How Can Family Members Help After a Truck Accident?
Written by AskTheLawyers.com™ on behalf of Tom Metier with Metier Law Firm.
One element that most large truck accidents have in common is the relative severity of the injuries and subsequent damages involved. Considering the size discrepancy between the average passenger vehicle and an 18-wheeler, it’s not surprising that the injuries are often catastrophic or even fatal. This means that an accident victim will likely need help from their family to pursue compensation for their damages via a personal injury claim. Whether your loved one was severely injured in a truck accident or passed away as a result of their injuries, there are key ways for family members to help.
Ways that family members can help after a truck accident include:
- Collect evidence from the scene of the accident. It’s important to take pictures and document the scene where the collision occurred as soon as possible. This evidence may include pictures of all the vehicles involved and property damaged, as well as any contributing environmental factors, such as the weather or temperature on the day of the accident. Other evidence that could be helpful to building your loved one’s case includes witness contact information and even testimonies if they agree to be recorded. It’s important to note that the longer you wait to collect evidence after an accident, the more likely it is the evidence has been destroyed, hidden, or naturally dispersed. If you are unable to attend the scene of the accident, it may help to know that truck accident attorneys are ready and willing to go on your behalf and begin a professional investigation at no cost to you.
- Collect your loved one’s medical records. It’s important to collect your loved one’s medical records after a semi-truck collision. Regardless of when the accident occurred and whether or not your loved one survived their injuries, these records are official documents that can help prove what happened and how. These medical records will play an important part in calculating the damages that should rightly be sought in a truck accident claim. If your loved one has passed away and cannot assist you in securing the necessary records, talk to a truck accident attorney about your options.
- Talk to a truck accident attorney on their behalf. Truck-on-car accidents differ from car-on-car accidents; while minor car accidents may be handled between the drivers and their insurance companies, it’s always important to involve a truck accident attorney when a large truck is involved. Not only do trucking and transportation companies have their own legal and insurance teams to protect them from liability, but they also have sole possession of important technical evidence which could help prove your loved one’s case. Electronic data recorders, driving records, and logbooks are just a few pieces of evidence a trucking company is extremely unlikely to surrender without the help of an experienced truck accident attorney. If finances are a concern, it may help to note that truck accident attorneys typically offer free consultations and work on a contingency fee basis, which means they only get paid if and when your loved one’s case is won.
- Be present. If your loved one survived a collision with a large truck or semi, they will likely face significant physical and emotional challenges during their recovery process. It’s important to be present and encourage them as they adjust to the new normal of daily life. Even if there isn’t much you can practically do to make them feel better, just being there can serve as an emotional boon in a physically and psychologically taxing period.
For more ways to help a family member after a truck accident, or for help filing or investigating a claim, reach out to an experienced truck accident attorney as soon as possible.