If you’ve been injured in a truck accident, then you’re probably trying to figure out the best path forward. That’s no easy task given the extensive physical and emotional pain and suffering that has been thrust upon you, and the serious financial harm that has been caused to you. Fortunately, though, the law gives you the opportunity to seek accountability and compensation through a personal injury lawsuit.
But when you’re pursuing one of these claims against a truck company and its insurance company, you need to be fully prepared if you hope to maximize your chances of obtaining the compensation that you deserve. That means anticipating and being ready to counter each of the following defenses:
- Comparative negligence: One of the most commonly utilized defenses in these cases is comparative negligence. Here, the truck company and its insurer try to shift the blame back to you so that your ultimate award is diminished by the amount of fault allocated to you. Therefore, a $100,000 award will be reduced to $60,000 if you’re found to be 40% at fault. That reduction can be significant and leave you without the resources that you need to make a full recovery. Also, if you’re found to be more than 50% at fault, then you can be denied recovery altogether. So, as you’re building your truck accident case, you need to analyze your driving actions at the time of the wreck and develop strategies to defend against comparative negligence claims.
- Third-party liability: Another tactic used by truck companies in these cases is arguing that a third-party is responsible for the accident. This happens in wrecks involving multiple accidents, and it may shift the liability to a party that is less likely to pay you for your damages. So, while you need to make sure that you include all parties that are relevant to your case, you should also develop arguments that make sure that as much blame is placed on the truck company as possible.
- Frolic and detour: Truck companies sometimes even blame their own employees for these wrecks. They may claim that the trucker who caused the accident was operating outside the scope of his or her employment, such as by running a personal errand or taking a detour that was not approved by the employer. If the truck company is successful in raising this argument, then it can avoid paying compensation altogether which, again, could leave you unable to recover the full extent of your losses.
- No liability: In some cases, a truck company simply argues that the circumstance of the accident means that no one should be held liable. This argument is often raised in cases when there was poor weather or some type of hazard in the road. Even if those factors contributed to your case, you could still analyze the trucker’s actions at the time of the accident to determine if they were appropriate under the circumstances.
Know how to build the strong personal injury case that you deserve
If you’ve been injured in a truck accident, then you owe it to yourself to build the strongest personal injury case you can. That means gathering evidence that allows you to build persuasive legal arguments and anticipating the defense’s arguments. Don’t worry if that sounds daunting to you. You can work closely with an experienced personal injury attorney who can help guide you through the process and position you for recovering the compensation that you need and deserve.