Collisions with large trucks and other commercial vehicles can be devastating, leading to a range of potentially severe injuries that can interfere with your daily life and ability to work. If you or someone you love has been injured, or if a loved one died, in a commercial truck accident, you may be entitled to compensation.
Truck accident lawyers with Sokolove Law know who to talk to, where to find answers, and what steps you need to take. Let us put our 40+ years of experience to work for you. Contact us today for a free legal consultation.
What Are Commercial Vehicle Accidents?
A commercial vehicle is any motor vehicle operated for profit, usually involving the transport of goods or passengers. In the United States, there are approximately 6.8 million commercial motor vehicle (CMV) drivers, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).
Examples of commercial motor vehicles (CMV) include:
- Big rigs (also known as semis, tractor-trailers, or 18-wheelers)
- Box trucks (also known as single-unit or straight trucks)
- Cargo vans
- City, coach, or school buses
- Delivery vans
- Dump trucks
- Taxis or rideshare cars
When accidents happen involving commercial trucks, the passengers in a non-commercial vehicle are 6 to 10 times more likely to suffer injuries and fatalities than passengers of the truck.
Also known as tractor-trailers or 18-wheelers, semi-trucks crash and injure, or kill someone, every 15 minutes in the U.S. Annually, this adds up to about 555,000 truck accidents and accounts for nearly 5,000 fatalities, according to the FMCSA. Collisions with trucks kill more people than accidents involving planes, trains, ships, and interstate buses combined.
And that just accounts for accidents involving semi-trucks — many additional commercial truck accidents occur every day. The injuries they cause can be devastating to families, putting lives and livelihoods at risk.
With experienced truck accident legal help, however, you can level the playing field and pursue compensation that can help lessen the financial toll for your family.
Involved in a Truck Accident?
Get in touch with our experienced legal team to learn more about your legal options and how we can help.
How Do Commercial Vehicle Accidents Happen?
Commercial truck accidents can happen for any number of reasons. However, they can often be the result of the commercial motor vehicle (CMV) driver neglecting to comply with federal safety standards.
Many trucking companies encourage truck drivers to cut corners as a way to maximize their profit, even though it can put those sharing the road in danger.
Causes of Truck Accidents
Causes of commercial vehicle accidents include:
- Distracted driving: According to the FMCSA, 71% of large-truck crashes happened when the trucker was doing something else while driving, like eating, using a cell phone, or checking the map.
- Driver fatigue or drowsiness: Driver drowsiness can impair a driver’s response time to on-the-road hazards, which increases the risk of accidents. According to the Large Truck Crash Causation Study (LTCCS), 13% of CMV drivers were fatigued at the time of the crash. Another study found that 3 out of 4 commercial vehicle drivers experienced at least one type of driving error as a result of drowsiness.
- Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol: 17% of CMV drivers at the time of the crash were using over-the-counter drugs, some of which (like cold pills, allergy medicines, and sleeping pills) can induce drowsiness, according to the FMCSA.
- Failure to maintain tires, brakes, and other parts
- Following too closely: 5% of truck crashes happened when the driver followed the vehicle ahead of them too closely, not giving themselves adequate time to brake in the event of an emergency, according to the LTCCS.
- Inadequate surveillance: 14% of large-truck crashes occurred due to the CMV drivers’ inadequate surveillance or failure to see approaching traffic, like during a lane change, according to the LTCCS.
- Overloading trucks
- Pay structures that encourage dangerous driving, like speeding and exceeding the maximum driving hours
- Speeding: 23% of large-truck wrecks involved the truck driver traveling too fast for weather or road conditions, according to the LTCSS.
- Unfamiliar roadways: 22% of large-truck crashes occur when the driver is unfamiliar with the roadway, likely due to their having to check the map while driving.
- Unqualified or untrained drivers
Common Truck Accident Injuries
Commercial truck accidents often involve far larger vehicles, both in size and weight, than everyday car accidents. This means the injuries many sustain can be more severe, and accidents are more likely to result in fatalities.
Large commercial truck and bus crashes that caused injuries increased 62% from 2009 and 2015, before increasing an additional 13% between 2016 and 2019, according to data from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).
Truck accidents can cause a range of serious injuries, including:
- Broken bones
- Hearing or vision loss
- Loss of limb(s)
- Spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
If you or your loved one were injured in a truck accident, you may be able to pursue compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, and more from the negligent driver and company through a commercial truck accident lawsuit.
Who Can File a Commercial Vehicle Accident Lawsuit?
You may be able to file commercial vehicle accident lawsuit if you or your loved one were:
- Involved in a commercial motor vehicle accident (like a bus, truck, or van)
- Suffered injuries as a result of the accident
If you have a case, our experienced personal injury lawyers can provide truck accident legal help at no out-of-pocket costs to you or your family.
Not Sure About Your Options?
During a free, no-obligation case review, a member of our team can listen to your story and let you know what your legal options may be. Get the help you deserve.
How to File a Commercial Truck Accident Lawsuit
If you become a Sokolove Law client, your commercial vehicle accident lawyer and legal team can handle every step of the legal process for you. This way, you can focus on your health and family, while we focus on your case.
Though every crash case differs, the legal process generally involves us:
- Determining your eligibility to take legal action during a free consultation
- Gathering all of the evidence needed to build your case and prove your truck accident claim
- Filing a commercial truck accident lawsuit against the driver or company on your behalf
- Pursuing truck accident compensation in the form of a settlement or verdict
Truck Accident Settlements and Verdicts
After filing a lawsuit, truck accident compensation can generally be secured in one of two ways:
- Truck accident lawsuit settlements: In legal cases, truck accident settlements refer to when your legal team and the defendant are able to agree on an amount of compensation for your injuries, usually before the case proceeds to trial.
- Truck accident trial verdicts: If a truck accident settlement isn’t reached, your case may proceed to trial, where a judge and jury can hear your case and give a verdict that decides the outcome.
Choosing a Truck Accident Injury Lawyer
Without the help of an experienced truck accident attorney, it can be difficult for truck accident victims to successfully navigate the legal system and hold the responsible parties accountable.
But finding the right attorney, one who can offer you all of the skills and resources you need, can be difficult if you don’t know what you’re looking for.
What to Look for in a Truck Wreck Lawyer
To find the best truck accident lawyers for your case, be sure to look for a law firm that can offer you:
- Free Case Evaluations: Don’t keep wondering what your legal options are. During a free, no-obligation case review, a member of our team can listen to your story and let you know if you may be able to take legal action.
- Decades of Experience: Sokolove Law has handled personal injury cases like this for over 40 years, helping injured clients pursue the justice and compensation they deserve.
- Nationwide Availability: If you want experienced legal representation near you, look no further than Sokolove Law. Since our founding in Massachusetts over 40 years ago, our firm has expanded nationwide, with offices and attorneys in nearly every state.
- A History of Success: Our personal injury attorneys have successfully recovered over $9.3 Billion for thousands of injured clients nationwide.
- Truck Accident Legal Help at No Upfront Cost: There are no out-of-pocket fees to work with our truck accident attorneys. We’ll only get paid if we’re able to secure compensation on your behalf.
Get Help from a National Truck Accident Law Firm
If you or a family member were hurt in a commercial truck accident, you may be eligible to pursue compensation through a lawsuit — and we may be able to help.
As a national truck accident law firm, Sokolove Law has the resources and reach to hold negligent drivers accountable for the injuries they may have caused you and your family.
Over the last 40+ years, we’ve recovered over $9.3 Billion on behalf of injured clients nationwide.
Commercial Vehicle Accident Attorney FAQs
I was in a commercial truck accident — what do I do next?
If you were involved in an accident with a commercial truck, it’s important to seek medical care for any injuries you may have suffered. Even if you think you’re completely fine afterwards, you should still get medical attention to determine the extent of any potential injuries. Some injuries may not be immediately apparent, especially after the shock and adrenaline of an accident.
If you’re able, try to document as much as possible while still on the scene of the accident. Use your phone to take pictures of the accident scene, including any road signs nearby, the truck’s license plate, the road and weather conditions, traffic around you, and other relevant details. This kind of evidence can be difficult to gather later on when conditions and circumstances may have changed.
Afterwards, call your insurance company — but don’t accept any settlement offers before consulting an experienced attorney, who can look out for your best interest.
If the accident isn’t your fault, you have the legal right to hold the responsible parties accountable, whether it’s the negligent driver or the company they work for. Contact Sokolove Law today to learn more about your potential legal options.
Do I need a lawyer for a commercial truck accident lawsuit?
Without strong legal representation, litigating truck accident cases can be very challenging. Truck accident law is highly complicated. Additionally, commercial vehicles are often owned by companies that may have the resources to fight these claims.
Without legal representation, you may be setting your case up to fail.
By working with a commercial truck wreck lawyer, you can get experienced legal help with all aspects of your case, from gathering the evidence to filing the claim — at no upfront cost to you or your family.
How can I find a truck accident lawyer near me?
If you’re trying to find an experienced truck accident lawyer near you, look no further than Sokolove Law. As a national law firm, we have offices with licensed attorneys in nearly every state, which allows us to provide local representation nationwide.
No matter where they may be in the U.S., our commercial truck accident lawyers are able to help injured clients pursue the compensation and justice they deserve. Get a free truck accident case review today to see if our attorneys may be able to help you.
How much does a commercial vehicle accident attorney cost?
Nothing out of pocket. Truck accident lawyers with Sokolove Law work on a contingency basis, which means we only get paid if your case results in compensation. Contact us today to see if we can help with your case.
How long do I have to file a truck accident lawsuit?
You only have a limited amount of time to file a truck accident lawsuit due to laws called statutes of limitations. These deadlines to take legal action vary by state, which can make it difficult to figure out without the help of an experienced truck accident attorney.
Once this window of time closes, you won’t be able to take legal action over your injuries again. Don’t miss out on your chance to seek justice — contact Sokolove Law today.
What are some different types of truck accidents?
Different types of truck accidents can include:
- Blind-spot accidents (when the driver loses sight of nearby vehicles)
- Brake failures
- Head-on and rear-end truck collisions
- Jackknife accidents (when a tractor-trailer brakes suddenly, the trailer can swing out at a 90-degree angle, potentially leading to rollovers)
- Overturn or rollover accidents (when the tractor-trailer rolls over)
- Reversing or backing-up accidents
- T-bone accidents
- Tire blowouts
- Too-wide turns
- Underride accidents (when the smaller vehicle gets stuck under the tractor-trailer)
What trucks are considered commercial?
Trucks are considered to be commercial vehicles when they transport goods or people for profit. Types of commercial trucks include:
- Armored trucks
- Big rig trucks (18-wheelers, tractor-trailers, or semis)
- Chemical or biohazard trucks
- Construction vehicles (like concrete mixers, cement trucks, etc.)
- Delivery trucks (Amazon, FedEx, UPS, etc.)
- Dump trucks
- Forklift trucks
- Livestock trucks (carrying bees, deer, pigs, cows, etc.)
- Log trucks
- Moving trucks
- Plow trucks
- Septic tank or sewage trucks
- Snow plow trucks
- Tanker trucks (gasoline or fuel trucks)
- Train trucks
- Tow trucks
In addition to commercial trucks, we can also help with accidents involving other types of commercial vehicles, like:
- Buses (for cities, schools, or companies like Greyhound)
- Taxicabs or rideshare vehicles (like Uber or Lyft)
- Vans (moving vans or Amazon delivery vans)