Being rear ended by a semi truck in Texas can be an emotional and traumatizing experience. Unfortunately, semi truck accidents have become all too common.
If you or a loved one has sustained injuries in a semi truck accident in Texas, you may need help figuring out what to do next. These kinds of accident cases can be complex and difficult to handle on your own, but hiring an attorney can be a great first step toward recovering the compensation you deserve.
The truck accident lawyers at Grossman Law Offices know what it takes to navigate a successful settlement. In this article, we will discuss some basics of a semi truck accident case so that you have the information you need to maximize your settlement.
Texas Semi Truck Accident Statistics
According to the Texas Department of Transportation, in 2018, one motor vehicle crash occurred every 58 seconds. This is a staggering statistic, but how many accidents involved semi trucks?
A semi truck is considered a “commercial motor vehicle” (“CMV”) under both the Texas Transportation Code and the Code of Federal Regulations. In 2018, the Texas Department of Transportation reported 37,515 total CMV crashes, showing just how common semi truck accidents can be.
If you have sustained injuries in a rear-end semi truck accident, contact a personal injury attorney today. Our lawyers are standing by and ready to discuss your legal options and help you get on your way to recovery.
Common Rear Ended by Semi Truck Accident Injuries
If you have been rear ended by a semi truck, there is a high likelihood that you have sustained significant injuries. Due to the size of a semi truck and the magnitude of force exerted in a semi truck collision, injuries are often extensive and unavoidable. Common injuries sustained by victims in a semi truck accident include:
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI),
- Spinal cord damage,
- Nerve damage,
- Internal organ damage,
- Herniated discs,
- Broken bones, and
After a rear-end semi truck collision, it is imperative that you seek immediate medical attention. Having a professional assessment of your injuries is an important step in the settlement process. Without such an assessment, it can be difficult to prove what damages you may be entitled to.
Even if you do not notice any injuries or you feel like your injuries are only minor, you can never be certain without first seeking the opinion of a medical professional. Many times, victims of a rear-end semi truck collision will suffer internal injuries that are not immediately recognizable. Failure to identify and address these types of injuries can lead to severe consequences.
After you have sought medical treatment, it is also important to continue to monitor your injuries. Take note of any changes in how you feel in the coming weeks and months.
How Much Is My Rear Ended by Semi Truck Settlement Worth?
Unfortunately, there is no specific formula for calculating what your semi truck settlement might be worth. However, there are several factors to consider that can help determine what compensation you might deserve.
Damages in a Semi Truck Accident Settlement
Your settlement amount will be comprised primarily of your economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages help compensate for any out-of-pocket expenses related to your accident. If you are rear ended by a semi truck, your settlement may include economic damages for:
- Past and future medical expenses,
- Property damage,
- Loss of past and future wages, and
- Lost earning capacity.
An experienced personal injury attorney can work with you to identify and calculate your economic damages. This can help ensure that you don’t miss out on any compensation you may rightfully deserve.
Conversely, non-economic damages will compensate a truck accident victim for their emotional damages. Non-economic damages might include compensation for:
- Pain and suffering,
- Emotional distress,
- Disfigurement and disability,
- Loss of consortium, and
- Loss of enjoyment of life.
Non-economic damages are more subjective than economic damages. For this reason, it can often be more difficult to assign a dollar value to non-economic damages. However, it is important that you properly consider and calculate your non-economic damages correctly, as these will frequently make up a large portion of your compensable damages.
How Fault Factors into My Settlement
The State of Texas applies a “modified comparative negligence” rule in semi truck accident cases. Under Texas law, “the court shall reduce the amount of damages to be recovered by the claimant with respect to a cause of action by a percentage equal to the claimant’s percentage of responsibility.”
This essentially means that a party’s damages are reduced according to their degree of fault in the accident. Further, a party cannot recover any damages at all if they were more than 50 percent responsible for the accident.
If you can prove that you were not at fault in any way when you were rear ended by a semi truck, your settlement will not be reduced. Due to the nature of a rear-end collision, if you were the party that was rear ended, it will often be the case that there was nothing you could have done to avoid the accident and your resulting injuries. This will make it easier to prove that your damages should not be reduced.
However, proving fault can still be tricky. For this reason, it is always recommended that you speak with an attorney about your case. A lawyer who regularly handles truck accident cases can help you gather evidence and use it to your advantage to help prove that you were not responsible for your accident.
Is the Semi Truck Driver’s Employer Liable for Injury Damages?
Even though the semi truck driver may be the one who is primarily responsible for your injuries, a driver’s employer may also be held liable under Texas law. This can be important to note because semi truck drivers’ employers will often carry insurance coverage for this purpose.
Thus, in some cases, you may be able to seek compensation directly from the employer’s insurance, rather than from the driver themself, making it potentially easier to recover your compensation.
However, you should be wary of accepting any offers from a semi truck driver’s employer or its insurer without first obtaining the advice of an attorney. While an offer to settle may seem appealing at the time, there is always a chance that you could be entitled to more.
Contact Our Team Today
For your rear-end semi truck accident case, you will need more than just a personal injury lawyer. You need an attorney who knows how to handle a truck accident case.
While there are countless personal injury law firms in Texas, many of them will not have the in-depth understanding of truck accident cases that is necessary to be successful in this specific area of personal injury law. But rest assured—at Grossman Law Offices, we have the experience and resources necessary to fight for your rights in your truck accident case.
Grossman Law Offices has been helping personal injury victims recover for over 30 years. We have won thousands of cases for our clients, earning them millions of dollars in compensation to help them recover. Contact us today for your free case evaluation and see how we can help you.
Do I Need an Attorney to Help with My Semi Truck Settlement?
You can always handle your rear-end semi truck settlement without the assistance of an attorney. However, having a lawyer in your corner can be a great benefit. A lawyer can help you pursue damages that you may not even know exist. Ultimately, a personal injury attorney can help you maximize your settlement.
How Do I Know If I Should Hire a Lawyer?
Typically, the more severe and extensive your injuries and damages are, the more likely it is that you may benefit from the assistance of an attorney. At Grossman Law Offices, we offer free case evaluations. Contact us today for your evaluation and see what we might be able to do for you.
I Didn’t Notice Any Pain Immediately After My Rear-End Accident, But I Have Begun to Experience Some Pain—Can I Still Pursue a Claim?
In Texas, the statute of limitations for a truck accident claim is two years. This means that you have two years from the date of your accident to file a claim. In some circumstances, the time may be extended if you did not discover your injury for some time after the crash. But it is important to act fast. You may still be able to file a claim, but contact our office today to ensure you are within the statute of limitations.