When you are involved in an accident with an 18-wheeler, construction vehicle or other big rig, you will be bombarded with questions (both in your own mind and from others) about who was responsible, what caused the accident and whether you are entitled to compensation for the accident. There are so many players involved that it can be confusing to know where to start. The first step is to understand the reasons why the accident happened, and then call a personal injury lawyer, who can guide you through the process of getting compensation for your loss.
Big Truck Accident Numbers
Over the past 20 years the incidents of big truck accidents have gone up by 20 percent. This is a staggering figure. Consider that less than 15 years ago, over 130,000 injuries and fatalities resulted in truck accidents, and that figure has increased! While there are fewer truck-related accidents than other types of combined accidents, truck accidents tend to be more serious than other types of accidents due to the size of the vehicle involved.
In a regular car accident, the issue usually comes down to the two drivers and their insurance companies, with road conditions sometimes being a factor. With big rigs there are more people involved, and the case can be more complex. Consider that few large trucks are owned by the driver. That means that not only is the driver involved in the case, but the trucking company, leasing service (if any), the truck’s manufacturer or the manufacturer of any parts that contributed to the accident, and the loader or shipper if improper loading was partially responsible.
When the time comes to pay out, these various entities usually go to war over who pays out what portion of the compensation settlement. You can then get caught in the middle, suffering while you wait for this all to get hashed out. In the worst case scenarios, the companies simply refuse or delay payment.
Many trucking companies might try to avoid liability by putting distance between themselves and the driver. This can create additional complications if they argue that the driver, as an independent contractor, wasn’t their employee, or that they are leasing equipment and thus aren’t responsible for its maintenance.
There are laws in place to stop these tactics, but it requires a knowledgeable lawyer to challenge such attempts at avoidance when they inevitably occur. When you’re facing a challenge from a company with resources and teams of attorneys in their corner, you can feel overburdened and out of your league.
There’s only one way to fight against these sorts of strong-arm, delay and bullying tactics. Seek the services of an experienced personal injury attorney. Your injury lawyer will be your best friend in fighting these companies and their insurance representatives when they refuse to pay. Attorneys know the laws and know when someone is trying to exploit a loophole. In short, if you’re injured in a trucking accident in South Carolina, a lawyer will make sure you get all the compensation to which you are entitled.
Working with an Injury Lawyer
If you’ve been involved in a South Carolina truck accident, don’t wait. The clock is ticking, and you want to begin your claim fast. Read a bit more about our experience in truck accidents, and contact us for a free, no obligation consult today.