Damages for any vehicle accident fall into three primary categories: economic, non-economic, and punitive damages.
Economic damages are the expenses generated for accident victims like medical and rehabilitation bills, costs of restoring property damage, lost income, diminished earning capacity, lost income, projected future medical expenses, and other expenses. Non-economic damages include pain and suffering, emotional distress and consortium losses, and enjoyment of normal activities.
Punitive damages are awarded in the most extreme cases of negligence or deliberate attempts to cause harm. Companies that hide dangerous characteristics of products or equipment that could cause accidents also risk paying punitive damages.
Truck accidents often qualify for punitive damages because trucking companies often engage in these behaviors:
- Knowingly participating in conduct that generates big safety risks
- Condoning illegal or unethical conduct that poses safety risks
- Showing gross negligence of behavior that contributes to injuries, losses, or damages in an accident
- Neglecting or ignoring safety regulations that apply to commercial truckers
- Falsifying records of misconduct
Truck Accident Complexities
According to information published by Indiana legal experts, car accidents usually have only one defendant, but truck accidents can have multiple defendants. As a result, these cases often become complex, requiring expert investigation, experienced personal injury attorneys, and court actions in additional courts at the state or federal level.
Truck accidents often generate extreme damage to more than one vehicle, multiple victims, and environmental damage that requires specialized remediation. Additional causes of accidents include mechanical vehicle problems, loading issues, defective equipment, hazardous cargo, improperly made repairs and maintenance negligence.
Trucks play a crucial role in the U.S. economy by shipping more than 10.5 billion tons of products, which generate $700 billion each year. In addition, the industry employs more than 7 million people, including 3 million drivers. In this context, it is easy to understand that single, and multiple trucks crashes concern, everyone, in the public and private sectors.
Moreover, trucking company attorneys have the legal resources to delay, obfuscate and minimize your injuries without an experienced and aggressive lawyer fighting for your rights.
The following are examples of the types of compensation you might qualify for in truck accident cases:
- Money for physical or psychological therapy
- Hospital, physician, and medical bill payments
- Punitive damages are limited by Indiana law to 3 times the amount of other damages or $50,000, whichever figure is greater.
- Bills for rehabilitation services
- Estimated future expenses for medical bills
- Pain and suffering compensation
- Payments for increased stress-related issues like PTSD
- Cosmetic surgery costs to repair disfiguring injuries
- Compensation for disfigurement-related stress, deformity, and permanent injury
- Lost wages
- Projected lifetime loss of wages caused by your injury or permanent disability
Indiana follows the modified comparative fault rule, which means your damages are reduced by the percentage of fault you’re assigned. For example, you can collect no damages if you’re held 51% or more liable for the accident. However, if you are held 40% liable, then you only receive 60% of your settlement or court-ordered judgment award.
Tremendous Damage Potential of Semi Accidents
Large, loaded tractor-trailers can cause permanent injuries and death. According to research and statistics, commercial trucks account for one out of 10 vehicle accident deaths despite only making up 4% of road traffic. Unfortunately, drivers and trucking companies often ignore limits and safety rules, but you can make them pay the costs of negligence or carelessness.
If you have any further questions about the type of compensation you deserve after a truck accident, ask a truck accident lawyer in Indianapolis any questions in a private and confidential consultation. Many attorneys offer the victims of truck accidents representation on a contingency basis, which means you don’t have to pay the lawyer unless you receive a settlement or compensation award.
In Indiana, if you were injured in a truck accident, you may be able to file a personal injury lawsuit against the driver or trucking company that caused the accident.
In most cases, you will have to file a lawsuit two years from the accident date. You may lose your case if you do not file a lawsuit in time.
That’s why hiring an attorney with experience in truck accident claims is important. A lawyer can investigate the company’s safety record, examine the driver’s logbook, interview witnesses, and hire an accident reconstruction expert if necessary.
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