Truck accidents can have devastating consequences. They can leave victims struggling with severe injuries, long-term disabilities, and uncertainty about the future., They can also leave grieving family members at a loss for how to move on. For both victims and grieving families, filing a claim is an important part of the recovery process, as it provides a source of financial recovery while also ensuring that the at-fault party is held accountable.
Truck accident claims can be extremely complicated, and often require the knowledge, skill, and resources of an experienced attorney who understands the complexities of these difficult cases.
The Chicago truck accident lawyers at Coplan + Crane have substantial experience in a wide range of cases involving 18-wheelers and other large commercial vehicles. If you were hurt in a truck wreck, we can help you pursue the justice and compensation to which you may be entitled.
Below are just some of the ways a Chicago truck accident lawyer can help you pursue the justice you deserve after a serious wreck.
One of the first steps toward pursuing a truck accident case is to identify the at-fault party (or parties). Truck accidents can have several different causes, and the cause (or causes) of an accident will determine what company (or companies) are liable.
For example, many truck accident victims will have claims against the truck driver’s employer. But, if the truck driver is an owner-operator, then victims may need to file their claims with the truck driver’s insurance company instead. If a truck defect or cargo-related issue played a role in the crash, then the truck’s manufacturer or the shipping company could be fully or partially liable as well.
When investigating a truck accident, it is critical to ensure that all evidence remains admissible in court. The admissibility of evidence can be a key factor in truck accident litigation, and trucking companies, truck manufacturers, and others will not hesitate to fight victims’ and families’ claims based on technicalities. Additionally, if an insurance company knows that a victim’s or family’s evidence of liability is inadmissible in court, it will be far less likely to offer a fair settlement—because it knows that it won’t have to pay as much (if any) if the case goes to trial.
In legal terms, the costs of a truck accident can be divided into two categories: economic and non-economic. Economic costs are those that have a direct financial impact on victims or their loved ones. In non-fatal truck accident cases, typical economic costs include:
In fatal truck accident cases, families can recover these losses in addition to funeral expenses and other related costs by filing a claim for wrongful death.
Non-economic costs are those that do not have a direct financial impact, but instead impact truck accident victims and grieving family members in other ways. Common examples of non-economic costs include emotional distress, pain and suffering, loss of consortium and companionship, loss of enjoyment of life, and loss of services and support.
Since it isn’t possible to simply “add up” non-economic costs, accurately calculating these losses presents some unique challenges. Making sure you are seeking appropriate compensation for your (or your family’s) non-economic costs after a truck accident requires experienced legal representation.
Once a truck accident lawyer identifies the at-fault party (or parties), preserves the relevant evidence, and calculates your (or your family’s) losses, your lawyer can then file all available claims on your behalf. Depending on the circumstances presented, this may involve dealing with one or more insurance companies, or it may involve going directly to court.
Truck accident cases can involve several complicated issues. For example, trucking companies will frequently try to blame victims for their own injuries, and it is a common defense tactic to claim that victims have not strictly followed their doctors’ advice. An experienced truck accident lawyer will be able to address these issues proactively so that they do not create unnecessary problems during your case.
Ultimately, the most important way a truck accident lawyer can help your case is by making sure you don’t settle for less than you deserve. You only get to settle once, so it is extremely important that you make informed decisions when evaluating any settlement offers you may receive.
If a company makes a settlement offer, your lawyer can help you decide whether to accept or keep fighting for more. If a fair settlement isn’t on the table, your lawyer can take your case to court and use the available evidence to fight for the full financial compensation you and your loved ones deserve.
If you would like to know more about how a truck accident lawyer can help your case, we encourage you to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with the experienced truck accident lawyers at Coplan + Crane. During your initial consultation, we will listen to the details of your case and explain your rights and legal options.
To speak with a lawyer about your legal rights in confidence call our office today at (708) 358-8080 or contact us online now. Coplan + Crane helps clients in Chicago, Oak Park, Rockford, and other Illinois areas.