If you are injured or if someone in your family has died in a truck accident, you might be eligible to recover compensatory damages from the party responsible for the accident. In order to be able to do so, you need to establish the liability of the party at fault and prove that the accident was caused directly as a result of their actions.
Determining Liability in Truck Accidents
Determining liability in a truck accident can be tricky. Unlike a car accident, where the driver is perhaps the only person who can be held liable in most cases, there are multiple parties who can be held liable in a truck accident.
Truck Driver – If the truck driver was drunk, under the influence of drugs, speeding, distracted, took prescription pills that could induce drowsiness, or failed to follow the rules of the road, they can be held liable for the accident.
Trucking Company – If the trucking company forced the driver to operate an unsafe truck, forced them to drive for more than 11 hours without resting, failed to screen the driver for alcohol and drugs, or failed to check if the driver was medically fit to drive a truck, they can be held liable for the accident.
Loading Company – If the accident was caused as a result of the cargo shifting or spilling out of the truck, the loading company can be held liable for not loading and securing the cargo properly.
Truck Manufacturer – If the accident was caused as a result of a defective part, the manufacturer can be held liable for the resulting damages.
Apart from this, the repair and maintenance contractor, third-party logistics provider, weigh station employees, freight broker, and other parties can also be held responsible for a truck accident, depending on various factors.
What Do You Need to Prove in a Personal Injury Case?
Under Mississippi law, the plaintiff is required to prove the following in a personal injury lawsuit:
- An accident occurred.
- The accident occurred as a result of the actions of the party at fault.
- You suffered financial and non-financial losses due to the accident.
Proving Liability in a Truck Accident
The liability of party at fault can be proved with the help of the following documents and information:
- The truck driver’s personnel file
- The truck company’s screening and hiring process
- The truck’s black box data
- The truck’s maintenance and inspection records
- Fuel receipts
- Toll booth receipts
- Hours of service logs
- Cell phone records
- Bill of lading
- Police reports
- Surveillance footage, if available
- Dashcam recordings
If you hire an experienced personal injury lawyer, they can conduct a detailed investigation into the circumstances that led to the truck accident and gather the information they need to prove the liability of the parties at fault.
Calculating Damages in Truck Accidents
In a personal injury case, the compensation you are entitled to receive is calculated based on the damages you incurred in the accident. Given below is a list of the records you need to submit in order to prove the extent of the damages you suffered as a result of the accident.
- Medical records
- Hospital bills
- Receipts for medications
- Receipts for mobility aids
- Invoices for home-based care
- Expenses associated with your rehabilitation
- Old paystubs
- A quote from a qualified contractor for the modifications needed for your residence due to your disability
Shared Fault in Truck Accidents
In some cases, the defendant’s lawyer might try to argue that the accident occurred partly due to your own actions. This is particularly common in accidents involving a car and a truck.
If they manage to prove that your actions were also partly responsible for the accident, your compensatory damages will be determined based on Mississippi’s ‘pure comparative negligence’ doctrine.
For example, if the compensation for the damages you incurred equals $100,000, and if it is decided that you were at 20% fault for the accident and the truck driver was 80% at fault, your compensation will be reduced by 20% and you will be paid $80,000.
Truck Accident Lawyers in Mississippi
If you or someone in your family happens to be a victim of a truck accident in Mississippi, the personal injury lawyers at Reeves & Mestayer, PLLC can help you. We provide aggressive, high-level legal representation to truck accident victims in Mississippi, Louisiana, and Alabama.
We can investigate the underlying factors that led to the accident, identify all the parties whose negligence or actions contributed to the accident, build a strong case against them, and ensure that you are compensated for all the damages you incurred as a result of the accident.
We know this aspect of the law very well. We have a long track record of success and our satisfied client base is verification of this. What is your side of the story? Call us today.
You can contact our law firm at 228-374-5151 for a free consultation with our personal injury lawyers.