When you’ve been injured in an accident, you need someone to fight for your rights. You deserve a top-notch College Station truck accident lawyer on your side to stand up to the trucking company. You deserve Chad Jones Law, P.C. We have extensive experience handling high-stakes cases involving 18-wheelers, and the trucking companies don’t intimidate us.
Big rig trucks are a common sight on Highway 6, Highway 30, I-35 and other highways in this area. Most motorists do not mind sharing the road with those commercial trucks, but that changes in a hurry when they are involved in wrecks. A fully loaded 18-wheeler can weigh up to 80,000 pounds, leading to devastating injuries. Even smaller commercial vehicles like delivery trucks and dump trucks can cause serious injuries as well, and recovering from those injuries can take months or years.
If you are recovering from injuries sustained in a truck wreck, your legal battle may just be beginning. The commercial trucking company and their insurance companies will not just roll over and pay you what you’re owed. They have teams of investigators, attorneys, and adjusters on their side, and their priority is to reduce or deny your claim.
Types of Truck Accident Cases Our Attorneys Handle
Commercial truck drivers are held to higher legal standards than motorists because their vehicles are so difficult to handle – and potentially dangerous. Our lawyers in College Station have handled truck accident cases involving the following circumstances:
- Truck Rollover
- Wide Turn
- Tire Blowout
- Cargo Fell Off Truck
- Blind Spot/No-Zone
- Texting Truckers
- Drunk/Drugged Truck Drivers
- Speeding Trucks
- Asleep-At-The-Wheel Truckers
- Poorly Maintained Trucks
What to Do After a Truck Wreck in College Station
As with any crash, the health and safety of the parties involved should first priority. Seek medical help and make sure the scene is safe. Call the police and ask for the investigating officer’s name and badge number; the report he or she fills out can be a critical piece of evidence in the case.
Ask the truck driver for his or her name and contact information as well as the corporate name and address of the trucking company. Injured parties should also obtain contact information from any witnesses to the wreck. Keep comments to anyone else at the scene brief, and stick to the facts of what happened. Take note if the trucker or any other motorist says something admitting fault, and avoid making any such statements.
Potential claimants should also try to take pictures of the scene, including skid marks, damage to the truck and to their vehicle, any other property damage, and any visible injuries. The trucking company often has investigators on the scene within hours, so any evidence that can be collected before they arrive may be valuable.
Finally, injured parties should notify their insurance company promptly. However, before speaking to anyone from an insurance company or the trucking company, contact us. The sooner someone gets a College Station attorney on their side, the better the outcome may be in a particular truck accident case.
Is it Possible to Sue the Trucking Company?
In general, it is possible to sue the trucking company, but it depends on the circumstances of the wreck. There is a legal doctrine called respondeat superior that makes an employer responsible for the negligent actions of an employee while on the job. If the truck driver is a direct employee of the trucking company, this doctrine makes the company vicariously liable. However, if the trucker is an independent contractor, respondeat superior may or may not apply, depending on the specifics of the relationship between the trucker and the trucking company.
We may also be able to show that the trucking company’s own actions make them directly liable for the wreck, even if the truck driver was not an employee. For instance, the company may have pressured the driver to work through mandatory breaks or violate hours-of-service regulations, which may have caused the trucker to fall asleep at the wheel due to being exhausted. Or the company may have negligently hired a driver with a history of drunk driving after failing to conduct a background check. An experienced College Station attorney from our firm to thoroughly investigate a truck crash to determine if the company may be responsible.
How to Handle Insurance Companies
It is important to not deal with any insurance company before speaking with a lawyer. These companies are not on the injured party’s side, no matter how friendly they may seem. Any information given to the trucking company or their insurance company can be used to reduce or deny a claim.
Instead, contact our law firm in College Station as soon as possible after the truck wreck. Once retained, we can contact the trucking company and their insurance carrier to notify them that a lawyer is on the case. From that point forward, they should direct their questions to us, not the claimant. If they try to call anyway, claimants should politely decline to answer and remind them that they can contact their attorney.
It is also important to avoid accepting any settlement offer. An attorney should be contacted first instead. Remember that in truck wreck cases, there are usually multiple insurance companies involved. Depending on the circumstances, accepting a settlement offer from one insurer may settle liability with other insurance companies, leaving a claimant with no source of additional compensation. Once a claimant has taken an insurance company’s money, there’s usually nothing an attorney can do. In many cases, that offer will not even come close to paying for the full cost of your accident. We could demand that they return to the negotiating table and fight for an offer that fully covers your truck accident-related expenses.
Speak with a College Station Truck Accident Attorney
Remember that commercial trucking companies often move quickly to protect their own interests after a wreck. This is why it is so critical that you contact our College Station truck accident lawyers right away. If you retain our firm to handle your truck accident case, we can contact the trucking company and their insurance carrier to tell them to direct further inquiries to our office. We can help you demand the best possible medical care and arrange for your doctors to be paid with an attorney’s lien if necessary.
We could build a strong case by hiring outside experts, interviewing witnesses, and combing through the trucking company’s records to find critical evidence. In most cases, we are able to negotiate a fair settlement that may pay for the full cost of your wreck. If the trucking company does not back down, an experienced attorney from our law firm can fight for your best interests in court.