Being involved in any type of motor vehicle accident is frightening, but collisions involving 18-wheelers may be especially traumatic. The injuries and damages sustained in commercial trucking accidents are often much more serious than other types of accidents. The load limit for 18-wheelers is 80,000 pounds: sixteen times the weight of an average automobile. When these trucks are involved in an accident, that weight adds to the force of impact, turning what might be a less serious collision with a smaller vehicle into a major accident.
Additionally, commercial drivers and their employers may engage in dangerous behaviors that can impact the seriousness of a collision. For instance, driver fatigue is a factor in many semi-truck accidents. Drivers are often pressured to work long hours without adequate rest, causing them to fall asleep at the wheel. When an accident results from driver fatigue, the damage can be quite serious, since truck drivers will have limited time — if any — to respond to the situation and try to right their course by braking or swerving out of the way. Distracted driving, driving under the influence of illegal substances, lack of proper training, and improper vehicle maintenance could also be factors.
If you have been involved in a commercial vehicle accident, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries in a commercial truck accident settlement — but you should strongly consider working with a personal injury lawyer to make sure you are making the best decisions for your case. Eighteen-wheeler accidents often require extensive investigation in order to locate all parties who are at fault or otherwise might be held legally accountable for your injuries. Your attorneys will have to prepare your case in a way that exposes the insurance company to significant risk, which can be expensive and challenging, in order to make sure you are fully compensated for your short- and long-term harms and losses. An expert personal injury law firm — such as our team here at FVF in Austin — will help you make informed medical decisions, fully evaluate the extent of your financial and quality of life damages, thoroughly investigate your case, and help you recover compensation for your damages. Trying to do this without expert legal help could cost you hundreds of thousands, even millions of dollars in some cases.
The average settlement for 18-wheeler accidents is generally higher than that for other types of collisions, mainly because damages in these cases can be so extensive, but also because juries are not afraid to hold 18-wheeler companies accountable for their misconduct. It is not uncommon for an 18-wheeler accident to result in serious, catastrophic injuries or even death. While 18-wheeler accident settlements can vary vastly depending on the circumstances of the case — particularly your role in and responsibility for the accident in question — there are several types of damages you may be able to recover.
Every accident is unique; however, there are certain contributing factors personal injury attorneys regularly see in commercial trucking accidents. While many commercial truckers are safe, responsible drivers, the nature of the business often leads to excessive risk-taking and negligence, on the part of both drivers and the companies that employ them. These factors may include the following:
It is difficult to point to an average semi-truck accident settlement amount, in part because many factors can affect your case and the amount of compensation you receive. An experienced personal injury lawyer can help you investigate these variables and understand how they may impact both your ability to seek recovery and the type of damages you are able to claim. Here are some things to consider that can influence compensation amounts:
Just as unique factors in your case affect how much your settlement will be, the length of time it takes to reach a settlement is dependent on a variety of factors. Some of the factors that determine how long your 18-wheeler accident case settlement will take include:
Regardless of the details surrounding your case, it’s important to speak to a personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Attorneys can help explain your options and rights, and guide you through the process of filing suit. A client-centered Austin law firm like FVF can also provide resources to help you seek medical care, while protecting and documenting your case in a manner that will expose insurance companies to significant risk. We will take pains to investigate your case thoroughly — and fight for your rights if negligence or recklessness was a contributing factor.
Contact us today for a free consultation. The sooner you get in touch, the sooner we’ll be able to prepare a strategy that protects your interests.
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