Getting into a truck accident can result in expensive medical bills and a lot of stress. These accidents often result in damages greater than the average car accident case, as these accidents have a tendency to leave people with more severe injuries.
A passenger car weighs about 4,000 pounds on average, while the average commercial truck weighs about 80,000 pounds. That makes for a huge difference in terms of force. Commercial trucks are harder to stop quickly and can impact cars more severely than another passenger vehicle would.
Large trucks accounted for 9% of all vehicles involved in fatal crashes in 2018, according to Injury Facts. In 2018 there were 4,862 large trucks that were involved in fatal crashes. When truck accidents occur, the injuries or deaths most often occur within the smaller vehicle. Most truck accident drivers walk away without any serious injuries.
Truck accidents can cause severe injuries, such as traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injuries, or even death. After getting into an accident, the last thing you want to do is think about money. But you’re probably worried about the medical bills you’ll have to pay. An experienced truck attorney, such as the aggressive lawyers of Abels & Annes, will be able to help unload that stress off of your back and allow you to continue recovering from your injuries.
Factors Considered when Calculating Your Injury Claim
There are many different factors that come into play when determining how much your claim is worth. No two claims are worth the same amount. While a judge and jury will be the ones to decide your claim’s worth if you go to trial, your attorney will keep you in the know on how much you should expect once he or she has fully evaluated your case.
The more medical bills you have, the higher your claim is often going to be worth. An accident that caused you serious injuries will leave you in much more medical debt than an accident that caused you only a few minor injuries. Your treatment time and the amount of overall medical attention you need will play a part in determining your case’s value. The compensation that you receive should be enough to cover any past or future medical costs related to the injuries you incurred because of the accident.
Lost Wages and Income
Any wages that you lost because of your injuries will be included in your claim’s value. If you had to take time off to recover, you are eligible to receive that money back. You may also receive compensation for any wages you will continue to lose because of your injuries. You can also receive compensation for the loss of earning capacity. If you’re no longer able to do the job you were doing, you may receive additional compensation to cover for those losses.
In a truck accident case, property damage refers to the damage done to your vehicle. Your own insurance may cover some of these costs, but you can claim any costs not covered by your insurance, such as your deductible.
Other Economic Damages
Other economic damages can include things like in-home care, such as a personal grocery shopper, childcare, or travel fees to and from medical appointments.
Pain and Suffering
Pain and suffering compensation is different based on each individual case. If you settle, your lawyer will demonstrate to the insurance company your quality of life before the accident, and how it’s changed since the accident occured. The greater the change, the more compensation they’re likely to offer you. The same is true if your case is brought to trial, except the decision will be made by the judge and jury instead.
Permanent Disability or Disfigurement
If your accident has left you permanently disabled or disfigured, your case will have a higher value. These disabilities can greatly change someone’s life, so that’s why they’re awarded further compensation.
Should I Settle my Truck Accident Claim?
Settling your truck accident claim can be a huge decision to make. Your decision to settle should be based on three factors: your case’s trial value, settlement value, and chance of winning. If your case has a trial value of $100,000 and you only have a 50% chance of winning, your settlement value is going to typically be well less than full value.
Many insurance companies will try to get victims to settle in order to avoid going to trial. It’s really up to you whether you want to settle or not, but your attorney can help you make the decision. If you have a high chance of winning your case, taking a low settlement is often a bad idea. If you have a low chance of winning your case, you may want to start to think about accepting a settlement offer.
Negligence and Your Claim
Negligence also plays a huge factor in your claim. If your accident occured because of gross negligence, you may be awarded punitive damages. Punitive damages are given to the victim as a punishment to the negligent party in order to keep the same party (or different parties) from committing a similar act in the future. Punitive damages are rare but can occur if a party was grossly negligent or if the court is trying to deter the accident from reoccurring.
Contact a Truck Accident Lawyer
If you or someone you love has been injured in a truck accident, our experienced truck accident attorneys here at Abels & Annes are ready to help you win your case. Getting into an accident can be stressful, but a good attorney can help to take the weight off of your shoulders. For more information, or a free case evaluation, please contact us online or at 312-924-7575.