Injuries sustained in any type of motor vehicle accident can be serious, even life-threatening; however, the chance of sustaining a serious injury increases dramatically when one of the vehicles involved in the collision is a tractor-trailer or other large truck. If you were recently injured in a trucking accident in the State of Florida you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries if the truck caused, or contributed to, the accident. One of the first questions you may have after being involved in a trucking accident is likely “Is an attorney needed to litigate a trucking accident case?”
Fundamentally, a trucking accident is litigated the same as any other motor vehicle accident with regard to the legal principles on which the case is litigated. Like a car accident, for example, a trucking accident is based on the law of “torts” which is where a victim will find the right to pursue compensation from a negligent party for injuries sustained in an accident. The law does not require a victim in any type of accident case to be represented by an attorney; however, there are several important reasons why a victim should retain an attorney, particularly if the case involves a semi-trailer.
One important reason why an attorney is needed is the severity of injuries usually found in a trucking accident case. A victim may be entitled to compensation for both economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages represent things such as medical bills and lost wages. The more serious the injuries, the more difficult it can be to be certain a victim receives all the economic damages to which he is entitled because a victim must consider the future cost of medical bills as well as the cost of bills already accrued.
Another important reason to hire an attorney is the issue of negligence. In order for a victim to be entitled to compensation another party must have caused, or contributed to, the accident. Even if it is clear that the truck caused the accident, liability may still be an issue. The reason for this is that when a large truck is involved there are often multiple possible defendants, including:
- Driver of the truck
- Owner of the truck
- Owner of the cargo
- Manufacturer of the truck
- Third party maintenance company
Apportioning negligence among the possible defendants can be extremely difficult as each one will try and shift the blame to the other defendants. All too often, a victim proceeding pro se (without an attorney) fails to include all the possible defendants, resulting in the loss of compensation to which he/she is entitled.
Ultimately, the decision to hire an attorney or not is yours to make if you are the victim of a trucking accident; however, the best way to ensure that you receive all the compensation to which you are entitled is to work with an experienced Florida trucking accident attorney. Contact the trucking accident team at Powers Sellers & Finkelstein PLC by calling 727-531-2926 today to schedule your appointment.