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What is a Fair Settlement for a Truck Accident?

Truck accidents can have severe consequences, both in terms of personal injuries and financial implications.

If you or a loved one has been involved in a truck accident in New Jersey, understanding what constitutes a fair settlement is crucial.

In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the factors that influence truck accident settlements, the average settlement amounts for 18-wheeler accidents in New Jersey, and how to navigate the process successfully.

What is a Fair Settlement for a Truck Accident?

Average Settlement for 18-Wheeler Accidents in New Jersey

Truck accidents involving 18-wheelers can result in substantial settlements due to the severity of the collisions.

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), there were 52 fatal large truck accidents in New Jersey in 2019.

These accidents can lead to substantial settlement amounts, particularly in cases involving wrongful death.

In New Jersey, the average settlement for such accidents can vary widely, depending on factors like the extent of injuries, property damage, and the liable parties.

On average, settlements can range from tens of thousands to several million dollars.

How Can I Decide the Settlement Amount for Truck Accidents?

Determining a fair settlement amount for a truck accident is a complex process. It typically involves evaluating various factors, including:

  1. Medical Expenses: The cost of medical treatment, rehabilitation, and potential future medical needs.
  2. Lost Wages: Compensation for income lost due to injuries and recovery time.
  3. Property Damage: Repair or replacement costs for the vehicle and other damaged property.
  4. Pain and Suffering: Non-economic damages, such as physical pain, emotional distress, and loss of quality of life.
  5. Liability: Establishing who is at fault and to what degree, which can impact the settlement amount.

Which Common Factors Are Involved in Truck Accidents?

Truck accidents can occur due to various factors, and it’s crucial to understand their common causes:

Driver Fatigue

Long hours on the road lead to fatigue, reducing alertness. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) reports that 13% of commercial motor vehicle drivers were considered to be fatigued at the time of a serious crash.

Distracted Driving

Texting or phone use while driving is a significant risk. According to the FMCSA, in 2018, 71% of large-truck crashes occurred when the truck driver was doing something else while driving.

Excessive Speed

Speeding is a major factor in truck accidents. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) found that 17% of large-truck drivers involved in fatal crashes were speeding.

Driving Under the Influence

Alcohol or drug use is a dangerous cause. NHTSA data shows that in 2018, 5% of large-truck drivers involved in fatal crashes had a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 g/dL or higher.

Poor Vehicle Maintenance

Mechanical failures due to poor maintenance, like brake failures or tire blowouts, can lead to serious accidents. The FMCSA indicates that vehicle-related factors were coded in 6% of large trucks involved in fatal crashes.

Adverse Weather Conditions

Bad weather makes truck driving challenging. The U.S. Department of Transportation notes that approximately 21% of vehicle crashes are weather-related, with a significant portion involving large trucks.

Truck Accidents Cost

Truck accidents come with substantial costs, not only in terms of property damage and medical bills but also in broader economic terms. 

According to the American Trucking Associations (ATA), the average cost of a large truck accident, including property damage and medical expenses, exceeds $91,000.

These costs can include immediate medical attention and emergency services. Repair or replacement of vehicles and damaged infrastructure. Legal representation and court costs for accident-related cases.

After a truck accident, insurance premiums often increase for both trucking companies and individual drivers. If injuries prevent the victim from working or limit their earning capacity.

Rules and Regulations for Truck Drivers in New Jersey

Truck drivers in New Jersey must adhere to specific rules and regulations set by both state and federal authorities.

These regulations are designed to ensure safety on the road and reduce the risk of accidents. Key regulations include:

  1. Hours of Service (HOS): Federal regulations limit the number of hours a truck driver can operate their vehicle to prevent driver fatigue.
  2. Vehicle Inspections: Trucks must undergo regular inspections to ensure they are in proper working condition.
  3. Weight Limits: Trucks must adhere to weight limits, both for their cargo and their total weight.
  4. Licensing Requirements: Drivers must obtain the necessary licenses and endorsements to operate commercial vehicles.
  5. Drug and Alcohol Testing: Regular testing is required to ensure drivers are not under the influence.

Average Cost of a Commercial Truck Accident

The average cost of a commercial truck accident can be significant, encompassing various expenses.

For example: In a recent New Jersey truck accident case, the victim received a settlement of $2.5 million, which covered medical expenses, lost income, and pain and suffering.

It is influenced by factors such as the extent of injuries and the degree of property damage.

The costs can be broken down into the following categories:

  • Medical Expenses: Hospital bills, surgeries, rehabilitation, and ongoing medical treatment.
  • Property Damage: Repairs to vehicles and any damaged infrastructure.
  • Lost Income: Compensation for time missed from work due to injuries and recovery.
  • Legal Costs: Legal representation and associated fees.
  • Non-Economic Damages: Compensation for pain and suffering, emotional distress, and reduced quality of life.

Tips for Dealing with Insurance Companies

When seeking a fair settlement for a truck accident, it’s essential to interact with insurance companies carefully.

A qualified attorney like Rosengard Law Group, can help you navigate the process, negotiate on your behalf, and protect your rights.

Keep detailed records of medical bills, repair estimates, and any correspondence with insurance companies.

Be cautious about accepting early settlement offers, as they may not fully cover your expenses and damages.

Work with your attorney to negotiate for the compensation you deserve, considering all aspects of your losses.

See also: Tips for Dealing with Insurance Adjusters After an Accident

Talk to Truck Accident Lawyers in New Jersey

Seeking legal counsel is highly advisable when dealing with truck accidents in New Jersey.

Experienced truck accident lawyers in New Jersey can provide invaluable assistance in determining liability, assessing the fair settlement value, and representing your interests throughout the process.

They can help you navigate the complexities of insurance claims, negotiations, or, if necessary, litigation.

New Jersey Truck Accident Settlements: A Case Study

In New Jersey, truck accidents, particularly involving 18-wheelers, often lead to substantial settlements due to the severe consequences they entail.

These accidents are influenced by various factors like driver fatigue, distracted driving, and poor vehicle maintenance.

The average settlement ranges widely, influenced by medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, and non-economic damages like pain and suffering. In a notable case, a victim received $2.5 million covering these aspects.

Dealing with such accidents requires understanding the common causes, adhering to truck driving regulations, and often, legal consultation to navigate insurance claims and negotiations effectively.

Secure Your Truck Accident Settlement

If you’ve been involved in a truck accident in New Jersey, it’s crucial to understand your rights and the potential compensation you could receive.

Navigating the legal world can be daunting, but you don’t have to do it alone. Reach out to experienced truck accident attorneys who can guide you through the process, from assessing your claim to negotiating with insurance companies.

Don’t settle for less than you deserve. Contact us today for a consultation, and let’s ensure you receive the fair settlement needed to cover your medical expenses, lost income, and other damages. Take the first step towards securing your financial and personal recovery now.

FAQs

How to Be Calculated Payout After Truck Accidents?

Calculating the payout after a truck accident involves assessing various factors, including medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, pain and suffering, and liability.

It’s often recommended to consult with an attorney who specializes in truck accidents to ensure you receive a fair and accurate calculation.

Do Truck Accidents Occur Due to Driver Negligence?

Yes, many truck accidents result from driver negligence, which can include behaviors like distracted driving, speeding, impaired driving, and fatigue.

Understanding the common causes of truck accidents is essential for promoting safer roads and seeking compensation when accidents occur.

Conclusion

Receiving a fair settlement after a truck accident in New Jersey is vital to cover medical expenses, lost income, property damage, and non-economic losses.

Understanding the factors that influence settlement amounts, abiding by regulations, and consulting with experienced attorneys are crucial steps in the process.

By following these guidelines, you can better navigate the complexities of truck accident settlements and ensure you receive the compensation you deserve.

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