Hampton Truck Accident Lawyer
Truck accidents are common occurrences on highways nationwide, including in Hampton. Busy roads like I-64, and I-664 run through Hampton and regularly see large tractor-trailers, 18-wheelers, and other big rigs. In many cases, crashes with these large commercial vehicles can result in serious injuries to anyone they encounter. When tractor-trailer crashes result in devastating injuries, our Hampton truck accident lawyers are here to help.
Injuries sustained in an accident with an 18-wheeler may result in significant medical bills, periods of rehabilitation and recovery, and time missed from work. This can create financial devastation for families struggling to recover both mentally and physically from their injuries.
Our experienced injury attorneys can stand by you to help you fight for the compensation you deserve. Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers regularly represents people injured in truck wrecks and we can use our knowledge to help you.
Common Causes of Hampton Truck Wrecks
Commercial trucking accidents can happen in many different ways but are usually the result of the trucker or their company’s negligence. Some of the more common causes of truck accidents are:
- Driver fatigue, inattention, and distraction
- Improperly secured cargo or loads
- Overloaded trucks that can tip over
- Excessively speeding and otherwise driving recklessly
- Failure to diagnose and repair truck malfunctions
Improper driver training, impaired driving, and failing to follow federal traffic safety regulations for the commercial trucking industry also can contribute to accidents with tractor-trailers. All of these situations can lead to catastrophic truck crashes, whether they are rollover accidents, tire blowouts, jackknife wrecks, or rear-end collisions. When major injuries result from a truck accident, our local attorneys can help determine who is at fault.
Legal Theories in 18-Wheeler Accident Claims
Most truck accident claims are based on negligence, which involves four main elements: duty, breach of duty, proximate cause, and damages. All drivers have a duty to ensure the safety of others on the roadway, and when drivers fail to live up to that duty and cause damages to others, they may be liable for the resulting damages. This includes truckers too.
These cases are especially complex because there can be more than one negligent party. For example, trucking companies often encourage their drivers to skip federally mandated breaks to meet tight deadlines. The process of gathering evidence to prove negligence, which is often essential to maintaining a truck accident claim, may be one of the primary reasons to get advice from one of our lawyers in Hampton.
Potential Recoverable Damages in a Semi-Truck Accident Claim
Individuals injured in truck accidents may sustain more life-threatening and permanent catastrophic injuries than those involved in crashes with other passenger vehicles. The sheer size and weight of tractor-trailers compared to passenger vehicles is immense, which makes the occupants of those vehicles more vulnerable to injuries when involved in a collision. Potential damages available may include:
- Medical bills, surgical costs, hospitalization expenses, rehabilitation costs, and prescription drug expenses
- Lost wages, loss of future earnings, and lost income due to an inability to work
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
A Hampton attorney can help you make sure your truck accident claim is thorough. We can fully review the facts of your case to make sure you are asking for the maximum amount of compensation available.
Filing Deadlines for Truck Crash Litigation
Even if you suffer life-altering injuries because of negligence by a trucking company or one of its employees, you only have a limited amount of time to file a lawsuit. Under Code of Virginia §8.01-243, most people who want to sue over truck wrecks must start the litigation process no later than two years after the date of the accident.
This deadline is crucial to be aware of even if you plan to resolve your claim out of court. A defendant who knows an injured person is time-barred from filing a lawsuit against them has no reason to participate in settlement negotiations in good faith.
The Potential Impact of Contributory Negligence
In addition to statutory filing deadlines, it is also vital to understand how Virginia state courts handle allegations of “contributory negligence.” In other words, a defendant may argue that you are partially at fault for causing the truck accident or worsening your injuries through your own misconduct. In most states, a victim who is found partly to blame for their accident-related damages may have the value of their final damage award reduced in proportion to their share of the total fault. They may be prohibited from getting any compensation if they are 50 percent or more at fault.
However, Virginia is unique in not following this modern “modified comparative fault” system. Instead, if you are found at all responsible for causing or exacerbating your losses, you may be unable to collect any compensation, even if someone else is still primarily at fault. Help from a capable truck accident lawyer at our firm is crucial to protecting your rights after being hurt by a negligent trucker in Hampton.
Filing Suit After a Family Member Gets Hurt
Typically, an injured person has the authority to demand civil restitution for their own damages. That said, if a truck crash leaves someone cognitively unable to care for themselves and pursue litigation, family members may be able to step in for them. There are many restrictions in these scenarios, which a capable Hampton truck wreck attorney could explain in more detail.
If a truck accident directly causes a person’s premature death, surviving family members may be eligible to pursue compensation for their own ensuing losses through wrongful death litigation. Legal counsel can help hold the responsible parties accountable after a fatal truck accident.
Talking to One of Our Hampton Truck Accident Attorneys
When truckers or their companies act in a negligent, careless, or reckless matter that leads to injuries to others, they may be financially responsible for the damages that result. Due to the significant and life-altering injuries that can occur in truck accidents, you may incur substantial medical expenses and lost wages. A Hampton truck accident lawyer at Cooper Hurley Injury Lawyers could work with you to develop a claim for compensation against the parties responsible for your losses.
18-wheeler accident claims can be complex because they often involve more than one potentially liable party, federal trucking regulations, and technical evidence in some cases. Getting experienced legal guidance and representation throughout the process of filing a tractor-trailer accident claim can be crucial. Call to learn how we can help you.