Florida Truck Accident Attorneys
After a truck accident, it is common to feel like you have more questions than answers. You may be dealing with the pressures of skyrocketing medical debt, recovering from your injuries, and trying to get the insurance company to do the right thing. Unfortunately, many people will try to shirk their responsibility and lowball your much-needed compensation. Getting clear answers starts by contacting a commercial truck accident attorney.
Let our attorneys handle the heavy lifting for you. At Farah & Farah, our Florida personal injury lawyer have over 40 years of experience fighting the good fight for our clients. We have an established track record of helping our clients get the full amount they deserve. Plus, we will fight your case on a contingency fee basis. You won’t have to pay anything unless we are victorious.
Contact our commercial vehicle accident lawyers 24/7 at (888) 594-0956 for your free, no-obligation case review.
What Should I Do After a Truck Accident?
If you are involved in a Florida truck accident, here are some of the most important commercial vehicle accident procedures to follow:
You must contact 911 as soon as you can. A police officer will be able to conduct an official investigation. Once on the scene, they can assess the evidence and create a detailed report about the conditions of the accident. The officer may use visual evidence, review truck driver accident procedures, eyewitness testimony, and accounts from the drivers to create a non-biased report about who or what caused the accident.
After they have completed their investigation, ask the officer how to get a copy of the report. Not only will your insurance company want a copy of it, but it can be used as evidence in a trucking accident claim.
Seek Medical Attention
It is important that you seek medical attention as soon as possible. Call 911 immediately. After a serious truck accident, it is essential to seek a doctor’s consultation. Getting an evaluation after a crash will help ensure you’re not hurt.
Medical documentation of your injuries is also an important asset for a case. Although you may feel fine immediately, do not assume you are not injured. Many people do not experience the full range of their injuries until days after an accident. A qualified medical professional needs to evaluate the full extent of your injuries.
If you are not in severe physical condition, take pictures of the scene. After contacting law enforcement, start documenting the scene. If you have a camera phone, use it to log everything that happened. Including:
- All possible causes to the crash
- Crash debris
- Damage to all vehicles involved in the crash
- Road layout
- Traffic patterns
- Weather conditions
- Write down your experiences
- Record testimony from eyewitnesses
Take photos from multiple angles and distances. These will be useful when you file your insurance claim. Trucking companies and insurance providers are notorious for burying evidence and bullying victims. Documenting everything helps you petition for your full recovery.
Exchange Contact Information
It is important to exchange contact information with everyone involved in the accident. These people can help you during your insurance claim or serve as witnesses during a possible personal injury lawsuit.
Ask everyone involved (including police officers and eyewitnesses) for their full name, phone number, license plate number, email address and address. Exchanging contact information is one of the most overlooked commercial vehicle accident procedures. It is always better to have more information than less in these circumstances.
After a truck accident, it is essential to get:
- Contact information and name of truck driver
- Driver’s insurance carrier
- The United States Department of Transportation serial number (if available)
- Truck driver’s licenses number
- Trucking Company insurance carrier
- If available, ask for Electronic Logging Devices (ELD) information
- Information about the trucking company that employs the driver or owns the commercial truck. Ask the driver if they own their vehicle
- Take pictures of unique identifiers (like numbers or letters) that are on the truck
Contact Your Insurance Company
It’s important to contact your insurance company after an accident. It’s also important to remember that an insurance provider is never your friend. This harsh truth applies to your personal insurer and any other party’s insurance carrier.
When you report a truck crash, the insurance company will look out for its bottom line. That means they will offer you the lowest payout possible and will not want to offer you a major settlement. Do not accept or sign any offer without talking to a lawyer first. Agreeing to any compensation can cause you to forfeit the right to seek additional aid.
If an insurance company knows you have a lawyer on your side, it is illegal for them to contact you directly. Having a lawyer makes it harder for them to lowball you or negotiate against your best interests.
Never Admit Fault
Never admit fault or speculate on liable parties. Trucking accidents involve many parties. While the truck driver is a potentially responsible party, the trucking company, the carrier, and the broker or shipper who hired the carrier may also share liability.
Contact a Truck Accident Attorney
It is always smart to seek out a qualified truck accident attorney for advice on handling communications with all parties. A trucking attorney will be able to guide you through the process and provide sound advice.
When you hire a trucking attorney, you are hiring someone who understands the complex trucking industry networks. A qualified trucking lawyer will be able to schedule a vehicle inspection. They will be able to download the black box of the truck and look for possible crash causes. If they can access this data, it may be possible to recreate the collision using 3D technology.
Fighting for justice requires leaving no stone unturned. After a truck accident, it is not uncommon for a motor carrier’s insurance to issue a settlement up to or beyond $1 million. A less experienced lawyer who doesn’t understand trucking accidents may advise their client to accept less than they deserve!
How Long Do I Have to File a Truck Accident Claim in Florida?
The statute of limitations in Florida declares you have two years from the accident date to file a claim against the driver, the trucking company, their insurance companies, or any other responsible parties. Though this may seem like a long time, it can go by fast when recovering from injuries and getting back on your feet.
Why It’s Important to Act Fast After a Truck Accident
There are many reasons to act fast after a truck accident, including:
- The courts will likely dismiss your claim if you do not file it within the legal time frame. Once the courts dismiss your claim, you cannot take any further legal action.
- Your attorney needs time to investigate your accident and gather evidence, such as the truck driver’s record, the truck’s black box, and witness testimony. This evidence can go missing, and witnesses may forget the details of the accident if too much time passes.
- Waiting too long to file a claim will allow the opposing insurance company to dispute the severity of your injuries.
Giving your truck accident attorney enough time to establish the facts of your case and file your claim will greatly increase the chances of securing justice for your accident.
What Does The Process For Filing A Truck Accident Claim Look Like?
After being involved in a semi-truck accident, you may not know what to do next. There are some steps you should take as soon as possible after the crash.
Each party in the accident will work to determine who was responsible for the crash. In most cases, the accident report will contain the police officer’s assessment of who was at fault in the crash. Even if the officer cites the truck driver, that does not mean your case is over.
All too often, truck companies and their insurance carriers will look to place a portion of the fault on the victim – even if the victim did nothing wrong. Your Farah & Farah truck accident lawyer will be ready for this.
When you hire a skilled truck accident attorney, we will:
- Gather all evidence related to the case, including accident reports, eyewitness accounts, video, photographic evidence, and more.
- Obtain your medical records and have them reviewed by trusted medical professionals.
- Hire an accident reconstruction expert to testify on your behalf.
It’s important to know that there is a time limit on filing your truck accident claim. Acting as quickly as possible is key to recovering as many damages in a truck accident case as possible. While filing a timely claim is necessary, it will take an indefinite amount of time depending on the circumstances of the case. An experienced truck accident lawyer can help shoulder the burden of your case and get you the best results possible.
Reasons the Length of a Truck Accident Case Could Take Longer
Truck accidents are often complicated cases that can take a while to be resolved. Here are some reasons that your truck accident case may take longer to settle:
Finding which party is at fault is one of the first steps in any vehicle accident claims process. This can take much longer than a car accident because the trucking company must also be investigated for liability.
The Severity of the Accident
Trucks are mammoth forces in an accident, which means that truck crashes can cause severe vehicle damage, injuries, or even fatalities. With a more serious accident, there are more factors to investigate, making the claims process longer.
Semi-trucks are required to carry insurance, but levels of coverage can vary between trucking companies. Coverage also differs depending on the cab, the trailer, and the load that the truck carries.
If you or a loved one was injured in a truck accident, medical treatment and expenses can add to the complexity of the case. Injuries sustained in a truck accident case may not appear until weeks after the accident, so you shouldn’t accept a settlement before you finish your medical treatment.
All of the above factors can make negotiating a settlement difficult to discern. It may take many rounds of negotiations before a solution can be found. This is why it’s crucial to get a truck accident lawyer who will fight for the best compensation, no matter how long it takes.
What Evidence Do I Need After a Truck Accident?
The minutes after a truck accident are crucial. The best way to ensure that your case has a positive outcome is to collect valuable evidence.
Here is some of the most important information to collect after a truck accident:
When police respond to the scene of an accident, they are required to complete an official report documenting their investigation. This report includes information from the scene, evidence from the crash, eyewitness statements and contacts, and injury information. The police report may also suggest who was at fault in the crash. This is one of the most important types of information to collect after a truck accident for both your own and your attorney’s records.
Black Box Information
Many trucks are equipped with black boxes that can provide information on how fast a truck was going, when the driver applied the brakes, and how long the driver had operated without a rest period. Some may also have in-cab cameras. These are valuable because they provide another perspective on what was happening in the cab before the accident.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) requires commercial drivers to keep detailed logs of their work shifts and rest periods to ensure compliance with hours-of-service (HOS) regulations. These logs can determine if fatigue played a role in the accident and violated any regulations.
Federal and state law requires trucks to undergo routine maintenance and inspections. Trucking companies are required to keep these records for at least 30 days. These records are not included with your official police accident report in many cases. You will need to request them following an accident. These records are crucial evidence in case of trucking accidents. They can reveal discrepancies or fraudulent records on truck inspections, maintenance, and repairs. They may also document if the truck has failed required inspections.
Obtain copies of all medical records documenting your injuries and treatment following the truck accident. These records prove you suffered injuries and that they were caused by the accident in question. You will also want to keep copies of any bills related to medical treatment received related to the accident.
Eyewitness Reports and Expert Testimony
Witness reports are a valuable asset for a trucking accident. Collect names and contact information from any witnesses. Ask if they can stay to give an official account of the accident to the police.
If needed, the attorneys at Farah & Farah can secure expert witnesses to testify about the causes of the crash.
Victims of truck accidents should photograph every aspect of their accident and injuries to the extent possible. Photographic evidence from multiple angles of damage to vehicles, road conditions, and injuries will play an important part in your case. Only take photos if it is safe to do so. If the other driver is being hostile, wait until the police show up.
What You Can Expect From Our Truck Accident Attorneys?
Not all truck accident attorneys are the same. You need a big truck lawyer who fully understands your case’s complexity. Our attorneys have recovered billions for our clients and know what steps to take to ensure a lasting verdict.
First off, the sheer size of commercial trucks — and other large vehicles — lead to more damage and long-lasting injuries. As a result, many expenses need to be accounted for in the total cost of your truck accident. Our truck accident attorneys will be able to help you document your expenses. We have ample knowledge of demonstrating and establishing our client’s losses.
However, there are even more benefits to having a semi-truck accident lawyer on your side. Other complications impact the difficulty of the truck accident recovery. For starters, trucking accidents are much more complex than car accidents. Determining liability can be tricky in trucking accidents because they involve many parties, including the driver, the owner, and the contracted company. This means you may need to contend with all of these parties’ competing interests. In many cases, multi-national insurance and trucking companies will do everything in their power to avoid responsibility. They may deploy teams of lawyers to bully you into silence.
After a big rig collision, it is important to act quickly. Our team of truck accident attorneys will leave no stone unturned for your case. Our accident investigators will fully document the accident scene and find the best path forward for your case. We will mobilize quickly to prevent crucial truck accident evidence from being lost to the sands of time.
Our big truck lawyers are not afraid to advocate for you. We have litigated for our clients across Florida, and we are ready to fight for you!
What to look for in a Florida Truck Accident Attorney
So many lawyers claim they are the best ones to handle your case. It can seem overwhelming when you are trying to find the right one. As you make your decision, keep these things in mind.
- You want an attorney with experience in truck accident cases
These cases can become complex, and your attorney needs to understand the specificlaws in place both federally and statewide that govern truck accident liability. Understanding how truck companies operate, and that they come with teams of lawyers and insurance carriers is vital. Make sure your truck accident attorney has plenty of experience working on large truck crash cases.
- Your attorney needs to be willing and able to investigate major crashes
These cases often involve in-depth investigations. Not only does your attorney need to be willing to do this, but they have to have the resources to do so. This includes gathering the evidence necessary to win, including:
- Eyewitness testimony
- The truck driver’s personnel files, logbooks, blackbox, etc.
- The truck company’s safety records, vehicle maintenance logs, inspections, etc.
- All accident reports
Your attorney may also need to hire an accident reconstruction expert and other experts ready to testify on your behalf.
- Your attorney needs to understand the FMCSA rules and regulations
Commercial truck drivers and companies are tightly regulated by the FMCSA. Many of these cases are won or lost based on an attorney’s knowledge of the FMCSA rules and regulations. The FMCSA is a system that monitors and regulates safety standards for all carriers and commercial motor vehicles in interstate commerce.
You are subject to FMCSA rules if you operate a vehicle over 10,001 lbs or transport between 9-15 passengers (driver included) for compensation directly or indirectly. In addition, you are subject to FMCSA regulations if you have a vehicle designed to transport 15 or more passengers (including the driver) not for compensation or you are transporting hazard materials.
- You need an attorney who will work diligently on your behalf
You need to find an attorney who will treat your case as if it is the only one they are working on. Your attorney should work diligently on your behalf so that you have the best possible chance of success.
Our Truck Accident Lawyers Can Increase Your Chances of Recovering The Compensation You Deserve
You need someone who knows how to fight for your best interests. Only a truck accident attorney with a proven record of researching, investigating, and establishing a case will be able to help you get what you’re owed.
The insurance company wants to diminish your suffering, but we won’t let them.
If you’ve been injured in a trucking or commercial vehicle accident, an attorney can help you buy a new vehicle, get back to work, and pay for medical treatment. At Farah & Farah, we help you take fast action to seek the compensation you deserve. Our FL truck accident attorneys have the experience and the compassion needed to fight for your rights and deliver successful results.
If you — or someone you love — have suffered from a truck accident, you owe it to yourself to speak with an attorney. Our compassionate team is available 24/7 at (888) 594-0956 to get started on your case.
Get your free, no-obligation case review from our attorneys now. You won’t owe us anything unless we win your case.
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