The catastrophic injuries that a truck accident can cause can be very expensive to treat. Medical bills alone can easily reach six figures in a serious truck accident and could reach millions if you are permanently disabled.
Meanwhile, you may not be able to work for months if you can return to work at all. This means that you may have a very difficult time supporting yourself and your family.
The trucking company’s insurance provider should cover these bills. But you will generally need to file a lawsuit to secure all the compensation you are entitled to receive.
That said, recovering the compensation you deserve will not be as easy as it sounds. You will need a skilled personal injury lawyer who can make sure that your case is heard among the crowd of other lawsuits all competing for the liable insurance company’s attention.
This is where we can help. Call Robinette Legal Group today at (304) 594-1800 to arrange a free consultation with a skilled West Virginia truck accident lawyer.
Robinette Legal Group
Robinette Legal Group is a premier law firm in West Virginia that represents clients who have suffered catastrophic injuries. If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident in West Virginia, then you need an experienced West Virginia truck accident attorney to seek justice on your behalf.
Why Choose Us?
At Robinette Legal Group, we focus on getting you the maximum amount of compensation for your injuries, medical bills, and pain and suffering.
Our legal team provides excellent service, and we make sure that we take all the proper steps needed to maximize the results for our clients.
Our main focus is making sure that you get the best service available and the best result for your case.
Truck Accident Claims vs. Car Accident Claims
Truck accident claims tend to be more difficult to pursue than car accident claims. This is because there are typically more factors involved, for instance:
Victims of truck accidents usually suffer more serious injuries than victims of car accidents;
Truck drivers must follow certain state and federal rules and regulations; and
There are typically more parties involved in a truck accident claim, such as the truck driver, trucking company, shipping company, truck mechanic, and the truck’s designer or manufacturer.
An experienced truck accident lawyer from Robinette Legal Group can help you evaluate all of these factors, and assist you with identifying every party who can be held liable for your injuries and losses.
Common Causes of Truck Accidents in West Virginia
There is a good chance that your truck accident could have been prevented had the trucking company or its driver acted with due care. Most truck accidents stem from preventable mistakes and acts of carelessness. Common causes of truck accidents in West Virginia include:
Loss of control by the driver;
Poor road conditions due to poor road maintenance or bad weather;
Speeding or traveling too fast for road conditions;
Improper truck maneuvering when turning or passing through intersections;
Driver fatigue; and
Investigating your truck accident and determining fault are tasks we can perform for you at Robinette Legal Group. We have investigators, crash reconstruction specialists, and qualified experts available to help with your case.
Common Injuries Suffered in West Virginia Truck Accidents
Truck accidents are more likely than car accidents to result in serious injuries to those involved. Common West Virginia truck accident injuries include:
Victims can suffer the effects of the injuries suffered in a truck accident for life. Even a minor injury can lead to pain, emotional suffering, and expensive medical costs.
What to Do After a Truck Accident
You have power as the victim of a truck accident in West Virginia. There are things you can do to strengthen your case from the very beginning, while still at the scene of the truck accident. Take the following steps after your truck accident, if possible:
Report the crash. Almost all truck accidents are serious enough to warrant reporting them to the police, as they can cause injuries, expensive property damage, or death.
Exchange information, if you can. Get the truck driver’s name, contact information, vehicle information, and insurance information.
Check for eyewitnesses. If anyone saw the crash take place, write down their phone numbers for statements later.
Take photographs. If possible, document the truck accident by taking pictures of all of the vehicles involved and any other important details, including your injuries.
Go to the hospital. Don’t wait to seek professional medical care, especially as your injuries are most likely serious.
Call the insurance company. Call your own insurance company to report the crash. Do not admit fault for the truck accident. Your insurer can launch an investigation to determine fault.
Contact a truck accident attorney. Consult with a lawyer right away for help. An attorney can take immediate steps to preserve evidence and help you with an insurance claim.
Many truck accidents are catastrophic. It is okay if you cannot take these steps in the immediate aftermath of a truck accident. Once you have received medical care, contact an attorney for assistance. A law firm can do what is necessary to help you build a case.
Who Is Responsible for a Truck Accident in West Virginia?
Determining liability, or financial responsibility, for a truck accident in West Virginia takes understanding the state’s fault law. West Virginia is a fault-based insurance state, meaning an insurance claim will be filed with the person or party most at fault for causing the collision. Therefore, you must determine fault before you can file a truck accident insurance claim.
Trucking companies are liable for most truck accidents in West Virginia. It is the company’s legal responsibility to ensure safe operations, such as by hiring qualified drivers and properly maintaining fleet vehicles. If the truck company is negligent, and this causes a truck accident, the company will be liable. In personal injury law, a party is negligent if it is careless and gives someone else an injury.
Truck companies can also be vicariously liable for the negligence of their drivers and employees. If a distracted truck driver caused your crash, for example, the trucking company may bear vicarious liability. If the trucking company is not liable, other potential defendants are a third-party driver, the cargo company, a maintenance crew, a truck manufacturer, and the government.
How to Prove Negligence
Once you or your truck accident lawyer determine liability for your collision, you will have to prove negligence before you can obtain a financial award. The burden of proving negligence, called the burden proof, rests with you as the injured party. It is your responsibility to establish the defendant’s negligence based on a preponderance of the evidence.
Negligence consists of four key elements:
Duty of care. All truck companies and their employees have a duty of care, meaning an obligation to act in a reasonable manner to prevent accidents.
Breach of duty. A breach of duty is any action or omission that falls short of the accepted duties of care, such as a truck driver or trucking company’s carelessness.
Causation. A causal link between the defendant’s breach of duty of care and the truck accident.
Damages. Real, compensable losses suffered by the plaintiff in the truck accident, such as physical injuries and property damage.
A preponderance of the evidence means enough clear and convincing evidence to establish that the defendant is more likely than not responsible for the collision. A truck accident attorney can help you prove negligence by collecting evidence, hiring experts to testify, and using other proven strategies to demonstrate fault.
Evidence Used in a Truck Accident Case
Evidence is one of the most important parts of a truck accident injury claim. Without evidence that the truck company or another defendant caused the crash, you may be unable to recover financial compensation. One of the things that make a truck accident case unique is the types of evidence available.
Evidence to support your truck accident claim may include:
The truck’s black box;
Electronic logging devices;
The truck driver’s employment records and driving history;
The truck driver’s medical records;
Truck and fleet inspection and maintenance logs;
The trucking company’s compliance records;
The truck driver’s cell phone records;
Photographs and surveillance footage, including in-cab camera footage; and
Testimony from truck accident experts
The commercial trucking industry uses special tools and technologies to ensure safety. Data collected from these technologies can support your case. An attorney can help you access this information and obtain copies of important evidence to use during your claim.
What Is a Rapid Response Team?
One of the reasons it is important to contact a truck accident lawyer as soon as possible is the rapid response team. Most trucking companies deploy rapid response teams to the scenes of truck accidents immediately, even before the police arrive. These teams consist of investigators, accident deconstructionist, and forensics professionals. They are sent to crash sites to gather evidence.
Unfortunately, rapid response teams are not unbiased. They work for the trucking company. They may collect evidence that you need to prove that the trucking company is at fault or clear away the scene of the crash before you’ve had a chance to return for evidence.
The best way to protect yourself is by hiring a truck accident attorney to represent you as soon as possible. An attorney can take steps such as filing a preservation letter to prevent the destruction of important evidence.
Compensation for West Virginia Truck Accident Injuries
If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident in Virginia, you can seek financial compensation by filing a truck accident lawsuit against the responsible parties. This may allow you to recover compensation for:
Pain and suffering;
Funeral and burial costs; and
However, the truck company and their insurance provider will do everything they can to limit their liability after a truck accident. This is why you need a qualified and experienced truck accident attorney working on your side.
The skilled West Virginia truck accident attorneys at Robinette Legal Group will fight aggressively on your behalf, and ensure that you don’t settle for less compensation than you are entitled to recover.
Contact Robinette Legal Group
If you or a loved one has been involved in a truck accident in West Virginia, call Robinette Legal Group today. The sooner you call, the more we can do for you.
We handle truck accident cases on a contingency fee basis. This means that we charge no fee unless we recover a settlement or judgment on your behalf.
Call our law firm today at (304) 594-1800, or visit our contact page to arrange a free case evaluation with a reputable West Virginia truck accident lawyer.