18 Wheeler Accident Lawsuit In 2024 - All in One Guide

If you have been involved in a collision with a semi-truck, you or a family representative may be eligible to file an 18 wheeler accident lawsuit. Choosing a qualified lawyer will help you get information about how to proceed immediately following the accident. You may also have concerns about whether you are at fault or how to deal with law enforcement and insurance companies after such an unpleasant event. For these, your trusted lawyer should be able to provide the answers.

Why does an 18 wheeler accident happen?

Like most motor vehicle accidents, accidents involving 18 wheelers mostly occur due to the negligence of the driver that caused the accident. It may include:

  • Driving too fast.
  • Driving too fast in bad weather conditions.
  • Tailgating or following too close behind the injured party.
  • Driving through a red light.
  • General negligent or reckless driving.
  • Not stopping at a stop sign.

Sometimes, drivers have their unique reasons why such 18 wheeler accidents occur. It may include:

  • Brake problems.
  • Fatigue.
  • Prescription drug use.
  • Over-the-counter drug use.
  • Required to stop before the crash (traffic control device, crosswalk).
  • Roadway problems.
  • Traffic flow interruption, due to congestion or crash.
  • Traveling too fast for prevailing conditions.
  • Unfamiliarity with the roadway.

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What type of injuries are involved in a truck accident?

18 wheeler trucks weigh so much and often carry various freight. A fully loaded large truck can even weigh more than 80,000 pounds. Therefore, the nature of the injuries incurred by truck accident victims can be quite severe. 

The most common injuries involve neck sprain, whiplash, or back strain. Unfortunately, accidents involving trucks may not only permanently destroy your vehicle; they will also leave you with life-changing permanent disabilities. Here is a list of injuries one might face when involved in an 18 wheeler accident:

18 wheeler accident lawsuit
  • Amputation of an arm or leg.
  • Broken bones.
  • Burns.
  • Disfigurement.
  • Injuries to internal organs.
  • Injuries to the back.
  • Paralysis such as quadriplegia or paraplegia.
  • Traumatic brain injury or other neurological damage.
  • Neck or spine.
  • Wrongful death.

These injuries or conditions can be expensive to deal with. Nonetheless, filing a lawsuit against the negligent party could help you get a fair 18 wheeler accident lawsuit settlement.

Things to do immediately after a truck accident

After an accident, you might have a hundred thoughts running through your mind, including the amount of pain you might be experiencing. No doubt, 18-wheeler accidents are terrifying. Still, there are some things you can do to expedite your return to safety.

Although you might feel overwhelmed, it is necessary to get medical assistance immediately. Contacting medical experts shortly after the event will help you keep good, detailed records of those experiences.

Barring any medical emergencies, it is better to call an attorney before dealing with the liable party. A highly skilled and experienced 18 wheeler accident attorney will suggest what you should do next and who you should contact.

You should connect with the local law enforcement regarding the semi-truck accident you have gone through. There will likely be significant property damage when a commercial vehicle is involved, which must be assessed even if there was no injury.

Note: Law enforcement officers have several days to  file their police reports officially. You need to be aware of this to gather the necessary evidence to support your accident case. After your accident, your 18 wheeler accident lawyer will assist you with various things, including collecting statements and documentary evidence if needed.

It is helpful to contact your insurance agent while at the scene of the accident. They will tell you exactly what information and evidence you will need to verify what happened.

You need to swap contact information with all parties involved, even if you are unsure if you will need it. This information would later be helpful in helping you prove your lawsuit rather than tracking people and documentation down while you are still recovering from the accident. Here are some tips on collecting evidence:

  • The information you collect should include names, addresses, phone numbers, and insurance company information of the at-fault driver, including a policy number.
  • It is advisable to document things such as the license plate number of the vehicle, vehicle make/model/year/color, as well as the registration number of the vehicle.
  • You should also write down the driver’s license number of the other party for future reference. These may seem like little information, but they can be beneficial in filing your lawsuit against 18 wheeler accident.  
  • When possible, you should also take down the statements from consenting eyewitnesses who were there when the event occured. Ensure you record their contact information, including name, address, and phone number.
  • A testimonial from an eyewitness can often be key in proving who was at fault in a semi-truck accident. It is important to take pictures of any damage to the vehicles if it is safe to do so. Copies of documents, ID cards, and license plates are also useful in solving disputes efficiently.

How much compensation will I get after filing a lawsuit?

The amount of damages you will get after a semi or 18-wheeler accident depends on the facts of the accident, the law, and the severity of the victim’s injuries. Victims of distracted or intoxicated truck drivers may be awarded more damages in an 18-wheeler accident case. 

Note that the insurance companies of the trucking insurance company will try to settle the 18 wheeler accident claim outside of court and will fight for every last penny for the clients.  As a common tactic, insurance companies will try to reduce your compensation. However, hiring skilled and experienced lawyers will do their best to provide you maximum compensation by filing your 18 wheeler accident compensation claim.

Types of damages

Your damages and injuries and pain and suffering can entitle you to claim damages. Here are some of the basis of the award for damages:

  • Hospital and medical bills.
  • Property damage.
  • Temporary or permanent loss of income.
  • Long-term disability.
  • Disfigurement.
  • Loss of consortium.
  • Loss of enjoyment of life.
  • Past, present, and future pain and suffering.
  • Permanent Impairment.
  • Mental and emotional anguish.
  • Punitive damages.

Statute of limitation in 18 wheeler accident lawsuit

When making an 18 wheeler accident lawsuit claim, you have three (3) years from the date of the accident to file a lawsuit for the damages you sustained as a result thereof. There may be some exceptions, such as if the truck that caused the accident involved a government entity. Therefore, contacting an experienced truck accident lawyer to find out about your particular injury claim is your best decision.

Why hire Ethen Ostroff Law

Many clients experience a pileup of bills in the aftermath of a serious accident. Property damage, car repairs, medical bills, and missed work can all contribute to financial hardship. To ensure you get the maximum possible payout after an 18-wheeler accident, hire a legal emergency 18 wheeler accident lawyer who will help you get all potential economic and non-economic damages without any hassle. You can instantly get professional assistance from Ethen Ostroff Law by calling us on 610-510-8883.

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