Las Vegas Truck Accident Lawyer Explains Insurance Claims
Truck Accident Lawsuits
Commercial truck accidents in Las Vegas usually occur on freeways / highways, such as the 215 beltway, I-15 and I-95. The combination of a large truck, coupled with the high speeds on freeways often results in enormous amounts of damage and personal injury.
If you are hurt due to a serious truck accident, call 702-432-1000 to talk to a truck accident lawyer directly. We have helped many clients involved in truck and semi-truck accidents.
When Truck Accident is Indeed an "Accident"?
In Nevada, in order to win a truck accident lawsuit, the attorney has to prove that:
- Negligence of the truck driver contributed to the accident, or
- The truck (or a part of the truck) was malfunctioning.
Proving Negligence in a Truck Accident
Typically, when it comes to large vehicles - large trucks, semi-trucks, big rigs, or an 18 wheelers - the truck driver and truck companies are required to comply with many government regulations and take extra safety precautions. These regulations include:
- Special driving licenses
- Federal tracking safety regulations
- Inspections at the weight stations
- Keeping sleep and break logs (“sleeper-berth time” regulations)
In a lawsuit, the truck accident lawyer has to prove that the driver indeed neglected all or some of these rules and connect the negligence to the accident and to victim’s injuries. Once these connections have been made, the lawyer may file a claim to get compensation for current and future medical bills, lost wages and pain / sufferings.
In Nevada, when multiple victims were involved, all victims who filed a claim must be compensated.
Malfunction parts can be part of: (a) negligence, (b) product defect, or (c) sometimes both.
When a part malfunctions, the question becomes - what caused it? If the part requires regular inspections and maintenance - the part may have failed due to human error. If human error is involved at that stage of the product's life, then someone was negligent.
On the other hand, if the product failed due to a defect from the manufacture, then there may be a product defect claim. In product defect cases, the truck accident lawyer does not have to show that someone was negligent. The attorney only has to show that the product was indeed defective and that the defect caused injury.
Accident Claim Expert Opinions
In cases involving broken or defective parts, an accident claim expert is usually involved. Experts have to test and re-test multiple times different parts of a product and draw opinions from those test. Most of the concerns in truck accident cases are: air brake adjustments, speed, driver fatigue, and truck maintenance.
These opinions are often argued heavily in court by both sides. This also means that your truck injury case can take much longer.
Who is Liable for an Accident?
Although the accident itself was the start of your legal battle, the causes of that accident may have started months or even years before the accident took place. For each potential cause of the accident there is a defendant that may be held responsible.
In any large truck accident, there may be more than one defendant, including:
- The truck driver
- The truck owner
- The trailer owner
- The truck company
- The truck company management
- The truck manufacturer(s)
- The truck parts manufacturer(s)
- The trailer manufacturer(s)
- The trailer parts manufacturer(s) or trailer
- The people responsible of loading the truck or trailer
- The people responsible for maintaining the truck
In the State of Nevada, you can file a lawsuit against some or all of the defendants responsible for the crash.
Future Damage Analysis
Future damage analysis is extra important in a truck accident - the true damage to a person may be masked by the overall severity of the impact. Often shards of glass to the skull or blunt force trauma can cause long-term health issues.
If this is the case, the truck accident lawyer has to determine the future cost of long-term care. Frequently, expert witnesses (such as, doctors, psychologists, economists) must be hired to calculate this future cost and render their opinions in court.
When Insurance Company Calls
The insurance company will almost always try to settle first with the victim directly. They know from experience, if the truck accident lawyer is involved, the insurance company will end up paying much higher settlement.
When insurance adjuster calls you, our advice is, take their information (phone, name, address) and politely tell them that your attorney will contact them. Then find the best truck accident lawyer you can to represent you.
We invite you to call Heshmati & Associates at 702-432-1000 to discuss your case.
Dealing with Insurance
It is not so uncommon for insurance adjusters, risk managers, or the attorneys for the defense to make low ball offers; make a misstatement of law which would lead the claimant to believe that they don’t have a claim; to record the phone conversation and later use honest mistake in a recorded statement as an excuse to deny the claim; to encourage the victim to delay treatment and, later, refuse to pay for it because the claimant waited far too long to see a doctor.
Dealing with insurance companies can sometimes become ugly!
We had a case in Las Vegas where the insurance company offered to reimburse only half of medical bills and said that most of the client's injuries were result of the client's old age (!), not the accident.
Needless to say, Heshmati & Associates fought against the insurance company and at the end received a very good settlement for the client.
Truck Accident Settlement
The “at-fault” party is expected to pay for all medical bills and future long-term care (if applicable). In addition, the “at-fault” party is expected to replace or fix the victim’s vehicle and other damaged property, pay for lost wages and pay for pain / suffering.
Offers During the Trial
While majority of truck accident lawsuits are settled, sometimes the involved parties cannot reach an agreement and the case goes to trial.
During the trial it is not unusual for the insurance company to offer a deal to the victim(s) in order to settle the case without risk of a high verdict from the jury. Always discuss in detail the potential settlement with your truck accident lawyer and weigh all pros and cons before you accept. Remember, the attorneys who represent insurance companies are not your friends; they want to protect the insurance company’s money, not you.
Truck Accident Lawyer Can Help
In truck accident cases, the process of getting compensation from insurance company is very complex. Because many parties are involved, it often takes much longer to get fair compensation.
Attorneys at Heshmati & Associates take all truck accident cases on a contingency basis which means - you only pay if we get settlement money for you.
To discuss your case, call the truck accident lawyer at 702-432-1000.
The initial consultation is free.
Heshmati & Associates attorneys serve clients in the Las Vegas Valley and the State of Nevada.