Most of us are unfamiliar with the trucking industry, so filing an insurance claim after an accident might feel daunting. When you hire a truck accident attorney in Las Vegas, you don’t have to navigate the process alone; your attorney will make sure you’re taking the following steps in the aftermath of your truck accident.
Remember: trucking companies and their insurance providers will not look out for your best interest, but their own. If you have been in a serious truck accident, don’t communicate with third parties like insurance representatives — even if they reach out to you. Lean on your attorney’s expertise and have them handle all communication on your behalf. At the least, always consult with an attorney before saying anything.
What to Do at the Accident Scene
The first few moments following an accident can be emotionally and physically traumatic, so only do what you can without compromising your health. If you are able, save or record any evidence you see. Take photos or videos of the collision; these can be invaluable in supporting your claim. If you or your passenger(s) are seriously hurt, focus exclusively on seeking medical attention first and foremost.
Then, if and when it is safe to do so, take the following steps:
Contact Law Enforcement Right Away
Call local law enforcement as soon as possible. If anyone involved in the accident has injuries, make certain the dispatcher informs first responders that they must deliver medical care.
Once officers arrive at the scene, they will compile an accident report. This report gives an objective summary of the collision. It includes details such as who was involved and what events led to the accident.
Request a copy of the accident report if you can. (However, know that your attorney can also request a copy later on.) This report is important for building your claim.
Strict to the truth, but be brief when speaking to law enforcement. Only provide the facts as you know them; never speculate or admit fault regarding the accident and try to keep your emotions out of your statement.
Because most people have a smartphone, photographs are easy to get and can be one of your most valuable pieces of evidence.
Use your phone to snap photos of all the vehicles involved. Take photos of injuries, if you can, and nearby debris that resulted from the crash.
Additional things to document as you take photos include:
- The license plate and any other identifying information on the truck or its trailer, such as logos, phone numbers, etc.
- Skid marks on the road (or trails in the grass or gravel) that show the truck’s and your vehicle’s driving pattern
- The truck or trailer’s tires
- All vehicles involved in some way in the accident
- Current road conditions, including construction obstacles, deteriorated guard rails, or inclement weather
When in doubt, take as many photos as you can. Any factual details could become valuable once your attorney starts building your case.
As with any auto accident, exchange contact information with the other party involved. This should include the following:
The truck driver’s full name, mailing address, and contact information, their commercial driver’s license (CDL) number, and personal insurance information
The trucking company’s name, mailing address, and contact information, as well as their insurance information
If witnesses stopped to help or witnessed the accident, ask for their names and contact information. Witnesses can offer insight into the collision that a truck accident attorney can use to help your claim.
Other parties associated with the truck might also send representatives to the accident scene to take pictures and talk to witnesses directly after. You should identify and avoid any party associated with the truck’s driver or their employer.
Handling the Aftermath of a Truck Accident
Once law enforcement releases you from the truck accident scene, take the following steps to protect your claim and avoid liability.
Seek Medical Care
Before you do anything else, always seek medical attention. If your injuries are minor, or you don’t believe you were harmed during the crash, visit a medical practitioner at an urgent care center. For more serious injuries, head straight to the ER.
Some injuries, like whiplash, appear several hours or days after an auto accident and can cause severe complications if left untreated.
Consulting with a medical practitioner also establishes a timeline for your claim that insurance companies will use to assess its value.
Write Down Your Memory of the Truck Accident
A practical method to recount auto collisions is to write down your memories of the events that took place before, during, and after the accident.
Do this as soon as possible while the thoughts are still fresh in your mind. Include details such as:
- The conditions of the road before the accident
- The weather
- The number of people involved in the collision
- What the driver of the truck said to you following the collision
- The responding law enforcement officer’s name
- The behavior and condition of the truck driver
Any information you can provide may prove helpful when building a case to prove liability with the insurance companies.
Call a Las Vegas Truck Accident Lawyer
Truck accident claims can become complex legal cases that require investigating multiple parties involved in the accident.
Don’t wait; contact Henness & Haight for a consultation after you or a loved one has been hurt in a truck accident. Our consultations are completely free and carry no obligation to hire us.
We represent victims regardless of their ability to pay. You have enough to worry about; you should never have to worry about how you’ll cover legal fees. Because we promise “no win, no fee,” we only get paid if we win a judgment or settlement for you. Our fees are covered by a portion of your total compensation, which means zero out-of-pocket costs.