What Compensation is Available for Truck Accident Victims?
Georgia truck accident victims are entitled to be made “‘whole” after an accident. In simple terms, a victim is made whole when he or she is put in the position that they would have been in had the accident ever taken place.
Obviously, this is not possible for cases involving very serious accidents. There is no way to counteract the debilitating pain associated with a serious injury. Therefore, financial compensation must be granted in an amount that fairly accounts for the full extent of a victim’s damages.
After an Atlanta trucking accident, a victim may seek recovery for:
- Repair or replacement of personal property
- Expenses from past medical treatment
- Projected costs of future treatments
- Lost wages, including past and future earnings not realized
- Other intangible losses, like suffering, disfigurement, and loss of quality of life
If you have been seriously injured in a truck accident, you need to be aware of your legal options. You may be entitled to compensation, but you face some large hurdles. Working with an experienced Atlanta truck accident lawyer can help you prepare a strong claim seeking the full extent of your damages.
Reach out to the Law Offices of Andrew E. Goldner today to schedule a free, no-obligation case review when you call (404) 869-1580 or contact us online.
Calculating Damages After Your Car Accident
Truck accident injury victims will run into roadblocks with insurance companies when trying to prove the full extent of their damages. Most financial damages may seem as easy to prove as handing over a doctor’s bill or car repair estimate. The reality is that insurance companies will use any technicalities or even frivolous argument available to reduce the value of your settlement.
For example, when presenting bills for hospital treatment, the insurer may allege that certain damages were not “reasonable and necessary”. They may also allege that some of your injury complications were related to a pre-existing condition, even if no pain existed prior to the wreck.
Similarly, the insurer may dispute the repair estimate for your damaged vehicle and demand that you visit an approved repair shop that they are used to working with.
Another such obstacle is that some damages are difficult to quantify. It’s easy to value a hospital bill for treatment that has already occurred, for example, but it is extremely difficult to put a dollar figure on pain and suffering, often extending for many years. All too often, insurance companies use the lack of clarity surrounding these types of damages to avoid paying a fair settlement.
Victims of serious truck injuries need an aggressive attorney to fight for you and your right to be compensated for your losses. Your attorney can work closely with providers and medical consultants to prove that your treatment costs were “reasonable and necessary” and directly related to the truck accident. They can also help you obtain a fair, reasonable estimate for your vehicle repairs.
Trusting the insurance company can lead to unexpected coverage denials or leave you scrambling to prove your injuries were caused by the truck that hit you. Hiring a truck accident lawyer in Atlanta can prepare you for these common tactics, giving you time to focus on recovering rather than fighting battles with well funded and heavy handed insurance companies.
Delayed Pain After an Accident Involving a Truck
As an experienced trucking accident lawyer, Mr. Goldner has represented many clients who have been injured in collisions with semi trucks, tractor-trailers, and other commercial trucks.
Some people experience immediate and obvious injuries at the accident site. Others suffer extreme pain after some time before seeking treatment.
Insurance adjusters typically argue that any delay in treatment shows that the accident and injuries were “not that serious.” The insurance companies try to paint the injured accident victim as someone who is out for money only and trying to “milk” the accident.
Our offices have handled cases involving two primary “delayed” injuries. First, people who suffer broken ribs in car and truck wrecks often do not know that their ribs are broken until X-rays are taken. Estimates are that 10% of patients admitted to the hospital after blunt force trauma (for example, an accident victim’s chest impacting the steering wheel) suffer a fracture of one or more ribs.
In the modern age of cost-saving medicine, physicians are sometimes reluctant to order X-rays for trauma victims. The failure to “look inside” via chest X-ray sometimes results in rib fractures going undiagnosed until the patient follows up for subsequent symptoms.
Another “delayed injury” we often see in serious truck accidents is bleeding in the brain. A brain bleed may present in many fashions, including subdural hematoma, subarachnoid hemorrhage, among others.
Sometimes, the brain injury and bleeding present immediately at the accident scene. However, frequently, the bleeding is delayed. This situation can be dangerous where a car wreck victim presents to an emergency room after an accident and undergoes a CT scan which is interpreted as clear. Then, confusion or a headache occurs later in the day. These symptoms may be a telltale sign of a brain bleeding and injury.
These complications illustrate why it is so important to not just get a thorough diagnosis but to also get all of your symptoms documented in your initial visit. That way, there is a record of a possible condition even if it isn’t immediately diagnosed.
The risks of delayed injuries also show why it’s important to attend follow-up visits and report any changes in your medical symptoms or general state of being. Being diligent at all stages of your recovery increases your chances of treating all injuries and reduces the chance that an insurer can dispute whether the injuries were related to the truck accident.
Lost Wages and Other Damages With an Atlanta Truck Accident Lawyer
Another area that is contentious when negotiating a truck accident settlement with an insurance company is lost wages.
For those of us who work regularly scheduled shifts or have a salary, documenting income is easy. However, a recent report from the IRS shows that the volume of independent contractor workers in the U.S. has increased by 22% since 2001. There are also plenty of individuals who work on commissions, tips, or special projects.
Anyone who has irregular income will need to perform an audit on their income from the past 6-12 months in order to determine an average income amount. They can then compare this past income to their current, reduced income and claim the difference in insurance.
The Law Offices of Andrew E. Goldner can assist truck accident injury victims with all of the above-mentioned tasks. And we can also assist you with responding to common denial reasons and other defenses the insurance company will use to avoid liability. If no settlement agreement can be reached, we are prepared to argue your case in court in front of a jury – where we have a record of success.
Call our offices now to speak to an Atlanta car accident attorney near you. Dial (404) 869-1580 or contact us online to schedule your free, no-obligation case review now.