Were you injured in a collision involving a commercial truck in El Dorado Hills? If a negligent truck driver, trucking company, or another party caused the crash that injured you, the first step you should take is to call an experienced truck accident lawyer.
Seeking compensation for injuries and other unexpected losses after a collision with an 18-wheeler can be challenging. Trucking companies and their insurers don’t like to lose money, so they usually do everything they can to deny or undervalue injury claims against them.
Don’t let them get away with it.
The El Dorado Hills truck accident lawyers at The Law Office of Black & DePaoli, PC, have the necessary resources and experience to help you pursue compensation and hold the at-fault parties accountable for their actions. Contact our truck accident attorneys today for a free initial consultation to discuss your case and evaluate your legal options.
Why You Need a Lawyer for Your Truck Accident Claim
Truck accidents are complex and can be challenging to investigate. While fault may be relatively straightforward in an accident between two passenger vehicles, multiple parties could share responsibility for a truck accident. Therefore, a comprehensive investigation of the crash will be necessary to determine liability and identify all potential sources of compensation.
At the Law Office of Black & DePaoli, PC, our truck accident attorneys can:
- Investigate the accident that caused your injuries
- Collect evidence to support your case and analyze potential violations of state and federal regulations
- Identify all liable parties involved in the accident
- Document and calculate the full extent of losses you incurred because of the crash
- Negotiate for a fair settlement with the insurance company
- File a lawsuit and seek justice in court if a fair settlement is not possible
Dealing with the trucking company and the insurers while recovering from severe injuries can be overwhelming. A personal injury lawyer from The Law Office of Black & DePaoli, PC, can take that burden off your shoulders by handling every aspect of your personal injury case for you while you focus on healing and putting your life back together.
What Makes Truck Accident Cases So Complicated?
Truck accidents can be particularly complicated because they often involve multiple liable parties. Not only will you need to identify everyone involved in the accident, but if more than one party is found to be at fault, then you could also have to deal with multiple insurance companies.
Because truck crashes usually cause more extensive injuries than a typical car accident, and because truck insurance policies typically have much higher limits – often $1 million or more – you can count on the insurance companies and the trucking industry lawyers to put up a fight.
Obtaining evidence to prove liability in a truck accident case can also be challenging. Evidence including truck driver logs and black box data might provide insight into what the truck driver was doing just before, during, and just after the crash. Trucking companies may try to withhold these items and might even tamper with them to avoid liability.
Getting an attorney involved is your best chance of recovering the vital pieces of evidence you need to prove your case. Your lawyer can also determine every potentially liable party and seek out every potential source of insurance coverage before building and pursuing a solid claim for full compensation.
Who Can Be Held Responsible for a Truck Accident Injury in El Dorado Hills?
When a truck accident occurs, there may be multiple at-fault parties. For example, potentially liable parties might include:
- The truck driver – Often, the truck driver is responsible for the accident. Truck drivers could be negligent in various ways, including distracted driving, impaired driving, speeding, fatigued driving, reckless driving, tailgating, and more. However, truck drivers aren’t always the only responsible party.
- The trucking company – The trucking company could also be held responsible in some instances. Federal regulations outline specific hours of service regulations to prevent truck driver fatigue. However, some trucking companies pressure drivers of commercial vehicles to disregard the rules and continue working to deliver more freight and increase profits. If a truck accident occurs because the trucking company pushed a long-haul driver to work beyond the legal hours of service limits, the truck company could also be held responsible. If the driver was an employee – regardless of the title – the employer could be vicariously liable for the driver’s negligence.
- Third-party truck maintenance company – If a third-party maintenance company was supposed to inspect and maintain the tractor-trailers, and the company fails to perform its duties accordingly, then the maintenance company could be liable for a truck accident.
- Cargo loaders – If cargo loaders did not properly secure the cargo or did not load the semi-trailers correctly, the loading company could be responsible for the accident. Unsecured cargo, for instance, can shift in the trailer and throw off the weight distribution in a large tractor-trailer. Unsecured heavy loads could even fall into the road from an open trailer, severely injuring motorists. In addition, oversized loads could affect semi-trucks ability to brake and steer safely.
- Truck or parts manufacturers – If a truck accident occurs due to defective truck parts, such as faulty brakes, then the manufacturer of the parts could potentially bear some liability as well. The truck manufacturer could be liable if the truck itself had defects that led to the crash or worsened its effects.
How Is Fault Determined in a Truck Accident Investigation?
Some common types of evidence used to demonstrate liability in trucking accidents include:
- Black box data recorders on large trucks
- Truck driver logs
- Cell phone records
- Surveillance camera footage
- Eyewitness testimony
- Information from police reports
To prove that the truck driver, trucking company, or another party’s negligence caused the crash, you will need to establish four key elements:
- The at-fault party should have acted reasonably and responsibly to protect you from harm.
- The at-fault party fell short of its duty.
- The at-fault party’s negligence directly led to the crash.
- You suffered quantifiable losses as a result of the accident.
Proving fault in a truck accident case can be challenging, especially if the trucking company tries to prevent you from obtaining the evidence you need to build your case. That’s why it is critical to consult with an experienced El Dorado Hills truck accident attorney right away.
What Compensation Can Be Recovered After a Truck Accident in El Dorado Hills?
If you were injured in a trucking accident in El Dorado Hills, you could be eligible to recover compensation for losses such as:
- Medical costs for treating severe injuries
- Lost income
- Lost earning potential
- Pain and suffering
- Property damage
- Wrongful death benefits in fatal crashes
- Punitive damages, if appropriate
If you have questions about recovering compensation after a truck accident, contact our team to speak with an attorney about your case.
California Statute of Limitations on Truck Accident Lawsuits
In California, you have two years from the date of a truck accident to initiate legal action against the at-fault party. That means that if you choose to file a personal injury lawsuit, you must do so within that time, or the court will be barred from hearing your case.