Common Defenses in Commercial Trucking Crashes and Ways Around Them
Fighting Back at Commercial Trucking Crashes: Common Defenses Trucking Companies Use and How to Disprove Them
A trucking collision can be the result of several different factors. Regardless of the cause of the accident, the consequences are likely to be great even in low-speed collisions. But when an average sized car collides with a massive 18 wheeler at a high speed, the smaller car will take on the brunt of the force resulting in life threatening injuries or even wrongful death to all occupants. If you or a loved one have been injured in a trucking crash, contact a New Mexico commercial trucking crash lawyer to find out about your potential claim.
Lawsuits against large commercial trucking companies are oftentimes complex, and hard to take on by oneself. This is true in part because these companies usually have both ironclad insurance policies and accident response teams on hand to help in defending any claims that may arise against them. Hiring just any motor vehicle accident lawyer will not help you in a commercial trucking crash. You need to retain counsel that just focuses on commercial trucking crashes like the Caruso Law Offices, P.C.
Common Defenses that Commercial Trucking Companies Use
It is a common misconception that when a truck driver receives a ticket in an accident, that the insurance company will automatically concede liability. Insurance companies will oftentimes tell to plaintiff victims that they will accept liability, but then dispute this later on when a lawsuit has been filed. However, even if the insurance company accepts their responsibility to pay in writing, those statements will not legally bind them to pay for your damages. In addition, the trucking company and truck driver will likely plead not guilty or oppose the ticket. If they plead nolo contendre, or no contest, the plea also cannot be used in a personal injury action.
Unfortunately, this means that most insurance companies will likely dispute their liability and responsibility to pay damages at court. Insurance adjusters may even attempt to dissuade victims from consulting attorneys, claiming that having an advocate at your side will only delay the case. This is a gross misrepresentation of the legal process. In fact, studies have shown that those who hire competent attorneys will likely recover a higher award of damages than those who attempt to try a case on their own.
Common defenses of insurance and trucking companies that our commercial trucking crash lawyers have encountered include:
- Shifting blame from the truck driver to the injured person (known as “comparative fault”);
- Claiming that an unidentified third party was at fault for the accident (a phantom vehicle defense);
- Claiming that the victim has failed to prove their case or damages;
- Arguing the truck driver acted reasonably but that the crash was just an unavoidable accident;
- Claiming that the victim has exaggerated their injuries or was not actually injured at all in the accident (attacking causation);
- Arguing that the victim’s medical costs were unreasonable or unnecessary to treat their injuries; and
- Claiming that the victim has failed to prove their lost wages.
Ways Around the Common Defenses by Trucking Companies and Truck Drivers
All of the above defenses can be rebutted with witnesses. Some will require fact witnesses, who are individuals that observed the accident, saw the seen, or witnessed your injuries and recovery. Other witnesses will be expert witnesses. These are witnesses that have not necessarily saw the accident occur, but they are witnesses to the facts and can use accepted methods to demonstrate fault or damages.
For example, a treating physician or expert doctor can testified that your injuries were caused by the subject crash based on a review of your medical chart, the accident reports, and the expert’s knowledge of the practice of medicine. An accident reconstruction expert can be used to demonstrate that tire marks, force of the impact, and data from the truck’s computer to prove who was at fault through science—even if the expert did not witness the crash.
Injured in a New Mexico Commercial Trucking Crash? Call Us to Fight the Common Trucking Defenses to Help Prove Your Case
If you or a loved one has been injured in a motor vehicle accident, call the experienced New Mexico trucking accident attorneys at the Caruso Law Offices, P.C. today by dialing (505) 883-5000 You can also contact us on our website through the easy to use and convenient Contact box located by clicking here.