UNITED STATES—A fully loaded big rig can weigh as much as 80,000 pounds. Even unloaded, a semi weighs on average, somewhere around 35,000 pounds. That’s a lot of weight. Their sheer size and mass can do a catastrophic amount of damage to a vehicle and its occupants. Florida truck accidents can cause devastating life-changing injuries.

If you’ve been injured by a big rig, reach out to an experienced Gainesville truck accident lawyer. They can help you to get the maximum compensation for your injuries while you struggle to recuperate. Tragedies such as these can alter a victim’s life forever.

How To Receive Compensation After a Truck Accident Injury

A collision with a big rig can cause irreparable damage to your vehicle and your body. Truck drivers typically drive long distances for long hours, and driver fatigue could easily cause an accident. Also at fault could be unbalanced trailer loads that can cause erratic driving.

Regardless of the accident’s reason, you deserve compensation for the truck driver’s reckless actions. To help you do so, we’ve put together these 5 suggestions to help you move forward and put this tragic memory in your past.

Hire a Personal Injury Attorney

Once you’ve sought out medical care for your injuries, it’s time to hire a Florida personal injury attorney. Attempting to recover damages from the accident without legal counsel won’t provide a positive outcome. You’ll want an experienced team on your side to do most of the work for you so that you can use your time recovering or adjusting to your injuries.

Fortunately, most initial consultations are free, and personal injury attorneys typically work for a contingency fee. This means you won’t have to pay a dime to retain a lawyer; they’ll only be paid if you receive a settlement.

Collect Evidence

With your help, your legal team will collect the evidence required so that you can receive the highest settlement amount. Your lawyer will need proof of your injuries and that the truck driver was negligent and caused the accident. Typical evidence to prove both can include:

  • Police accident reports
  • Photographs of the accident scene
  • Eyewitness reports
  • Emergency room intake and discharge papers
  • Your medical records and bills
  • X-rays, CAT scans, or MRI images
  • Doctors’ notes and diagnosis or prognosis paperwork

Most big rigs have two very valuable devices that can help to prove negligence. The first is a dashcam that records the road and possibly the truck’s interior. The second is the truck’s black box data. Black boxes record vehicle speed, sudden braking, or sudden acceleration or deacceleration. These two devices can provide valuable information about the crash.

Be Careful With Your Social Media

Although it’s popular opinion that your social media is private and cannot be used as evidence, it’s not true. It’s best not to post anything about the accident, a possible settlement, or anything that can be used against you. For those claiming chronic pain or mobility issues, posting photos of you out and about with friends can add doubt that your injuries are as severe as you claim them to be.

Follow Your Doctor’s Orders

The truck driver’s legal team can use any gaps in treatment as proof that your injuries aren’t serious, so it’s important to keep appointments and follow your doctor’s treatment plan. Postponing or forgetting about doctor’s visits or physical therapy sessions is a big no-no. Remember, you’ll need to provide proof of your injuries. Avoiding continued medical treatment can be used as proof that your injuries aren’t severe.

Pre-Trial Negotiations

Both legal teams will meet before a personal injury trial to exchange evidence. Trials can be lengthy and costly, so it serves both sides to agree on going to court. During this discovery phase, eyewitnesses and medical experts may be deposed under oath, and this testimony can be used as evidence. Fortunately, most personal injury cases are settled out of court, and it’ll be up to your lawyer to negotiate the best settlement possible.

How To Receive Compensation After a Truck Accident: The Bottom Line

Being involved in an accident with a big truck can be a horrifying experience. The damage that a semi can do is usually much worse than smaller vehicles. A crash like this can cause life-altering injuries and could possibly cause emotional issues such as sleeplessness, fear of driving, nightmares, and PTSD. You have a right to seek compensation for damages, economic and non-economic.

Working with an experienced Florida personal injury attorney familiar with truck accident cases is the smartest way to seek justice and receive the maximum compensation for your injuries.