Delray Beach Truck Accident Lawyers
Accidents involving commercial vehicles in Florida, such as tractor-trailers, cause atypical damage unseen in standard car accidents. With an average weight exceeding 10,000 pounds, tractor-trailers often disrupt traffic along major roadways, litter pavement with cargo, and inflict debilitating injuries to passengers of other vehicles. Whereas a standard car accident characteristically involves two parties (the at-fault driver and the victim), truck accidents are far more complex, in which fault can be attributed to several parties.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident, contact an experienced Delray Beach truck accident attorney to discuss your legal options, as you may be entitled to financial compensation.
Understanding Florida’s Truck Accident Laws
In the event of a truck accident, parties that have a financial interest at stake will mobilize to gather evidence and reduce financial liability. Under such circumstances, insurance companies may take advantage of victims who do not fully understand their rights. The Shiner Law Group provides a list of steps for truck accident victims to follow:
- Call emergency services and seek immediate medical attention. Florida law requires law enforcement to submit an accident report.
- Gather all relevant information, including picture or video evidence, contact and insurance information, as well as weather, and road conditions.
- Do not admit fault or give statements that could be interpreted as admitting fault. Consult with legal counsel first.
Similar to personal injury cases, truck accidents in Florida are adjudicated under the state’s comparative negligence standard, which means that a percentage of fault can be assessed to anyone whose negligence attributed to the accident. The claimant must prove the at-fault driver owed a reasonable duty of care, the duty of care was breached, and any injury sustained was directly caused by the breach.
Florida truck accident victims can pursue damages against the following parties if injuries were sustained:
- The owner of the truck, the driver, and the hiring company.
- The company leasing the truck (if applicable).
- The owner of the trailer or the trailer’s leasing company (if applicable).
- The company and personnel responsible for loading the truck.
- The manufacturer of the truck’s components of product liability is shown.
Truck drivers who fail to comply with state and federal regulations exacerbate the risk of bodily injury or wrongful death. Driving under the influence (drunk driving laws are held to a lower legal limit for commercial drivers (0.04%)), distracted/aggressive driving, speeding, improper vehicle maintenance/inspection, hours of service violation, and improper loading/securement are all principal causes of tractor-trailer related accidents.
The statute of limitations for a truck accident lawsuit is four years in the state of Florida, and two years when a wrongful death is involved.
Florida’s Commercial Liability Coverage
Most tractor-trailers are owned by third parties that offer different coverage options for damage to your vehicle as opposed to compensation for injuries. Other policies combine damage to property and bodily injury under Combined Single Limit (CSL) coverage. Separate coverage for injury is referred to as Commercial Liability Coverage. Under Commercial Liability Coverage, medical bills not covered by Personal Injury Protection (PIP) are considered out-of-pocket costs. If a negligible party is found guilty, the out-of-pocket expenses will be included as damages and paid by the defendant’s insurance carrier.
Depending on the degree of injuries sustained and subsequent medical treatment, a victim of a truck accident may be faced with medical bills exceeding $100,000. Understanding the type of available coverage to pursue in a potential lawsuit against an at-fault carrier is among the first steps toward recovery. Truck accident victims may be entitled to damages for pain, suffering, mental anguish, and future medical care, which are pursued against the commercial company’s insurance carrier.
How a Shiner Law Group Attorney Can Help
When you suffer from injuries in a truck accident, your last priority may be securing legal representation; however, it is important to know that insurance companies and their team of adjusters will employ tactics that undermine any unrepresented party in a legal proceeding. With a Shiner Law Group attorney by your side, we will aggressively build a compelling case by collecting, examining, and preserving all relevant evidence while facilitating insurance negotiations.
For over 15 years, our award-winning legal team has developed the legal acumen and results-driven approach to litigating across the full spectrum of truck accident cases arising from negligence. We understand the hardships our clients face, so we seek a broad range of damages, including, but not limited to, medical treatment and rehabilitation, loss of income, periods of disability, or a permanent inability to engage in gainful employment, to ensure the strongest financial compensation.