Brookhaven, NY Truck Accident Lawyer
Thousands of semi-trucks and 18-wheelers travel on the road every day. Unfortunately, big trucks are at least as likely to get into an accident as any other vehicle. The sheer size and weight of commercial trucks virtually guarantees severe damage to other vehicles they hit and their occupants.
After a truck accident, you could be weighed down by enormous medical bills, a long road toward physical recovery, or emotional distress. Our lawyers can fight for you in court to give you the best chance of getting the help you need after an accident.
Call the truck accident lawyers at The Carrion Law Firm at (718) 841-0083 for a free case analysis.
The Statute of Limitations for Truck Accident Lawsuits in Brookhaven, NY
You should file your truck accident lawsuit as soon as you can. Not only will doing so allow our truck accident lawyers to work on your case longer, but a law called the statute of limitations sets a time limit on how long you have to sue for your injuries. If you do not file within the legally allowed timeframe, a court will not hear your case, and you will recover no damages.
The statute of limitations for a personal injury lawsuit in New York is three years. For a wrongful death claim, the time limit is two years.
A handful of circumstances can extend this time period. For example, New York puts the statutory period on hold for minors until they reach the age of 18. That means that if you were in a truck accident as a minor, the three-year filing period will start on your 18th birthday.
Who is at Fault for a Truck Accident in Brookhaven, NY?
When preparing a truck accident lawsuit, the immediate reaction might be to sue the driver for your injuries. However, the truck driver is only the last person in a chain of individuals who could have had a hand in causing your truck accident. Suing multiple parties might give you a better chance at getting the compensation you deserve in a truck accident lawsuit.
The Truck Driver
The truck driver will likely be a central part of any truck accident lawsuit, as they were the one driving, after all.
Truck drivers are often found liable for accidents when they are negligent. This could mean either they acted carelessly on the road or that they did not follow traffic .
For example, a truck driver who is tired and hits someone is negligent, but not because there is a law against tired driving. They are negligent because driving a big vehicle when you are fatigued is generally careless. On the other hand, a truck driver who hits another vehicle because they were speeding is negligent because they are violating a traffic rule.
The trucking company is often responsible for truck maintenance. As such, trucking companies can be liable for issues with brakes, tires, horns, and other safety features that are not working properly.
Additionally, truck companies must comply with Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) regulations. These regulations include insurance requirements, limits on how long a driver can be behind the wheel at one time, and frequency of drug and alcohol tests for drivers. If a trucking company has failed to comply with these regulations, it could be liable for your injuries.
Another way a trucking company could be liable is through “vicarious liability.” Employers can be held responsible for the actions of their employees when their employees are on the job. If the truck company directly employs the driver, they could be made to pay for their driver’s mistakes.
State and Local Authorities
Roadways in a state of disrepair often cause vehicles to make sudden movements when bumps and depressions jolt vehicles driving on them. Poor road conditions can also cause drivers to maneuver erratically and be more likely to hit someone.
If you believe that your truck accident was caused in part by bad road conditions, the state or local entity in charge of repairing them might be liable.
Damages in a Brookhaven, NY Truck Accident Lawsuit
Damages awarded by courts fall into three categories: economic, non-economic, and punitive damages.
Economic damages have a readily ascertained monetary value. Two common economic damages from a truck accident are hospital bills and vehicle repair costs.
If you are injured in such a way that you can no longer do your job, lost wages from when you were recovering as well as future earning potential is also considered economic damage by courts, even though no bill is associated with it.
Since economic damages are based on bills, receipts, and salaries, insurance will pay for them out of an obligation to do so. However, insurance companies do not like to pay out policies for every accident. You still might need to go to court to recover economic damages.
Non-economic damages do not have a bill or cost directly associated with them. Pain and suffering, loss of companionship from a deceased person, and reduced enjoyment of life from injuries are all common non-economic damages.
For example, if you used to ride a bike every weekend for fun, but after an accident can no longer ride a bike because of injuries, you might be entitled to non-economic damages.
Punitive damages are designed to punish defendants for especially bad conduct. Courts tend to reserve them for particularly bad actors whom they want to discourage from repeat behavior, so punitive damages are rarely awarded.
Talk to a Brookhaven, NY Lawyer for Free Today
Get in touch with a truck accident lawyer to discuss your case for free at The Carrion Law Firm at (718) 841-0083.