Commercial trucks and big rigs generally cause more damage than cars due to their sheer size. Because of the risks involved, anyone operating trucks must be more attentive than usual and are under more stringent rules than ordinary motorists.
If you were recently involved in a truck collision here in Warsaw, our Warsaw truck accident lawyer could assist with the claims process. Learn more about your accident’s relevant laws here.
Truck Companies Must Have Liability Insurance in Warsaw
The trucking company is typically responsible for their driver’s actions if they were within the scope of their employment. State and federal departments require trucking companies to carry liability insurance for their trucks in Warsaw and the rest of Indiana.
Liability coverage will pay for the victim’s injury and property damage-related expenses when the policyholder is responsible for an accident. Your truck accident lawyer can help you gather evidence of the accident to back up your claim with the insurance provider. They are also familiar with trucking and traffic laws and can check for the company or driver’s violations. You could use these as more proof of their liability.
Required Liability Coverage for Trucks
The mandatory minimum liability coverage depends on the truck’s cargo and gross weight. The heavier the truck or more dangerous its load, the higher the required amount. Here are the current minimums:
- Trucks carrying hazardous materials (such as radioactive chemicals and flammable liquids or gasses) must carry at least $1,000,000 liability coverage.
- Trucks weighing over 10,001 pounds and carrying non-hazardous materials (for example, plastic or cardboard packaging) should have coverage of at least $750,000.
- Trucks also carrying non-hazardous materials but weighing less than 10,001 pounds only need a minimum of $300,000.
For a free legal consultation with a truck accidents lawyer serving Warsaw, call 800-333-9999
When the Truck Driver’s Personal Coverage Applies
The trucking company usually cannot be liable for the driver if they were not working when the accident happened. If the trucker was off duty and used the truck to run errands, their personal auto liability coverage will apply, not the trucking company’s. You will likely have to file a claim with the driver’s auto insurance provider.
The company will also not be responsible for the driver if they intentionally caused the accident.
Mandatory Minimum Coverages for Individual Drivers
According to Indiana Code § 9-25-4-3, motorists must carry proof of financial responsibility to drive legally anywhere in the state—including Warsaw. But while drivers usually carry an auto insurance policy, they may be self-insured instead.
In any case, their minimum limits are as follows:
- $25,000 for injuries or death per person
- $50,000 for injuries or deaths per accident
- $25,000 for property damages per accident
But the Warsaw truck driver’s personal coverage limits might not be enough to compensate you for your losses. Should this happen, you could move on to another option: filing a lawsuit.
Warsaw Truck Accident Lawyer Near Me 800-333-9999
Filing a Truck Accident Case
Besides the truck driver having insufficient coverage, there could be other reasons why you might consider filing a truck accident lawsuit. For example, you may not agree with the insurance company’s settlement offer. Or you and the trucking company or driver may have failed to settle out of court.
With a truck accident case, you will have the civil court evaluate the accident and available evidence. You and the other party may also face each other in court proceedings. However, getting sued can also encourage them to try and reach a private settlement again.
Lawsuits have different filing requirements than claims, which your lawyer can help you comply with. They can also represent you during the court hearings or trials and advise you on conducting yourself. If the other party wishes to settle privately, your attorney can also help negotiate for you.
Deadline for Filing Truck Accident Lawsuits in Indiana
Indiana Code § 34-11-2-4 contains the statute of limitations or time limit for filing your Warsaw truck accident case. You have up to two years to bring your lawsuit to court regardless of whether you are filing for your injuries or your damaged property.
If you are filing a truck accident lawsuit resulting in wrongful death, Indiana Code § 34-23-1-1 states that you would also have a two-year deadline.
Damages in a Warsaw Truck Accident Case
If the claim or lawsuit settles successfully, you can recover damages for your actual expenses, which usually include:
- Medical treatments and prescription drugs
- Lost wages
- Vehicle repairs
- Funeral costs (if the crash killed a loved one)
You could also get compensated for the suffering your injuries or loved one’s death caused. These non-economic damages include:
- Disabilities and disfigurements
- Loss of consortium
We can estimate your total recoverable damages by calculating your expenses and assessing your injuries.
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Sharing Fault Can Reduce Recovery
Indiana is a comparative fault state, meaning you may receive less than your total damages if you share some fault for the truck accident.
For instance, say that the court finds you were over the speed limit when the accident occurred. However, the truck driver was using recreational drugs. This results in you sharing 25 percent of the fault while the driver is 75 percent liable. So, if your total damages were $400,000, you would only get $300,000.
Our Lawyers Want to Build Your Kosciusko County Case
Truck accidents can be deadlier and more expensive than a regular car collision, but you can still take legal action. Isaacs & Isaacs Personal Injury Lawyers is always open to discussing your accident’s legal concerns 24/7. Since 1993, our attorneys have handled various claims and cases in a wide range of practice areas in Indiana, Ohio, and Kentucky.
Besides truck accidents, these also include slip and fall injuries, dog bites, and defective drugs. Review our case victories to see the results we produce for clients. We have over 400 years of combined legal experience, and we provide Spanish-speaking attorneys and paralegals. Call today for your free consultation.