An accident with a commercial vehicle can be devastating. When you collide in a car with a large commercial vehicle, it can result in serious damage and injuries. You can suffer a variety of losses, including medical costs, lost wages due to missing work, and permanent disabilities. When this happens, you need to seek compensation if the accident was due to the commercial driver's negligence. Here is what you need to know about your compensation:
Seek an Insurance Claim
One of the first ways to be compensated for your losses due to an accident with a commercial driver is making an insurance claim with the vehicle's insurance carrier. To do this, the liable party must be identified. When you are in an accident with a commercial vehicle, the liable party can be more than one party.
The driver of the vehicle is one possible liable party. Some accidents are due to speeding, violating traffic laws, or other issues that are due to the actions of the driver.
The commercial company that owns the vehicle is another possible liable party. The company can be held responsible for the negligent actions of the driver. The company may also be liable itself due to negligent behavior, such as not properly maintaining the vehicle, allowing for incorrect loading, poor hiring practices, and so on.
The manufacturer of the commercial vehicle may also be liable for your accident if the vehicle is fitted with defective parts that result in an accident, such as bad brakes.
File an Insurance Claim
Once liability is determined, your lawyer will file the claim with the insurance company for one or more of the liable parties. Part of the claim will include evidence proving the fault of the liable party. You also have to show your losses when you file the claim. The insurance company may provide a settlement offer. Your attorney will evaluate if the offer is adequate. If the offer is not adequate in meeting your losses, your attorney can proceed with negotiations for an increase. If the insurance company does not provide you with an appropriate offer, you then can go to court.
File a Lawsuit
If you decide to file a lawsuit, keep in mind it will most likely still include the insurance company. You can sue the insurers for not providing you with an adequate settlement offer. The insurance carrier will act as the defendant in your lawsuit and will argue why their insured are not liable or not liable past the point of the initial settlement offer. Although most lawsuits settle, some may go to trial. If this happens, you and your attorney will compile a solid case against a commercial company to get your damages.
Reach out to a car accident attorney for advice about your case.