You might assume that if you are involved in an accident with a commercial truck, such as an 18-wheeler, and the driver was at fault, the situation would be handled in much the same way as with a car. But, because of the fact that many parties are involved with commercial trucks, determining who is truly liable is not always easy and several companies may end up playing a veritable game of HOT POTATO as they try to pass fault from one party to another.
Here are some of the companies and individuals who may be involved in an accident involving a commercial truck:
- The driver – Certainly the driver of the truck who was at fault will be involved. Make sure to get their driver’s license info, address and phone number.
- The company that owns the truck – Commercial trucks are often not owned by the driver, but instead, a trucking company that simply hires drivers for various pickup and delivery jobs.
- The company the truck driver was driving for – Another party is whoever the driver was working for at the time of the accident. For instance, the driver may have been hired by a furniture company to deliver furniture and because they overloaded the truck, this could have contributed to the accident.
- The repair shop that services the commercial truck – Yes, even the repair facility who recently worked on the truck could be considered liable in an accident. If the repairs were done incorrectly or faulty materials were used during a service visit, these issues could lead to the repair facility being named liable for the accident.
- Any of the insurance companies representing any of the above parties – Of course, eventually, one or more insurance companies will likely pay for the damages and/or injuries associated with the accident.
If you are involved in an accident with a commercial truck, you may think you can handle the issue yourself and, in some cases, that may work out perfectly fine. But as you can see by the number of potential parties involved listed above, in many cases what may seem like a very cut and dry issue can quickly become a nightmare. You may have to deal with a plethora of phone calls, interviews, provide estimates to multiple parties and face a lengthy battle to try to secure any compensation from the at-fault party. The smartest move following such an accident may be to secure the services of a law firm.
There are accident law firms that have experience with commercial truck accidents, especially those firms with truck accident liability lawyers, that can handle the entire ordeal on your behalf. They will work to collect the necessary evidence to prove fault and act as your mediator in dealing with any of the companies involved. They will work to resolve the situation in the fastest way possible and ensure you the maximum compensation you deserve.