The damages caused by a truck accident can be devastating. Your newfound physical limitations might reshape the way in which you live your life, taking away your most beloved activities, while the financial losses can rock any semblance of stability that you once had. All of this can take quite an emotional toll, leaving you overwhelmed and fearful of the future.
Fortunately, help may be available through a personal injury lawsuit. If you’re successful with one of these claims, you might be able to find accountability and secure the resources that you need for proper medical treatment and to reclaim financial stability.
But the process isn’t an easy one. While you should certainly levy a legal claim against the negligent trucker who caused your accident, you should also take aim at his or her employer. But when it comes to suing a truck company, you have to be prepared to properly counter its defense strategies if you hope to succeed. So, let’s take a look at some of the most common truck company defenses:
- Comparative fault: One of the most common defense arguments made by truck companies is comparative fault. Here, the truck company argues that you’re at least partially to blame for the accident, which, under Florida law, means that your ultimate recovery would be reduced by the percentage of fault allocated to you. This can drastically reduce your ultimate recovery, so you need to be prepared to defend your own driving actions at the time of your accident.
- Frolic: Another tactic commonly employed by truck companies is arguing that the trucker alone should be held accountable for the wreck. Truck companies do this by putting forth facts that show that the trucker failed to follow the route established by the truck company or by engaging in some activity outside the scope of his or her employment. For example, a trucker who gets in an accident as he or she was running a personal errand in the rig may be deemed to have been engaged in frolic at the time of the wreck, thereby shielding the truck company from liability.
- Third-party negligence: Sometimes truck companies argue that another third-party is blame for the wreck. This defense strategy won’t necessarily prevent you from recovering compensation, but it could if you fail to include all necessary parties to your case. It could also reduce your ability to recover the full extent of your damages, as many individual drivers are unable to pay for the extensive damages often seen in these cases.
- Unavoidable hazards: Another argument that truck companies make is that the weather or some unavoidable hazard in the roadway was to blame for the accident, rather than the trucker him or herself. As a result, the truck company tries to argue that no one should be held liable for the damages suffered. Here, you’ll want to carefully analyze the trucker’s actions at the time of the wreck to see if they were still negligent in nature.
Know how to build the legal claim that you deserve
With so much on the line in your truck accident case, you owe it to yourself to build the best legal arguments possible. This means knowing the facts of your case and the law, as well as how to apply the law in an aggressive fashion that is advantageous to your claim. That’s not an easy endeavor, we know, especially for those who have little or no experience in the legal arena. But don’t fear. Competent and proven legal teams like ours stand ready to fight to ensure that you stand the best chance possible under the circumstances of finding accountability and recovering the compensation that you need.