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When you need a truck accident lawyer Salt Lake City UT residents have trusted for years, contact Rasmussen & Miner Attorneys at Law. We have helped many accident victims in Utah recover their damages from negligent truck drivers and companies. We can help you too.
When someone is seriously injured in an accident caused by a truck driver, they often have questions about their rights. If you are a truck accident victim, or know someone who is, call our firm to discuss your concerns and obtain knowledgeable answers to your questions.
What vehicles are classified as commercial trucks?
A vehicle used to conduct business or transport cargo is a commercial truck. They include 18-wheeler trucks, tankers, delivery vehicles, and refrigerated trucks. They may have a short, local route or they may travel back and forth across the country.
Are Truck Operators Eligible for Workers’ Compensation Benefits?
If you were injured in a truck accident while performing functions for your job, you may be eligible to receive workers’ compensation benefits as a result of your accident. This is generally not the case if you are classified as an independent contractor. (Unsure of whether you’re classified as an independent contractor? Look at your latest paystub. Did your employer withhold taxes from your income? If no taxes were withheld, you’re currently classified as an independent contractor.) With that said, some independent contractors are either intentionally or unintentionally misclassified by the companies they do work for. Therefore, don’t assume that you’re not entitled to workers’ compensation benefits because you’re an independent contractor until you’ve discussed your situation with an experienced Salt Lake City, UT truck accident lawyer at our firm, as an exception may apply to your classification status.
Determining whether you were performing job-related functions at the time of your accident can be challenging if you’re a long-haul trucker. Say that you weren’t “on the clock” when your accident occurred, as you had diverted from your route to get something to eat and rest. At first glance, it seems that you wouldn’t be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits in this scenario because you weren’t strictly running your route. However, you were seeking rest (which is mandated for long-haul truckers per federal law) and nourishment using your rig, as that was the only vehicle that you had access to at that point. This is a tricky situation and should be evaluated by the experienced Utah legal team at Rasmussen & Miner before you dismiss the possibility that you may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits at this time.
When Is It a Good Idea to File a Personal Injury Lawsuit?
If you’re a trucker and a third party (a municipality responsible for maintaining safe roads, a trucking part manufacturer, another driver, etc.) may have contributed to your collision, it may be a good idea to speak with a Salt Lake City, UT truck accident lawyer at our firm about filing a personal injury suit in addition to a workers’ compensation claim. Similarly, if you are a trucker operating as an independent contractor and a third party may be partially or totally at-fault for your accident (including the company you do work for), it’s a good idea to explore the potential benefits of filing a personal injury claim. Finally, if you are a motorist, motorcycle rider, or anyone else who was hit by a large truck, you should absolutely connect with our firm to explore your legal options.
Essentially, the law provides a way to seek compensation from those who have harmed you, provided that they owed you a so-called “legal duty of care,” breached that duty, and your injuries directly resulted from that breach. This is a complex legal way of saying that if someone else acted negligently, recklessly, or dangerously in an intentional manner and you were hurt as a result, chances are good that you have cause for civil legal action.
What are common causes of trucks colliding into cars and other vehicles?
There are a wide variety of causes but some of the most common are:
- Brake malfunctions or the driver does not allow enough time to slow or stop their truck safely.
- Visibility issues that cause the driver to not see another vehicle.
- Driver distraction.
- Driver error, often caused by inadequate training.
Can I receive money for the time I’ve had to take off from work due to my injury?
In most cases, yes. Our firm can review your case and tell you if you’re eligible for lost wages not only for time already lost, but for time you may lose in the future.
The truck carried hazardous materials and my doctor said they may be the cause of my respiratory problems. What are my legal options?
A qualified truck accident lawyer Salt Lake City, UT may have to review your case to offer a definitive answer. However, generally speaking if your lawyer can prove that the driver and/or the materials manufacturer or distributor was negligent, you may be able to file suit against the responsible parties.
Can I file a lawsuit against the trucking company because I was injured?
If the driver was an employee of the company at the time of the accident, then possibly. If a skilled lawyer can establish that the company was in some way responsible for the driver’s negligence then they may be held liable. Every case is different but must meet certain legal standards. Call Rasmussen & Miner for a free case review.
If you’ve been injured because of a truck driver’s negligence or because their company was negligent, contact our law firm as soon as possible. You may be eligible for compensation from the negligent parties involved. Contact us today to find out more from a truck accident lawyer Salt Lake City, UT drivers can count on to protect their legal rights.