Grossman 7/10/20 – Truck Accidents page 2 – gtg

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Trials

There are a variety of reasons that cases do not settle out of court. When that happens, a plaintiff’s only way of getting the just restitution he or she deserves is by taking the case to a trial. Because the injury victim bears the burden of proof in litigation involving a trucking accident, he or she will have the more difficult task of the two sides in a trial. In order to have a chance at winning in a trial, you have to provide compelling evidence to prove each of the four elements of every claim involving a truck accident. These elements, explained in detail below, are duty, breach, causation, and damages.

Duty – In order to establish duty, you, the plaintiff has to prove that the defendant in the case owed that plaintiff a duty to behave in a cautious enough manner so as not to bring harm to you. This is typically a fairly straightforward element because nearly all people owe all other people the duty to act as would a reasonable person in regard to not harming other people. This could mean not performing unreasonably dangerous actions, or taking distinct precautions in order to protect others from experiencing harm.

Breach – The next thing you must prove is that the conduct of the defendant resulted in a breach of the duty of care that was owed to you. Should the “reasonable person” duty of care apply in regard to your case, then proving breach means proving the defendant performed some sort of action that a reasonable person would not have performed. In order to establish that a breach occurred, you have to provide evidence to show the court exactly what the defendant either did or did not do. A judge or jury will then consider all of the circumstances surrounding your case and then decide whether or not the actions of the defendant can be considered a breach of the duty of care that you were owed.

Causation – The third element you must prove is causation. It is not adequate to merely prove that the defendant was in breach of the duty of care you were owed. You must also prove that the actions of the defendant caused the injury you are suffering from. To prove this element, however, you have to have a great deal of rock-solid, compelling evidence. There are multiple entities that play a role in preparing a truck for any kind of trip – an error on the part of any one of them could result in an accident. Because there are so many potentially responsible parties, many defendants will commonly attempt to sway a judge or jury that another party, or even the plaintiff, was to blame for causing the accident. You will have no chance of winning your lawsuit if you do not produce compelling enough evidence that can put the blame squarely on the defendant.

Damages – This fourth and final element refers to the monetary amount that you will collect from the defendant should you be successful in establishing the other three elements of your case. Plaintiffs can be compensated for a variety of damages, including loss of earning capacity, lost wages, medical expenses, pain and suffering, and other financial losses incurred due to the accident. However, you must accurately calculate the amount of money that is owed to you, and provide evidence that supports those calculations, in order to be able to win damages. More than likely, the defendant will also calculate how much you are owed, and that number will be significantly smaller than the one you come up with. It is imperative that you present compelling proof that your calculations are correct, and you’re not merely looking for a handout. And you must also prove that the defendant’s calculations are nothing more than, basically, a desperate attempt to avoid taking responsibility for the accident that injured you.

The process by which damages are calculated can often be an incredibly intricate and complex one. Should you still be receiving ongoing medical care, it can be very tough to, on your own, be able to estimate how high your medical expenses will ultimately get. It is even more difficult to put a “price tag,” so to speak, on the more subjective types of damages such as pain and suffering. And it can be even more difficult to try and accurately calculate your long-term losses such as loss of future earning potential because you have to consider the value of money over time, potential merit raises, possible raises you may get for taking certain educational courses, and other factors. However, the trucking accident attorneys with our Law Office are very familiar with how to calculate damages, since we’ve been doing it for the last two decades. We know how much a judge or jury will likely decide how much your case is worth, and can make sure you do not get shortchanged.

Our trucking accident lawyers are here to help you, whether your case reaches an out-of-court settlement or it goes to trial. We know how to compel the defense into making our clients settlement offers that are fair, and also know how to devise strong strategies should the case have to wind up in court.

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Determining the defendant

As is the case in any form of litigation, one of the first steps in a trucking accident case is to determine the defendant. Doing so in truck accident litigation can be especially difficult since there are so many parties that have an involvement in getting a truck ready for a trip. One or more of them can commit an error that can result in an accident that causes injuries or deaths. More than one error can be committed by more than one party. Should it be determined that more than one entity played a role in your accident, you can take action against all of them, and all of them can be defendants in your lawsuit.

Some of these potentially responsible parties include the company that planned the truck’s route, the company responsible for loading the truck, the manufacturer of the truck or certain parts of the truck, and, of course, the trucking company and the truck driver.

The Company that Planned the Truck’s Route
Of course, there are certain roads that a typical automobile can travel that an 18-wheeler cannot, or at least should not, travel. There are height, weight, and cargo restrictions regarding many roads, tunnels, and bridges that must be taken into consideration when the route of a truck is planned. Because of these complexities, many trucking companies choose to hire outside firms to plan truck routes. Should this company make an error in planning a route, such as ignoring vital road or bridge restrictions that can lead to a dangerous accident, that company can be held accountable for any injuries that occur.

The Company that Loaded the Truck
Often times, a truck is not dangerous on its own. Rather, the manner in which that truck is loaded can present the danger. Most trucks, by law, cannot drive with a load in excess of 80,000 pounds. However, there are a lot of companies that, in an attempt to save time and trips, will overload a truck’s trailer. And when this occurs, a truck is more susceptible to tipping over when it comes around a turn. There are other instances where a company responsible for loading a truck will do an inadequate job of fastening cargo to a flatbed trailer. As a result, inadequately loaded cargo can loosen from the flatbed and lead to an accident that causes an injury. If your accident was caused by improperly loaded or overloaded cargo, then you can sue the company that was responsible for loading the truck.

Manufacturers
There are times where a trucking accident is caused by a manufacturer that produces parts with either manufacturing flaws or defects in design. There are lots of parts that comprise a truck, as is the case with most other vehicles, and all of these parts have to operate correctly in order for the truck to be roadworthy and safe. If, for example, the truck’s tires, or the straps designed to secure the cargo, are flawed in some manner and therefore unsafe, fellow motorists could be put in significant danger. If the manufacturer is in some way responsible for the defects or flaws of these incredibly vital parts, and an accident occurs, then that manufacturer could be held liable for any injuries that result.

The Trucking Company
While the truck driver is typically the most directly responsible party when an accident takes place, it is rare that the driver shoulders the entirety of the blame. Normally, an injury victim can sue not only the driver but also the company that owns the truck and employs the driver. Two legal theories exist that allow this to happen. The theory of “direct liability” enables plaintiffs to hold the company that owns the truck liable for the accident that occurred. If the trucking company is guilty of negligence, and the negligence led to the accident that caused your injury, the trucking company is considered directly liable. For instance, if the company that owns the truck was negligent in properly maintaining the truck’s braking system, and a brake failure led to the accident that caused your injury, then you might be able to hold the company that owns the truck directly liable for their negligence in causing the accident.

There are other times where a trucking company did not appear to do anything wrong, and that all the blame for the accident lies with the truck driver. However, under the theory of “vicarious liability,” the company that owns the truck can still be held responsible. A legal doctrine known as “respondeat superior” allows this to happen. This Latin term “respondeat superior” simply means that employers are responsible for the workplace actions of their employees, whether or not the company itself did anything wrong. In the case of an accident involving a truck, this means you can sue the trucking company as well as the driver.

The Truck Driver
Again, the driver of the truck will normally be the party most directly responsible for causing an accident to occur. Truckers can make all kinds of mistakes, both on the road and off of it. They can ignore stop signs, recklessly speed, and make turns that are illegal – basically, drive in a careless manner and pose a substantial threat to all of the other motorists on the road. Often times, though, the biggest mistakes made by truckers have little to do with the actual task of driving. They can skip mandatory rest breaks in order to meet often unfairly stringent deadlines. When this occurs, those drivers exponentially increase the chances that they will fall asleep behind the wheel and cause a devastating accident. Other drivers will take illegal stimulants in an effort to stay awake, posing a danger as well. As unbelievable as it may seem, we have seen many instances where a driver was flat-out drunk and caused an accident. Whatever the reason, if a trucker decided to make his or her delivery schedule more of a priority than your safety, or was intoxicated in some fashion, then you can initiate legal action against that careless driver.

These parties – route-planning companies, cargo-loading companies, parts manufacturers, trucking companies, and truck drivers – are just a few of the many potentially responsible entities that can be sued in the event of an accident. You have to determine exactly which party or parties were responsible for your injury in order to have any chance of getting fair compensation for the losses that you have incurred.

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The Critical Importance of a Thorough Investigation

Once an accident involving an 18-wheeler takes place, it is vital that a thorough investigation is launched into all of the circumstances that surround it. Such an investigation will not only help you identify the cause of the accident and help you determine responsibility, but it will also enable you to collect the critical evidence that will be necessary to prove your case in a court of law. As was previously mentioned, the plaintiff in a truck accident case bears the burden of proof. The court does not want to simply be told how to decide a case. Judges and juries need to be able to see, touch, and hear evidence that supports your case. The compelling evidence that can be produced by a detailed investigation can make the difference between you winning your case and leaving the courtroom with nothing.

The trucking accident attorneys with our Law Office are intimately familiar with how to conduct a painstakingly detailed investigation. Our standard procedure is to immediately race to the scene of an accident in nearly every single trucking accident we take. Once we arrive at the scene, we immediately begin working to uncover evidence. There are all kinds of items that can be of immense help to you in proving your case, including physical evidence such as pieces of wreckage and skid marks, statements of witnesses, photographs and video evidence, police reports, test results, and much more. We can find this evidence and preserve it in a manner that can be used in court to prove your case.

However, you have to be aware that the other side in your case will be doing almost the exact same thing. Representatives for the defense will also visit the accident scene and pore through the wreckage looking for any sliver of evidence that they can use to suggest you, yourself were the cause of the accident. These defense operatives are normally sent to an accident scene almost immediately after it occurs. They will have with them investigators and other professionals who are experts in re-creating accidents. They know they need to begin their investigation as quickly as possible, because the longer it takes them to start looking for evidence, the better the chances that the evidence they are looking for will have been altered or even disappeared completely.

There is one recent case that our firm handled that illustrates the need for quickly launching an investigation. In this case, our client had been blamed for an accident that took place at night, when his car hit a truck. The defense maintained that our client was to blame because the car he was driving had no headlights. When we were called to represent him, we immediately went to the salvage yard where the remnants of his car had been sent. Sure enough, we discovered that his car, indeed, had no headlights. We were not satisfied by merely seeing that the car was missing its headlights, so we decided to check the salvage yard’s security cameras. While looking at surveillance tapes, we saw that a representative of the defendant had entered the salvage yard and removed the headlights from the car that belonged to our client. Armed with this critical evidence, we were able to expose the underhanded attempt by the defense to avoid responsibility. That footage was scheduled to be taped over 24 hours later. If we had not immediately launched that investigation, that critical evidence may have been lost forever.

We cannot stress enough the importance of quickly conducting an investigation; the defense has already started, so you have to start as fast as possible. Again, the evidence tends to disappear once an accident takes place due to weather conditions and other factors. Plus, witnesses’ memories can become cloudy or they will simply decide they no longer want to get involved. Our attorneys can normally build extremely strong cases even if we are not contacted for months after an accident takes place. However, the best cases normally ensue when we are immediately called. Please do not waste any time in contacting an experienced trucking accident lawyer. We know the turmoil you are going through, but time is of the essence.

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Hurdles You Will Encounter

Many of the clients we represent at our Law Office are very business-savvy and sophisticated. They could easily pick up a book or do some Internet research and learn the law. However, there is much, much more to emerging successful in a truck accident case than just having an understanding of the law. If you choose to pursue legal action on your own, you can almost guarantee that you will either get nowhere close to the compensation that you deserve, or you will leave that courtroom with nothing at all. That could be the worst mistake you’ll ever make in your life – you will be on your own in paying for your crushing medical and other expenses. You will not get a second chance.

Here are a few of the obstacles that injury victims who choose to represent themselves often fall prey to in trucking accident litigation.

Truck Drivers Who Lie
Defendants always have a reason to lie, no matter the kind of litigation in which they are involved. However, truck drivers have even more motivation than normal to lie, because their livelihood will likely depend on them doing so. If a trucker is found responsible for an accident, that is the kind of black mark that can force them into another line of work. They will not only lose their job – in all likelihood, they will not be hired by another trucking company. So, if given the choice between lying or losing their job and not being able to provide for their family, many truck drivers will try and shift the blame for the accident to the injury victim. If you cannot prove that the truck driver is indeed lying, then you will have no chance to win your case.

The trucking accident attorneys with our Law Office know how to get through the lies truck drivers tell and get to the truth. There are many times where we can gather immense amounts of evidence and expose the driver’s lies. When we produce witness statements, forensic test results, and video surveillance footage that all corroborate your account of the events that took place, the truck driver will likely lose all credibility in the eyes of a judge or jury. Many times, we can get to the truth through witness depositions. A deposition is where the attorney of the plaintiff is allowed to ask questions of the defendant’s witnesses. We have taken thousands of such depositions over the last two decades, and have developed extremely effective questioning techniques that will often compel a truck driver to tell the truth – often long before a trial is even scheduled to begin.

Policies of Large Insurance Companies
Trucking companies are required by law to have insurance on their vehicles. The value of these policies can dwarf those of typical automobile policies – often being worth 50 times as much. Therefore, an insurance carrier could lose 50 times more money in the event of a trucking accident than it would after a “normal” automobile accident. It only follows logically, then, that the carrier would devote 50 times the resources and fight 50 times harder to defend such a policy in order to avoid having to pay. It should be evident, then, that it can be far tougher to get just compensation from a truck insurance policy than it would be an everyday automobile insurance policy.

Since they have such a vested interest in protecting this kind of policy, they will do whatever they can to keep you from winning your case. They will employ high-powered insurance adjusters for just this reason. These professionals are the kind of adjuster you may have encountered after a small fender-bender. They are seasoned, ruthless, and view you as an enemy. They got to where they are by saving their company millions of dollars through denying claims just like yours. Typically, they only respect a seasoned and experienced trucking accident attorney.

This kind of adjuster will initially seem very nice to you. They’ll just want to ask you a few seemingly innocuous questions regarding the accident. But be very, very careful – their only true intent is to trick you into admitting the accident was your fault, or get you to otherwise say something that could be used against you in court. They will record the conversation, and then take whatever you say out of context in order to kill your claim. Basically, it is best that you simply refuse to talk to them. The attorneys at our Law Office make sure their clients are shielded from adjusters and their badgering, often intimidating tactics. We field those calls instead so that your words can never come back to hurt your case in court.

Large insurance carriers also employ highly trained and expert defense lawyers to protect their policies. These lawyers know insurance law like the back of their hand, and are intimately familiar with all the legal technicalities that can lead to your suit being thrown out of court should you either represent yourself or rely on an inexperienced attorney. Our Law Office lawyers have dealt with large insurance companies for 20 years, so we know the kinds of tactics they use and the kinds of tricks they like to try and play. We know how to defeat them, and defeat them handily.

Self-Insured Trucking Companies
There are some instances where a trucking accident will not include an insurance carrier. Sometimes, trucking companies choose to simply insure themselves, and they do so by setting aside some of their assets should they have to pay a plaintiff through either an out-of-court settlement or after losing a lawsuit. Should the trucking company involved in your accident be a self-employed company, then you will likely not encounter the kind of insurance adjuster mentioned above. Rather, you will be probably dealing with an officer of the trucking company. And if you thought insurance adjusters were bad, they’re nothing compared to an officer of a self-employed trucking company.

These people are normally paid through their trucking company’s profit-sharing program, so they make more money when the trucking company makes more money. If that company loses an accident lawsuit, that cuts into the profits, obviously. It follows, then, that the company officer would lose money as well. So this person will be extremely highly motivated to deny your claim. That officer will be much more concerned with his or her financial well being than yours, so he or she will be personally motivated to make sure you don’t get a dime.

Even though insurance adjusters can be intimidating and harassing, at least they are licensed, and as a requirement of that license, they are required to follow a code of ethics. Officers with self-insured trucking companies are under no such obligation, so their behavior is not governed. Clients often turn to us for help after suffering the harassment of these people. Not only are they known for employing harassing tactics to try and bully injury victims, but many of them also are not above altering evidence or employing other unethical schemes to defeat your case. If you need relief from these unethical actions, please call the trucking accident lawyers at our Law Office. We will put a stop to that nonsense immediately.

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How Our Law Office can Help You

There are many things that a seasoned and skilled trucking accident attorney can do to help you obtain the just restitution you deserve for the injury you have suffered. One of the things we do immediately is to make sure that our clients get the medical assistance they need. Even if you do not have insurance, or you are under-insured, we can help you find the necessary medical care. We have excellent relationships with several medical professionals and we can often get you the help you need at no cost to you. These medical practitioners will do this because they know our track record for success, and thus know they will most likely be reimbursed for the treatment they provide to you.

The next thing we do, as stated above, is quickly launching a detailed investigation in order to uncover the evidence you need to prove your case. Not only that, but we also take care of our clients’ cases every step of the way, and keep them informed as well. We take the litigation off of your plate so you can focus on recovering from the injury or injuries you incurred in the accident, and get your life back on track as soon as possible.

Here are just some of the services we offer our clients in every trucking accident case we take:

Launch an investigation into the cause of the accident
Collect the vital evidence you need to satisfy your burden of proof
Put our reputation for winning cases to work for you by compelling defendants into offering a fair settlement offer
Develop a rock-solid trial strategy
Put our knowledge of court procedures to use in order to ensure your case is not dismissed by a judge
Field all calls from insurance adjusters so you are not exposed to their intimidating, badgering and harassing tactics
Expose the lies truck drivers will tell in an attempt to save their job by shifting blame to you
Shield you from the oftentimes unethical methods used by officers of self-insured trucking companies to defeat your case.

Again, these are just a few ways that the trucking accident lawyers with our Law Office help our clients. We want to take all the stress involved with litigation off of your plate so you can focus on getting well and getting back to a normal life. If you would like to find out more about how we can help you or get a free and confidential consultation concerning the specific circumstances surrounding your case, please call us as soon as possible. We are on hand 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and we will gladly answer any questions you may have.

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Our Law Office Explains Why You Need Truck Accident Lawyers To Help You With Your 18-Wheeler Accident

Everywhere motorists look there are massive 18 wheelers hauling freight and construction materials to destinations all over the American South, and with all this big rig traffic, it is a statistical inevitability that there will be commercial vehicles involved in major accidents in which there will be serious injuries, heavy property damage, and fatalities. It is only a matter of when and a matter of who will be involved in the truck wreck.

If you or a family member has been injured or if a loved one has been killed in a tractor-trailer mishap, our truck accident law firm can help you recover compensation for your injuries and losses. We have litigated and won hundreds of 18 wheeler cases and we’ve recovered millions of dollars in compensation for our clients. We understand the physical pain and emotional damage you are going through, and we are also quite sensitive to the fact that your struggles have only just begun. Attempting to recover adequate and fair compensation can cause even more worry and frustration, and we’d like to ease your stress by helping you to better know the legal and other options you have at your disposal, and we’d as well like to inform you of the likely obstacles you will face as you attempt to seek justice and fair compensation.

Who is to Blame?
If you would like to recover compensation for the injuries and losses you have endured after an accident with a big rig, you must first pinpoint who is responsible for your mishap. In most tractor-trailer accidents, there may numerous parties who share liability for your accident. Texas law abides by the legal principle known as respondeat superior. Respondeat superior simply means that employers are responsible for the actions or inaction of their employees while they are on the job. In the case of a tractor-trailer mishap, multiple parties can share liability for the accident in question.

In an 18 wheeler accident personal injury or wrongful death legal action, the truck driver, the trucking company, the route planners, the freight loaders, truck and truck parts designers and manufacturers among other parties all or a combination of these can be held responsible for a big rig accident. You need the help of a skilled and experienced truck accident law firm to represent you. Our attorneys have over twenty years of experience in investigating 18 wheeler accidents and we know how to find every party who may have had a hand in the cause of your accident. When a truck driver is involved in a big rig mishap, our lawyers know how to determine if it is the truck driver’s negligence or if it is a mechanical failure that caused the wreck. In certain cases, the freight was not fastened properly or the brakes were poorly maintained, and this could cause the trailer to jackknife. Determining blame in an 18 wheeler mishap is a complex and intricate process, and our trucking accident law firm can ensure that all negligent parties are held responsible for your accident and that you are compensated accordingly.

It is absolutely legal for you to represent yourself in a court of law when pursuing a claim against a negligent truck driver, trucking company or its insurance carrier, but choosing to self represent is seldom a wise choice. Lawsuits to recover compensation for a tractor-trailer accident can be extremely complex and challenging–even inexperienced attorneys have very little chance to be successful, and the chances of winning are incredibly small for non-lawyers. You will be facing some of the most skilled, experienced, and aggressive legal defense attorneys in the United States. These attorneys have devoted their lives to winning lawsuits for trucking companies and their insurance carriers. They know how to win. In order for you to be successful in seeking the recovery of compensation for your 18 wheeler mishap, you will need the aid of an equally skilled, experienced, and aggressive attorney, and a big rig accident law firm can help you in your time of need.

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The Trucking Industry is Big Business

Federal law mandates that all trucking companies must be insured to protect themselves and the public against the inevitable accidents, injuries, property damage, and fatalities that are a daily fact of life in the trucking transportation industry. Many people believe the myth that since trucking companies must carry insurance, it is then a relatively easy matter to recover compensation for one’s injuries and losses. Nothing could be further from the truth. Trucking company insurance carriers have little to no interest in helping you receive compensation. Like all businesses, insurance carriers are out to turn a profit and to make money, and we don’t begrudge them that. Insurance policies for 18 wheelers, however, are extremely valuable and are worth much more than your standard automobile policies. Insurance carriers will do what they can to deny or minimize your claim so as to save themselves considerable sums of money. Their interest lies in their bottom line, and that means paying out as little as possible in compensation claims. The insurance adjusters will do all they can to deny your claim or evade paying its true value.

Of course, Texas law provides that a truck accident victim or the family of a loved one killed in an 18 wheeler mishap has the right to recover full and fair compensation from the trucking company, but require that the burden of proof rests squarely on the shoulders of the victim or his or her family to prove the negligence of the trucking company or other parties. That is, it is up to you to provide the substantial and irrefutable proof of the truck driver or trucking company’s negligence in a court of law. You must also prove with evidence that the sought compensation is a fair amount and is legitimate. Of course, the trucking company or its insurance carrier will contest that amount of compensation and will instead offer a much lower of recompense for your injuries and losses, if they are not trying to deny your claim outright. The best way to recover full and fair compensation is to retain a skilled and experienced trucking accident law firm whose attorneys know who to take on and win against trucking companies and their insurance carriers.

Insurance Company Legal Defense Teams
Insurance companies employ extremely skilled and specialized defense lawyers to defend their policies and company assets. They have legal specialists who are experts in manipulating judges and juries to view the case as they see it–which is in favor of their employers. In most instances, the insurance legal defense attorneys arrive to investigate the accident scene mere moments after the wreck is called in by the truck driver, and they begin to build a case against the victim before he or she has had time to even remotely consider what course of action he or she should take. They take advantage of those moments where you are seeking medical treatment and are confused by just what exactly is going on. If you delay in retaining legal counsel, your ability to investigate all available evidence is falling much further behind that of the defense attorneys.

Insurance Adjusters’ Interest Lies With Their Employers, Not With You
Trucking company insurance carrier insurance adjusters have little care in whether you recover compensation, and in fact, it is in their interest that you not recover anything for your injuries and losses. These insurance adjusters are the best in their field and they earn high incomes because of it. They got to where they are by saving their employer significant amounts of money in protecting company assets by denying compensation claims. These adjusters will befriend you and attempt to get you to believe they are your average claims adjuster by saying that they desire to help you and that they will get you full compensation for the injuries sustained in the 18 wheeler accident. The difference between these adjusters and your typical automobile adjusters is this: Car insurance companies need to keep your business, so these adjusters are trying to save money for their employer. Adjusters will try to get you to contradict your statements in regard to how the big rig accident happened, and then they will use your own words against you in a court of law to deny or minimize your claim. In other instances, adjusters will coerce victims into signing away their legal rights by offering cash-strapped victims a woefully inadequate settlement offer in exchange for the victim promising not to sue the company at a future date.

When insurance adjusters fly in from New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles and see a victim representing himself or herself alone at the negotiating table, they know in their hearts that they are going to win one for their employer. They know that a novice will be unable to take a victory against them, which is why you need a skilled, experienced, and aggressive truck accident law firm with its own deep resources and team of attorneys ready to compel the insurance company to offer a fair and adequate settlement. Insurance carriers only respond if they fear losing even greater amounts of assets in a court-ordered compensation award.

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Truck Drivers Can Be Deceitful

Even if the truck driver in question was undoubtedly at fault for the mishap that caused your injuries and losses, he or she will have little incentive to tell the truth either in negotiations or on the witness stand. Most truckers who are found liable for causing 18 wheeler accidents will likely be fired, and he or she stands little chance of finding employment in their livelihood of choice. What company is going to hire a driver with a history of causing his employer to lose hundreds of thousands of dollars? Like you, truck drivers have to provide for families and loved ones, and if they lose their jobs, they will be unable to adequately feed their families. Even honest and decent people may find themselves saying lies they otherwise would never say in order to save their livelihood.

Our Law Office once had for a client a victim who endured an injury in a mishap with a tractor-trailer, and our client found himself being accused by the truck driver for causing the accident by driving at night with his headlights turned off. During the accident scene investigation, our attorneys noticed a surveillance camera at a nearby business that was pointed directly at the accident site. After obtaining a copy of the surveillance video, our lawyers reviewed the tape and found with crystal clear clarity that our client was driving with his headlights on. We caught the trucker in a bald-faced lie. In many instances, trucking accident cases involve deception and deceit, and an experienced trucking accident law firm can properly interview and depose the truck driver in order to ask those questions that will reveal his or her lies. Our attorneys have conducted thousands of interviews and depositions, and we know how to get truck drivers to reveal the truth and recover compensation for our clients.

Self-insured Trucking Companies Are a Problem
Though federal law requires trucking companies to carry insurance, the law does not require these companies to purchase insurance through traditional carriers. Some companies opt to self insure. What this means is that these companies set aside a certain percentage of their assets to cover compensation claims that inevitably will happen as a result of doing business in the trucking industry. These companies can be very difficult to negotiate or work with. Regular insurance carriers are not only subject to federal regulation, but insurance adjusters are also compelled to abide by federal ethical codes and standards, and if an adjuster should violate these codes, he or she could lose their license or job. This is not the case with self-insured trucking companies, since their company officers are not subject to any ethical codes or standards, and as a result, these trucking company officials are not bound to act in good faith. On the contrary, these officials have a well-deserved reputation for acting in unscrupulous ways, and they are known to bully, intimidate, witness, and evidence tamper and act in a nearly criminal manner. The reason for their unethical behavior is simple. Their salaries and bonuses are tied to company profitability, and the more they approve in compensation claims, the less money they make to provide for their families and support their standard of living. They have every incentive to try to deny or minimize your rightful compensation claim in order to save what amounts to essentially their own money. If you hire our big rig accident law firm, we take all necessary measures, including legal action, to compel these self-insured trucking company officials to negotiate and act in good faith.

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Beware of Self Representation

Representing yourself before these legal defense teams and skilled insurance adjusters is rarely a wise idea. As the old saying goes, any lawyer who represents himself has a fool for a client. This saying is even more appropriate for 18 wheeler mishap claims where the law is more complex and more difficult to successfully negotiate than in the average passenger vehicle lawsuit.

Knowledge of the law is only a tiny portion of the necessary tools in order to be victorious in a trucking accident case. You need a skilled and experienced big rig accident law firm whose attorneys have over twenty years of experience in taking on the strategies of skilled defense lawyers. Like anything, it requires years and years of practice to obtain the necessary skills and experience to be successful in a court of law or at the negotiating table. Are you familiar with answering interrogatories? Can you prepare a demand pocket? Respond to a list of admissions? You will need to know these if you want even the slimmest chance of winning in court.

You need a truck accident law firm with a considerable record of success so that insurance carriers will negotiate with you in good faith and offer a full and fair compensation settlement then risk going to trial with one of the nation’s premier truck accident law firms and losing a large compensation award. Our attorneys have taken on and defeated every single major insurance company in the United States, and we have recovered millions of dollars in compensation for our clients. These companies and their defense attorneys have no fear of non-lawyers and novice attorneys because they know that they will defeat inexperienced parties. They do, however, fear our Law Office. When our attorneys threaten a lawsuit, these companies prepare to settle. They do not wish to face us in a court of law.

What Can You Do?
The first thing you need to do is take the actions necessary to preserve the evidence in your case. You need to hire legal representation as soon as possible so that your lawyer can begin investigating the accident before it is too late. Every second you delay, is a second where evidence is degraded or disappears, for example, accident sites get cleaned up or weather destroys subtle but crucial evidence. Our Law Office thoroughly and meticulously investigates the scene of the mishap to collect the substantial evidence necessary to prove the truck driver, trucking company, etc., negligent and responsible for your injuries and losses. We will measure skid marks to points of impact, we will review any surveillance video, we will examine police and fire department records, we will inspect the involved vehicles, in short, we will do what it takes to gather the evidence to win your case.

In one case we handled, we had two clients, one who was severely injured, and the family of another victim who was killed in the same accident with an 18 wheeler at night. The truck driver left his trailer completely lying across the road, with his trailer acting as a complete barrier to any oncoming traffic. As noted, this accident happened at night and the trailer involved did not have any lights on its side to indicate its presence, in effect, the trailer was invisible to any traveling motorist. Our client drove around a corner and smashed directly into the trailer and the top of the automobile was completely shorn off and killed the driver instantly while the passenger was severely injured. The next day our services were retained and we rushed our attorneys to the accident scene to begin our investigation, but by the time we got there, the passenger vehicle had already been towed to the junkyard. After we arrived at the salvage yard, oddly, we found that the destroyed car was missing its headlights. As with the case mentioned above, our attorneys noticed a surveillance video at the junkyard and they asked to review the video. On the tape, our lawyers found an employee of the trucking company trespassing and stealing the car’s headlamps. Later, at trial, the trucking company tried to argue our clients were at fault for driving at night without headlights installed in their car. Not only did we embarrass them and win at trial, but we also exposed criminal wrongdoing and now the trucking company will be held liable for that behavior.

It was a good thing our clients contacted us when they did. The surveillance video was set to automatically erase and begin re-recording every forty-eight hours. Had our clients delayed, chances are that this crucial evidence would have been destroyed and the chances of our clients recovering fair compensation would have been diminished. Investigating immediately is the best chance you will have of recovering the necessary evidence you need in order to receive full and fair compensation.

We Can Help
The trucking accident law firm at our Law Office has been using its deep knowledge and experience of personal injury and wrongful death law involving tractor-trailer accidents in Texas for over twenty years. If you have been harmed in a big rig mishap, we can help you recover fair and adequate compensation for your injuries and losses, and we can help you seek justice as well.

If you or a family member has been involved in an 18 wheeler accident in Texas, call us for a free consultation to discuss your legal or other alternatives.

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Truck Accident Lawyer Explains Why You Should Never Trust the Insurance Company After an Accident

It’s simple advice that’s been proven time and time again. In the many cases our Law Office has seen over our twenty years or practicing law: Don’t trust the insurance company. You may have already gone through a negative experience with an insurance agent or insurance company.

On the other hand, maybe you’ve never had to deal with an insurance agent and aren’t aware of the possible pitfalls that can occur when seeking compensation for a claim. In either case, there are many instances where the interests of the insurance company often outweigh your best interests. In other words, some insurance agents might not be quite like a good neighbor. Because insurance agencies are still a for-profit business, this often means that, if an insurance agent can deny our greatly lessen your claim, they stand to save their company the most amount possible. In other words, your loss is often their gain. The Texas truck accident law firm of our Law Office provides the following story as proof that you shouldn’t automatically trust the insurance company.

When An Insurance Company Takes Advantage
As an example of the statement, “Don’t trust the insurance company,” a woman once contacted our Law Office after her husband and the father of her children was killed while changing a flat tire on the side of the road by a reckless 18-wheeler driver. Because the truck driver knew he was at fault, he contacted his company, and his company subsequently contacted their insurance company. This insurance company then quickly deployed a team of highly trained professionals, involving accident recreation specialists, defense attorneys, and top-notch insurance agents, to the field in order to pursue all possible routes towards vindicating the negligent driver. However, this team was unsuccessful at disproving the driver’s fault at the scene of the accident.

But insurance agencies, especially in the case of accidents involving 18-wheelers where large sums of money are on the line, seldom give up so easily. Employing an oft-used tactic that preys on the emotional vulnerability of those in the initial stages of the grief process, this particular insurance agency sent an agent to visit the recently bereaved woman while she was at the morgue identifying her husband’s body. Hoping to catch her during this understandably difficult time, the insurance agent was attempting to get her to agree to a settlement offer that was far less than fair. Fortunately for the woman, her brother was also there and was able to escort the offensive insurance agent away from his sister. This is a common tactic that often results in an aggrieved party agreeing to a less than fair settlement because they were not in the right emotional or mental state to make a rational decision regarding their legal rights. If you ever happen to be in the same circumstances, it’s in your best interest to contact competent legal help before agreeing to any settlement offered by an insurance agent. As a reminder, it’s best to have a healthy skepticism when it comes to what an insurance agent may be offering you, or, in other words, don’t trust the insurance company.

The saga continues. The lady who lost her husband because of a negligent truck driver simply wanted fair compensation in order to take care of herself and her three children in light of her husband’s death. Assuming that this was quite fair grounds for compensation, she agreed to later meet face-to-face with an insurance adjuster. This seemingly innocuous meeting would eventually be the undoing of any possible legal remedies she could have sought in a wrongful death lawsuit.

For starters, the insurance agent blatantly lied to her that she would only receive compensation for her husband’s lost wages if she chose to sue the insurance company. The agent was fully aware of his lie, but the woman believed he was telling the truth. The truth was that many different types of damages could be sought in such a case, including loss of future earnings, which would have likely greatly increased the amount of compensation this lady could have received. Because she believed the insurance agent honestly had her best interests at heart and was telling her the truth, she stood to lose a sizable, and justly due, amount of compensation because of her innocent and trusting nature. Since she was under the impression that this was the only way she would ever receive any type of compensation, and that this would be the only way in which she’d be able to take care of herself and her family, she was on the brink of signing the insurance agent’s prepared papers in order to agree to the settlement.

However, she still had some misgivings about the situation and asked if she could speak with a lawyer before signing the papers. Rather quickly after that moment, an attorney arrived at her door, looked over the papers, and agreed that the settlement was fair and likely all she would receive. Because of this “outside” source of knowledge, she signed the papers, agreeing to a paltry settlement that was far less than what was fair or necessary for her to able to provide for herself or her family. What she was not aware of in this particular situation was the fact that the lawyer who happened to appear at her house at the right time was in fact hired by the insurance company to do exactly what he did. In other words, the “outside” attorney was in fact “on the inside” and was going to always agree that the settlement was just and all she could hope for. Her innocence in dealing with insurance companies was taken advantage of, and she wound up losing immense amounts of possible compensation because of it.

Unfortunately, by the time the wrongful death attorneys at our Law Office had been contacted by this woman and told about her case, we were unable to assist her as she’d already signed proper documentation. By accepting a settlement, she was then legally prevented from bringing a lawsuit against the negligent driver’s insurance company. Had she contacted us at anytime prior to signing the dotted line, we would have likely been able to help her see all of her possibly legal remedies, and she would have known that she should have likely been compensated for her husband’s loss of future earnings, her own pain and suffering, and funeral expenses. She could have stood the chance to have received over a million dollars in compensation for everything she had been through. However, because of the often unscrupulous and unethical tactics of some insurance companies, and because she believed the lie that her best interests were being looked after by these insurance companies, she wound up with a settlement that included only a few years of her husband’s lost wages that eventually devolved to a measly $600 per month once her children became independents. The sad but true conclusion to this story isn’t that she lost so much, but that the insurance adjuster involved likely received a raise, a bonus, or a promotion for what they did.

Get Legal Help from our Law Office Before Dealing with an Insurance Company
Don’t let what happened in the story above happen to you. By contacting our Law Office quickly in the aftermath of a personal injury, auto accident, or wrongful death case, you can be sure that will work assiduously to protect you from the sometimes unethical treatment and tactics used by some insurance companies. Especially as the stakes of an accident case escalate, such as in the event of wrongful death, it’s vitally important to have experienced legal help on your side to ensure that insurance companies are held liable for the policies they provide to their clients and for their clients’ negligence. Our Law Office has two decades’ worth of experience in personal injury and wrongful death law, as well as a proven track record of success in seeking full and fair compensation for our clients. Call us for a free consultation, especially if you think you might be in over your head dealing with an insurance company. We will listen to the details of your case and inform you as to your possible legal remedies for compensation. Above all, remember one thing: Don’t trust the insurance company. They may not always be on your side, but the Texas personal injury and wrongful death law firm of our Law Office is.

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Grossman 7/10/20 – Flatbed Trailer Accidents – gtg

Flatbed Truck Accident Attorney on Texas Falling Cargo Accidents

As dangerous as accidents involving massive 18-wheeler trucks can be, accidents involving flatbed trailers can be even more devastating. The cargo carried by flatbed trailers is usually extremely large and bulky; so much so that it cannot be carried by the typical trailer of a regular truck.

The flatbed trailers traveling on the major roads in and around can haul all kinds of huge, odd-shaped objects. They can include manufactured homes, extremely long pipes, and even windmill blades. All of these objects hauled by flatbed trailers can pose a significant risk to other motorists on the road if they are loaded in an improper fashion.

If you have suffered an injury in an accident involving either a flatbed trailer or the cargo that is was hauling, then you will probably be able to pursue restitution for the injuries you have incurred. You should contact a flatbed trailer accident attorney to fully comprehend your rights. This article is designed to provide you information as to the parties you can take legal action against in a flatbed trailer accident case, the common obstacles that will block your path to securing compensation, and how a flatbed trailer accident attorney can help you. This article, however, is not designed to replace the counsel of an actual lawyer.

Who is Liable for the Injuries you have Suffered?
In an accident involving a flatbed trailer, there may be more than one party that might be responsible for the injuries you have suffered. You were only injured once, of course, but you can take legal action against each and every person or entity that in some way contributed to the accident, and sue each of them for the same amount of damages. A flatbed trailer accident attorney will launch a thorough investigation of the accident scene, and all of the circumstances surrounding the accident, in order to determine who was to blame for your injuries.

The most obvious responsible party is, of course, the driver of the truck that caused your accident. Many truckers, in order to make a living, are required to drive an incredible number of miles and meet rigid deadlines. Although the law requires them to take rest stops on a regular basis, many of them ignore that requirement and drive on without proper rest. And when a distracted or exhausted driver is behind the wheel of one of these immense flatbeds, a devastating accident can occur that can result in debilitating injuries or death.

If you sue the driver, however, that is just the first of what could potentially be several legal actions you take. Almost every time that it is determined that a careless driver causes an accident, the injury victim can also sue the company that hired that driver as well. This can be a significant benefit to you, as trucking companies normally have extensive cash reserves that can lead to you obtaining just compensation for the injuries you have suffered. Personal injury law in Texas subscribes to the doctrine known as respondeat superior. This theory mandates that an employer is legally liable for any injuries that its employee causes while on the job. What this means, basically, is that even if the employer did nothing wrong, you can still sue the company for the negligence of its employee because of the theory of respondeat superior.

There can also be several other parties that in some way contribute to a flatbed trailer accident. For instance, the company responsible for planning the route of the truck, the company that manufactured the straps used to secure the cargo, the company responsible for securing that cargo, and others could be held liable for your injuries. Consider a scenario where a truck is hauling a piece of a modular home that is extremely tall. Say that truck travels under a low bridge, and part of the home is knocked off, strikes your car, and you suffer an injury as a result. You can more than likely sue the company that planned the route and led the truck to go under that bridge. There are other times where the cargo on a flatbed trailer can become loose, even though that truck was not pushed or hit by anything else. In this case, the straps holding that cargo could have been defective, or the company charged with securing that cargo could have been negligent in the performance of its duties. When this takes place, you might be able to pursue legal action against either one of those companies, or both of them.

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Challenges Encountered by Unrepresented Accident Victims

If you fail to secure the help of an experienced flatbed trailer accident attorney, there are several hurdles that you will have to surmount in order to obtain the just compensation that you deserve. A seasoned attorney is familiar with what needs to be done in order for you to overcome the obstacles that can put your case at risk. Some of the issues that you will need to be aware of concerning litigation involving a flatbed trailer accident include:

Determining the source of the cargo.
Dealing with truck drivers who lie.
The policies of big insurance companies.
Trucking companies that are self-insured.
The burden of proof the plaintiff bears.
Here is some detailed information on each of these potential hurdles.

Did You Know?
Our Texas attorneys have won hundreds of 18 wheeler accident cases. Call us today to discuss your case.

Determining the source of the cargo
It is possible that the cause of your accident was the cargo that was left lying in the road long after the truck that was hauling it had left the scene. When this takes place, it can be incredibly challenging for inexperienced attorneys to determine the source of the cargo, and basically impossible for someone with no legal background. In order to determine the source of that cargo, or to identify who to take legal action against, you have to first be able to track down the truck that dropped the cargo.

These kinds of cases occur frequently. Cargo often comes loose from a flatbed trailer without a driver even knowing what happened. There are other times that the driver is well aware that the cargo has fallen, but chose not to take the time nor make the effort to try and make sure the cargo was cleaned up, either by calling the police or taking some other action. A flatbed trailer accident attorney, however, can help you determine the source of the cargo that caused the accident that injured you.

Dealing with Truck Drivers who Lie
Truck drivers who lie concerning the cause of an accident can be just as formidable a threat to your case as flatbed trailers can be to other motorists on the road. If a driver is found to have caused a flatbed trailer accident, he or she will likely be fired. With that kind of black mark on his or her record, that driver will find it very difficult to find another job. Considering the state of the economy, it is easy to see why an otherwise trustworthy person would stoop to this kind of desperate act. However, this lie, if successful, will come at the expense of your case, because the blame will shift from the driver to you.

But there are many ways that a seasoned and skilled flatbed trailer accident attorney can uncover the lies of a truck driver and ensure that your case is saved. The first way is through collecting vital evidence that can prove the trucker is lying. For instance, in one of our recent cases, we were able to secure surveillance footage from a nearby business’ security camera in order to prove our client, contrary to what the trucker claimed, was driving with his headlights on. Secondly, our attorneys can often reveal the truth through a deposition. In a deposition, an attorney is allowed to ask questions of the other side’s witnesses prior to the trial commencing. A skilled attorney can, by asking the correct questions, compel a witness to tell the truth or expose a witnesses’ attempt at telling a lie. The flatbed trailer accident attorneys with our Law Office have taken thousands of depositions. We will do whatever is necessary to ensure that the judge, jury, and insurance company completely know your side of the story.

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The policies of big insurance companies
When you possess something that is valuable, you will tend to do whatever you can to protect it, as compared to what you would do to protect things that might not be worth as much. For instance, many of us have insurance on our house, but we wouldn’t insure, say, that 20-year-old lawnmower in the garage. The insurance business works under a similar philosophy. A typical car insurance policy is akin to the old lawnmower, while a flatbed trailer policy is more like a house. As such, insurance providers will often go to extremes in order to protect a flatbed trailer policy because it can be several times more expensive than the typical automobile policy. If you have suffered an injury due to an accident involving a flatbed trailer, the insurance carrier is well aware that you may be due a substantially higher amount of compensation that you would get if you had been injured in a typical car accident. Therefore, the insurance provider will do whatever it can in order to either pressure you into accepting much less than you have coming in terms of a settlement or deny your claim flat-out.

Because flatbed trailer policies are so expensive, insurers will dispatch their best adjusters to defend the claim. They will also send a team of expert defense lawyers who are intimately familiar with each and every technicality involving insurance law. This defense team will immediately investigate an accident scene in order to start collecting evidence they will use to attempt to prove the accident was your responsibility. Their adjusters will descend upon you immediately after the accident as well. These aren’t the friendly agents you may encounter after a regular fender-bender. They are, instead, licensed pros who are the very best their profession has to offer. They got to where they are by proving to be very adept at denying claims on a regular basis. These adjusters will make it their mission to make sure your claim is denied as well.

It can be very, very troubling to deal with an insurance company by yourself. The adjuster will constantly badger you in an attempt to admit that the responsibility for the accident lies with you alone. Either that or they will try to trick you into admitting that you’re not really as hurt as you’re letting on. When they have a conversation with you, they will record your words and twist those words to suit their purposes by damaging your case and having your claim denied. The flatbed trailer accident attorneys with our Law Office, however, know how to deal with insurance company representatives, and have been doing so successfully over the last two decades. In fact, we have defeated nearly every major insurance carrier in the nation. As a result, they are very familiar with our track record of success, and we can use that reputation to pressure them into making our clients a fair settlement offer.

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Trucking companies that are self-insured
It can be bad enough dealing with the harassing and sometimes intimidating tactics that insurance adjusters employ. Again, they will constantly call you and try to trick you into admitting you were completely responsible for the flatbed trailer accident, or to admit that you really aren’t hurt that badly. But dealing with a representative of a self-insured trucking company can be even worse if you don’t have a seasoned flatbed trailer accident attorney by your side protecting your rights.

Trucking companies, by law, are required to carry insurance on their trucks. But rather than pay the often exorbitant rates necessary to carry insurance through a traditional provider, some trucking companies opt to insure themselves. They do so by putting aside a portion of their revenues to protect them from lawsuits when an accident takes place. Of course, this is perfectly legal.

If you are involved in an accident with a truck that is owned by a self-insured trucking company, you will probably encounter a company officer and not a professional insurance adjuster. That officer is probably part of his or her company’s profit-sharing plan. If the trucking company loses the case, then its profits are reduced. Therefore, that officer will be personally losing money if his or her company loses its case. So you can see the motivation that officer will have to make sure your claim is denied, or that you win as little money as possible. Also, these officers are not licensed as are insurance adjusters, who have to adhere to a code of ethics in order to maintain that license. Self-insured trucking company officers, however, are under no such obligation. Therefore, while an adjuster can be aggressive, a self-insured trucking company officer can be downright harassing. Some officers are not above tampering with evidence or threatening accident witnesses, and even injury victims. The flatbed trailer accident attorneys with our Law Offices know how to put an abrupt end to those underhanded tactics, and we know how to protect our clients from the harassment of self-insured trucking company officers.

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The Burden of Proof a Plaintiff Bears

There is another formidable hurdle that the plaintiff in a flatbed trailer accident case has to surmount, and that is bearing his or her burden of proof. As unfair as this may sound, the law in Texas is under the presumption that a defendant owes nothing to a victim. The injury victim has to bear the burden of proof, which means he or she has to provide the necessary evidence to prove that he or she should receive damages. Should that plaintiff fail to produce that evidence, then he or she will not collect a thing. In every flatbed trailer accident case, the plaintiff needs to prove four elements in order to win a case. These elements are duty, breach, causation, and damages.

Duty
The first burden the plaintiff has to prove is that the defendant in the case owed the plaintiff a duty of care. This is typically a pretty straightforward element. Every person owes every other person a duty to act in a manner that a reasonable person would act in order to make sure they do not injure another person. In the event of a flatbed trailer accident, the driver of the flatbed owes all other motorists sharing the road the duty of care to drive as a reasonable person would drive. As we mentioned previously, there could be other parties that owe you a duty of care as well, such as the trucking company that hired the driver, the company that loaded the cargo, the company the planned the route the truck took, etc.

Breach
Next, the plaintiff must prove that the defendant breached that duty of care owed to the plaintiff. The plaintiff has to produce evidence that establishes that the defendant acted in a manner that was unreasonable, and harm was caused as a result. Say the driver of the flatbed trailer involved in your accident ran a red light, and you suffered harm as a result. In this case, the driver’s actions would probably be considered unreasonable.

Causation
In order to prove the third element, causation, the plaintiff has to prove that the actions or inaction of a negligent party were the cause of the injury the plaintiff suffered. For example, if your flatbed trailer accident took place because the cargo on the trailer became loose, then you could possibly show duty and breach in that the company that loaded the truck did not properly secure the cargo. However, if that cargo remained in place through the entirety of the accident, then the people who loaded that truck would probably not be to blame for causing your injury, and thus you will not be able to prove causation in this instance.

Damages
The final element you must prove is that you are owed a certain monetary amount of damages that will properly compensate you for the injury that you suffered. The damages you can receive depend upon the “price tag,” so to speak, associated with the injury that you incurred. Of course, you will have to produce proof of this as well. You can’t just tell the judge or jury that, since the accident, you have been in constant pain – in order to prove damages, you have to provide medical proof of that pain, and how much your previous and future medical care will cost. Should you not be able to get back to work, then you will have to accurately calculate how much you have lost in wages, and how much you will lose in potential future earnings. And then you have to calculate the non-tangible damages such as pain and suffering, loss of consortium, and others. Can you put a price tag on emotional trauma? If you want to get the maximum compensation that you have coming to you, you had better figure it out, and that can be incredibly difficult without an experienced legal representative. If you have an inexperienced attorney, or you try to do this yourself, it will be just about impossible. The flatbed trailer accident attorneys with our Law Office are very familiar with how to calculate damages, whether they are objective or subjective. Over our 20 years of litigating these kinds of cases, we have more than likely seen several that are quite similar to yours. Once we hear the specific circumstances surrounding your flatbed trailer accident case, we will be able to accurately ascertain the amount of damages that you are entitled to so you get the just compensation you deserve.

It is imperative that you have a skilled and seasoned attorney by your side, whether or not your case goes to trial. The attorneys with our Law Office are extremely adept at collecting evidence and preparing it in a manner that will satisfy all four elements of your flatbed trailer accident case.

How a Flatbed Trailer Accident Attorney Can Help You
If you have suffered an injury due to a flatbed trailer accident, the attorneys with our Law Office can fight for you and protect your rights. We take care of every single component of your case, from the start to the finish, and keep you completely up to date on how your case is progressing. These are but a few of the services that we provide our clients to help win their case and help them obtain the fair restitution they deserve:

No matter what caused the flatbed trailer accident that led to your injury, whether it was the trucking company’s negligence, the company that planned the route, the company that failed to secure the cargo, or some other reason, please call the flatbed trailer accident attorneys with our Law Office as soon as you can. We will give you a confidential and free consultation; listening to all the specific circumstances surrounding your case, answering any questions you may have, and evaluating the strength of your case.

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Grossman 7/10/20 Commercial Vehicle Accidents – gtg

Commercial Vehicle Accident Attorney Tells You What To Expect After Your Accident

Any party who drives through Texas will see that commercial vehicle firms are a large proportion of vehicles on the highway. Transport commercial vehicles allow Texans to both export products to the rest of America and Mexico, and for us to enjoy the products brought in from the rest of the world. With all the large commercial vehicles on the highway and all the commercial vehicle drivers paid to spend long hours at the wheel, accidents and even deaths are statistically going to happen.

If you or a family member has been hurt in a commercial vehicle accident, you need a knowledgeable commercial vehicle accident attorney on your side. Our Law Office is here for you. We have spent the last two decades in litigation cases involving commercial vehicle accidents, so we know the devastating disaster they may cause you and your family. We want you to know that your challenges are just beginning with the wreck. Now you need to deal with anguish and difficulty of navigating the court process to obtain redress for the damage has been done for you. We wish to inform you of your legal options so you may make the best decisions to make sure the compensation you deserve.

Self-Representation in a Texas Commercial Vehicle Accident Case
The law allows anyone to represent himself in a courtroom but is rarely a good idea. Procedures to address the causes of accidents commercial vehicle traffic may be extremely challenging, and people who have no legal experience have no chance of succeeding in such a challenge. You wouldn’t try to build an HDTV screen in your garage. You wouldn’t try to prescribe medicine for your sick child even if the law allowed it. Why? Because these challenging tasks require training, experience, information, and resources. Bringing injury claims or lawsuits due for injury or wrongful death in a commercial vehicle accident is just as challenging. You need the expertise of a knowledgeable commercial vehicle accident attorney to win.

You Need A Commercial Vehicle Accident Attorney
Anyone may represent himself or herself in a courtroom and it’s rarely a good idea, but it’s flat-out crazy when the claim concerns commercial vehicle accidents. Anyone may learn the principles of substantive law of injuries with an Internet search, but that can’t inform you what you need to know to make your claim successfully in court. Understanding of the law is a fraction of the skills needed to succeed in such a lawsuit. A knowledgeable commercial vehicle accident attorney may fight against the tactics of defense attorneys. The lawsuits are won over to the sound legal strategy and procedural prowess. You need someone to help you who know how to handle every detail of the claim.

It is essential to your success that you have a knowledgeable commercial vehicle accident attorney trying your personal injury claim. Only the fear of losing money motivates insurers, and a lawyer with a history of success inspires such respect, which makes the insurance firm much more probably to offer an equitable settlement. Our attorneys have won hundreds of cases to provide millions of dollars in settlements from every major insurer in the nation. When our lawyers are threatening a lawsuit, insurers know that they are better off settling, and a fair settlement provides our clients fair settlement without needing a jury trial.

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What Is The First Step For You After An Accident With A Commercial Vehicle?

Preservation of physical evidence is critical to the success of your claim. It’s necessary to engage a lawyer as soon as possible so that your attorney may start the examination before it’s too late. The physical evidence is beginning to fade quickly – video has been removed, witnesses forget what they saw and there are physical changes in the scene. For every day he waits to engage a lawyer, their chances are fading into oblivion. The team of professional investigators at our Law Office start all cases of accident examination with due diligence of the site of the wreck to find physical evidence that the commercial vehicle driver’s negligence caused the accident. We find and interview witnesses, measure the distance between the street tire marks and impact points, review police files, and inspect all vehicles involved, take photographic physical evidence, and catalog all the physical evidence so that it’s admissible.

Did You Know?
Our Texas attorneys have won hundreds of 18 wheeler accident cases. Call us today to discuss your case.

By way of example, families of two men who have suffered a horrible accident 18-wheeler engaged us. The driver was killed and the passenger was seriously hurt when the driver of a commercial vehicle attempted to turn left and got stuck, leaving the commercial vehicle on a highway curve, blocking the ability to move. However hard as it might be to believe, this type of accident happens quite frequently. Night had fallen after the wreck, and the only part of the commercial vehicle that was visible to traffic were the lights on the back of the commercial vehicle cab. The commercial vehicle was practically invisible. When our clients came around a bend in the highway, crashed into the commercial vehicle at full speed, breaking the roof of the car, killing the driver on impact and sending the passenger to the intensive care unit. The family engaged our firm the next day, and our investigators got to work on the case.

The commercial vehicle driver asserted our clients’ headlights were not on and that they were broken. When our investigators examined the remains of the car at the junkyard, they were astonished to see the lights of the vehicle missing. The headlights weren’t broken but were completely gone. Concerned about the fate of the demand of our clients, we searched the salvage yard and noticed a security camera. After requesting a copy of the video file, the video file showed someone from the commercial vehicle company stealing the headlights. When the transport carrier later asserted that our client was driving without lights, we literally had their deception caught in the headlights. They should have settled out of court because they have paid a high price. The lesson of this anecdote is the need to act fast. The security system of the junkyard was designed to erase its memory every two days. If our client in this claim had waited longer, the physical evidence would have been lost. An immediate examination is the only way to preserve physical evidence so that we may show your claim.

After the accident, an examination like that one into the junkyard is necessary for two reasons: First, with a search, you may determine who caused the accident. It’s often not clear who was responsible for causing a commercial vehicle accident. As we asserted above, many other people, including other drivers and pedestrians, might play a role in causing an accident. Second, a proper examination allows victims to collect the physical evidence necessary to show the responsibility of the accused. Juries do not want to be told how to decide the claim. They want to make their own assessments by reviewing the physical evidence that backs up your testimony and our telling of events. Physical evidence is critical for a claim.

The commercial vehicle accident attorneys at our Law Office have over the course of two decades learned how to conduct an examination to determine who caused the wreck and they know how to get the physical evidence you need to make sure we indict all the parties liable. In fact, we made a standard procedure to visit the wreck site in almost all commercial vehicle accidents we deal with, no matter the distance. When they reached the place, looking for physical evidence that may help you win your claim. We record measurements, take pictures, talk to eyewitnesses, gather forensic investigations, collect police reports, take hold of any video surveillance, exam the vehicles and the streets, and anything else we may to help your lawsuit. We collect the physical evidence in such a manner that it’s admissible and acceptable to the court.

Most of the defense attorneys left for the scene of the accident moments after an accident took place. It’s probable that the defense attorneys involved in your lawsuit have already completed its examination, assisted by teams of lawyers, adjusters, and investigators. They started as soon as possible to strengthen their case because they know that the physical evidence has a tendency to disappear after an accident. Commercial vehicle accident attorneys at our Law Office make sure that all parties liable for the injuries in a commercial vehicle accident are held accountable.

It is best to begin your claim and investigation as soon as possible. Our attorneys can prepare a solid case, although if we are not contacted until several weeks after an accident happens, it is more difficult. The strongest cases are usually built when we are contacted as soon as possible after the incident. We suggest that you do not delay contacting a commercial vehicle accident attorney to help you.

Contact several law firms and inquire as to how many such commercial vehicle accident lawsuits they’ve handled and what their record is. Ask for the name of some client with a similar commercial vehicle accident who may give their opinion of the law firm. Interview at least two or three of them, and make sure they offer you a free initial consultation on your particular lawsuit. If they do not or if they do not offer some references, or they do not have extensive experience with commercial vehicle accidents, you most probably don’t want to engage that law firm.

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Who Is To Blame In The Commercial Vehicle Accident That Injured You?

To submit your lawsuit, you must determine who actually caused the accident that hurt you. In most commercial vehicle trucking accidents there are more than one party at fault, at least partially, and assigning degrees of responsibility may be a complex process. In the state of Texas, there is the legal concept of respondeat superior that holds employers liable for acts of their workers. Therefore, in cases of commercial vehicle accidents, there are generally at least two defendants – the driver and the commercial vehicle firm that employs him. If the commercial vehicle driver suffered a momentary lack of concentration and caused a wreck, the commercial vehicle firm is also liable.

However, responsibility is rarely limited to these two parties. The firm that loaded the commercial vehicle could have failed to secure the cargo correctly, causing a load shift, which causes an accident. The firm that planned the route could have sent the commercial vehicle on a street that is not designed for commercial vehicles. If a mechanical challenge caused the accident the mechanic who maintained the commercial vehicle could be liable. And it’s also possible that the driver of another car drove hazardously, that the commercial vehicle swerved to hit another car. Very rarely is the question of responsibility in an accident involving a commercial vehicle easy to establish. To complete your lawsuit, you need a knowledgeable commercial vehicle accident attorney who knows how best to investigate the exact cause of the accident, if you know who is liable for damages.

Commercial Vehicle Drivers Will Lie
Do not expect a commercial vehicle driver who caused the accident to admit their responsibility. What happens to a commercial vehicle driver who is negligent in an accident? He will most probably find this hard to find a commercial vehicle driving job with another firm, as he now has a black mark on their driving record. With the state of the job market and the economy, many who are otherwise reliable will lie to protect their jobs and the ability to provide for their families.

By way of example, a client once engaged the firm to deal with a lying commercial vehicle driver. Our client was hurt in a commercial vehicle accident one night and the commercial vehicle driver asserted our client was driving without headlights at the time of the accident. Our investigators diligently searched the scene and saw a security camera at a nearby store pointing directly at the point of impact. After obtaining a copy of the video, we had a clear picture of our clients with their lights shining. When the commercial vehicle driver has repeated their lies during the deposition, he was caught. Dishonesty and deception are common in commercial vehicle accidents. Our commercial vehicle accident attorneys know how to find the critical physical evidence through a thorough examination and how to ask the right questions to catch people lying.

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Large Insurers of Commercial Vehicles

The federal government requires carriers to purchase large insurance policies to protect against the inevitable accidents that occur as a result of doing business. However, do not believe that the process of resolving a personal injury action will be quick and painless just because the commercial vehicle firm is insured. Insurers are trying to make money, not help you. As commercial vehicle insurance is much more valuable than the standard automobile insurance policies and they will fee huge sums of money for the insurance firm, they will fight hard to protect its assets. Adjusters live by the adage, “if you give someone an inch, they will take a mile.” They think if they offer you something, the next victim will ask for more. They do what they can to protect their money.

The fact of your injury does not mean that the law guarantees compensation. According to the Texas Civil Remedies Code, an injury victim or relatives of a party who unjustly died in a commercial vehicle accident are entitled to bring action against the commercial vehicle firm. However, the victim or victim’s family has the burden of proof to establish the responsibility of the carrier or insurer for reimbursement. The victim must show that the compensation sought is fair and distributed equally among all those liable according to their relative degree of responsibility. On the other hand, the insurance firm also has rights and will be trying to reject the lawsuit or reduce the size of your compensation.

Tricky Adjusters
With so much money involved in commercial vehicle insurance, insurance firms generally assign their most experienced adjusters to take these assignments. They handle insurance claims for a living, and they know how to manhandle accident victims. They will pretend to be your friend and inform you they are there to help you receive compensation. They will inform you they just want to ask you a few routine questions. Insurance adjusters are not interested in getting you help, but just trying to save their firm money. They ask you questions to try and drag you into admitting your own responsibility for the wreck. Then they may refuse your request. In some cases, they attempt to convince the victims of accidents to waive the right to sue in exchange for an unjust settlement that does not adequately compensate for damages caused by an accident.

When they fly in from New York or Chicago and see that you’re at the table alone they celebrate. They know that someone without judicial experience has no chance of beating them. You need a knowledgeable commercial vehicle accident attorney to strike fear in the insurance firm.

Defense Specialists

Insurance firms do not look for lawyers as you might because they retain lawyers who specialize in defending commercial vehicle firms for personal injury claims. They know all the tricks of the trade to handle the case on behalf of their employers and investigate the scene of the accident when this happens. They are not concerned with finding out the truth. Their purpose is merely to build a case against the victim before they decide to engage a lawyer. The longer you wait to engage a lawyer, the more behind your lawyer is going to be.

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Self Insured Commercial Vehicle Firms

Some firms guard against commercial vehicle accidents by setting aside a portion of their assets, rather than subscribe to a standard insurance policy. These firms have developed a reputation for being hard negotiators prone to undesirable behaviors. The federal government regulates the registration of insurance firms, licensing of insurance adjusters, and requires them to respect certain principles. No such ethical bonds restrict these self-insured firms and seeking compensation for them may be an awful experience. By taking on a self-insured firm you won’t be dealing with the insurance adjuster, but rather an agent of the firm whose income is most probably derived from profit sharing. If the agent agrees to compensate the firm, they literally give you money from their own account, so be assured the agent of the firm will use any means he may to deny your lawsuit.

Self-insured firms have been known to tamper with the physical evidence, engage in witness perjury, and even intimidate and threaten victims. If a self-insured firm harasses you, contact us immediately and we may force them to deal with you in good faith.

Getting Compensation and Satisfaction for Your Commercial Vehicle Accident Injuries
You may go to a jury trial or you may agree to a settlement with the insurer or the self-insured commercial vehicle firm. Below we’ll explain a bit more about these two ways to win your case.

In a settlement compromise, the plaintiff and the defendant avoid the need for a jury trial through negotiation and agreement without employing the help of a court. In a typical settlement, the defendant voluntarily agrees to pay the plaintiff a sum of money. In exchange for compensation, the plaintiff agrees not to sue the defendant in the future for more money for any other damages caused by the accident. The acceptance of a settlement offer is fair for the victim of the accident. By asking for and accepting a fair settlement offer, you may usually receive your payment much faster than if this would have gone to court. Also, by accepting a settlement offer you avoid the uncertainty that is always present when you entrust your fortune to juries selected randomly.

To receive a fair settlement offer from a defendant is usually not easy and usually requires the support of a knowledgeable commercial vehicle accident attorney. Defendants know that they have no obligation to pay anything unless you win your claim in a courtroom. For this reason, they are rarely motivated to voluntarily pay unless they are nervous they will lose if they undergo a jury trial. The best way to make a defendant willing to pay is to have solid physical evidence and a commercial vehicle accident attorney with an excellent reputation. The commercial vehicle accident attorneys at our Law Office will make sure that in your claim, you have both. We have been handling these commercial vehicle accident claims for two decades and we have won favorable settlements and judgments against almost all the major insurers in the country. Insurance firms know our reputation and usually prefer settling with our clients to meet one of our commercial vehicle accident attorneys in the courtroom.

Although a fair settlement may benefit victims, bad settlements permanently deprived them of their rights, requiring that you lose your ability to prosecute the accused of what their claim is really worth. The defendants know that accident victims often face large bills and lost income. They hope they get you to accept a small settlement instead of fulfilling their obligations. They will assert that their low-ball offer is all that you are entitled to, or that there will be no better settlement coming whether in a jury trial or through negotiation. They will inform you their offer is all you may expect. Do not believe them. A commercial vehicle accident attorney may inform you how much money your claim is worth and they help you assess whether the defendant’s offer is fair.

You may also take your lawsuit to court. Between the plaintiff and the defendant, the task of the plaintiff is harder in a jury trial. This is due to the fact that the plaintiff has the burden of proof in proceedings. They have to show that the defendant would be liable for the injuries you incurred. With this heavy burden on your shoulders, it’s rarely a good idea to represent yourself in a courtroom. Meeting your burden of proof generally requires a solid legal strategy, convincing physical evidence, and a qualified commercial vehicle accident attorney. You need a solid strategy that shows the 4 parts of commercial vehicle accident claims convincingly. These 4 parts are duty, violation, cause, and damages.

Proving duty is showing that the defendant in the claim has a duty, which means he has a duty not to cause harm. This obligation to protect each other is one of the basic requirements of law but the degree to which this exists depends largely on the circumstances and relationship between the parties. In most cases, it’s not hard to show that defendants in a commercial vehicle accident had a duty as they are expected to act towards others as a reasonable party would, and that means avoiding causing harm. It’s likely that this “reasonable person” standard applies to the driver in your claim.

The second part of your claim is violation. You must show that the defendant has violated the obligation or duty. After you have demonstrated both duty and the violation of which have shown that the accused is guilty of negligence. Most commercial vehicle accidents involve this, if it’s shown that the driver did not take the necessary precautions to make sure of safety. To establish violation, you must provide physical evidence of the defendant’s negligence.

After you have proven that the defendant behaved hazardously, you must show causation. We have seen how several parties have a role in a commercial vehicle accident on the highway and how many people may be held liable at the time an accident happens. In many cases, the defendant tries to blame other parties, or even you, saying they are not the reason that the accident happened or that their action did not cause your injuries. If you do not have enough physical evidence to show that the defendants you named in your claim caused the accident as well as your injuries, you won’t win.

After proving the defendant’s responsibility, you must show your damages. The term “damage,” means the money that defendants must pay you, not your actual injury. You may collect damages for injuries such as pain and suffering, medical costs, repair bills, lost wages, lost earning capacity, and other losses you may have incurred. You must show you are entitled to that for which you ask. This requires the calculation of the total amount of your losses and providing physical evidence of your claims. Often the amount of damages in a commercial vehicle accident lawsuit is a controversial subject. Calculation of damages is often not an easy task for those who are not lawyers, and even inexperienced lawyers don’t do this correctly.

If medical treatment is ongoing, this may take some work to estimate the amount of your last medical bills, especially if you do not know the extent of your treatment and how long this will take to recover. In addition, it’s often challenging for non-lawyers to put a price on intangible losses like mental anguish or pain and suffering. Calculation of loss of earning capacity may be another obstacle for beginners. Damages for loss of earning capacity are designed to compensate the claimant for the income they won’t be able to earn in the future due to the inability to resume work after a commercial vehicle accident. Calculation of lost earning capacity is not as simple as taking the latest annual salary, multiplied by their work-life expectancy. You should consider factors such as promotions and raises, which the victim would have received if he had continued working. Our commercial vehicle accident attorneys will take into account all your losses and calculate all the damages correctly. We also know what physical evidence is needed to show these enhanced damages in a courtroom.

Proving all 4 parts of commercial vehicle accident lawsuits is critical, and if you do not provide enough physical evidence for every one of those 4 parts, you lose your claim. This is one reason why it’s so important to have a knowledgeable commercial vehicle accident attorney on your side.

Our Commercial Vehicle Accident Law Firm Can Help You

Did You Know? Our Texas attorneys have won hundreds of 18 wheeler accident cases. Call us today to discuss your case.
Our commercial vehicle accident attorneys have helped hurt Texans in the settlement of claims involving commercial vehicles in Texas for two decades.

If you’ve been in an accident, we can help you seek compensation for your injuries, pain and suffering. We have won millions of dollars in compensation for hundreds of clients. If you or a family member has been involved in a commercial vehicle accident in Texas, contact us for a free consultation and learn how we may help you get back to enjoying life.

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