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What Compensation is Available After a Truck Accident?

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Posted By Legal Team | July 21 2023 | Truck Accidents

Trucks are large, unwieldy, and outweigh average passenger cars by thousands of pounds. A fully loaded 18-wheeler weighs as much as 80,000 pounds compared to the average 4,000-pound car. When a truck is involved in an accident with a smaller vehicle the results are often devastating for the occupants of the smaller vehicle.

With the steady rise of the freight industry, accidents involving large commercial trucks have increased by 49% in the last decade. In 2021 alone, 5,700 large trucks were involved in accidents accounting for 9% of accidents with fatalities.

If you or a loved one was injured in an accident involving a large commercial truck, it’s likely that you’re dealing with property damage and serious injuries. Injuries from truck accidents quickly become expensive with medical bills piling up at the same time you’re dealing with medical treatment, surgeries, and long recovery times. It’s important to reach out to an experienced Atlanta truck accident lawyer to find out what compensation is available after the accident.

Types of Damages to Claim From the Liable Party

Like many states, Georgia follows a modified comparative negligence rule for insurance claims. This allows injury victims to claim damages even if they were partly at fault in the accident. As long as they’re found to be less than 49% at fault in an accident, they can make a claim for damages. Their compensation is reduced by their percentage of fault. For example, if an award for damages is $100,000 and an injured motorist was found to be 25% at fault for the accident, they can still recover $75,000 in compensation.

In many cases, truck drivers are found to be at fault in accidents. Driver fatigue, distraction, inexperience, and intoxication are all common causes of truck accidents with the driver fully at fault. When a truck driver’s negligence causes an accident, an injured motorist can claim compensation for damages including:

  • Medical expenses
  • Future medical expenses if they have upcoming treatment, surgery, or ongoing medical care related to the accident
  • Lost wages
  • Future income loss
  • Diminished earning capacity if the accident caused disability
  • Pain and suffering
  • Any other applicable non-economic damages such as PTSD, diminished life quality, disfigurement, loss of limb, or anxiety

When a truck driver is responsible for a serious accident, their liability insurance must cover the victim’s claim for property damage and personal injury damages.

Other Liable Parties in Truck Accidents

It may take an experienced Atlanta car accident attorney to investigate a truck accident to determine liability and make a claim for compensation. While it’s often the truck driver who is responsible for an accident, liability could also lie with any of the following entities:

  • The trucking company
  • A truck maintenance company
  • A truck parts manufacturer
  • A freight loading company
  • A third party such as another driver or a road maintenance department

In order to make a claim for compensation after a truck accident, it’s essential to correctly identify the negligence that led to the accident and prove liability by demonstrating the following legal points of liability:

  • That the party at fault owed a duty of care to take reasonable measures to prevent injuries, such as a driver’s duty to follow traffic laws or a truck company’s duty to enforce driving limits to avoid fatigued drivers
  • That the at-fault party breached their duty of care by acting negligently or recklessly
  • That the negligent breach of their duty of reasonable care directly caused an injury
  • That the injury victim suffered damages due to the injury

Because the injury victim bears the burden of proving liability in order to recover compensation, a personal injury attorney in Atlanta, GA with experience in truck accident claims understands how to investigate the accident, identify the negligent party, prove liability, and maximize the compensation for your damages.

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