What to Do After a Collision with a Truck in Terre Haute

In the unsettling moments following a collision with a large truck, it’s crucial to remember some key steps to protect your rights and strengthen any potential legal claim you may later pursue. 

Here are the primary steps to take:

  1. Prioritize Safety and Health: Call emergency services and seek immediate medical attention, even if your injuries initially appear minor. Delaying medical care can adversely affect your health and potentially weaken your claim.
  2. Contact Law Enforcement: It’s essential to report the accident to the police. An official police report can serve as a crucial piece of evidence in your claim.
  3. Collect Evidence: If it’s safe to do so, gather as much evidence as you can from the accident scene. This could include photographs of the accident scene, the vehicles involved, and any visible injuries.
  4. Avoid Admitting Fault: Be careful with your words at the accident scene. Even an innocent apology can be misconstrued as an admission of fault.
  5. Contact a Lawyer: Reach out to a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. We can guide you through the legal process and help you protect your rights.

Common Injuries Related to Truck Accidents in Indiana

Due to the size and weight of commercial trucks, accidents involving these vehicles often lead to catastrophic injuries, if not wrongful death. Such injuries can have life-altering consequences, requiring extensive medical treatment and long-term care. 

Some common injuries resulting from truck accidents include:

These are just some of the injuries we hear every day at our firm, and if it’s also your case, we can help you get the justice you deserve. According to the impact of your injuries and non-economic damages, your attorney will calculate a fair amount of compensation you need to recover and get your life back.

Proving Negligence in a Truck Accident Case

Understanding and establishing negligence is the cornerstone of a successful truck accident claim. It’s a complex process that involves proving that the truck driver, trucking company, or other party involved failed to uphold their legal responsibility towards you, consequently leading to the accident.

The essential aspects to demonstrate in this process include:

  1. Duty of Care: This aspect recognizes that the defendant, such as the truck driver, had an inherent responsibility to ensure their vehicle was operated safely and within the bounds of established laws and regulations.
  2. Breach of Duty: Here, it must be shown that the defendant acted counter to their duty of care. This could be a manifestation of various behaviors such as reckless driving, driving under the influence of substances, or even disregarding trucking laws in Indiana.
  3. Causation: This element involves linking the defendant’s breach of duty directly to the occurrence of the accident. It must be evident that their negligence was not just present but was the primary cause of the accident.
  4. Damages: Finally, it is necessary to prove that you have suffered tangible damages as a result of the accident. These damages may range from physical injuries and emotional distress to property damage and loss of income.

In order to navigate this intricate legal maze, a personal injury lawyer is a vital ally. They can meticulously gather and scrutinize evidence such as accident reports, witness testimonies, trucking logs, and other pertinent information. By doing so, they can construct a robust case aimed at demonstrating the negligence of the defendant and securing the compensation you are entitled to

Comparative Fault in Accidents on Terre Haute

Indiana law applies a doctrine known as comparative fault in personal injury cases, including those involving truck accidents. As set out in Indiana Code § 34-51-2, this principle plays a crucial role in determining the compensation you can receive if you’ve been involved in a truck accident.

At its core, comparative fault examines the role that each party played in the accident. If you, as the plaintiff, are found to be partially responsible for the incident, this will directly impact the amount of compensation you are eligible to receive. This is calculated proportionally: the percentage of fault assigned to you is the percentage by which your total damages award is reduced.

Let’s consider an example: suppose you are involved in a truck accident and are seeking $100,000 in damages. However, during the legal proceedings, it was determined that you were 20% responsible for the accident. In this case, your total compensation would be reduced by 20%, meaning you would ultimately receive $80,000.

Yet, it’s essential to understand that Indiana operates under a modified comparative fault system. This means if you’re found to be 51% or more at fault for the accident, you may be barred from receiving any compensation.

big rig 18 wheeler truck driving down the road

Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer to File a Claim and Get Justice

Navigating the aftermath of a truck accident can be complex. Not only because if you are partially responsible compensation might not be enough to cover your damages, but also because there are many other federal and local laws that directly affect your case. But you don’t have to face this process alone. 

At Christie Farrell Lee & Bell, our Terre Haute truck accident lawyers will stand by your side every step of the way. We will thoroughly investigate your case, negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf, and, if necessary, passionately represent you in court to ensure you receive the justice and compensation you deserve.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident, don’t hesitate to contact us. Let us help you turn a tragic event into a path towards recovery and justice.

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