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Frequently Asked Questions About Truck Accidents

Answers you can trust from experienced Houston attorneys

Truck accidents caused by commercial truck drivers often raise a lot of questions. You might wonder what you should do next. Or who will investigate your accident. Or whether you should accept a settlement offer. All these questions and many more are important. That’s why it’s critical that you get accurate information so you can make smart legal decisions.

Our experienced Houston truck accident lawyers at Smith & Hassler can answer all your questions and help you in many ways. That’s because our attorneys have more than 30 years of experience getting results for injury victims and their families in Houston and throughout Texas. You can count on us when it matters most.

What is your truck accident question?

Below, you’ll find the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about truck accidents in Texas. If you don’t see your specific question, don’t worry. Even if you do, we strongly advise you to contact our law firm and schedule a free case evaluation. That’s because every accident is different. So is our approach to every legal case. We’re not like other law firms. We think outside the box.

What are common causes of truck accidents?

Due to the size and weight of large commercial trucks, they can inflect greater damage on our roadways than smaller passenger vehicles. Most truck accidents are caused by the negligence of drivers, trucking companies, and vehicle parts manufacturers.

Drivers often cause truck accidents due to speeding, distracted driving (like using a cell phone), driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, fatigue (especially given the long hours truck drivers often work), and not adhering to traffic rules. Inadequate driver training also contributes to many truck accidents.

Equipment failures often lead to serious truck crashes involving brake failure, tire blowouts, steering issues, and transmission problems. If the cargo isn’t properly loaded or secured, it can shift during transport and cause a truck to become unbalanced.
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Should I call the police after my truck accident?

Yes. The first thing you should do after your truck accident is call the police and ask them to respond to your accident. This way, you’ll have an official police record of exactly what happened. Otherwise, you could face problems in the future, especially with insurance companies responsible for compensating you.

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Who determines who caused my truck accident?

Often, the police officer investigating your accident is the one who will determine who was at fault. Sometimes, other state, local or federal agencies may be involved in investigating your accident and determining who was at fault.

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Who investigates truck accidents in Texas?

Commercial truck accidents are different than car accidents. That’s because other agencies besides local or state police (including the Texas Highway Patrol) might investigate your truck accident. One is the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB). They’re often involved in investigations involving large commercial trucks.

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Are the laws different for truck accidents in Texas?

Yes. Truck accidents are governed by many different state and federal laws which often only apply to large commercial truck accidents.

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Should I see a doctor after my truck accident?

Yes. Your health and well-being should be your top priority after your truck accident, so have a doctor examine you right away. You could have a life-threatening internal injury and not even realize it. Also, by having an official record of your injury, you may have an easier time getting the financial compensation you deserve for your accident-related expenses.

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Should I talk to the truck driver after my truck accident?

Yes. If you are healthy to do so, get the truck driver’s name, address, phone number, insurance information and the name of the trucking company the truck driver works for. Beyond that, don’t say anything else to the truck driver. It’s important to understand that anything you say about your accident could be used later to deny your accident claim.

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What should I do if the trucking company contacts me after my accident?

Do not talk to them. Even if their questions sound simple or straightforward, they’re just contacting you to try to get information their insurance company can use to deny your claim.

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What should I do if the truck driver’s insurance company contacts me after my truck accident?

Again, you do not have to talk to the truck driver’s insurance company. We strongly advise you not to do so. Anything you say to insurance companies can be used by them to reduce or deny your accident claim. Leave them to us. We know how to deal with insurance companies and can negotiate with them on your behalf.

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Should I accept a settlement for my truck accident?

We realize it’s tempting to accept a settlement offer soon after your truck accident. You have a lot of medical bills and other expenses adding up after your crash. The reality is many of the settlement offers made by insurance companies don’t even come close to covering all your accident-related expenses. Once you agree to accept a settlement offer, you often cannot go back and ask for additional money in the future. That’s why it’s critical that you carefully consider this offer before agreeing to accept it. We can help you review their offer and advise you on what to do.

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How much is my Texas truck accident worth?

Every truck accident is different. Some are worth a few thousand dollars. Others can be worth millions. We can review the details of your case and discuss how much we think your accident could be worth.

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What truck accident expenses can I be compensated for?

All your truck accident-related expenses can and should be covered by the truck driver’s insurance company. These expenses can cover a wide range of damages. That’s because they’re not simply confined to your expenses immediately after your accident. They can include all future expenses related to your truck accident, such as:

  • Medical care, including:
    • Emergency care
    • Physical therapy
    • Surgical procedures
    • Follow-up medical care
    • In-home medical care
  • Lost income during your recovery
  • Lost future income if you cannot return to work
  • Pain and suffering, in certain circumstances

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Can I file a lawsuit for my truck accident?

Yes. You have the right to sue the truck driver, the trucking company, their insurance company, and anyone else who may be responsible for your accident and who refuses to fairly compensate you for your crash. Filing a truck accident lawsuit may be the best way for you to get the money you deserve. That’s why we want to meet with you. We know how the legal system works. We know what strategies often work best. We can discuss your options with you and help you decide if you want to file a lawsuit. It’s your choice. We’re just here to help.

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What should I do if I lost a loved one in a truck accident?

If you lost a loved one in a truck accident, you may be able to seek compensation through a wrongful death claim. You must be a spouse, child, or parent of the deceased to be eligible. In some cases, siblings and other relatives can pursue a wrongful death claim.

A wrongful death claim can provide compensation for both economic and non-economic damages. This includes medical and funeral expenses, loss of the deceased’s future earnings, loss of companionship, and emotional distress of survivors.

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How long do I have to file a lawsuit after my Texas truck accident?

In most cases, you have two years from the date of your truck accident in Texas to file a lawsuit. This deadline is known as the statute of limitations. Two years might seem like a long time. The sooner we can start investigating your crash, the better. That’s because the evidence needed to build a strong truck accident case can disappear over time. This is especially true when it comes to the so-called “black box” data in trucks which documents exactly how fast the truck was traveling at the time of the crash, as well as the last time the truck driver took a break.

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How can a Texas truck accident lawyer help me?

There are so many ways our Texas truck accident attorneys can help you after your accident. First, we will work hard to make sure your truck accident gets the attention you rightfully deserve. This includes making sure your accident report is accurate. It also often includes investigating your crash and consulting with accident-reconstruction experts, if necessary. We can also deal directly with insurance companies and trucking companies on your behalf. If they refuse to cooperate, we will not hesitate to file a truck accident lawsuit on your behalf.

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Get Smith & Hassler. We think outside the box.

Don’t underestimate the complexity of your truck accident. Get the help you need to get your life back on track. Contact our law firm and schedule your free case evaluation with a Houston truck accident lawyer who will fight for your rights. Contact Smith & Hassler. We think outside the box.

Smith & Hassler

1225 N Loop W #525
Houston, TX 77008
Toll Free: (877) 777-1529
Local: (713) 739-1250
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10039 Bissonnet St Suite #214
Houston, TX 77036
(713) 804-6863
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14200 Gulf Fwy Suite #103
Houston, TX 77034
(713) 929-2230
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15201 E Freeway Service Rd
Suite 203
Channelview, TX 77530
(281) 559-6566
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