Few accidents are as devastating as those involving commercial trucks. The massive size of these tractor-trailers make them nearly unstoppable on the roads. In fact, it is not uncommon for people who have been hit by a truck to suffer from traumatic brain damage, spinal cord injuries, loss of limbs, paralysis, post-traumatic stress disorder, organ failure, and bone fractures, to name a few.
After you’ve been seriously injured in an accident, you need to know what steps you have to take to get through this trying time in your life as easily as possible. Make no mistake, it won’t be easy, but with the right Atlanta truck accident lawyer on your side, the entire process can be significantly less overwhelming.
You can learn more about how to go about filing a truck accident lawsuit from start to finish when you continue reading.
First Steps After Your Truck Accident
Immediately after the accident, one of the first things you have to do is be seen by a medical professional. Go to see your primary care doctor, let the ambulance that arrived at the scene bring you to be evaluated at the hospital, call a home nurse, whatever your prerogative is— but be seen and have it documented.
Accidents with 18-wheelers are often catastrophic, and just because you don’t feel any life-threatening injuries, that doesn’t mean you haven’t suffered a severe injury that can’t be seen with the naked eye.
You could have organ failure, internal bleeding, whiplash, a concussion, a traumatic brain injury, a damaged spinal cord, and other serious injuries. For your own safety, health, and wellbeing, the first thing you need to do is be seen by a healthcare provider.
In addition to being necessary for your health, being seen immediately after the accident can only help your civil lawsuit against the liable party. Waiting leaves the opportunity for the defense to offer some other explanation for your injuries.
Liability for Trucking Accidents
Speaking of liability, after you’ve been seen by a doctor and cleared medically, you can work with your lawyer to figure out who is responsible for causing your accident. No truck accident claim can be successful until you are able to prove based on a preponderance of the evidence that the accused party is at fault for the accident.
If you’re assuming that the truck driver is to blame, you may be surprised to learn that there are several other parties who could have played a part in causing your accident.
Sure, some truckers have been known to fall asleep at the wheel, drive dangerously, or cause accidents through distracted driving, but there are many other parties who are responsible for getting that tractor-trailer up and running and could be partially responsible for causing your accident:
- The trucking company
- The owner of the truck
- Safety inspectors
- Cargo loaders
- Trucking company staff
- Vehicle parts manufacturers
- Maintenance technicians
- Government agencies responsible for road safety
Once you have figured out which party or parties are liable for causing your accident and resulting injuries, your lawyer can finally move forward and file your truck accident claim with the insurance company and in court.
How Much Is Your Claim Worth?
Before your claim is officially filed, your lawyer will also likely want to go over how much your lawsuit could be worth. You’ll need to take an inventory of the various ways your life has been affected by your injuries.
Leave no stone unturned, and no loss unaccounted for: money you lost, unexpected expenses, the physical pain, emotional trauma, and other losses should all be quantified to determine the value of your truck accident claim.