A truck accident, especially one with severe injuries, can leave you with a lot of bills to manage: medical bills, repairing or replacing your vehicle, and contending with lost wages and ongoing regular bills on top of those new expenses.
If someone else caused your accident, you may deserve compensation. Not only that, you may have several options for seeking assistance paying your bills and managing your expenses following the truck accident.
1. File a personal injury claim.
Get in touch with an attorney as soon after your accident as possible to assess whether you have grounds for a personal injury claim and who you need to file a claim against. A truck accident claim can take time to investigate, since more than one party may share liability. The truck driver, who will typically carry a higher-value insurance policy than the average driver of a passenger vehicle, may bear primary responsibility for the damages you suffered in your truck accident. However, other parties may share liability, including:
- The driver’s employer
- A mechanic who recently worked on the vehicle, if a mechanical failure contributed to the accident
- The manufacturer of a truck, when a new vehicle’s malfunction caused an accident
An attorney can help investigate your claim and give you a better idea of exactly how much compensation you deserve. You can usually seek compensation through a personal injury claim if the truck driver or another driver caused the accident, that act of negligence caused you to suffer serious injuries, and you have tangible financial losses due to the truck accident. Typically, through a personal injury claim, you can seek compensation for several key elements.
Compensation for Your Medical Bills
The liable party in a truck accident will not pay your medical bills directly. However, you can seek much-needed compensation for the medical expenses you face as a result of your injuries. Talk to your attorney about how to calculate potential future medical bills to include them as part of your claim or to learn more about how to put together and track your medical expenses following a serious truck accident.
Payment for Lost Wages
If you suffered serious injuries in your truck accident, you may miss considerable time at work during your recovery. Even minor injuries could leave you out of work for 6-8 weeks while you recover. More severe injuries could even leave you permanently unable to complete your usual job responsibilities and struggling to pay your bills as a result. You can pursue compensation for wages lost as a result of your truck accident, including vacation time lost to your recovery and time missed once you could return to work, but had to return to your doctor for follow-up appointments and therapies.
Compensation for Pain and Suffering
In addition to the financial damages you can calculate following your truck accident, you may deserve compensation for the pain and suffering you faced due to your injuries. Talk to your attorney about how to calculate and include pain and suffering, including both the physical pain you faced as an immediate result of your injuries and the long-term emotional suffering you may have faced. You may, for example, want to claim compensation for loss of enjoyment of life, loss of relationships, or missing out on critical events in your life.
Coverage for Property Damage
You may have significant property damage from your truck accident, including the need to replace your vehicle. Typically, you can seek compensation for all repair or replacement costs.
2. Use your medical insurance to help cover your medical bills.
Often, your medical insurance can help you pay for the medical care you need after a serious truck accident. Whether you have broken bones, spinal cord injuries, or traumatic brain injury, you can use your medical insurance to help cover many of the expenses associated with your accident. You may want to contact your insurance company soon after your accident to get a better idea of what your specific policy will cover. You may want to consider your copays and deductibles as well as how much coverage your insurance will offer for long-term care, in-home care, or durable medical equipment, especially if you suffered severe injuries in your accident.
You will need to let your medical insurance provider know that your injuries occurred during a truck accident and that another party bears liability for that accident, which may impact your ability to use your medical insurance.
3. Contact your auto insurance company.
In some cases, you may have the ability to pursue compensation through your insurance company for damages sustained in a big truck accident. Most of the time, big truck drivers carry insurance policies with plenty of protection that will offer compensation for injuries sustained in a car accident. However, in some cases, you may need to pursue compensation through your auto insurance company. You may need to use:
Your Uninsured Motorist Coverage
If the truck driver that caused your accident does not carry insurance, you may need to use your uninsured motorist coverage to receive compensation for your injuries and damages to your vehicle. Contact your insurance provider to learn more about what coverage you have.
Your Underinsured Motorist Coverage
Most truck drivers carry larger insurance policies than the drivers of passenger vehicles, which means the truck driver should carry more than adequate insurance. However, if the truck driver does not carry adequate insurance, you can pursue compensation through your underinsured motorist policy for additional damages to your vehicle or injuries you sustained in the accident.
If you carry collision insurance or comprehensive insurance, you may also use your personal auto insurance policy to get fast coverage for damages to your vehicle.
Did you suffer serious injuries or sustain considerable damage to your vehicle in an accident with a big truck? An attorney can help you understand your legal right to compensation as well as your options for pursuing assistance. Contact Allan Berger & Associates today at 504-526-2222 for a free consultation regarding your truck accident claim.