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  • How to File a Lawsuit Against a Commercial Trucking Company

    How to File a Lawsuit Against a Commercial Trucking Company

    November 28, 2022 | Car Accidents, Truck Accidents

    Can I Sue a Commercial Trucking Company?

    The commercial freight industry in the United States is incredibly massive and has seen some of the most rapid growth of any industry in the United States.

    Here are some statistics to back up this claim according to the American Trucking Association:

    • Over 72% of all freight is transported by commercial trucks.
    • The commercial trucking industry generated nearly $900 billion in 2021
    • Almost 40 million trucks were registered for commercial use in 2020
    • Commercial trucks traveled over 300 billion miles in 2020

    Needless to say, the number of commercial trucks on American roads and the revenue they generate for both themselves and their vendors are gigantic.

    18-wheelers and other commercial vehicles play a vital role in our everyday lives, and they are essential to the economy.

    Trucking and freight companies haul an array of goods and raw materials, making delivery of anything from household appliances to construction components a streamlined process. Commercial trucks often drive at high speeds and use specialized routes to expedite deliveries.

    However, due to the number of trucks on the road, the distance they travel, and the sheer size and weight of their vehicles, commercial trucks are also responsible for some of the most devastating car accidents.

    If you have been involved in an accident involving a commercial vehicle, you may be able to file a commercial trucking lawsuit as the victim of negligence on behalf of the truck driver and/or their employer.

    What Is Negligence When It Comes to Commercial Trucks?

    Negligence is legally defined as the failure to use reasonable care.

    When it comes to truck accidents, it can refer to any number of things, such as:

    • the truck driver was distracted
    • the truck was not properly maintained
    • the truck driver was operating the vehicle at reckless speeds
    • the driver fell asleep while driving

    If the truck driver or their employers did not follow safety regulations or their actions caused an automobile accident, they can be found negligent and liable to a lawsuit. You could file a lawsuit against the trucking company if they were negligent in their hiring, training, or supervision of the truck driver.

    Related: Who is responsible for determining fault in a car accident

    Who Can Sue a Commercial Trucking Company?

    Anyone who has been affected by a commercial truck accident has the right to file a lawsuit against the trucking company.

    This can include:

    The victim: Someone who was injured in the crash and sought compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. –

    The family of a deceased victim: The estate can file a wrongful death lawsuit against the trucking company to cover funeral and burial expenses.

    A property owner: If a truck accident causes damage to a home or another piece of property, the owner could file a lawsuit against the trucking company.

    Commercial Trucking Faults That Lead to Lawsuits

    There are a variety of commercial trucking faults that lead to lawsuits. Any of these can open up a commercial trucking company to a lawsuit if a related accident occurred:

    Faulty machinery or poor truck maintenance: If a truck’s brakes, engine, tires, or other parts are faulty, the trucking company is liable.

    Improperly loaded cargo: Cargo that is not properly secured or that has shifted in transit can cause accidents.

    Failure to comply with traffic laws: If a truck driver runs a red light or speeds, fails to yield, or drives aggressively, it can lead to an accident.

    Driver negligence: If a truck driver does not follow proper procedures for safely driving, it can lead to accidents.

    Related: United States Car Accident Statistics

    How to File a Lawsuit Against a Commercial Trucking Company

    By definition, a commercial trucking company is a company that transports goods by road in a licensed vehicle – such as a large truck or transport van – with a commercial license from the state department of transportation. If you’ve been in an automobile accident with a commercial truck, you may be able to file a lawsuit against the company.

    All states allow you to file a lawsuit against commercial trucking companies, and you should do so immediately after the accident. You don’t need to file a lawsuit to receive compensation, but if you simply accept the payout given to you by the company’s insurance agent, you will likely receive far less compensation than you deserve.

    Here are the steps to take to file a lawsuit against a commercial truck driver and their employer:

    • Seek medical attention for any injuries sustained in the accident
    • Obtain the names and contact information of all parties involved in the accident.
    • Gather information on the truck, including the license plate number, make and model, and the name of the trucking company.
    • Write down everything that happened in the accident and gather any witnesses to the accident
    • Get a copy of the automobile accident police report
    • Contact a local truck accident attorney

    Getting the Compensation You Deserve for Your Truck Accident Injuries and Property Damage

    Automobile accidents involving large commercial trucks like semi-trucks and 18-wheelers can devastate all parties involved. If you’re injured in such an accident, you may be able to file a lawsuit against the trucking company. You’ll want to act quickly, though, as the statute of limitations is short.

    In addition to filing a lawsuit, you can also help protect yourself from future accidents by driving defensively. Avoid distractions behind the wheel, keep a safe distance from commercial trucks, and always be prepared for the unexpected.

    If you have questions or have been involved in an automobile accident involving a semi-truck, transportation vehicle, 18-wheeler, or any other commercial vehicle, contact the St. Louis personal injury attorneys at Ortwerth Law to schedule your free consultation.