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Have you been a victim in a big rig accident today? Big rigs are powerful transport trucks that are designed to pull heavy freights across the United States. Being involved in an accident with an 18-wheeler truck or big rig can be a terrifying experience.
If you or someone you care for has suffered an accident involving a big rig, then there are some important actions you must start immediately to ensure you don’t also suffer legal and financial repercussions of a truck accident.
These are the 7 actions you must take after being involved in a collision with a big rig.
1. Detail all information about the accident
Write down everything about the incident. No matter how insignificant, it’s crucial you write down every detail about what happened.
As time goes on, you will naturally forget valuable details you may need in your case.
- Time: the time of the accident is important for your case. Was it rush hour or a quiet hour in the evening?
- Road conditions: other conditions like terrible road maintenance and bad weather can be responsible for an accident.
- What was the driver of the big rig doing? Were they speeding or driving carelessly?
- Describe the accident: detail how the accident happened. What happened first? Who was responsible for it? Was there a chain reaction caused by one driver or multiple factors?
- Describe what happened after the accident: this is vital too. Did anyone attempt to leave the scene of the accident? When did emergency services arrive?
2. Get information from the driver (and all parties involved)
Get personal contact information from all the parties involved in the accident.
The driver of the big rig will likely work for a company. You will need personal details as well as work details. Through the legal case, you will probably be dealing with the driver’s company rather than the driver themselves.
If there are any witnesses, make sure you get their contact information too. You may need a witness statement.
3. Get medical attention
In some accidents, it may take days or even weeks before you realize you’ve suffered an injury. Some injuries are internal but can have long term effects that impact your daily life.
After the accident, get a medical examination. Shock and adrenaline can delay the effects of serious injuries. Whilst it might be your natural instinct to go home and get away from the accident, get medical attention first.
A medical examination can determine if you’ve been injured internally. Making a compensation claim can recover any financial losses from medical expenses.
4. Don’t contact insurers immediately
Do not contact your insurance company to inform them of the accident. Wait.
You need to get legal guidance before contacting them.
Insurance companies just want facts and to get the case solved quickly. You can’t contact them if you don’t have all the facts to make a claim. It’s important you get legal advice to ensure you answer your insurer’s questions correctly: you don’t want to be paying for an accident or damages that weren’t your fault.
5. You must not sign anything you don’t understand
After an accident, you will likely be asked to sign important documents and be asked questions about the accident. If you’re in shock or injured, you must not sign anything until you have recovered from the trauma. Shock, injuries and painkillers can debilitate your logic and mental ability.
If you sign any legal documentation before getting assistance from your own lawyer, they can be used against you in a courtroom and damage your compensation case.
6. Find an experienced lawyer who can deal with your case
There are many lawyers out there, and you need to find one who has a history of success in criminal and personal injury cases to give you the best chance at getting compensation for your accident.
Spending extra time to research and find the best lawyer for you and your case offers extra benefits and higher chance of success.
7. Contact a personal injury lawyer
Once you’ve found a lawyer who has experience with big rig accident compensation claims, contact them and tell them about your case. These are the questions you need to ask before hiring a personal injury lawyer.
Follow their advice. Your lawyer will have worked in similar cases like yours before and they will be able to direct you on the best course of action to help you achieve the best outcome. There are many mistakes you must avoid when making your claim.
Fast track your compensation claim for your big rig accident today
Compensation processes can be lengthy and time consuming. But you can help speed up the process by following the steps mentioned above and reading this 18 wheeler accident guide.
Disclaimer: This blog is intended as general information purposes only, and is not a substitute for legal advice. Anyone with a legal problem should consult a lawyer immediately.