If you have been in a car accident before, you might assume that a truck accident claim proceeds in a similar fashion. However, the average commercial freight truck weighs about 80,000 pounds or more, 20 times the weight of a passenger car. As such, there is a much greater chance of severe injuries and several other critical differences between auto accidents and truck accidents.
Montagna Klein Camden is a leading Virginia truck accident law firm with offices in Norfolk, Virginia Beach, and Newport News. We have a long history of protecting our injured clients against insurance companies who will do everything within their power to prove they are not liable and by recovering maximum compensation for their truck accident claims. With our firm, you can sit back and focus on recovering from your traumatic experience while we handle the complexities of your truck accident claim and get you the compensation you deserve.
Montagna Law handles any type of truck accident involving an 18-wheeler, tractor-trailer accident, or other large commercial vehicles from box trucks to construction vehicles and beyond. Just a few of the types of cases we handle include:
If you have been in an accident with a semi-truck or other big rig in Hampton Roads or across Virginia, our legal team is here to listen, provide legal advice, and fight for the compensation you deserve. Call our offices at 757-622-8100 or use our online contact form for a free consultation today.
Recent Truck Accidents Lawsuit and Settlement Victories
Montagna Law has won millions of dollars in settlements, judgments, and awards for our clients over the years, including a $900,000 settlement for an accident involving a large truck. While it is hard to say what your case might be worth until we do a case evaluation, we fight for fair compensation for our clients every step of the way.
When compared with other types of motor vehicle accidents like car and motorcycle accidents, those involving a big rig or other commercial truck accidents are far more devastating, involving disfigurement and other catastrophic injuries.
Financial damages can quickly add up to tens of thousands of dollars, not to mention immense emotional pain and suffering.
Injuries sustained after a truck accident can be severe and come with intensive medical care and bills. Injuries following a truck accident are often life-altering.
Truck drivers’ insurance policies can be up to 50 times larger than car accident insurance policies. Because of this, these insurance companies will do everything within their power to prove they are not liable.
Victims of truck accidents tend to spend much longer in the hospital for their injuries than car accident victims.
An accident with a large commercial truck is significantly more likely to result in death than a crash involving two cars.
Commercial trucking accidents are viewed differently largely because truck drivers are generally employed by a trucking company. As the employer of the truck driver involved in or who caused the accident, the legal responsibility may fall on the trucking company. Other parties that may be liable in the case of a trucking accident include:
The common causes of truck accidents in Virginia are both similar and different to those involving other types of passenger vehicles. The trucking industry is heavily regulated under federal law. These regulations are put in place to protect both truckers and other motorists from the risk of serious accidents. Truckers may be held liable for damages and compensation to truck accident victims if they violate these laws.
Some of the most common causes of vehicle accidents involving trucks include fatigue, drunk and distracted driving, equipment failure, improper cargo loading, and lack of proper training. In many cases, these accidents involve many responsible parties beyond the trucker. That is why it is important to have a personal injury lawyer in your corner who understands the unique nature of truck accident cases.
Federal laws are in place to limit how much time motorists operating large trucks can spend on the road, yet fatigue is still a major problem. Drivers often ignore these regulations in the interest of making up time. This leads to slowed reflexes, lack of attention, and even falling asleep at the wheel.
Drunk and distracted drivers are two of the most common dangers on roadways today in terms of presenting a risk to other passenger vehicles. Whether a driver is drinking, using drugs, reading, eating, or talking on a cell phone while behind the wheel, their reaction time is slowed, and their judgment is impaired. Distraction, drinking, and drugs affect drivers in such a way that they cannot pay proper attention to the road.
Equipment failure means some part of the truck that is important for its function does not work the way it should. It could be that the brakes fail, tires blow out, headlights or turn signals do not work properly, or any other aspect of the truck’s mechanics fail. These types of personal injury claims can be complex, as in addition to the trucker, the trucking company, maintenance crew, and even the parts manufacturers may hold some responsibility.
When the crews responsible for loading cargo fail to make sure that it is correctly secured and balanced, it can throw off the driver’s ability to control the vehicle. This can lead to catastrophic accidents that can change or even end lives. Personal injury law provides compensation to the victims of these situations, which can involve several responsible parties.
Running a large commercial vehicle requires intensive training. With the trucking industry suffering staffing issues, too many companies are forgoing this training, which can have devastating consequences.
As a general rule of thumb, the more serious the resulting injuries, the more complex and expensive the claim. Truck accidents often involve complex medical evidence and high-pressure insurance tactics that make them much more challenging than conventional auto accidents.
For example, carrier companies and their insurance providers are well aware of how high the stakes can be in a truck accident case. They are prepared to defend aggressively. Our experienced truck accident lawyers are crucial to protecting your best interests and leveling the playing field.
Keeping calm and taking the proper steps after an accident is vital in securing maximum compensation for your injuries.
Get your vehicles and any people who can be moved off the road if possible so that they are not a risk to other drivers, which can make an already bad situation worse. Never apologize for anything at the accident scene.
Contact first responders right away. This will enable you to ensure that everyone receives medical attention and file a police report. A police report, while not admissible as evidence, can help you to recall the details of the incident later. Do not leave the scene before the police arrive.
Draw diagrams of what happened, take notes, and get as many photographs of the scene as possible from as many different angles as possible. Get contact information from any witnesses, and exchange information with the other driver. Stay calm, do not issue blame, and do not apologize. Simply gather evidence.
It is vital to get medical attention even if you do not feel hurt. Many injuries can take days or weeks to present, and getting seen early can help prevent injuries from worsening. It also shows you are taking the situation seriously.
Report the accident to your insurance company as soon as possible. Do not editorialize. Stick to the facts. The insurance company may look for reasons to doubt or deny your claim, so let your attorney handle communication after the initial report.
The right attorney in your corner can build a strong case for fair compensation and damages for the injuries you have suffered. Never be afraid that you are asking for too much. Going high at first will help you get a fair final settlement after negotiations.
Generally speaking, the damages available to a victim of a truck accident in Virginia include (but may not be limited to):
Every truck accident is different, and the amount of compensation a victim can recover depends on the circumstances of the accident, the relevant insurance policies, and the nature of your injuries, among other considerations.
A truck accident lawyer is absolutely essential to your case and recovering the most damages. Our compassionate attorneys can not only ease the stress and anxiety that is natural in the aftermath of a truck accident but can also determine the at-fault party in the accident and what compensation should come from it.
If you have sustained injuries in a commercial truck accident, proving the accident was a result of negligence can be key to the process of recovering maximum compensation for your losses. In truck accidents, negligence can be any behavior or act that may be considered a breach of duty on the truck drivers’ part according to their duty of care.
Under the regulatory process imparted by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), truck drivers are responsible for following certain rules and regulations while on duty including:
If you are involved in an accident with a truck driver who has failed to follow these regulations, you may be able to prove negligence on their part.
Virginia is one of only four states that still uses pure contributory negligence. This means that if you bear even 1% of the responsibility for the truck crash, you may not be able to recover any damages. With many different parties possibly holding responsibility, from the driver to the trucking company and even the maintenance crew, it is vital to work with a qualified injury lawyer to build a strong case for you.
A truck accident claim also requires a comprehensive examination of the extent of damage and the severity of the sustained injuries.
In order to build a sustainable truck accident claim, one must take all the resulting expenses and factors into account. Without a trusted truck accident attorney by your side, it can be extremely difficult to recoup all of the economic and non-economic losses sustained during a truck accident. Here at Montagna Law, we partner with you to ensure that you are compensated for all of the trouble you have undergone during and following your truck accident.
According to a study done by the American Bar Association, approximately 80 percent of lawyers who take on personal injury cases do so on a contingency fee basis. The contingency fee is from 33 to 40 percent, but clients can try and negotiate for a better rate. In most instances, the attorney will take a third of the compensation amount.
In Virginia, you have two years from the date of the accident, or the date of death, in personal injury cases to file your lawsuit. This is called a statute of limitations.
Every case is unique and different. Some take only a few months to solve, while others can take years. It depends on the complexities of your case. Know, however, that your attorneys at Montagna Law will fight doggedly for you every step of the way. Our only interest is getting you the compensation you deserve.