What Should I Do if a Truck or Tractor-Trailer Hits My Car?

Truck Accident Lawyer

A lawyer can understand that a collision with a commercial truck or tractor-trailer can be a frightening experience. The force with which a vehicle that size hits your small (in comparison) passenger vehicle can cause a lot of damage to both the drivers and passengers and to the car itself. Here are some steps to take to ensure you have the documentation you need should it be necessary for you to bring a lawsuit due to the truck driver’s negligence.

Remain at the scene of the accident.

Staying at the accident scene will help to avoid confusion. If the accident is not your fault, it could be claimed that you were responsible and fled the scene. You need to stay at the scene of the accident and gather as much evidential information as possible. Get the information on the truck driver’s license, his insurance information, determine the names of any witnesses, and record license plate numbers.

Call the police.

A truck driver could admit fault at the scene and then alter his story later. You could need evidence to contradict a change in the driver’s official assessment of the events. The police can interview you, the truck driver, and any independent witnesses (if there are any). It is much easier to prove your claim if there is a documented police report placing blame on the truck driver for the collision.

If you’re injured, go to the emergency room immediately.

Do not wait to “see how you feel” or “see if you feel better after a few days.” Go immediately and have any damage or injuries evaluated. If you wait, an insurance company could argue that you were not seriously injured.

Take pictures of your car, the truck, and any debris

Pictures can serve as evidence to help prove your property damage and show the layout of the accident scene.

Call your insurance provider.

You should report the accident to your insurance company as soon as possible. Put off any talk about harm or injury until you’ve seen a medical professional. Many times, accident victims don’t feel symptoms from the collision until hours or days later. Statements made to an insurance agent about your injury and harm could be used against you later.

Do not speak to the truck driver or trucking company’s insurance people.

Insurance agents and adjusters intend to help their insured party (the truck driver or trucking company) avoid liability. They may take what seems like innocent information from you and use it against you to fight your claim. A truck accident attorney can deal with the opposing party’s insurance company.

Refuse to sign anything until you’ve spoken with a lawyer.

An insurance agent or adjuster might try to get you to sign something that would forbid you from seeking compensation for your medical expenses, vehicle repairs or replacement, loss of wages, and pain and suffering.  An experienced and knowledgeable attorney can protect your rights and get the compensation you deserve. Contact a lawyer right away to schedule your consultation.

Resource: Truck Accident Lawyer Virginia, MartinWren, P.C.

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