Truck Accident Settlements in Houston
Truck accidents can have catastrophic consequences due to their enormous size and weight. While the typical passenger vehicle weighs around 4,000 pounds, semi-trucks can weigh about 80,000 pounds when loaded – about 20 times heavier than the average passenger car. It’s perhaps no surprise that occupants of lighter vehicles frequently suffer severe, even fatal, injuries while truck drivers remain unscathed.
Were you injured in a truck accident in Houston that someone else caused? If so, an experienced lawyer can help you recover the compensation you deserve for your injuries, medical bills, lost wages, pain, suffering, and other losses. Truck accident cases are incredibly complex, but the Houston truck accident attorneys at Pines & Goldenzweig, PLLC, have the knowledge and skills to help you bring an accident claim or personal injury lawsuit against the parties that harmed you.
Contact our offices today for a free, no-risk consultation.
How Our Lawyers Help Truck Accident Victims Win Settlements
At the law firm Pines & Goldenzweig, PLLC, we understand the challenges of bringing a truck accident claim and are not afraid to go toe-to-toe with trucking companies, their insurers, and their high-powered legal teams.
If you hire our firm to manage your case, we are prepared to:
- Investigate the accident. Our team will conduct a thorough investigation of the collision that caused your injuries. Moving quickly to gather and preserve evidence is vital. Trucking companies will sometimes tamper with or even destroy evidence to avoid liability. They’re also not likely to just hand evidence over to you if you request it. Our attorneys will do what is necessary to secure the evidence needed to prove your case, even if we have to go to court to obtain it.
- Determine liability. We will use the evidence we gather in our investigation to identify the liable party or parties and determine all potential sources of compensation.
- Negotiate with the insurance companies. We will handle all communications with the carrier’s insurance company or adjusters if they are self-insured and negotiate a settlement on your behalf. Insurance companies are for-profit organizations. The adjuster’s ultimate goal is to save their employer money. They often use various tactics to minimize the amount they pay accident victims. That is why you need an experienced attorney to fight for your best interests.
- Pursue legal action if necessary. If the insurance company negotiates in bad faith or refuses to make a fair offer, we will not hesitate to litigate your case in court. Our experienced trial lawyers have secured substantial judgments and verdicts for many injured clients in the past, and we will work tirelessly to do the same for you.
Our clients gain access to our network of accident reconstruction experts, medical and mental health experts, and other specialists who can provide statements or even testify in court on your behalf. Our attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, which means you won’t owe us anything unless we win your case. Because we will not charge you upfront legal fees, there is no risk in working with us to demand justice.
How Truck Accident Settlements May Differ
Truck accident settlements are different from those in typical automobile accidents in a few ways. A truck crash settlement may be larger than the average car crash settlement due to the nature of the accident and the severity of the resulting injuries.
Insurance policies on large trucks typically carry much higher limits than passenger cars – often $1 million or more. With more severe injuries, the higher limits mean more money is on the line.
Many truck accident cases involve multiple liable parties, including the truck driver, the trucking company, the truck’s owner, cargo loaders, and others. Depending on who is found to be at fault for the accident, multiple entities could be responsible for compensating you. While this may take longer to negotiate or litigate, the result is frequently a larger settlement.
What Kind of Settlement Can I Expect?
Although the size of your settlement will depend on various factors, in general, the more severe your losses, the more compensation you should be entitled to recover. If you were partly to blame for the accident, shared fault could also affect your settlement amount. The insurance company (or the court, if your case goes to trial) will also consider how the injury is likely to impact your work and daily life. If your case does go to trial, litigation costs will also affect your final settlement.
What Is the Average Semi-Truck Accident Settlement in Houston?
It is challenging to predict the average truck accident settlement amount since every case is unique. Depending on the circumstances of your case, you might be able to recover financial relief for:
- Present and future medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Future lost earning capacity
- Physical scarring or disfigurement
- Physical and emotional pain and suffering
- Loss of quality of life
- Vehicle and other property damage
- Wrongful death benefits in fatal accidents
Our attorneys can calculate all of your financial losses to quantify your non-financial damages for pain and suffering, which can be difficult to determine without the help of a seasoned truck accident lawyer.
Types of Injuries Receiving the Highest Truck Accident Settlement
Truck accidents can lead to severe injuries that require surgery and rehabilitative care. The results may impact an individual’s ability to live a normal, productive life. Generally speaking, the more severe the consequences of an accident, the larger the settlement figure.
Common injuries that lead to large settlements include:
- Spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Broken and crushed bones
- Internal injuries
- Accidental amputations
- Disfiguring injuries
It is crucial to get prompt medical treatment. Even if you believe your injuries are minor at first, they could be more serious than you think and could later develop debilitating complications if left untreated. You should never agree to a settlement until you understand the full extent of your injuries.
How Long Does It Take to Settle an 18-Wheeler Case?
The time it takes to settle varies depending on the many unique factors in the case. Some of the issues that could influence the length of your case include the severity of your injuries, the duration of your treatment and recovery, the accident investigation, the insurance company’s willingness to process and settle your claim, and whether litigation becomes necessary.
Most truck accident cases settle before they go to trial, but sometimes litigation is the best option for obtaining financial relief. However, if your case does go through the legal system, it will take longer to resolve.
Truck Accident FAQs
Were you injured in a collision with a semi-truck or other large commercial vehicle in Houston? If so, here are some answers to some questions you might have about seeking fair compensation for your injuries, medical expenses, and other losses.
It’s difficult to say how much your truck accident case might be worth until an experienced truck accident lawyer has investigated the crash and evaluated the facts of your case. But you can get some idea of what your case might be worth by examining all the different kinds of losses you are eligible to receive through a personal injury lawsuit. These losses include things like:
- Any medical bills related to the accident, including any future treatment you may require
- Your lost wages or other incomes resulting from the accident
- Your reduced ability to work because of a long-term or permanent disability from the accident
- Your pain and suffering from your injuries
- Your emotional distress caused by the accident
- Your personal property that was damaged in the accident
There is no law requiring you to hire a truck accident lawyer after a collision involving an 18-wheeler. However, not hiring an experienced truck accident attorney is generally a bad idea, especially if you’ve been severely injured.
If you are recovering from severe injuries and have missed work due to a truck accident, seeking compensation from the at-fault party can be challenging without professional legal help. Your focus should be on recovering from your injuries and getting medical treatment. While you take care of yourself, a truck accident attorney can handle the legal legwork.
Hiring a lawyer is also crucial to maximizing your claim. You only have one chance to recover the money you need and deserve. If you try to seek compensation alone and don’t have the proper legal training, you risk being taken advantage of by the other party’s insurance company. With an experienced injury lawyer fighting for you, you’ll have a better chance of maximizing your claim and getting the money you need to move on from the crash.
Fault in a truck accident is based on the legal concept of negligence. Negligent behavior includes actions or inactions that fall short of the duty of care drivers owe to everyone else on the road. Evidence of negligence can come from many sources, such as information in the police report, photos, witness statements, black box data, toxicology reports, expert accident reconstruction, and more.
There are three broad categories of compensation (also known as “damages”) you can recover in a personal injury lawsuit. They are:
- Economic damages — Your direct financial losses resulting from the accident, such as your medical bills and lost wages
- Non-economic damages — Losses you have suffered that do not have a specific dollar value attached, such as the pain from your injuries and emotional trauma from the crash
- Exemplary or punitive damages — Additional compensation awarded by a judge or jury to punish negligent parties for particularly reckless or intentional behavior
The parties who are most commonly found liable in truck accident cases are:
- The truck driver
- The trucking company
- Truck maintenance crews
- Cargo loaders
- Vehicle or parts manufacturers
It depends on the nature of the driver’s medical condition. If a truck driver has a sudden medical emergency that was not foreseeable or preventable, they likely cannot be held liable. However, if the driver had a known medical condition and failed to take steps to prevent an accident, they could be responsible for the crash.
Truck accident cases generally take longer than car accident cases because there may be multiple liable parties, so you might need to file numerous claims. There also might be several injured parties, particularly if the crash involved multiple vehicles, which could complicate things. Most truck accident cases take at least several months before you settle, and it may be even longer if your case goes to trial.
In most cases, you have two years from the date of the accident to file a personal injury lawsuit in Texas.
If you are partly at fault for a truck accident, you may still be able to recover compensation for your injuries. In cases where multiple parties share responsibility for an accident, Texas uses a form of comparative negligence to determine who will receive compensation. That means as long as you are not found to be more than 50 percent liable for an accident, you could still recover partial compensation for your injuries. If you are found partly responsible for an accident, your payment will likely be reduced by your percentage of fault.
If you have uninsured motorist (UM) coverage through your auto insurance policy, you can file a claim with your own insurance company to seek compensation for your injuries. You may also be able to file a claim against the trucking company or another liable party. Finally, you may still be able to file a personal injury lawsuit and claim compensation from the other driver’s assets.
Some of the ways that truck accidents are different from car accidents include:
- More severe injuries
- Higher medical bills
- More liable parties, which means you may have to file multiple claims to recover compensation
- Higher insurance limits on trucks – usually at least $1 million – mean insurers may put up a tougher fight
The truck accident lawyers at Pines & Goldenzweig, PLLC, work on a contingency fee basis. That means you do not have to pay any fees upfront, and you will only have to pay your attorney if they help you recover compensation for your injuries. Contingency fees mean everyone who needs access to the legal system can afford a personal injury lawyer.
Contact Our Experienced Houston Truck Accident Lawyers Today
If you were injured in a truck accident in Houston and someone else is to blame, contact a Houston truck accident attorney at Pines & Goldenzweig, PLLC, right away to get started on your accident claim.