Ocala Truck Accident Attorneys
Commercial trucks can weigh as much as 80,000 pounds when they are full of cargo. Not surprisingly, these large, heavy vehicles can cause devastating damage when they collide with a small car, minivan, or SUV. Being in a truck accident is not only frightening but can result in serious and often life-changing injuries, and victims often incur thousands of dollars in losses, if not more.
If you or a family member has been injured in a truck accident, you should know that you may have important legal rights. Truck accident cases can be very different than regular car accident cases in many ways, however, so you want to ensure that you have legal assistance from an Ocala truck accident attorney who has specific experience representing truck accident victims.
Truck Accident Cases Are Complicated
Ocala truck accident cases can be significantly more complex than other traffic cases for many different reasons. After a crash, it will not be as simple as calling another driver’s insurance company and making a claim. Instead, you will be facing large trucking corporations who have legal teams and insurance representatives fighting liability whenever they can. Many issues can arise while processing a truck insurance claim and, even if the insurance company makes a settlement offer, it will often be insufficient to cover your past and future losses. It is critical to be represented by a truck accident lawyer who understands how these powerful insurance companies work and can engage in persuasive negotiations.
In many cases, it is necessary to file a lawsuit in civil court to obtain the full amount you deserve for your injuries because a truck insurance company refuses to cooperate. Not only is the legal process complicated with many different rules and procedures, but you also must identify specifically who should be held liable for your accident. Many different parties can cause or contribute to a truck accident, including:
Trucking companies and insurers can make it extremely difficult for you to determine exactly who was responsible and they can even hide evidence or try to mask mistakes. An experienced Ocala truck accident lawyer will have the resources needed to investigate the circumstances of your crash and determine exactly who and what caused your crash so that you can file a successful truck accident claim.
Truck accident cases can also be particularly challenging because of the severity of many injuries sustained by victims. Traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, and other catastrophic injuries can leave victims with lasting disabilities and requiring long-term care. Because of the extreme cost of lifelong medical treatment and lost earnings, there can be a significant amount of money at stake for truck accident victims. You should be represented by an attorney who understands how to accurately calculate and pursue recovery for all of your losses so you are not left financially liable down the road.
The legal issues involved in truck accident cases are also different than car crash cases. The trucking industry is subject to many additional regulations set out by both Florida and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). Knowing how to navigate these often confusing regulations is essential in a successful truck accident case. Our attorneys are highly familiar with the trucking industry and all relevant laws so they can best represent truck accident victims.
Why You Can Rely on Meldon Law for Your Truck Accident Case
Even if you realize that you need a lawyer who is skilled in handling truck crash claims, knowing how to choose the right lawyer can be difficult. There are many law firms that advertise on TV and billboards and it can be challenging to know who you can trust to handle your case in the best way possible. The following are only some of the many reasons you can trust the truck accident lawyers at Meldon Law.
- Founder Jeffrey Meldon started the firm in 1971 and has since become highly respected throughout Florida for the firm’s dedication to and success for its clients.
- Both insurance companies and lawyers for trucking companies recognize that Meldon Law will not accept inadequate offers and will not back down from tough negotiations.
- Meldon Law only hires highly experienced litigators as associates who all stay current on new developments in the trucking industry, relevant laws, and technology.
- Our team has extensive knowledge of accident reconstruction, vocational rehabilitation, biomechanics, medicine, economics, and engineering.
- We have a network of highly respected medical, vocational, and accident reconstruction experts to assist with cases and provide reliable testimony.
Meldon Law understands that every truck accident case requires extensive research and investigation to be successful and we dedicate the time necessary to every single client. To ensure we have the resources to commit to each case, we are selective about the number of cases we accept. We value quality over quantity and will never settle your case simply to resolve it faster unless the settlement is the right decision for you. Instead of having your case handed off to a brand new attorney, you will always receive personalized representation from skilled associates who take pride in their work and have years of experience.
Ocala Truck Accident FAQ
Our attorneys regularly hear a wide range of questions relating to truck accidents and resulting legal claims. The following are only some examples of frequently asked truck accident questions. To discuss your specific situation, please contact our truck accident lawyers in Ocala directly.
What causes truck accidents in Ocala?
Modern commercial trucks are extremely complicated pieces of machinery that engineers specifically design to haul large heavy loads. They are a common sight in the Gainesville area, especially on Interstate 75 or around the University of Florida campus.
Accidents involving commercial trucks can occur for many of the same reasons that regular car accidents happen, but many of them are the result of truck driver error. In addition, some accidents result from issues that are unique to commercial trucking.
Some of the more common causes of truck accidents include:
- Distracted driving
- Overloaded or unsecured cargo
- Driving while impaired by drugs or alcohol
- Driver fatigue
- Coupling device failure
- Failing to adapt driving to adverse weather conditions
- Noncompliance with federal regulations
- Negligent hiring
- Inadequate truck driver training
These are only some of the potential causes of truck accidents, and victims should always have an attorney review any incident involving a commercial vehicle crash that resulted in injuries.
When can Ocala truck accident victims recover compensation?
Truck accident victims are often dealing with their treatment and recovery, facing stacks of medical bills, adjusting their budgets due to lost income, and much more. The stress can build quickly, and it is only natural to wonder whether you can recover compensation. The best way to know your rights is to have our legal team evaluate a possible case.
Generally speaking, however, victims can recover compensation if another party caused the truck accident.
The following are some possible parties that might be liable in your case:
- Truck drivers – As mentioned above, truck driver error is a major cause of commercial truck crashes. If you can show that a truck driver was negligent and the negligence caused your accident and injuries, then the driver should be liable for your losses.
- Trucking companies – Trucking companies are also strictly liable for the negligent actions of their employees. Companies can be negligent in their own right, as well, such as by poor maintenance of trucks, negligent hiring and supervision, and more.
- Other parties – Parties other than the truck driver and trucking company might also be responsible for causing or contributing to the crash. These include third-party cargo loading crews, mechanics, truck and tire manufacturers, and other drivers, among others.
If your attorney can identify one or more parties that should be liable for your accident, you have the right to recover compensation for your losses.
How much is my Ocala truck accident claim worth?
This is another question that requires an evaluation of your circumstances before an attorney can give you a personalized answer. However, you can get an idea of what your claim might be worth by examining your losses. These include losses already incurred, as well as any losses you might experience in the future.
Some common losses are as follows:
- Medical bills for treatment already received
- Estimated costs of treatment you need in the future
- Wages you lost from missing work
- Estimated future lost earnings if you cannot return to your prior position due to your injury
- Physical pain and suffering
- Mental trauma, including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Permanent disabilities and impairments, such as from a traumatic brain injury (TBI) or a paralyzing spinal cord injury (SCI)
Calculating your claim’s value can be complicated, especially since many losses from serious injuries are intangible and not directly associated with financial losses. Our legal team knows how to accurately determine your claim’s worth, so we seek the full amount of compensation you need and deserve for past and future losses.
Do I need an Ocala truck accident lawyer to represent me if the insurance company wants to settle?
Trucking is a high-risk industry, and trucking companies and their insurers know it. As a result, they are ready to do everything they can to limit liability at the drop of a hat. This includes settling cases for as little as they possibly can when there is no legitimate dispute over liability.
Because of this, you should retain an attorney to represent you, even if the insurance or trucking company has expressed a willingness to settle your case out of court.
Insurance companies use many tactics to settle cases for as little as possible, including:
- Making a settlement offer before you have had a chance to talk to a lawyer
- Making an unreasonably low initial offer
- Waiting until your bills are piling up before making an offer
- Pressuring you to provide a recorded statement before making an offer
- Misrepresenting your legal rights
At Meldon Law, we know the techniques trucking companies and their insurers use to settle victims claims’ for less than they are worth. As a result, we’re able to head them off at the pass and get our clients the compensation they deserve.
Will my Ocala truck accident claim go to court?
When many people imagine a personal injury claim, they might imagine scenes they see in movies and television shows that involve the injured victim hobbling up to the witness stand. However, in reality, very few injury claims make it to trial, even if your lawyer initiates litigation.
If the insurance company refuses to offer enough to cover your losses, your attorney might decide it is time to file a personal injury lawsuit in Alachua County civil court. There are many steps to the litigation process, including discovery, in which you exchange evidence and information with the other party. With this evidence, your attorney can build the strongest possible case to take to the negotiating table.
Settlement negotiations can occur throughout the litigation process, and most injury claims result in a settlement agreement. This prevents the cost and uncertainty of going to trial, so many defendants and their insurers are agreeable to settle. Your attorney should be a skilled negotiator who will fight for the full amount you need in a settlement agreement. Should your case not reach a favorable agreement, it can proceed to court for a trial.
Call Our Ocala Truck Accident Attorneys Today
The experienced legal team at Meldon Law has been standing up for the rights of truck accident victims in and around Ocala since 1971. We understand that the time following a truck accident is highly stressful and that you are focused on your physical recovery from your injuries and adjusting to any major changes in your life. If you are not able to come into our office for a consultation, we will be happy to come to wherever we need to in order to meet with you.
We are fully committed to seeking the best possible results for every client and we take pride in helping you recover. Please call our office today for free, at 800-373-8000, for more information about how we can help you.