Colliding with a box truck, semi, or other commercial truck is often devastating. Worse, it’s not the same as colliding with a passenger vehicle.
Suddenly, you’re dealing with huge corporate interests and commercial insurance companies. These people have deep pockets to help them fight against you and your case and a long track record of wriggling out of responsibilities.
What should you do if you want to win?
Never Speak to the Trucking Company or Their Insurance Provider
If you’re like most people, the trucking company will reach out to you right away. They might even sound friendly and concerned.
In reality, they’re either gearing up to offer you a lowball settlement that will not even begin to cover your expenses, or they’re trying to fish around for information to use against you.
Just say: “My lawyer will be in touch.”
Say it even if you still need to get a lawyer.
The insurance adjuster may call. Try not to talk to them. If they ask how you’re doing and you respond with a reflexive, they’ll use it against you. You’ll hear: “Plaintiff said they were fine when asked, so they’re not as injured as they said they were.”
Just let your lawyer handle the insurance adjuster. Only talk to the adjuster if your lawyer is present. Do not sign anything, do not allow them to record you, and do not make formal statements.
Secure a Lawyer Quickly
Many people believe they must reach maximum medical improvement before securing a truck accident lawyer.
Nothing could be further from the truth. You can call us the moment you’re awake and alert enough to do so.
Involving an attorney early has lots of advantages. Trucking companies have a terrible habit of “losing” evidence that could be vital to your case. Involving an attorney early in the process means increasing your lawyer’s chance of getting their hands on this crucial evidence.
In addition, there are generally time limits on filing insurance claims. Your lawyer can file those claims for you and handle the insurance companies, so they don’t lure you into making any vital mistakes.
You want to start your case immediately before you’re close to Alberta’s statute of limitations. You want to move as fast as possible so that you have excellent protection and representation throughout the process.
Choosing a Truck Accident Lawyer
Before hiring a lawyer, ask them about their trucking accident experience and process. For example, will they compare the trucking company’s action to Alberta’s commercial vehicle safety compliance codes and federal law governing truck accident cases? Will they demand the driver be tested for drug and alcohol abuse? Will they check the truck’s maintenance against industry standards and manufacturer-recommended maintenance schedules?
Many trucking companies try to wriggle out of responsibility by claiming their drivers are independent contractors and are responsible for insuring themselves. They do this not only because it protects their interests but because these drivers rarely secure their own insurance. Does your attorney know how to use the CRA four-point test to help prove that the trucking company is, indeed, responsible?
Finally, do they have a big war chest to pursue your accident case before getting paid?
Truck accident cases are expensive and complicated. Make sure your lawyer is up to the challenge.
Get Help Today
The team at Merchant Law has a significant war chest for tackling personal injury cases, and a thirty-year track record of taking on some of Alberta’s biggest trucking companies.
Talk to us before you talk to any insurance or trucking company representative.
We’ll help you get the compensation you deserve.