The crash scene is often chaotic when you have been involved in a commercial truck accident. Your next steps could substantially impact your ability to recover compensation for your damages and hold the at-fault party accountable to the fullest extent of the law. It will be crucial to gather as much evidence as possible to support your case so your insurance and civil claims can succeed.
As soon as you have an opportunity, hire a truck accident lawyer to advocate for your rights and guide you through the claims process. Here is more about the initial steps you should take immediately after a collision with a commercial truck in the evidence that will be most valuable against whoever is at fault for your accident.
Steps to Take Immediately After a Tractor-Trailer Collision
At the scene of a big rig collision, your steps are crucial. Failure to follow these steps could devastate the outcome of your truck accident insurance or civil claim. If you hope to recover the compensation you deserve, we must have sufficient evidence to support your case.
Your next steps will involve gathering as much evidence as possible to prove the at-fault party’s liability and negligence.
Call Emergency Responders for Help
First, make sure you call emergency responders for help. It is crucial to get police officers and emergency medical technicians (EMTs) to the scene of the accident so you can get the medical attention and support you need when you need it most.
Do not be surprised if the driver who hit you tries to convince you that you do not need medical attention or that calling the police is unnecessary. Generally, they do this because they may be driving without insurance, have a suspended or revoked license, or even have a warrant for their arrest. However, you must act in your best interest at all times, and having police and medical attention arrive is always the right move
Gather Evidence at the Truck Accident Scene
If your injuries do not prevent you from doing so, gather evidence while you wait for law enforcement officials and medical health to arrive. This is an excellent time to get the names and contact information of witnesses to the accident, take photos of surrounding property damage, and document the severity of your injuries and the damage to your vehicle.
You should also get the name, contact information, insurance details, and license plate number of the driver who hit you.
Speak with the Police
Once the police arrive at the scene, fill them in on your interpretation of how the accident happened. Law enforcement officials will conduct an investigation into the cause of the truck accident. They will file a crash report that provides valuable information about traffic conditions at the time of the crash, who may be responsible for causing the accident, and more.
Get Medical Help
Once emergency responders arrive, make sure you get medical attention. You may not believe your injuries are severe at this time. However, even if you believe your injuries are minor, it is crucial that you obtain a medical evaluation. You do not want to risk suffering invisible injuries that, if left untreated, could be substantially worse.
Your medical records will also be valuable as we argue the value of your damages, the severity of your injuries, and the impact your accident and injuries have had and are expected to have on your life.
Call a Reputable Truck Accident Lawyer for Help
Either at the accident scene or after healthcare providers have cleared you, hire a reputable truck accident attorney. You need a legal advocate on your side to handle the legalities of your case so you can devote your time to recuperating from your injuries.
Your lawyer will work on building a case against the liable party, figuring out who is ultimately responsible, calculating the value of your claim, negotiating with the insurance company on your behalf, and potentially bringing forward a truck accident lawsuit if necessary.
Follow Your Healthcare Provider’s Treatment Plan
After you have received medical treatment, make sure you continue following your healthcare provider’s treatment plan. If you fail to do so, the defense might argue your injuries are not as severe as you claimed or that you are partially responsible for the impact your injuries have had on your life because you failed to follow your medical provider’s course of treatment.
Consider Your Legal Options and Demand Justice
Next, discuss your legal options in detail with your truck accident attorney. Depending on the circumstances of your case, you may have multiple options. The first is to file a claim with the insurance company. This could be your personal auto insurance provider if you carry no-fault insurance coverage or the liable party’s insurance company.
Remember that insurance will likely not be enough to meet your needs fully. This is because insurance coverage is designed to cover specific types in amounts of damages up to the policyholder’s limits. The liable party may also like insurance coverage altogether. For this reason, you may need to be prepared to go to court.
When you go to trial for a truck accident, you have the right to be fully compensated for your damages. This means you should be repaid for not only your economic or financial losses but also your non-economic damages. Filing a civil lawsuit may be one of the only options available if you hope to maximize your financial compensation.
Get a Truck Accident Lawyer at Shelly Leeke Law Firm on Your Side
Immediately after your commercial truck collision, you may feel overwhelmed, scared, traumatized, and unsure of what to do next. Following the previously mentioned steps, you can build a case against the at-fault party as soon as possible after the collision.
Learn more about your next steps and how the truck accident claims process works when you contact a dedicated South Carolina truck accident lawyer at the Shelly Leeke Law Firm for a free, no-obligation consultation.