California Truck Accidents: What Happens Next?

In California, 9% of crash fatalities are because of trucks. There is also an alarming number of people who are left with catastrophic injuries too. These figures cannot be brushed under the table. When you are involved in this kind of accident, what can you do? Karns & Karns Personal Injury and Accident Attorneys are here to explain what happens next.

When An Accident Happens

If you ever become involved in an accident with a truck driver, there are specific steps you need to take in the immediate aftermath. The key here is to get to safety, seek medical attention, and gather as much information as you can before it’s too late.

Move to A Safe Spot

If it is possible, you should always leave your vehicle in a safe space and move to somewhere where you cannot be hurt again. Your top priority is your health and the safety of any passengers or fellow road users. Move to a suitable spot and make sure you stay out of harm’s way until you are either taken to hospital or treated by an ambulance crew. It is important to stay at the scene to answer any questions from police officers and provide a witness statement if appropriate.

Calling 911

As soon as you know you are safe, it is important to phone 911, asking for police and ambulance attendance at the scene. This will provide two big channels of support. Firstly, medical crews will be able to assess your injuries on the scene. There will be a report, and it should be followed up in a hospital. It is unlikely that you are coming away unharmed, therefore further intervention will always be recommended. Whether you think you are hurt or not, there could be a number of hidden injuries like internal bleeding, or even a traumatic brain injury to get checked out.

The Role of Law Enforcement

Secondly, an attending police officer will always create an accident report. This is a vital piece of evidence and will be an accurate, detailed assessment of the scene of the collision. It will have key bits of information like the truck driver’s plates, name, and company alongside anyone else who was a witness or involved in the events. This can be called upon further down the line when filing an insurance claim or pursuing a personal injury lawsuit with our personal injury law firm.

Pay Attention and Take Pictures

If you are capable of doing so, then it is important to take as many photographs as possible of the scene. You will naturally be overwhelmed and in shock, but these pictures will support your narrative when you get around to talking to a personal injury accident lawyer on our team. It will also help to jog your memory when revisiting the incident in the future. A brain in distress is never thinking completely clearly, and you are running the risk of misremembering or completely forgetting key details if you don’t have pictures to look back on.

Contact Our Team

The best thing about a great vehicle accident lawyer is that they can help you get the compensation you deserve. Whether you are facing life with steep medical bills because of the accident, losing out on wages as a result of a catastrophic injury, or even facing life without a loved one, we can help you to move forward and regain control. It will be difficult to fight the case without a trained attorney by your side, especially when dealing with a mainstream, powerful truck fleet company.

Why Do Truck Accidents Happen?

Much like other kinds of accidents, there are varying reasons why truck accidents could take place. Here are the biggest influential factors.

Speeding

Trucks are large vehicles, and they weigh a lot. They are also driven by people on tight deadlines with a heavy workload. They are bound by regulations and time pressures that other road users may not have, and that is why they are often found to be exceeding the legal speed limits for their cargo. Speeding, however, is incredibly dangerous in a vehicle of this nature. Not only does it make it harder to stop, but it is also all but impossible to maneuver or respond to any changes in the environment.

Tired Drivers

It is also the case that truck operators are prone to driving tired. They have long days and taking a break is a legal requirement, but not one that is strictly adhered to. Even the slightest bit of tiredness can significantly impact your ability to think, plan, and respond behind the wheel. If you are in charge of a major vehicle like a truck, this is a deadly mix. Exhausted drivers are more prone to making mistakes, missing judgment calls, and handling their vehicles poorly.

Faulty Trucks and Poor Maintenance

Despite the expected high maintenance standards, some trucks fail to deliver. This means, that if they are out on the road and driving about for a job, they might malfunction. DOT inspections are again, something every fleet must respect, but it isn’t always possible for trucks to be properly maintained. Something like a tire blowout is dangerous enough for a regular car, if it happens on a truck, it is catastrophic.

Inexperienced Drivers

Whether it is a lack of knowledge about a certain area, or a skill deficit in the person in charge of the truck, inexperienced drivers are a leading cause of this kind of accident. If there is insufficient training or a lack of confidence on a certain road, it is more likely that a crash will occur.

Californian truck accidents happen more often than you might think. The roads are a dangerous place for pedestrians and car drivers, and it is an unfortunate truth that truck drivers pose a major threat to your safety. If you have been involved in this kind of accident, don’t sit around and wait for resolution. Take action now.

Karns & Karns Personal Injury and Accident Attorneys know that truck accidents are big, traumatic events. You can phone us or make an appointment to find out exactly why we are the best team to help you with this matter.

6 Steps to Take after a Truck Accident Claim in California

Truckers are on the roads all over the state of California. Given the increase in fleets over the last decade, there has been a definite increase in road accidents. If you are a victim of a truck accident, it is important to follow the right procedures. If you don’t, you could compromise your insurance claim and any hope of a successful personal injury lawsuit. This post has some crucial information to help anyone in this situation.

At the Scene of the Crash: Act Fast and Stay Safe

As an experienced truck accident attorney team, we can confirm that at the scene of the crash, you must act fast and with safety in mind. Everything you do here will impact your insurance claim when the dust settles, so your actions matter. Even though you will be in shock, your first priority is to help everyone reach a safe space as soon as possible. It is actually a legal requirement to exercise your duty of care towards other people at the scene of the crash, so you could face charges if you don’t.

Find Your Phone

Your phone is one of the most useful tools you could have in a moment like this. Not only will it enable you to call for help, like an ambulance and law enforcement, but it will also be a convenient way to capture images of the scene. When you connect with top personal injury attorneys like us, we will always ask if you have any picture evidence to support your claim. Photographs or videos are the easiest way to prove the facts, and they can expose crucial details that might just make determining liability, a piece of cake.

Recording Information

Alongside media evidence, you will also need key bits of information like names, plates, and insurance information from the truck driver. You can keep this safe on your phone so there is no risk of losing it It will also make it accessible in the future when you come and meet your vehicle accident lawyer. Try to collect,

  • Truck driver name
  • Registration number
  • Company
  • Insurance information
  • Date and time of the accident.

Write Everything Down

When you get home or are waiting in the hospital, try to write down a detailed account of what happened. From your point of view, this will be helpful. It is easy to forget important pieces of the event in question as you settle down and the shock wears off.

Go to the Hospital

Without medical input, it will be impossible to tell if you are seriously hurt or not. It is always a good idea to rule out any grave injuries, and it will make you feel better that you have had everything checked out by a medical professional. Sometimes, people have hidden injuries that they don’t feel because of the adrenaline surging through their bodies at the time of the crash. It will also help when you are filing an insurance claim because medical reports and doctor’s notes are crucial bits of supporting evidence. It is a clear demonstration that you were worried about physical injuries and medical complications and will look better on paper for the opposing insurer.

Hire an Attorney

Once you have taken care of your medical needs, and collected evidence, it is time to make an appointment with Karns & Karns Personal Injury and Accident Attorneys. The benefits of having a lawyer on your team are major.

Experience in Your Corner

One thing you don’t have that we do is legal experience. It doesn’t matter how much you studied the laws of the road, without the experience in negotiating and practicing to back it up, you will struggle to move forward. That is not a failure, but a strength because recognizing when you need input is a brave thing to do.

Legal Insight

We understand exactly how these claims work, and what needs to happen in order to be successful. Our team will be able to collate evidence and back it up with further input from the relevant external sources while also ensuring you are looked after at each step of the way. There will be a ton of legal language flying in your direction, things to sign, and administration to follow up on. We will make all of this easier and explain things in clear and digestible terms.

Truck Accident Claims Need to Knows

In California, there is no legal limit on how much compensation you can claim in either an insurance payout or for a personal injury lawsuit. This means, for you, that is great news. You can ask for a maximum amount of compensation, and it cannot be rejected within a reasonable limit. As long as you factor in everything fairly and ethically, it can be put forward as a settlement request. What kind of things will our team look at?

Loss of Wages

Truck accidents are major incidents that are well-known to cause serious consequences for the victims. You are likely to be facing significant changes in your personal life from things like physical injuries and a decline in your mental well-being. All of this is relevant and will lead to you not being able to attend work as you did before. Catastrophic injuries require lots of hospital stays and visits, which in turn make it impossible to go back to work full time. This means lost wages, which will put you in financial hardship.

Hospital Expenses

The average cost of healthcare is already soaring, without having to pay additional costs on top of it. Health insurance only covers so much, and often people who are facing life with major medical interventions are just not able to keep up. That is where truck accident claims come into play because they can and do provide a crucial line of financial support through a settlement agreement.

So, if you are the victim of a truck accident, follow the advice in the post above. Now you know what to do and how to look after yourself if the worst comes to pass. Karns & Karns Personal Injury and Accident Attorneys are available for further support, advice, and input. Call us to make an appointment now.

How Can a Los Angeles Truck Accident Lawyer Help Me?

How can a Los Angeles truck accident lawyer help me? That is an important question if you or a loved one has been affected by a truck accident in which you were the driver or victim. Compensation can help you cope with the aftermath, and this can be extensive. Without a vehicle accident lawyer experienced in handling truck accident claims managing your case, you are unlikely to be fully compensated. We look at how a truck accident injury lawyer can assist you with your case.

 

The Role of a Truck Accident Attorney

It is a serious accident when someone is hit by a truck because these vehicles weigh so much compared to a normal car. An incident can cause anything from mild to severe trauma and injuries, even leading to wrongful death. You will need the expertise and resources of the best wrongful death lawyers in California for such cases.

It is important that you collect detailed information and proof to use in your claim case. This must be supported by a legal team comprising a road accident lawyer with decades of experience in such matters. Your accident injury lawyers will undertake the following steps on your behalf:

  • Analyze how severe the case is
  • Work out how much you should be compensated for all aspects of the claim
  • Undertake negotiations with the other party
  • Defend your rights

Determining How Severe a Case is

Factors that road traffic accident lawyers use to determine how severe a case is include the following:

  • The party who is liable for the traffic accident
  • Any negligence on the part of the truck driver
  • Compliance with the safety standards that the truck driver’s company failed to uphold
  • Any other contributions to the cause of the accident

Where more than one party is responsible for the crash, this can push up the amounts that can be claimed, and your accident injury lawyers will be in the best position to determine this and carry out the calculations. You will need to have substantial proof of liability to make your claim against the guilty party/parties.

Under no circumstances should you accept a preliminary settlement from the insurers of the truck driver and the company they work for before the claim for restitution has been made. This may make you appear guilty, and your road accident lawyer will warn you against this. Always be guided by your road traffic accident lawyers in every aspect of the case. The same applies if a loved one was killed in the accident and you and your wrongful death lawyers are fighting this on behalf of the deceased person.

 

Calculating the Cost of Damages

A claim for damages after a truck accident includes economic items and non-economic damages like pain and suffering, which can be harder to calculate. In the case of a fatality, a wrongful death settlement lawyer is essential to getting the best possible settlement for the bereaved family or partner of the deceased. Either way, your road traffic accident lawyers will do the necessary calculations and file a claim for you.

The economic charges that result from a truck accident are:

  • Lost wages. If you have a permanent or temporary disability, you will need to recover future earnings as well.
  • Medical Expenses. This includes both past and future medical expense for potentially the rest of your life.
  • Property Damage. Your own vehicle and other property might have been damaged in the crash and needs to be paid for.
  • With the likelihood of your or a loved one having physical injuries, you will have to pay medical expenses for tests and treatment, such as by medical practitioners, specialists, physiotherapists etc., as well as an account for hospitalization and occupational therapy in a special clinic.

Non-economic damages include:

  • Mental suffering
  • Physical Pain
  • Loss of Enjoyment of life
  • Physical disfigurement
  • Anxiety
  • Grief

You are entitled to claim for all these damages. How they are calculated may differ from state to state. This is another reason that you need the expert help of a road accident lawyer California. They will also advise you on timeframes within which a claim must be lodged.

 

Negotiating the Full Value of Your Compensation Claim

You will be up against the legal team for the trucking company. It is essential that you refrain from making any statements or offering information if they contact you. Remember that they are experts in getting the opposition to implicate themselves or getting the claim amount reduced.

It is also necessary for your own legal team to negotiate your compensation and keep the focus on the facts and the claim amount they have calculated for you.

 

Fighting for Your Rights

Once your accident injury lawyers have accepted your case, they will fight for your rights. It is important that you listen to their legal advice and act accordingly. Remember that these are legal instructions provided by road traffic accident lawyers and not just ‘good advice’ offered by a friend.

Your vehicle accident lawyers must be experienced attorneys in truck accident cases and competent in every way to take on your case. They will know how the state operates and what the deadlines are for each stage. This will enable them to submit the necessary documents in time, and in doing so, this will prevent the case from being dismissed.

Armed with this information, you can obtain the best truck accident or wrongful death lawyers California if the victim perished due to the accident. Alternatively, if you are the victim, you need the best truck accident lawyers to ensure that deadlines in court and the legal process are complied with, that you get excellent advice, and that you achieve a settlement which is a fair and just compensation for your suffering and expenses. Most truck traffic accident lawyers will not charge you for the initial appointment and usually only once the settlement has been upheld in court so that you need not worry about legal fees while the case is being heard. This makes it vitally important that you choose an attorney with the willingness to fight your case on your behalf.

Here at Karns & Karns Personal Injury and Accident Attorneys, we have the experience and expertise necessary to take on your truck accident claim. With the right backing, you can take comfort that you are receiving the best legal care.

What to Do After an Accident With a Semi Truck

Navigating the aftermath of an accident with a commercial truck can be an overwhelming experience. However, the steps you take at the accident scene and days after the crash can affect your ability to recover compensation for your damages. Your actions are critical to protecting your potential truck accident claim. Our truck accident lawyers highlight what to do after an accident with a semi-truck below.

 

Step 1: Check for Injuries and Call 9-1-1 to Report the Accident

Your first concern should be the safety and health of yourself and everyone involved in the accident. Before checking on passengers and other involved parties, check yourself for any visible injuries. Then, if you can, check on others.

Call 9-1-1 to report the accident and request emergency medical assistance if needed. Police will ensure that medical responders come to the accident scene. Additionally, police officers may come to the site, investigate the crash, and create a police report.

A police report is official legal documentation of the accident. It may include information about involved parties, witnesses, a summary of what happened, and other details of the crash.

 

Step 2: Gather and Exchange Important Information

You should exchange information with the semi-truck driver and any other involved parties. You should gather the following information:

  • Truck driver’s name
  • Contact information
  • Driver’s license number
  • Insurance company and policy number
  • Name and contact information of the driver’s employer
  • Commercial truck’s license plate number
  • Any other identifying information about the truck

Additionally, if there were any witnesses to the accident, request their names and contact information. Their statements may be essential for your claim.

 

Step 3: Document the Accident

Use your phone to take photographs and videos of the accident scene. By taking pictures, you are preserving evidence of the crash. This evidence may be critical to proving liability and protecting your potential truck accident claim.

Our semi-truck accident lawyers recommend taking photos of the following things:

  • Any visible injuries
  • Interior and exterior damage to your vehicle
  • Commercial truck
  • Nearby road signs or landmarks
  • Road conditions
  • Weather conditions

 

Step 4: Get Medical Attention

After you leave the accident scene, you should get a complete medical evaluation as soon as possible. Even if you feel fine, a medical evaluation is critical for a couple of reasons. First, you want to ensure that you get medical treatment if you have internal injuries or injuries that are not showing immediate symptoms.

Second, you want medical documentation. Medical documentation is critical for proving that your injuries resulted from the semi-truck accident.

 

Step 5: Consult With a Commercial Truck Accident Attorney

Commercial truck accident cases can be complex. Semi-truck accidents typically result in catastrophic injuries or death, so damages are generally significant. Additionally, many parties are typically responsible for ensuring a truck is safe and may be liable for your damages.

A semi-truck accident attorney can help you understand your legal rights and protect your claim from the beginning. Your attorney can help you preserve critical evidence, talk and negotiate with insurance companies, and fight for your right to compensation.

 

Schedule a Free Case Review With Our Semi Truck Accident Lawyers

Have you or a loved one suffered damages in a commercial truck accident? You may be entitled to compensation for your damages, such as medical bills and lost wages. Contact our semi-truck accident lawyers to discuss your legal options during a free, no-obligation consultation.

At Karns & Karns Personal Injury and Accident Attorneys, we fight for California, Nevada, and Texas accident victims to help them secure the compensation they need and deserve. Call us at (888) 779-1180 or contact us online to discuss your situation today.

 

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Before Hiring a Truck Accident Attorney, Ask These 4 Important Questions

truck injury lawyers

Truck drivers provide a very important service in society. They impact the lives of every citizen and impact daily life and needs, most especially if they are not able to do their job. Operating a truck requires specific skills set and more so commitment and dedication. And these are the sacrifices 3.5 million truck drivers in the US make.

And it is just right to have a truck accident injury lawyer by your side when the unfortunate truck accident happens. You need a lawyer for a truck accident that will work with you and build a case that will increase the probability of getting the maximum possible claims and compensation that you deserve.

With so many truck injury lawyers that you could hire, there are 4 important questions that you need to ask. This is to guide you on who to hire, who to trust and who will represent you in this challenging period of your life.

What Are The Experiences That You Had In Representing Truck Wreck Cases?

Just like there is a unique skills set that truck drivers have, you should also look for a lawyer for truck accident lawyers who have specific skills set in handling truck wreck cases. The more cases that they have handled and the more wins that they have, the better chances for you to get what you want. This shows that they have the experience, knowledge and resources to handle your case. And this spells a big difference in your choice for a lawyer for a truck accident.

How Long Does My Case Take To Be Resolved?

Any cases may take months to be resolved. There may be a number of tweaks that will happen as your truck injury lawyer looks and investigates the details of the accident. These include all evidence, documents (medical bills, diagnosis, recommended medical intervention), opinions of experts and specialists and even policy details of insurance companies.

No law office could you provide or guarantee you a date or number of months for your case to be resolved. But truck injury lawyers may provide you a realistic insight on what will happen from the time you hired them; from what things to be done to what challenges that may arise. You will also know how each of these challenges impact the timeline in resolving your case.

Setting expectations of both parties is a crucial part in your process of hiring a truck accident attorney. Don’t hire anyone unless this is done.

Will My Lawyer Always Be Available When I Need To Talk With Them?

Remember that you are a prospective client and as any client, the provider of service will promise you the moon and the stars, they will say yes to all the questions you want to be answered by a yes.

However, as a client, you would like to be assured that your lawyer will always be available when you need them. This means they will be able to answer you directly or get back to you once they are available.

A responsive attorney gives you the peace of mind that they are working on your case the best that they can. When you call them for updates or details of the proceedings they will be able to provide all information with full transparency.

So you need to be wary of this. You need to check on previous clients of the same case and see what they say about the experience that they had with the law firm. Take advantage of the internet and browse for testimonials and feedback. With this you will be able to gauge the communication style and responsiveness of your lawyer for truck accidents.

How Much Will It Cost Me To Avail The Services?

Majority of truck accident injury lawyers will not collect any fees unless they win your case. This is good news as there are a number of expenses that you are shouldering while you are in the process of fighting for your claims and compensation.

As in any relationship, transparency is a must and this is one way trust could be built. So, ask the questions “what’s in it for them” considering they will be providing time and resources for the firm to work on your case.

Ask what the fee structure looks like. What are the other expenses that may be part of the final bill? What are court fees? How about the expert fees? How will this affect the net claims or compensation that you may have after settlement or winning the case in court.

The answers should be specific. There will be red flags if you feel that the answers are vague and that they are trying to deviate to discuss these fees. In such a case, you should start looking for another representation.

Call Karns & Karns Personal Injury and Accident Attorneys Today And Be Empowered

Take action, pick up the phone and be informed. Get all the answers and ask all the questions to start working on your case. Time is of the essence and your choice and decision will spell the big difference on the success or failure of your case.

What to Say to Your Insurance Company After a Car or Semi-Truck Accident

After being involved in a car accident, you might experience a whirlwind of emotions and it can be quite terrifying. Even if you are lucky enough to not be seriously hurt, the stress, worry and anxiety after a car accident feels awful, and could lead you to act or speak in a way that might compromise your best interests when it comes to your case.

In fact, your insurance company or that of the other driver might be waiting for you to say the wrong thing. For example, apologizing at the scene might feel natural to you if the other driver has been hurt or their car is wrecked. But while you might be saying sorry just to be nice, insurance companies might take this as an admission of fault and hold you liable for the accident, even if you weren’t at fault.

 

What to Say to the Insurance Company After an Accident

You will likely get a call from the claim adjuster from your insurance company around a few days after the accident, in which they will want to get more information on the details of what happened. It’s important to bear in mind that insurance companies are looking out for themselves rather than you. Because of this, you need to be prepared for them to be looking out for any reasons to reduce your payout as much as they can. The best way to avoid giving them anything to use to do this is to say nothing at all and hire an experience personal injury attorney.  If you find that you must provide a statement keep your conversation as short and to the point as possible. Some tips to keep in mind include:

Give General Information

When speaking to your insurance company, you are only obligated to provide general or basic details about the accident. This includes personal information about yourself such as your name, the type of car you were driving when the accident happened, the other cars involved, the names of other people involved in the accident, where the accident happened, when it happened, and information on the other driver’s insurance company.

 

Don’t Provide a Recorded Statement

You are not under any legal obligation to provide a recorded statement to your insurance company. It is important to avoid recording a final verbal statement, without consulting a good car accident or personal injury lawyer beforehand, who can help you do this in a way that is in the best interests of your case.

 

Don’t Be Too Specific

Even if you have got medical attention after being involved in the accident and are aware of the extent of your injuries, it is important to avoid giving a detailed description of them or providing a final statement regarding your injuries to the insurance company. This is because after a car crash, injuries may appear later down the line, especially if you have internal injuries that are not always obvious. Along with this, there is also the risk of your current injuries escalating into something more serious.

 

What You Should Never Say After a Car Accident

Whether you are talking to the insurance company, the other driver involved, or witnesses at the scene, it’s important to choose your words carefully after a car accident. The vocabulary that you use could lead to problems with your case after a car accident, even if you said them innocently or meaning well. Some things that you should always avoid saying after a car accident include:

Sorry

Even if you are simply the type of person who apologizes a lot and you feel bad for the other driver involved, apologizing to them is always a bad idea. Even if you think that you might be at fault for the accident, don’t say sorry to the other driver. This is because any witnesses to the interaction might see this as an admission of guilt or taking responsibility for the accident.

 

That You Don’t Have an Attorney

If you are contacted by your insurance company before you have had the chance to get in touch with us here at Karns & Karns Personal Injury & Accident Attorneys, the last thing you should do is admit to them that you don’t have a lawyer yet. If your insurance company knows that you do not have any legal representation, they might try to reduce your compensation. For example, they may offer a quick settlement, which will typically be significantly lower than the amount you could have received.

 

Let’s Handle It Ourselves

You should always tell your insurance company about any car accidents that you are involved in. It’s not uncommon if you have a minor crash that only causes a little bit of damage to your car, and has not led to any serious injuries, to consider simply not telling your insurance company about it, getting the cars fixed and getting on with your life. However, it’s important to resist the urge to avoid reporting a car accident, especially if it was only a fender bender. The truth is that you may be due compensation for any crash, and not reporting a car accident to your insurance company will only make it harder to receive the payout you are owed.

If you’ve been involved in a car crash, then it’s important to carefully choose the words you use at the scene and when talking to your insurance company. Get in touch with our experienced lawyers today if you need advice on what to say. Call us today.