Very few traffic accidents in Philadelphia are simple in nature, especially when they involve large trucks. After a truck accident, many details will need to be addressed as you try to deal with this unfortunate event. It helps to have some idea of what to expect so that you know more about the things you’ll need to discuss with your lawyer. Below are some of the Philadelphia truck accident frequently asked questions we encounter and their answers.
Is Pennsylvania an At-Fault Insurance State?
When it comes to car insurance, Pennsylvania is considered a “choice” state, which means that victims have a right to sue for damages under tort laws. Pennsylvania accident victims don’t have to meet the obligations that have to be met in no-fault states in order to sue at-fault drivers.
However, because truck accidents can be even more complicated than car accidents, it’s important that you contact a Philadelphia truck accident lawyer from our office to determine how Pennsylvania insurance laws apply to your situation.
Is the Truck Driver Financially Responsible?
Like many other professions, the trucking industry has professional insurance to cover the costs of mistakes made by drivers. This insurance is much like any other car insurance, but has higher limits. Normally, it is the insurance that covers the costs if and when an 18-wheeler driver is sued for an accident.
However, the driver may face other penalties depending on whether substances such as drugs or alcohol were an issue, or if there were other factors involved having to do with the regulations that apply to his or her commercial driver’s license. If nothing else, the driver will almost certainly face an increase in the cost of his or her insurance.
Will the Truck Driver’s Insurance Pay?
Whether the truck driver’s insurance pays—and how much they pay—may depend on who negotiates the settlement. For instance, you might try to file a claim with them on your own, but without a qualified legal team, they may either not pay the claim or pay less than what you are entitled to. Keep in mind that many insurance companies will be represented by a team of corporate lawyers whose jobs are to protect the insurance company’s financial interests and pay you as little as possible.
Do I Have to Talk to the Insurance Company?
If either the trucking company or their insurer contacts you, you are under no obligation to speak with them or answer any questions. This is when it is helpful to consult one of our knowledgeable lawyers.
We can handle the communications and negotiations for you. Insurance companies and the professionals representing them will most likely not have your best interests in mind, so it’s best to proceed with caution until you have an attorney on your side to help.
Capable Philadelphia Truck Accident Attorneys
If you or someone you know has been in an accident with a tractor-trailer, you likely have many other questions. The experienced attorneys at the Pearce Law Firm can examine the details of your 18-wheeler accident and let you know the best way to move forward. Please call our office at 215-557-8686 or complete the form at the bottom of this page in order to arrange a time for a free case evaluation.