If the insurer refuses to make you a reasonable offer, we may advise going to court.
I feel OK. Should I still go to the hospital after the accident?
Especially after truck crashes, we strongly recommend seeking a medical evaluation following a collision. Many injuries simply can’t be seen or initially felt—organ damage and concussions are two common examples. You may not be in any pain now, but that could be because your body is temporarily in shock.
Do truck drivers have any special laws they need to follow?
The short answer is yes. Truckers are responsible for making sure they do not exceed the state weight or size regulations for cargo. They also are required to have a certain amount of rest time between shifts and cannot legally work more than seven days in a row. If these mandates are ignored, both the truck driver and trucking company can be found liable for resulting crashes.
Team Up with a Birmingham Semi-Truck Accident Attorney
Crashes involving 18-wheelers often result in catastrophic injuries. If you were lucky enough to survive, you deserve to be fully compensated by the person or people responsible for the trauma you’ve endured. At the Henry Dailey Law Firm, our attorneys are committed to providing the highest level of care in handling your case.
We will do what it takes to ensure that your case is heard. Our number one goal is to procure the financial security you’re entitled to so you can focus your energy on healing and rebuilding your life.
To set up a meeting with a Birmingham truck accident lawyer today, give us a call at 205-995-2412 or fill out the form at the bottom of this page. We are proud to always guarantee you’ll have no fees until we win.