Partial Fault Truck Accident in Utah
After a truck accident, you could face painful injuries, significant expenses, and serious concerns about the future. These worries may be compounded if you believe you were partially at fault for the crash. There’s good news: In Utah, you can still recover compensation even if you are partially at fault for a commercial vehicle accident. But your chances of obtaining maximum compensation could be difficult without a lawyer’s help.
The truck accident attorneys at Swenson & Shelley help crash victims pursue the money they deserve after a crash. Partial fault does not mean your case is over, even if the insurance company makes it sound that way. With 30 years of legal experience and in-depth knowledge of Utah personal injury law, our law firm knows what it takes to build a truck accident claim that wins. Call or contact us today for a free consultation with an experienced truck accident lawyer.
Determining Fault in a Truck Accident
In Utah, you can recover compensation if you are not 50 percent or more responsible for a truck accident. But who determines fault? That’s where a truck accident attorney can help. A lawyer can sort through the facts of the case and identify all liable parties.
Many parties, not just the truck driver, could be responsible for a truck crash. The insurance company for those other parties will also investigate the case and look for reasons to push liability onto someone else — and the target could be you.
Determining fault is important because it establishes who owes you money.
Potentially liable parties include:
- Truck driver – Truckers who engage in unsafe driving behavior such as speeding, driving while fatigued, and tailgating could be financially responsible if you suffer injuries in a semi-truck crash.
- Trucking company – Truck companies are responsible for hiring safe and well-trained drivers. If they fail to verify their employees are qualified and have a safe driving record, accident victims have the right to hold them accountable for their injuries.
- Auto manufacturers – If a mechanical defect contributed to a truck accident, the company that made the defective part can be held partly liable for the crash.
- Cargo loaders – Freight must be balanced and secured before a truck hits the road. Cargo loaders may be responsible for an accident if their failure to load the trailer correctly leads in part to a crash.
- Maintenance workers – Trucks take a lot of daily wear and tear. Therefore, mechanics must complete routine maintenance and repair problems as needed. If a maintenance crew does not notice or fails to fix a broken part, they may share fault for an accident.
A partial fault truck accident case can be complex. To obtain a financial recovery, you must prove how each liable party contributed to the wreck and that you do not share most of the blame. A Utah truck accident lawyer from Swenson & Shelley can gather evidence to support your claim and defend you against unfair claims of fault.
Establishing Fault for Rear-End Accidents
Many assume that Utah rear-end accidents are the fault of the driver who struck the other vehicle from behind. While this is true in many traffic accidents, it’s not always true. In some circumstances, the lead vehicle driver may be partially or entirely at fault for a rear-end collision.
Consider these examples:
Truck Driver A followed too closely and plowed into you from behind at a red light. In that case, Truck Driver A would likely be responsible for the crash.
Now, imagine you were texting while driving and had to stop suddenly, causing Truck Driver A to strike your vehicle from the rear. An investigation might find you at least partly liable for the crash.
Consult a truck accident attorney if you have concerns about your liability for a collision. Getting an investigation underway quickly gives your lawyer a chance to collect key evidence and witness statements while the memories are still fresh.
Fault States vs. No-Fault States
Some states use a no-fault auto insurance system to process auto accident claims. In those states, accident victims turn to their own insurers to cover their losses after a wreck. Utah is different. As a no-fault state, Utah gives you the right to file an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit directly against the responsible party or their insurer. However, you will have to prove they were primarily to blame for the crash to win your truck accident case.
What Should I Do After a Truck Accident?
Take these steps after a truck accident:
- Call 911 to report the truck accident and any injuries.
- Get the truck driver’s name, commercial driver’s license number, license plate, and relevant insurance information.
- Document the crash scene by taking photos and videos of the vehicles and your injuries. Include shots of any hazards that may have contributed to the accident.
- Ask any witnesses for contact information.
- Stick to the facts when speaking with the police. Avoid saying “I’m sorry” or anything else that could be considered an admission of fault.
- Seek medical treatment right away.
- Save all accident-related receipts and documentation.
- Hire a truck accident lawyer.
It is vital to watch what you say after a truck accident. The insurance company will seek any excuse to minimize or deny you compensation. A knowledgeable personal injury lawyer will handle all correspondence with the insurance company to give you the best possible chance of obtaining the money you need.
Contact a Utah Truck Accident Lawyer Today
Truck accidents are disorienting. Many times, drivers honestly might not be sure whether they are partially at fault for a wreck. Let Swenson & Shelley find the answers you need. Truck accident victims deserve the relentless pursuit of justice that Swenson & Shelley can provide. Contact us today for a free case evaluation.