If you have been involved in a serious truck accident, you may be eligible to recover damages. Damages refer to economic or non-economic compensation meant to reimburse someone for their injuries and inconvenience in a personal injury case. Economic damages are measured in dollars. Economic damages include medical bills, past and future lost wages as well as future medical bills. Non-economic damages are pain and suffering or loss of enjoyment of life.
Following a truck accident, it is important that you consult a qualified truck accident attorney that has experience recovering damages in Charleston truck accident cases, and can work diligently in order to advocate for you.
Common Truck Accident Injuries
Common truck accident injuries, unfortunately, can be fatal because these trucks versus regular automobiles are disproportionate in weight. And if high speeds are involved, then the likelihood of fatalities increases. Other common injuries include closed head injuries, injuries to the spine and orthopedic injuries. Just about any injury, that one can get in an automobile accident can be sustained in a trucking accident.
The long-term effects of these injuries vary and are different in every single case. Obviously, a fatality is devastating to loved ones left behind and each injury is different. The amount or the severity of the injury, the permanency of the injury and, importantly, whether or not future medical treatment will be needed, greatly affects how these cases are evaluated.
What Damages Can a Person Expect to Recover?
Persons involved in trucking accident cases in Charleston are entitled to recover damages for pain, suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, past and future medical bills, past and future lost wages and, a spouse of an injured person who is injured in a trucking accident may have a claim for loss of consortium, which is the loss of the love and affection, or the negative way that the injuries have affected the marriage. The liability insurance company for the at-fault driver is responsible for covering resultant property damage.
Damages That Auto-Insurance Covers
The typical liability automobile insurance policy will cover all the damages that a person sustained and are allowable to be recovered by a plaintiff at a personal injury case, pain and suffering, loss of enjoyment of life, past and future medical bills, past and future lost wages and a loss of consortium claim if there is a spouse. The only limitation can be, in South Carolina for an automobile, the minimum liability limits that one can have on a car and still be legal is $25,000. And, often times, that is not merely adequate enough to compensate people who are especially severely injured.
There is no formula for calculating non-economic damages. If an attorney and potential client cannot agree with the liability insurance carrier on a dollar amount for the non-economic damages suffered by a person, then a jury will decide. And, again, there is no formula for that either, it is simply 12 people who have never met the injured person, who meet at the close of the case, and decide what they think suffering and other non-economic damages are worth.
There is no formula when calculating punitive damages in Charleston truck accident cases. There is no formula per se in the relationship between the economic damages suffered by a person. However, there are appellate decisions that limit punitive damages in certain cases, but it is not a formula in any way, shape or form. One factor in considering punitive damages, however, is the jury may consider the relative net worth of the defendant in the case in considering whether and how much to award in punitive damages. There are no damages caps for trucking accident cases. The only cap that may exist is not really a cap, but it is policy limits on the liability insurance policy. Then, typically, in a trucking accident case, there is usually adequate, or more than adequate, coverage to cover the injuries.
Value of a Charleston Truck Accident Lawyer
An attorney’s role in helping to recover damages in Charleston truck accident cases is pivotal, and that is a large part of the job as a plaintiff’s attorney: to help you recover damages. A lawyer must prove liability – in other words, whose is at-fault – and prove that you suffered damages directly related to the liability of the defendant.
Early on, there is a lot of work to be done. Evidence needs to be secured. Often times, an accident reconstructionist needs to be on the scene as quickly as possible. Lawyers can send a letter to the defense, cautioning them not to destroy any evidence. And, either an engineer or reconstructionist will inspect the truck before any modifications or changes are made. If you are the victim of a truck accident and you want to pursue compensation, consult a distinguished attorney that can advocate for you.