A Maryland truck accident can be very dangerous. Whether you get hit by an 18-wheeler or another commercial vehicle making its way around Maryland, your life is at risk. Since these vehicles are much larger than passenger vehicles, they often cause severe injuries. Wherever possible, you should exercise greater care when you notice trucks nearby. However, there are some crashes which you won’t be able to avoid. If a large truck crashes into you, you may be able to get compensation for your losses.
Some truck accidents are caused by the negligence of the driver or a third party. You may be entitled to recover a range of damages including medical expenses and lost wages. However, you will first need to prove that the other party was completely at fault. You will need to work with a Maryland truck accident lawyer to understand your rights and know all your legal options. Truck accidents often present unique challenges so you should find an attorney who has extensive experience handling these types of cases.
Establishing Liability in a Maryland Truck Accident
Truck accident cases can get complicated. In a car accident, the driver is likely to be the at-fault party. However, multiple parties can often be held liable for truck accidents. Some accidents are straightforward but, in some cases, extensive investigations are necessary. The circumstances of your crash and any trucking industry regulation violations can help to establish liability.
Potentially liable parties include:
- The truck driver
- The company that loaded the cargo
- The company that performed repairs on maintenance on the truck
- The driver’s employer
- The owner of the trailer
- The company that leased the truck
- The manufacturers of defective parts on the truck
A competent attorney will review the details of your crash and determine all of the parties that could be held liable. This will help to ensure that you get all of the compensation you deserve. Once a potential defendant has been identified, your Maryland truck accident attorney will ensure all the elements of negligence are present. This means:
- The defendant had a legal obligation to you.
- They breached that obligation.
- That breach caused you harm.
Why You Need to Work with An Attorney
While the police and insurance companies will look into the accident, attorneys also gather their own information. This helps them to build a case on your behalf. Some of the things attorneys do include:
- Reviewing the police report
- Seeking out video footage of the crash
- Reviewing pictures of the crash
- Talking to eyewitnesses
- Checking the truck driver’s history for violations
- Looking into the truck’s maintenance records for violations
Also, your truck accident attorney will help you deal with the other driver’s insurance company. Having identified the defendant(s), negotiating with their insurer is one of the most important aspects of your case. Insurance companies do everything they can to avoid paying the full value of a claim. Sometimes, they even deny claims outright. They hope that victims won’t stand up to them and many don’t.
However, when you have an attorney on your side, you’ll know exactly what is a fair settlement. While it’s your decision whether to accept any offer the insurer makes, you’ll benefit from expert advice. You’ll also benefit from your lawyer’s negotiation skills and knowledge of the insurance and trucking industries. If you choose to appeal a claim denial or take someone to court, you’ll need an experienced attorney. Truck accident victims who have an attorney tend to get faster, higher settlements. Remember, the insurance company will act in its own best interests, not yours.
Time Limits for Seeking Compensation in Maryland
You must file your insurance claim as soon as possible after your crash. Not only do you want to get compensation promptly, but the insurance company will have a deadline in place. However, not all truck accident cases are resolved through negotiation. If you need to file a personal injury lawsuit to recover damages, the statute of limitations comes into play. In Maryland, you have three years from the date of the crash to file a lawsuit. If this deadline passes, the court won’t hear your case. This seems like a long time, but the insurance process will take up a lot of that time. Also, investigations into the crash may be drawn out. That’s why it’s best to hire an attorney immediately after the crash.
Schedule an Appointment with the Maryland Truck Accident Attorneys at Pinder Plotkin!
Truck accidents can result in life-altering injuries. If you want legal representation from experienced Maryland truck accident lawyers, contact our team today. Your initial consultation is free, so you have nothing to lose. Let us help you get the compensation you deserve.