Blog, Truck Accident

Settling A Truck Accident Claim: How Long Can It Take?

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Many factors can contribute to the time it takes to settle a truck accident case.  Every accident is different, however, the severity of the crash, who was at fault, the length of investigation needed, how the insurance companies react and if the case ends up at trial; all will take part in determining how long it takes to settle a truck accident claim.

“How Long Will it Take to Settle My Truck Accident Case?”

Truck accidents are often the more severe cases we see.  The injuries that are associated with a vehicle getting struck by a truck or vice-versa almost always lead to broken bones and internal injuries.  The force of a large truck and a smaller vehicle striking creates a trauma on the human body that is generally not seen in other accidents, although motorcycle accidents can result in similar injuries for obvious reasons, accidents involving large trucks always leave lives in shambles.

When Can I Expect Compensation for My Injuries Resulting from a Truck Accident?

That is a complicated question when it comes to trucking accidents.  As with auto accidents, the insurance companies involved have a process they must go through to not only determine who was at fault but also to determine what other factors are involved and how much of the medical treatment was as a direct result of the accident.

Unfortunately, in most cases, that is not the answer the injured victims want to hear.  However, it is the responsibility of the attorney that is hired for the case to push the insurance company to address the claim and make a fair offer.  Having experienced lawyers can shorten the timeline, but in most cases, the claim is at the mercy of the insurance company until or unless a lawsuit is filed.  With that in mind, it is never good for truck accident victims to take on the claim their self without an attorney.

Some of the more common factors that contribute to the length of an accident claim include:

The severity of the Truck Accident

What happened as a result of the accident will almost always have an effect on the length of time it takes to reach the results.  Accidents involving tractor-trailers and other large trucks are more likely to result in severe injuries and sometimes death.  Catastrophic injuries take months, sometimes years, to get over.  And it is NEVER okay to settle any accident case before the victim is fully healed, or at least as cured as medical professionals think they will get.

Truck flipped over after accident

Determining Fault of a Tractor Trailer Accident

Truck accident cases usually take longer to make a final determination as to who is at fault.  With state and federal regulations that should be followed more stringent on trucks that on passenger vehicles, determining who is at fault can take a substantial amount of time.  Investigators must consider the following:

  • Did the trucking company properly maintain the truck?
  • Did the driver follow all rules and regulations?
  • Did the trucking company follow all rules and regulations?
  • Where other drivers involved in causing the accident?

Investigating the accident helps determine who was at fault, and with truck accidents, there are a considerable number of different scenarios that could have led up to the crash and pinpointing the exact cause is the goal of your attorney.  The insurance company will also be investigating and will not make any decisions on how to handle the claim until they have completed their investigation and made a final determination on who they think is at fault and this could be very different than what is determined by your attorney.  That difference alone can extend a claim timeline for months and even years.

Negotiating with the Insurance Company after a Truck Accident

If in the end, the fault has been placed on the truck driver, a claim is still not cut and dry.  Any time an insurance company begins the negotiating process, they have one goal in mind, to keep the cost of the claim as low as possible.  This is a direct conflict with what should be the goals of the injured party, which is to make sure that they are treated fairly and compensated as such.

The negotiating process in a situation can be brutal,  but when you sometimes involve hundreds of thousands of dollars, it gets even trickier.  The negotiations between your attorney and the attorney of the insurance company can sometimes take a considerable amount of time and if nothing is agreed upon the next step is a lawsuit.  Depending on the number of injuries and the time for recovery, a suit may be unavoidable due to time constraints, but one will for sure be filed if the insurance company somehow tries to shirk its responsibility to the accident victim.

Contact Your Truck Accident Attorneys, The Miley Legal Group

If you or a loved one has been involved in an accident with a tractor-trailer and you are unclear who was at fault or have any other questions, do not hesitate to contact an experienced attorney.  Although the claim will probably take a lot longer than many would like, it is crucial that all the necessary steps are taken to ensure that the injured parties are compensated for their injuries and that they are put in a position where they can move on with their lives.

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Written by
Tim Miley
Tim Miley is the founder of The Miley Legal Group. After earning his undergraduate degree in finance at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX, Tim attended Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, PA, where he received his Juris Doctorate. Tim is admitted to practice in all courts in West Virginia and is currently a member of the American Association for Justice, the West Virginia American Association for Justice, the West Virginia Bar Association and the Harrison County Bar Association.
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