Have you recently been involved in a car accident with a Florida truck driver? You could be entitled to seek extra compensation.
Car accidents with truckers can leave behind severe damage, whether it is physical, mental, or to your vehicle. If you suspect the driver responsible for the car accident was the cause of negligence, you can speak to a Stuart FL, Truck Accident Lawyer today about filing a claim.
Your fight may run into obstacles, and it may not be easy depending on the circumstances. If you do decide to file a legal claim against a truck driver, there must be sufficient evidence that the accident was more than an accident. Here’s how to prove the trucker who hit you was not properly trained and what to expect in your legal battle.
Florida Trucker Requirements
Unlike everyday civilian drivers, truckers must follow additional safety protocols when operating their vehicles on the road. Since they are driving bigger trucks that sometimes carry harmful substances, they must be vigilant at all times.
Truckers must also go through intensive training and preparation to handle such equipment to ensure everyone’s safety on the road. Truckers must take a rigorous class and pass an exam to receive their CDL licenses. There are also safe driving measures these professionals must practice in order to keep their licenses.
The CDL exam requires expertise and requirements, including:
- Vehicle operation
- Passing a vision and medical test
- Vehicle road laws for truckers
- Brake safety
- Air brakes
- Basic skills
- Checking blind spots
- Making wide turns
- Operating vehicles in inclement weather
There may be additional training provided by the company the trucker works for, so they must be aware of company policies. While operating a commercial vehicle on the road, it is expected that drivers operate with safety and care at all times while incorporating the information they were trained with.
How To Prove The Trucker Was Not Properly Trained
If you plan on filing a claim, there needs to be sufficient evidence that the driver was not properly trained. Since accidents can and do happen on the road, investigating the background of the employee is a must for these kinds of cases.
When a trucker is hired by an employee, it is the employer’s responsibility to ensure that all drivers are adequately trained to meet company standards and federal requirements. It takes an average of 6 weeks to train and pass for a CDL in the state of Florida, but the requirements do not end there.
Once a driver is issued their CDL, it is the employer’s responsibility to keep up with the following about each driver:
- How many hours they’ve spent on the road
- Any violations or citations they have received
- Trainings the individuals have undergone
There are regulations to be updated when a driver receives their CDL, so training should be consistent.
When investigating the background of a driver’s training history, a lawyer might look into the company for information about what was offered to the individual. Companies who fail to deliver required training could face legal consequences, especially if their driver caused an accident.
How To File A Lawsuit Against A Trucker
Before filing a claim against a trucker, you should consider seeking the help of a Stuart Truck Accident Lawyer. If a driver was not properly trained by their employer, then you may be able to sue the company for your damages.
The attorney you hire will need to have a consultation with you beforehand to review your claim and all evidence to distinguish what the right move to make is. Your attorney will want to look at records of your:
- Medical history from the accident
- Damages to your vehicle
- Photo evidence you may have
- Any witnesses’ information you gathered at the scene
- Insurance information
Since you are trying to prove the negligence lies in the hands of the employer, your attorney may also turn their focus to the company history to see what they can find about whether the employees are trained and have up to date CDL licenses.
How Are Damages Awarded In These Cases?
Based on Florida car laws, civilians are required to carry a minimum of $10,000 in personal injury protection and property damage liability. This means that if you were ever involved in a car accident of any kind, your first step is to speak to your insurance agent before you consider filing a lawsuit.
However, there are certain limitations that warrant lawsuits and since truckers can carry up to 80,000 pounds, you could be in the right to file a claim with your attorney.
Accidents involving tractor-trailers can result in serious damages or even death if the accident is extremely severe. If it turns out that you have a viable and successful claim, one of two things may happen:
- A settlement between you and the company will be reached
- Your case will go to trial where a jury will determine the outcome
The trucking company may offer a settlement by electing the first option. This would be where your attorney and their attorney negotiate until an agreement is reached. If no agreement can be reached, then your case will go to court.
If your case makes it to court, the jury will listen to all evidence supported by both lawyers. If they deem you as the victim, they will look at your economic and non-economic losses to determine your settlement.
Economic losses are the total sum of items that can be added such as your medical bills, lost wages from time off work, and more. Your non-economic losses refer to pain and suffering and any mental or physical anguish that can’t be literally totaled but are factored into your final settlement offer.
Start Your Case Today with A Skilled Attorney
Were you or a loved one recently injured in a car accident with a trucker? If so, the attorneys at Frankl Kominsky Injury Lawyers want to help you seek the extra compensation you deserve. Our highly awarded skills and attorneys have been trusted by the residents of Stuart, Florida, for the last 40 years (by appointment only). Combined, we’ve helped clients recover millions of dollars for their injuries.
We want to help you recover your damages and seek justice against a preventable wrongdoing. To get started, schedule a no-obligation free consultation with one of our highly acclaimed attorneys.
You can leave your contact information in our free case evaluation form online or by calling our firm at (561) 800-8000.
We look forward to hearing from you. Don’t let any more time in the four years you have to make a claim pass you by.