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  • Writer's pictureRobert Schuerger II

A Guide on How to File a Lawsuit for Truck Accident in Indiana

Although less common, crashes involving commercial vehicles, such as semi-trucks, are some of the deadliest and most catastrophic accidents on the road. Victims often sustain severe injuries that can lead to amputation, disability, or even death.


Since Indiana is the fifth busiest state for commercial freight traffic with over 724 million trips each year, truck accidents account for about 5% of all motor vehicle crashes in this state.


The nationwide truck accident statistics are also alarming. However, victims can file a civil lawsuit to recover compensation for their injuries, losses, and suffering.


What should people do if involved in a truck accident? Can victims recover compensation? Schuerger Shunnarah Trial Attorneys can help with these questions as well as assist with how to file a lawsuit for motorcycle accident in Indiana.


Laws Governing Truck Accidents

Laws Governing Truck Accidents


Across the United States, the commercial trucking industry is regulated by federal laws that establish certain standards all companies and drivers must meet. Most rules cover the following:


  • Licensing requirements

  • Maximum vehicle weight

  • Inspections

  • Drug and alcohol testing

  • Emergency signal equipment

  • Prohibition of hand-held devices


Additionally, the Indiana Department of Transportation has set its own guidelines and requirements to avoid semi-truck accidents. Most of these regulations have to do with oversized load permits.


Common Causes of Truck Accidents


Even though federal and state governments have set standards to prevent accidents with commercial vehicles, they still happen. More often than not, these collisions are caused by the following:


  • Overloaded cargo

  • Speeding

  • Distracted driving

  • Failing to yield

  • Unsafe lane movement

  • Driving under the influence

  • Improper passing and turning

  • Unsafe backing

  • Following too closely

  • Poor vehicle maintenance


In other words, most truck accidents are caused by driver errors and can be prevented by meeting industry safety requirements.


Who Is at Fault for a Semi-Truck Accident?


Different parties can be held liable for a semi-truck accident. These are some of the most common:


  • The semi-truck driver

  • The truck owner

  • The trucking company

  • The truck manufacturer

  • The manufacturer of the truck's components

  • The person who loaded the ship's cargo


It's important for truck accident victims to establish who is at fault for their injuries and prove that they were negligent, as this is a crucial step in the legal process.


To prove fault in a semi-truck accident case, injured parties must prove that the defendant didn't exercise reasonable care and that this failure was the primary cause of the collision.


How Much Time Do Victims Have to File a Truck Accident Lawsuit in Indiana?


Under Indiana law, people who plan to take legal action against commercial truck drivers, trucking companies, or any other party involved in these incidents should file the lawsuit within two years from the date the accident occurs.


This period is known as the "statute of limitations" and may vary under certain circumstances. A person involved in a car accident with a truck operated by the Indiana Public Works Department or another government entity must provide a tort claim notice within 180 days, for example.


What Should Victims Do After a Truck Accident?


Truck accident cases are complex and time-consuming. Therefore, victims should initiate the legal process as soon as possible if they're planning to sue the at-fault party to recover compensation.


Below are the steps that injured individuals must complete after a truck accident:


1. Gather Evidence

If someone is involved in a car accident or collision with a truck, the first thing they should do is make sure they're safe. After that, if their condition allows, victims should gather as much evidence as possible.


The following are some pieces of evidence that can help truck accident victims prove their cases:


  • Photos or videos of the accident scene

  • Photos or videos of their injuries

  • Contact information of witnesses

  • Information from the semi-truck drivers, passengers, or any other party involved in the accident


2. Seek Medical Attention

It's crucial that victims seek medical attention after a truck accident, even if they believe they haven't been injured. Some people may not experience symptoms or have visible wounds until hours or even days after the collision.


By visiting an experienced doctor, people involved in a truck accident can ensure they don't have internal injuries, get treatment, and set a record that may serve as evidence to support their legal cases.


3. Contact a Semi-Truck Accident Lawyer

Victims should also contact an attorney with experience in these cases to find out what they should do next. Semi-truck accident lawyers know personal injury laws and can help people who have been harmed due to someone else's negligence understand their rights.


Indiana trucking accident attorneys also provide assistance through the legal process, collecting evidence, preparing cases, and handling settlement negotiations on behalf of victims. They also know how to file a lawsuit for car accident in Indiana.


What Are Truck Drivers Required to Do After an Accident?


If they're involved in an accident, truck drivers are required to do the following:


  • Stop the truck at the scene or as close to the accident site as possible

  • Provide their information to other parties involved in the accident, including their names, registration numbers, contact details, and driver's license

  • Assist anyone who has been injured


Can Truck Accident Cases Be Settled Before Trial?

Can Truck Accident Cases Be Settled Before Trial?


Victims may choose not to proceed with legal action but settle the case out of court. This process begins by filing a claim with the at-fault party's insurance company and negotiating a settlement. For more information, an Indianapolis semi truck accident law firm may be able to help.


Final Thoughts


A truck accident can change a person's life by causing catastrophic injuries or death. However, most of these collisions are preventable. Therefore, victims have the right to pursue compensation through a personal injury lawsuit.


Individuals who are harmed or lose a loved one under these circumstances should contact a semi-truck lawyer and get professional legal counsel to determine the best course of action for their cases.


Indiana semi-truck accident attorneys understand the state's legal system and can guide victims through the litigation process, helping them fight for their rights and recover the compensation they deserve.


Contact Schuerger Shunnarah Trial Attorneys Today!


If someone is injured in a truck accident, they can find a reliable and experienced lawyer at Schuerger Shunnarah Trial Attorneys. Our legal team is ready to represent victims in Indianapolis, Indiana, and will go the extra mile to achieve the best possible outcome for them. Contact us today!

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