In the event of an auto accident, your first concern is moving your vehicle to safety if possible, and calling emergency responders if necessary. From there, you exchange insurance information, document the scene and wait for the police to arrive to file a report.
While these steps are the same between a truck crash and a general car accident, the litigation process is different. If you are a commercial truck driver, understand the difference between truck crash litigation and car accident litigation.
Car Accident Litigation
In a car accident, one of the drivers involved in the accident is typically at fault. Any litigation between the drivers usually revolves around injuries, insurance negotiations and repairing or replacing vehicles. While there may be other variables, a car accident for the most part is relatively simple.
Commercial Truck Accident Litigation
On the other hand, a commercial truck accident brings additional layers to any litigation. A commercial truck driver must hold a CDL in order to drive a commercial vehicle. Due to the specialized training required to drive heavy vehicles, truck drivers held more responsible in traffic incidents.
Additionally, only some drivers own their vehicles. Many rent trucks or drive company-owned vehicles. The rights and responsibilities involved in driving a vehicle you do not own can complicate truck accident litigation. A personal vehicle owner holds a contract with an auto insurer, but truck drivers often have multiple contracts to consider.
Truck drivers may be employed by a company or self-employed. This affects the type of compensation available.
If you are a truck driver involved in a crash, seek out legal representation to avoid losing your commercial license. Even a license suspension can cost you significant income. If you have been injured while working, you may be able to collect workers’ compensation or social security payments.