Most of us will do everything possible to try to avoid a crash out on the road. Defensive driving is one of the most important skills that you can have. We have all seen those individuals who drive like they are completely safe, and no matter what kind of nonsense they pull out there, they will never get into a crash. It’s an unfortunate truth that it is mostly those kinds of people who keep your local personal injury lawyer busy.
When we see a commercial vehicle out on the road, sometimes with the “how am I driving” bumper sticker, we assume that those drivers will be extra careful. They surely wouldn’t drive poorly when all it takes is a simple phone call to get them in trouble at work right?
The unfortunate truth is that just because these drivers are behind the wheel of a commercial truck or semi-trailer, they are no better drivers then everyone else out there. As a result, commercial vehicle accidents happen all the time. If you have been involved in an injury causing accident involving a commercial vehicle, its important to understand the difference it will make when it comes time to seek compensation for your injuries.
Private and Commercial Insurance Policies for Accidents
The major difference between commercial and private auto insurance is who owns the vehicle in question. An individual who owns a vehicle will be required to carry private insurance in Nevada. Depending on the type of insurance, such as liability or full coverage, a certain payout cap on auto accidents and related damages will be a part of the plan. This means that no matter what kind of damages are suffered during the crash, there will be a limit on how much that insurance agency will payout as compensation.
If a company or corporation owns a vehicle, it must be covered by commercial insurance. Similar to private insurance, commercial insurance policies cover damages for bodily injury was well as property damages, but will cover much higher claims as well as offer compensation of other types of damages.
This means if you were injured in a crash where a commercial vehicle was at fault. You have a much better chance of receiving compensation for all of the damages that you have suffered. In the case of an accident involving a commercial vehicle, the services of an experienced personal injury lawyer become much more important.
Commercial Trucking Accidents
Semi-truck and trailer drivers spend all their days driving their big rigs. In fact they spend so much time on the road that their jobs are closely overseen by the U.S. Department of Transportation, as well as the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. The fact that semi-trucks are so large and dangerous, makes the rules and regulations for truck divers very strict, and that all truck drivers and trucking companies must have the very best auto insurance.
With the amount of time that truckers spend out on the road, fatigue is one of the leading causes of a trucking accident. However, distracted diving comes in as a very close second. Regardless of the strict regulations there are even still a great number of trucking accidents that are caused by the consumption of drugs and alcohol. The good news, if you can call it that, is that if you have been injured by a truck driver, the insurance policy will likely be good enough to cover all of your injuries and then some.
Why You NEED a Personal Injury Lawyer for Your Commercial Auto Accident
Regardless of how much money is available for compensation covered by the commercial vehicle insurance plan, the insurance agency will fight you tooth and nail over every dollar. They will immediately send out an insurance adjuster that will act like they are on your side, and that they want to help you get your compensation. The truth is that they are going to do everything in their power to pay you as little as possible.
Hiring an experienced personal injury lawyer will be your first step in getting what you deserve for your injuries. Without a injury attorney you will be opening yourself up to all of the tricky tactics that the insurance agencies will use to try to short change you on your settlement. Outside of that, a good lawyer will immediately begin doing the following things to help your case:
- Begin investigating the accident and compiling evidence. This evidence will include the police reports of the accident, any witness statements that were made, as well as looking for any traffic footage from roadside cameras, or even dash cams that were in the truck or surrounding vehicles.
- Gather and compile a complete list of all of your injuries and medical bills. This will include all treatments that have already happened, as well as any doctor forecasted treatments or surgeries that may happen in the future.
- Identify just who was the liable party, and if there were more than one, gather information on all liable parties as well as their insurance carriers.
- Draft and send a “demand letter” to the insurance agency of the liable party. This demand letter will contain all of the compiled evidence that shows who is liable, and what kind of damages that were incurred do to the accident.
- After the demand letter has been sent, your injury attorney will then begin settlement negotiations with the insurance agency. Hopefully, the evidence that was sent along with the demand letter is enough to persuade the insurance agency that they should negotiate in good faith.
Litigation and Trial
In many instances the insurance agency and your personal injury lawyer will be able to come to a settlement. A good injury attorney will be able to leverage the evidence, along with the threat of litigation, to get you a fair and equitable settlement. If not, your lawyer will have to file a formal complaint in civil court against the insurance agency and the insured.
Then the process of litigation begins. This involves court appearances, depositions, filing and opposing motions and pleadings in court and a tremendous amount of time preparing for trial. Witnesses will have to be found, sometimes subpoenaed, and prepared to give testimony.
For commercial accidents, when there is a great deal of money on the line, trials do happen more often than in private car crash claims. This makes the services of an experienced and talented personal injury law firm the more important.
Justice Law Center
At Justice Law Center, we offer free initial consultations, and will only take our fees out of the money we win for you. We have been helping the families of Nevada for decades to get the compensation they deserve.
Call us today.
Josh Nay is a writer and paralegal with over 10 years of experience in personal injury cases, family law and criminal defense.