Truck drivers in the United States must receive specialized training and obtain a commercial driver’s license (CDL) before legally driving a vehicle over a certain weight, as the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) explains. By doing so, they acknowledge the extra precautions required to keep themselves and those around them safe. When they fail to abide by safety standards while driving, serious accidents and fatal injuries can occur.
Thousands of accidents happen on Texas roads, and some of them involve commercial vehicles. In Nueces County, 413 accidents in 2019 involved commercial motor vehicles (CMVs), such as large trucks, according to the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), which resulted in fatalities and serious injuries.
If you suffered an injury or lost a loved one in a collision with a large truck, a tractor trailer accident lawyer in Corpus Christi, TX, can review your case and discuss possible legal options with you. Call D. Miller & Associates, PLLC, at (713) 850-8600 today to speak with our legal team.
Tractor Trailer Accidents Cause Severe Injuries
The size and weight of tractor trailers increase the risk of severe injury or fatality in accidents, particularly to passengers of smaller vehicles, pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorcyclists.
Commercial trucks are a major form of transportation used to distribute goods across the country. In this way, trucks contribute to the economy, but they also contribute to an increase in serious accidents.
If you or someone you love has suffered severe or fatal injuries in an accident with a tractor trailer in Corpus Christi, a lawyer can help you pursue financial recovery. Contact D. Miller & Associates, PLLC, today, and a representative from our legal team will respond as soon as possible to discuss your case with you.
Proving Liability in Your Tractor Trailer Accident
As a fault state, Texas requires the driver responsible for causing the accident to pay for damages involved, including property and personal injury. However, Texas uses a more specific type of fault system known as proportionate responsibility in which victims who share a portion of liability for the accident may receive reduced damages. If you hold more than 50% of the responsibility for your accident, you cannot seek financial awards from the other driver.
In most cases, victims and their attorneys will try to negotiate a fair insurance settlement amount from the at-fault driver’s insurance policy. Insurance companies work for a profit, so they rarely offer the amount you deserve right away, if at all. Insurance companies may:
- Refuse to admit the fault of their policyholder
- Use deceptive tactics to try to get the victim to settle for less
- Fail to provide a reasonable amount of financial recovery, even after extensive negotiations
If a victim and the insurance company do not agree on a settlement amount, the victim may take their case to court to attempt to prove liability to a jury and seek sufficient financial recovery.
Taking Your Case to Court
In Texas, you can file a lawsuit in court to pursue a greater amount of damages than the driver’s insurance will agree to provide. This gives you the opportunity to prove the liability of the driver and request a higher amount to cover the extent of your damages.
However, if the jury finds that you hold partial responsibility for the accident, it may reduce your award amount by that much. For example, if it finds you 20% accountable for the accident, you might receive 80% of the financial recovery awarded to you.
You do not have to face the insurance company and the court alone. A tractor trailer accident lawyer in Corpus Christi, TX, can represent you in court and help you seek just financial awards for your losses.
Texas Statute of Limitations on Vehicle Accidents
Victims of truck accidents should keep in mind that Texas has a two-year statute of limitations on these types of lawsuits. This means that, from the day the accident occurred, you have two years to file a lawsuit against the at-fault driver.
Insurance settlements can take time, and if you could not agree on a fair amount with the driver’s insurance company, the length of that process limits the time you have remaining to file a lawsuit in your case. For this reason, victims and their families should begin the lawsuit process as soon as possible.
If you lost a spouse, parent, child, or other loved one in the accident, you have two years from the date of their death to pursue financial awards in a wrongful death case. Attorneys prefer to settle out of court to make the process easier and more efficient, but negotiations can take time.
If the idea of pursuing this process on your own appears overwhelming or intimidating to you, a tractor trailer accident lawyer in Corpus Christi, TX, can help you manage your case.
Contact D. Miller & Associates, PLLC, Today
All drivers, especially those operating large vehicles, have a responsibility to use extra precautions to protect their lives and others while on the road. When they drive negligently or recklessly, serious and fatal injuries could result.
If a truck driver’s unsafe behavior on the road led to your injuries or the death of a loved one, a tractor trailer accident lawyer in Corpus Christi, TX, can help you hold them accountable and pursue fair financial awards for your damages.
At D. Miller & Associates, PLLC, our attorneys will work with insurance companies to seek the amount you deserve. If they will not settle, we will fight for your case in court on your behalf. Contact us today at (713) 850-8600 to discuss your case with our legal team.