Truck Accident Fault

Understanding Liability and Pursuing a Personal Injury Case After a Virginia Tractor-Trailer Accident

Tractor-trailer accidents can be devastating, causing serious injury or loss of life to victims. If you were involved in a truck accident in the Warrenton area, you may have delayed pursuing a personal injury case as you weren’t sure who was at fault or if you are entitled to any type of judgment or recovery of damages. Experienced truck accident lawyers know how to untangle the legal wreckage after a tractor-trailer crash, determine who was at fault, and fight for the compensation you deserve.

Tractor-Trailer Crash Statistics

Sadly, tractor-trailer crashes are on the rise and can carry devastating consequences. More than 5,800 large trucks were involved in fatal crashes in 2022, indicating a 49% increase over a 10-year period. Over 523,000 large trucks are involved in crashes every year.

After an accident involving a truck, you or your loved one may be focused on dealing with the after-effects of the crash, such as serious injuries, loss of limbs, missed time from work, depression, anxiety, and mounting personal and medical expenses. 

Insurance Adjuster Interactions and Protecting Your Rights

You may hear from the other party’s insurance company shortly after a crash. Sometimes, they will offer you a chunk of money right away to try to settle the case quickly. We suggest people approach conversations with insurance adjustors cautiously. Don’t accept any settlement amount without talking to a Warrenton truck accident lawyer first. 

The insurance representatives’ goal is to minimize their financial liability in a case. In their conversations with you about what happened, they can take words you say out of context to determine that their insured driver was either not at fault at all or was only partially at fault.

Because of Virginia’s “contributory negligence” law, if someone else is found to share even 1% of the blame for an accident, the victim may not pursue a personal injury lawsuit, no matter how severe their injuries are. If someone else is completely at fault for your accident with a tractor-trailer, engage an experienced truck accident lawyer who can handle discussions and negotiations with insurance representatives.

Working With a Lawyer After a Truck Crash

While you may not have done so right away after your accident, consulting with an experienced legal professional after an accident involving a tractor-trailer is important, even if the cause of the accident is unclear. Lawyers can draw from their experience in handling these types of personal injury cases when representing your interests. 

A truck accident lawyer will follow investigative procedures to understand the circumstances of the accident, determine who was at fault, and gather necessary evidence to prove fault. 

Personal injury lawyer’s evidence-gathering efforts can include:

  • Obtaining or taking photos or videos of the crash itself (from you or another party) or of the location of the crash after the accident, including relevant signage such as indicators of a construction zone
  • Gathering GPS or other vehicle data from the vehicles involved in the crash
  • Gathering other related physical evidence from the crash
  • Obtaining police records 
  • Interviewing eyewitnesses and taking their statements
  • Taking depositions 
  • Enlisting the help of expert witnesses such as accident reconstruction experts 
  • Obtaining copies of your vehicle repair costs
  • Obtaining medical records, receipts, and other documentation involving medical treatment sought as a result of the accident
  • Calculating total damages, including any expected ongoing treatment costs

Trial, If Necessary

Your personal injury lawyer will work on your behalf to obtain a fair settlement for the costs you incurred as a result of the crash. If the parties are unable to come to a settlement agreement, they should be prepared to fight for what you deserve in court. All of the evidence gathering and details of building a case are done to prepare for representing you in court, though many cases settle out of court, sometimes very shortly before trial.

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