Truck Accident FAQ
Experienced North Carolina attorneys ready to fight for you
Things start changing fast after you’ve been in a truck accident. You are seriously injured and need medical treatment. The expenses are adding up quickly and you are feeling the financial strain. But you may not be able to work because of your injuries. The process of filing a claim or compensation seems confusing.
The attorneys at Brent Adams & Associates know you probably have a lot of questions. We can explain the process and the challenges you are likely to face. Our firm has been helping people injured in truck accidents in North Carolina for decades. We help people stand up to trucking companies and insurance companies to get the compensation they deserve.
- What should I do if I’ve been in a truck accident?
- Should I talk to the truck driver’s insurance company if they contact me?
- Who can be held liable for a truck accident?
- How much money can I get after an accident with an 18-wheeler?
- How long will it take to resolve my case?
- Should I accept a settlement offer from the insurance company?
- What happens if I reject a settlement offer?
- How long do I have to file a lawsuit?
If you’ve been hurt in a truck accident, learn more about how we can help. We offer a free consultation. Contact us to schedule a time that works for you. We have offices in Raleigh, Fayetteville, Dunn, Southern Pines, and Clinton. We can go over your legal options and answer any other questions you have.
There are steps you can take – if you are able – that can protect your safety and your rights. Contact the police and get medical attention. This will generate documentation of the accident and your injuries. Get the names and contact information of the truck driver and any witnesses, but don’t talk about who was at fault. Take photos of the accident scene. Report the accident to your insurance company. Then call an experienced lawyer.
No. The adjuster who contacts you may seem friendly. You may be told that the insurance company just wants to ask you a few questions about what happened. It may sound perfectly harmless. But the real reason they are calling is to try to get you to say something they can use against you. That’s why it’s in your best interests to refuse. You can simply decline to answer questions and explain that you would like to speak to your attorney first.
There are often multiple parties involved in a truck accident. These can include the driver, the trucking company, the cargo owner, the company that loaded the cargo, the truck owner, the trailer owner and the manufacturer of faulty truck parts. One of more of these parties may have acted negligently, causing the accident that left you hurt. And each party may have different lawyers and insurance companies. An experienced lawyer who handles complex truck accident claims can identify the negligent parties and fight for compensation.
It depends on many different factors. These include the types of injuries you suffered and their severity, whether you were left with a permanent disability, your medical expenses, whether you were able to return to work, insurance policy limits and other factors. If a settlement can’t be reached with the insurance company and your case goes to trial, a jury will decide how much compensation you should receive. A lawyer can review your case and determine your damages to give you a better idea of how much you may be able to recover.
Truck accident can be fairly complicated. And in general, the more complex the case, the longer it will take to resolve it. Insurance companies will fight against your claim for compensation because they know there’s a lot of money at stake. If a case is fairly straightforward, sometimes it is possible to reach a settlement in a matter of months. But more complicated cases may require litigation and can take years.
You may be contacted by an insurance company soon after your accident with a settlement offer. They’re promising quick payment. By this time, your medical expenses may feel like they are getting out of control. You may feel like you just want to resolve the situation now and move on, rather than drag it out for months. But there are couple of things to keep in mind. The first is that the insurance company is trying to save money by offering you less. The second is that you only get one shot at recovering compensation. Once you agree to a settlement, you can’t go back and ask for more. That’s why we advise getting legal advice before giving an answer.
If you don’t think the settlement offer is fair, you have the right to reject it. Generally, one of two things can happen after that. Your lawyer can continue negotiations with the insurance company while building a strong case that proves negligence. If the insurance company will not increase their offer, you have the option of pursuing your case at trial. Your lawyer can advise you on how your case is progressing.
In North Carolina, you have three years from the date of your truck accident to take legal action for injuries you have suffered. That sound like plenty of time and you may not think there’s any rush to see a lawyer. But the longer you wait, the more challenging your case may be. Over time, evidence controlled by the trucking company – such as hours of service logs and information from the truck’s event data recorder – can be lost or destroyed. And the memories of witnesses can fade. That’s why it’s important to get legal advice as soon as possible after your accident.