Truck Accident Lawyer

If you’ve been in a truck accident in Glendale, Arizona, know that you’re not facing this tough time alone. The Perez Law Group, PLLC, is here to support and guide you through this. Facing serious injuries, stress, or financial worries? We can clarify your rights and find your way forward. Contact us at (602) 730-7100 or online.

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Phoenix Truck Accident Lawyer

Being involved in a truck accident is an overwhelming ordeal that can upend your life in an instant. You may suddenly find yourself battling life-threatening injuries, drowning under a mountain of medical bills, and facing the grim reality of being unable to work. However, it’s crucial to remember that you are not without options. You have rights, including the right to demand compensation for your losses and the agony you’ve endured. This is where having a truck accident lawyer in your corner becomes invaluable. They have a thorough understanding of the law and are committed to fighting for the justice and compensation you deserve. Below, experienced Phoenix truck accident lawyers at Perez Law Group, PLLC explain everything you need to know about truck accidents— from their common causes to your legal options, the potential financial compensation, and how a lawyer can support you through these challenging times, offering the guidance and reassurance you need.

About Trucks on Arizona Roads

A truck is a large vehicle designed to transport goods, featuring a cabin for the driver and, often, a separate trailer that attaches to the back for hauling cargo. The cabin contains the controls and is where the driver operates the truck. The trailer, which can be detached and exchanged, is the spacious compartment used for loading and carrying goods.

Trucks are a common sight on Arizona’s roads, playing a crucial role in the state’s economy. However, their presence also brings many dangers to other road users. Due to their massive size and weight, trucks can cause severe accidents resulting in significant injuries or fatalities. The disparity in size between trucks and passenger vehicles means that in a collision, the passenger vehicles often bear the brunt of the impact. Moreover, trucks have larger blind spots, longer stopping distances, and can be more susceptible to certain types of accidents due to their high center of gravity.

Types of Truck Accidents

It’s important to be aware of the different types of truck accidents that can happen. One common type is the rear-end collision, where a truck hits the vehicle in front of it. This often occurs when trucks can’t stop quickly because of their heavy loads. Another type is the jackknife accident, which happens when the trailer of a truck swings out and forms a sharp angle with the cab, often leading to loss of control. Side-impact collisions occur when the side of a vehicle is hit by the front or rear of a truck. These accidents are particularly dangerous because of the lack of protection on the sides of most vehicles. Rollover accidents happen when a truck flips over onto its side or roof, often caused by sharp turns at high speeds or sudden maneuvers. Lastly, underride accidents, one of the most fatal, occur when a smaller vehicle gets trapped under a truck’s trailer. Each type of accident presents unique dangers and challenges for everyone involved.

Causes of Truck Accidents

Driver fatigue is a leading cause of truck accidents, as truck drivers are on the road for long hours, which can lead to decreased alertness and reaction time. Poor vehicle maintenance is another significant factor; brakes, tires, and other important components must be regularly inspected and maintained to ensure safety. Overloading the truck can also lead to accidents, as it affects the vehicle’s handling and increases stopping distances. Speeding is a common cause too, as higher speeds reduce the driver’s ability to stop or maneuver safely in an emergency. Weather conditions, such as rain, snow, and fog, significantly increase the risk of accidents by reducing visibility and making roads slippery. Lastly, inadequate training for truck drivers on safety protocols and handling specific truck types can lead to mistakes on the road, contributing to accidents.

Truck Accident Hotspots

In Phoenix, Arizona, truck accidents can happen anywhere, but certain areas are more likely to see these incidents. Major highways and freeways, like the Loop 101 and I-17, are hotspots for truck accidents because of the high volume of commercial trucks traveling at higher speeds. Busy intersections and roads with frequent stop-and-go traffic can also be dangerous, as these conditions increase the risk of rear-end and side-impact collisions. Industrial areas and near logistics centers where trucks enter and exit frequently can see a higher incidence of accidents, especially during peak hours. Residential areas might not be common sites for truck accidents, but when they do occur, they can be particularly hazardous because of narrower streets and the presence of pedestrians.

Potential Liable Parties in Truck Crash Cases

When a truck accident shakes up your life, pinning down who’s responsible is often complex because truck accidents typically involve more factors than passenger car wrecks. Here’s a clearer look at the parties that might be liable:

The Truck Driver

This is often the first place to look. If the driver was distracted, under the influence, or violating traffic laws, they can be directly responsible.

The Trucking Company

Trucking companies have a duty to ensure their drivers and vehicles are safe on the road. This includes proper vetting during hiring, ensuring drivers comply with hours-of-service regulations, and maintaining their fleet. If a company fails in these duties, their actions or negligence can contribute to an accident. Moreover, if the company sets unrealistic delivery schedules that encourage speeding or insufficient rest, their policies could also be under scrutiny.

Loading Companies

Incorrectly loaded or secured cargo can lead to disaster. If cargo shifts during transport, it can cause the driver to lose control. The responsibility for this could fall on the shoulders of the company that loaded the truck, especially if they failed to follow proper safety guidelines or rushed the job.

Parts Manufacturers

Sometimes, the fault lies not in human error but with the vehicle itself. If an important component like brakes, tires, or steering mechanisms fails because of manufacturing defects, the manufacturer of that part could be liable.

Maintenance Providers

Regular maintenance is vital for keeping trucks safe. If an accident was caused by a mechanical failure that should have been caught or fixed during routine maintenance, the service provider could be held responsible. This could be the case for issues like brake failure or tire blowouts that are directly linked to poor maintenance practices.

In Phoenix, Arizona, as in many places, the process of identifying all the parties responsible for a truck accident involves thorough investigation. It’s about looking at every angle of the accident and every link in the chain of events that led to it.

Legal Process in Truck Accident Insurance Claims and Lawsuits

Initiating an insurance claim is your first crucial step after being involved in a truck accident. This process requires you to document the incident thoroughly and submit a detailed report to both your own insurance company and the insurer of the involved truck driver or their employer. Your report should cover all relevant aspects of the accident, including what led up to it, the full extent of injuries you sustained, and the degree of property damage.

Upon receiving your claim, the insurance company will assign an adjuster to assess the situation. This adjuster’s job is to review all the evidence you’ve submitted, like accident reports and medical records, to determine the financial cost of the incident. It’s vital to remember that insurance companies often aim to minimize their financial liabilities, which can lead to settlement offers that might not fully meet your needs or reflect the actual losses you’ve incurred.

If the insurance claim process ends without a reasonable resolution for you, filing a lawsuit becomes a viable option. This process starts with drafting and filing a formal complaint, a legal document that outlines your basis for seeking compensation from the responsible parties, which may include the truck driver, their employer, or other related entities. This filing initiates the lawsuit, kicking off a series of legal procedures. The defendants are then given the chance to respond to the allegations you’ve made in the complaint.

Following these initial steps, the pre-trial phase starts, marked by a process known as discovery. During discovery, both sides exchange pertinent information and evidence. This may include sharing documents, collecting witness testimonies, and conducting depositions to gain a comprehensive understanding of the case. Throughout this phase, there’s still a chance for settlement discussions, possibly mediated by a third party, aimed at resolving the dispute without going to trial. However, if these negotiations don’t lead to an agreement, the case moves forward to trial. At trial, the evidence is laid out before a judge or jury, who then deliberates to decide on liability and the appropriate compensation for you.

Going to court can take a long time and gets complicated, especially when you’re trying to show that the truck driver or their company was negligent. This is why talking to a lawyer who knows the ins and outs of truck accidents can make a huge difference. They can handle the tough talks with insurance companies or take your case to court if that’s what it takes.

Potential Damages in a Truck Accident Case

Truck accidents often result in severe injuries, including traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries leading to paralysis, amputations, severe burns, and internal organ damage. These injuries can have life-altering consequences, requiring extensive medical treatment and rehabilitation.

The compensation you seek through a lawsuit or an insurance claim isn’t just about money—it’s about trying to make your life whole again. Let’s break down what this could cover:

Medical Costs

This is often the biggest immediate concern. You’re looking at bills for the ambulance, emergency room, hospital stays, surgeries, medications, and any follow-up visits or physical therapy you might need. And the costs don’t stop when you leave the hospital. You might need ongoing treatment or rehabilitation, and sometimes there are long-term health effects that require continuous care. All of this should be factored into your compensation.

Lost Wages and Future Earnings

If you’re injured, you might not be able to work for a while—or ever again, in the same capacity. This part of the compensation covers the paychecks you’re missing now while you recover. But it also looks ahead, considering the impact on your ability to earn money in the future. If your injuries limit your work opportunities or force you into a lower-paying job, that’s a loss that can be calculated and added to your claim.

Pain and Suffering

This is harder to put a price tag on, but it’s just as real as the medical bills. The physical pain, the emotional turmoil of recovery, the impact on your daily life and relationships, the stress of dealing with the accident’s aftermath—all of this takes a toll. Compensation for pain and suffering means that the accident has affected your quality of life, not just your bank account.

In Case of Fatal Accidents

Tragically, some accidents result in loss of life. In these cases, the victim’s family can seek compensation for funeral and burial expenses, but also for the deep loss of companionship, support, and income the deceased provided. It’s a way to address the emotional and financial void left by the loss of a loved one.

Partial Fault

Arizona follows a rule that allows you to collect damages even if you were partly at fault for the accident, but the amount you receive is adjusted based on your share of the blame. So, if it’s decided that you were 20% responsible for what happened, any compensation you’re awarded will be reduced by 20%.

Next Steps After a Truck Accident

Right after a truck accident, your safety is the top priority. First, check yourself and others for injuries. If anyone is hurt, call 911 immediately. Even if you feel okay, it’s smart to get checked by a doctor soon, as some injuries might not show up right away. Then, if it’s safe, take pictures of the accident scene, the vehicles, and any visible injuries. This can help later on. Exchange contact and insurance information with the truck driver but try to keep the conversation light and don’t admit fault. It’s also important to get contact information from any witnesses. After that, report the accident to the police and your insurance company. Remember, talking to a lawyer before you discuss the accident with the insurance company can help protect your rights.

It’s also important to keep in mind that in Arizona, for truck accident cases, you have a specific time frame to take legal action, known as the statute of limitations. You must file a lawsuit within two years of the accident date. If you miss this deadline, you risk losing your right to pursue compensation for damages caused by the accident. It’s crucial to be aware of this time limit to protect your legal rights and ensure you can seek justice for any injuries or losses sustained.

Role of a Truck Crash Lawyer

A truck accident lawyer steps in to guide you through the aftermath of an accident. They’re your advocate, making sure your side of the story is heard and that you’re treated fairly by insurance companies and in court, if it comes to that. They understand the laws and rules that apply to truck accidents and can help figure out who is responsible for your injuries and losses. Truck accident attorneys handle all the complicated paperwork and negotiations, aiming to get you the best compensation possible for your injuries, lost wages, and any other costs from the accident. Plus, they can offer advice on how to deal with medical bills and repairs in the meantime.

Frequently Asked Questions

What should I do at the accident scene? Make sure everyone is safe, call 911, exchange information with the truck driver, take photos, and look for witnesses.

How long do I have to file a claim? In Arizona, you usually have two years from the accident date, but it’s best to start the process as soon as possible.

Will I have to go to court? Not always. Many cases settle out of court, but your lawyer will prepare to go to court if necessary.

What if I was partially at fault? Arizona uses comparative negligence, meaning you can still get compensation, but it may be reduced based on your fault percentage.

Can I claim for emotional distress? Yes, you can claim compensation for both physical injuries and emotional distress.

How do I know if I have a case? A truck accident lawyer can evaluate your situation and advise if you have a valid claim.

What compensation can I receive? Compensation can cover medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and sometimes punitive damages.

How long will my case take? It varies. Some cases settle quickly, while others can take months or even years, especially if they go to trial.

Do I need a lawyer for a truck accident claim? While not required, having a lawyer can significantly improve your chances of getting fair compensation.

Arizona Truck Accident Attorney

If you’ve been hit by a truck in Phoenix, or elsewhere in Arizona, you’re facing a tough road ahead—but you don’t have to walk it alone. At Perez Law Group, PLLC, we’re your advocates, ready to take on those responsible and fight hard for the justice you deserve. Give us a call at (602) 730-7100 or reach out online to discuss your legal options and next steps with an experienced truck accident lawyer.