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Truck Accident Settlements: What to Expect

Posted on June 24, 2021 in

No amount of money can ever make up for a catastrophic truck accident or replace the loss of a loved one. Pursuing financial reimbursement from the at-fault party, however, can provide you with justice, closure and financial security for the future. If you are curious about the potential value of your truck accident settlement, as well as the process of obtaining a settlement, learn what to expect with help from an attorney.

The Truck Accident Settlement Process

The first step toward financial recovery after a truck accident in Arizona is determining the identity of the at-fault party. This is a requirement under Arizona’s fault-based insurance system. You or your Scottsdale truck accident lawyer will need to determine what caused the collision, such as a careless truck driver or negligent trucking company. Then, you will file an insurance claim with the auto insurance provider of the at-fault party.

A truck accident insurance claim begins with you or your attorney submitting the claim paperwork, collecting evidence and answering questions asked by an insurance claims adjuster. An insurance adjuster is someone hired by the insurance company to investigate your claim and recommend whether to accept or reject benefits.

Be careful what you say to a trucking company’s insurance adjuster, as this person does not want what is best for you. The adjuster’s main goal is to maximize the insurance company’s profit by minimizing your payout. Do not accept any blame for the truck accident and do not agree to give the adjuster a recorded statement during negotiations.

Settlement vs. Trial

If the insurance company accepts your claim and offers a settlement, bring the offer to an attorney to verify that it is fair and just before you say yes. With only rare exceptions, once you accept a settlement, you cannot reopen the claim.

If the insurance company finds a reason to deny your claim – or wrongfully denies it for no reason at all – you may still be able to recover through a personal injury lawsuit in Arizona. A lawsuit means you and the defendant will go to trial and your case will be decided by a judge or jury if you cannot reach a settlement. You have the right to hire a truck accident attorney to represent you during settlement negotiations and an injury trial.

What Is the Average Value of a Truck Accident Settlement?

Although this is a common question, the average truck accident settlement does not exist. Each settlement is determined on a case-by-case basis, with settlement amounts varying considerably according to the specific facts of each case. In general, truck accident settlements are higher in value for victims with severe or catastrophic injuries, such as traumatic brain injuries or permanent paralysis.

Settlement values can be difficult to estimate without an attorney’s assistance. However, the types of damages available remain the same. They include:

  • All related medical and health care expenses
  • Ongoing medical needs, including medications and medical devices
  • Money to repair or replace a damaged vehicle
  • Lost wages and loss of the capacity to earn
  • Physical pain and emotional suffering
  • Wrongful death damages, if applicable
  • Punitive damages

Determining a truck accident settlement amount requires help from an attorney who specializes in commercial truck accident cases. An attorney can advise you on whether to accept a settlement or go to trial. Both legal options have pros and cons. A settlement is faster and typically cheaper, for example, while a personal injury lawsuit often results in greater financial compensation.

How To Increase the Value of Your Truck Accident Settlement

It may be possible to increase the value of an insurance company’s settlement offer depending on your case. Hiring an attorney to represent you during negotiations, for example, can force the insurance company to take your case more seriously. Always consult with an attorney about the value of your claim before accepting a settlement from an insurance corporation. An attorney can prevent tactics used by insurers to take advantage of clients, and help you negotiate for the best possible case outcome.

For more information about how truck accident settlements in Arizona work, contact a skilled Scottsdale personal injury attorney from Stone Rose Law today.