If you or a loved one have been injured in a truck accident in Brockton or elsewhere in Massachusetts, turn to The Law Offices of Gerald J. Noonan. Our legal knowledge and skill can help you pursue financial compensation for the injuries and damages of you or your loved one.
We are seasoned trial litigators who have successfully represented numerous personal injury victims. We have helped clients recover the compensation they deserve. We will work tirelessly to get a fair settlement for you. When the insurance companies refuse to offer fair compensation, our firm is fully prepared to fight your case at trial.
Given their size and weight, commercial trucks can cause serious damage to any vehicle they hit. Truck accident victims may be left with severe, life-altering injuries. If you have been injured in a truck accident, you might be struggling with the tremendous pain of your injuries. You may also be feeling the financial strain caused by medical bill after medical bill.
You do not have to face this overwhelming situation alone. The skilled and knowledgeable Brockton attorneys at The Law Offices of Gerald J. Noonan understand the challenges you are facing. We will use our 30 years of experience and our legal resources to help you obtain the settlement or verdict you need and deserve.
Contact us today to schedule a free case review. A Massachusetts truck accident lawyer in Brockton is ready to discuss your legal rights and options.
Why Truck Accident Cases Are Different
Many people might believe that semi-truck accidents are no different from any other kind of motor vehicle accident. In reality, 18-wheeler accident claims can develop into complex legal matters for several reasons:
- More severe injuries – The sheer size of a commercial truck means that a collision imparts significant forces on the occupants of a smaller passenger vehicle. These forces can lead to severe injuries for occupants of the smaller vehicle. A tractor-trailer accident that results in serious injuries can complicate a later legal claim. Accident victims often have extensive financial damages due to their intensive medical treatment. Injured victims may require future treatment even as their accident claim is being resolved. Those future damages must be estimated and included in their compensation.
- More parties involved – The trucking industry involves multiple companies. Each of those companies can make a mistake or commit an act of negligence that leads to a truck accident. These parties will often point the finger of blame at one another. Accident victims must sift through the evidence and determine which party or parties bear fault for the crash.
- More complex state and federal laws – The trucking industry is controlled by a series of regulations at the state and federal level. These regulations are intended to ensure the safe operation of commercial trucks. When these regulations are disregarded, a truck accident may be the result. Any investigation into a truck accident must consider whether those regulations were ignored.
Given the complexities of truck accident cases, when you have been injured in a truck accident, you are best served by having an experienced truck accident lawyer.
Who Can Be Held Responsible After a Truck Accident in Brockton?
A typical car accident usually involves only the drivers of the vehicles in the crash. However, given the complex and highly regulated nature of the trucking industry, truck accidents can have many more parties that bear some share of fault in a truck accident.
Parties that can be held responsible for truck accidents include:
- The truck driver that negligently operates his or her vehicle
- The trucking company, which may hire an unsafe driver or negligently maintain its vehicles
- The truck owner, if different from the truck driver or trucking company, when an accident is caused by improper or deferred maintenance of the truck
- The freight company, when an accident is caused by an unsafe or shifting truckload
- The truck maintenance company, if an accident is caused by improper or negligent maintenance of the vehicle
- The truck manufacturer or part manufacturer, if an accident is caused by a design or manufacturing defect
Our experienced Brockton truck accident lawyers can review your case to identify the party or parties that may share liability for your accident and injuries.
Demanding Full Compensation for Your Losses
An injured victim of a truck accident may be entitled to seek compensation for the damages they incurred as a result of the accident. At The Law Offices of Gerald J. Noonan, our Brockton truck accident lawyers will work to ensure that you are fully compensated for your losses. Your losses may include:
- Past, ongoing and future anticipated medical expenses
- Costs of long-term care, such as home health care
- Personal and home services such as laundry or housecleaning services when you cannot perform those tasks yourself
- Lost wages and income for the time you miss from work while recovering from your injuries
- Lost earning capacity, if your injuries disable you from returning to your old job or performing the same amount of work you did before the accident
- Lost quality of life from the inability to complete daily tasks or participate in activities you previously enjoyed
- Pain and suffering
We can also help you seek compensation for the property damage you suffered in the accident. You may need repair costs for your vehicle or replacement costs if your vehicle was totaled in the accident. You may also need repair or replacement costs for any other personal property damaged or destroyed in the accident.
Time Limit for Filing a Truck Accident Lawsuit in Brockton
Under Massachusetts law, you have three years from the date of your truck accident in which to file your personal injury lawsuit. If you wait too long to file your lawsuit, the court will almost certainly dismiss your case. That means you will permanently lose your right to seek recovery in court. It is critical that you speak with our Brockton truck accident lawyer as soon as possible. That will give us time to pursue your claim.
What to Do to Protect Your Rights After a Truck Crash in Brockton
Following your truck accident, take these steps to help preserve your legal rights and options:
- Call 911 or the police. If anyone has been injured, call 911 to have paramedics come to the scene. Otherwise, call the police department or state police and ask that an officer or trooper come to the accident scene. A police accident report will be prepared. Obtain a copy of this report from law enforcement.
- Get information from the truck driver and any other drivers involved in the accident. This includes names, contact information, the truck driver’s employer information, license/registration information, and insurance information.
- Document the accident scene and your injuries. If safe to do so, take photos or video of the accident scene. The pictures should include the positions of vehicles after the accident, vehicle damage, road lines and traffic controls. Also document the weather, lighting, road and traffic conditions at the time of the accident.
- Decline to give any statements to insurance adjusters or defense attorneys. You may be asked to give an official statement to an insurance adjuster. Persons representing the truck driver may be looking for you to say something they can use to deny your claim. Instead, you should refer all communications to your attorney. An attorney can communicate on your behalf and make sure your rights and interests are protected.
- Get examined by a physician. Even if you think you were not injured in the accident, get a physical exam from a doctor as soon as possible after your accident. A doctor might diagnose injuries of which you are unaware. A medical exam will allow you to more persuasively argue that any injuries were caused by the accident.
Common Causes of Truck Accidents
Commercial trucks, semi-trucks, tractor-trailers, and 18-wheelers are large, complicated pieces of equipment. Even a small mistake or momentary lapse in judgment can lead to a loss of control and a catastrophic accident. Common causes of truck crashes include:
- Careless or reckless driving, including failing to signal or weaving in and out of traffic
- Drowsy or fatigued driving, which can occur when truck drivers stay behind the wheel past government-mandated hours-of-service limits
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
- Inexperienced drivers, who may not know how to properly control their vehicle in emergency situations
- Unfamiliarity with routes, which can cause drivers to get lost and end up on roads unsafe for large trucks
- Improper or unsafe cargo loads, which can cause truck drivers to lose control as an improperly secured load shifts in the trailer
- Inadequate maintenance, including maintenance that is negligently performed or maintenance that is deferred out of neglect or as a cost-saving measure
- Defective trucks or truck parts, which can fail while a truck is moving and cause a driver to lose control
Other causes of truck accidents include bad weather, such as heavy rain or fog, and poor road conditions, including potholes or wet road surfaces.
Truck Accident Injuries
Due to the large size of commercial trucks, injuries in truck accidents are often catastrophic and sometimes fatal. Even if you think you have only sustained minor injuries, you should get checked by a doctor following a truck accident. Some injuries may not appear until hours or days later.
Common truck accident injuries include:
- Strains and sprains – These injuries are usually minor, but they can put you out of commission for several weeks.
- Bruises, abrasions, and cuts – These are also minor injuries, but if you fail to properly treat abrasions or cuts, they may become infected.
- Burns – Burns can range in severity and are often extremely painful. They may also become infected if you don’t care for them properly. If you have other health issues such as diabetes, burns may not heal properly, leaving you with an increased chance of severe infection.
- Fractures – Fractures involve bones that are cracked or broken but do not pierce the skin. Though fractures are serious, compound fractures—where the bone goes through the skin—are worse. Compound fractures may require surgery. You may not be able use a fractured limb for several weeks. You may need physical therapy once the fracture heals.
- Amputations – In some cases, a limb, toe or finger that is severely damaged may require amputation.
- Traumatic brain injury – Even with all the safety equipment in modern vehicles, you may suffer a traumatic brain injury in a truck accident. You can recover from many traumatic brain injuries. However, in some cases, you may suffer permanent brain damage.
- Back and spinal cord injuries – Back and spinal cord injuries can leave you incapacitated for a short time, or you may suffer from long-term or permanent injuries. Since your nerves pass through your spinal cord, you could experience paralysis if your injury is severe enough.
Depending on the severity of your injury, you may require physical or occupational therapy for weeks or months following your accident.
How Our Brockton Truck Accident Attorneys Can Help You
When negligent truck drivers and trucking companies injure you or a loved one, turn to the Brockton truck accident attorneys of The Law Offices of Gerald J. Noonan. We stand ready to protect your legal rights and interests. Our firm can help you pursue financial recovery from those responsible for your accident by:
- Investigating your accident to recover and review evidence, such as the police accident report, accident scene photos, truck driver logs and toxicology reports, truck manifests, truck data recorder logs, and truck maintenance records
- Bringing on accident reconstruction experts, trucking industry experts and engineering experts to help us show how your accident occurred. Medical, vocational and financial experts can demonstrate the extent of your injuries and damages
- Filing your claims with the insurance companies and aggressively negotiating with insurance adjusters and defense lawyers to reach a fair and full settlement for you
- Preparing your case for a trial, if necessary, if the insurance companies and at-fault parties refuse to make a fair settlement offer
Schedule a free, no-obligation initial consultation with a truck accident lawyer in Brockton. Learn how The Law Offices of Gerald J. Noonan can help you and your family seek the maximum financial recovery you deserve. Call us today.