You do not have an indefinite amount of time to file your truck accident claim so it is important that you move fast. Contact an attorney today to learn your next steps.
The most important reason to hire a lawyer quickly is to ensure that you are able to file your lawsuit before the statute of limitations expires. A statute of limitations is a deadline for filing a lawsuit.
Once the statute of limitations has passed, you will be barred from filing a lawsuit in court.
Every state has different laws pertaining to the time frame in which a victim must file a lawsuit. In Texas, for example, the statute of limitations (SOL) for injury claims is two years. This means a lawsuit must be filed within two years of the date on which the injury occurred. The SOL is also two years for a majority of wrongful death truck accident cases. Visit the bottom of this page to see a full list of each state’s statute of limitations for truck accident injury claims.
Beyond the SOL, making a timely claim is critical to your case’s investigation. One of the most important tasks the law firm you hire will do is the accident investigation and discovery. Your law firm will hire trained experts to reconstruct the accident to determine how it happened and who was at fault. They will examine the vehicle and collect evidence that may show any defects or parts that were not properly maintained. They will take witness statements and review police evidence.
In addition to examining the scene of the accident, your lawyers will review employee files, maintenance records, and driver logbooks to search for negligent or reckless conduct. All of this discovery is critical to determining liability and the accurate value of your case. The sooner you begin to compile a case, the more information you will have available. If you wait too long, important information and potential evidence could be lost, forgotten, or destroyed.
For example, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations require commercial truck drivers to keep daily logs that recap what they have done. This information can establish whether the trucker has complied with the maximum driving times. Once they submit these log books to their trucking company, the company is only required to maintain them for six months. That means this information could be thrown out if you wait too long to file a claim and obtain copies of log entries.
Another useful source of evidence is the electronic on-board recorder or the "black box," which stores data about the truck's speed and brake application at the time of a crash. However, these computers record information in loops that erase information after a certain number of miles. You need to act quickly to preserve it!
While many safety coalitions are pushing to make electronic on-board recorders a requirement in commercial vehicles, their petitions have been denied.Learn More
An individual who has been hit by a truck driver will need to report the incident immediately to the police or a local authority. The longer a person waits, the less clear the incident will become, possibly losing some of the most important information.
This will also give the truck driver a smaller window of time to "create" a false version of the accident, if the driver possibly knew that the trucking accident was their own fault.
In addition, any nearby witnesses will be able to give an accurate account of the event if approached at a time close after the accident. Similar to the last point made, a witness may forget about the events or another version of the incident may cloud their memory. Their recollection of an accident a few days or weeks later will be more valuable than a year-old memory.
If you file quickly, your injuries will still be visible and stand as hard evidence on your behalf. Your truck accident attorney can use photographs of your injuries and doctor's statements as evidence. The sooner you file, the more information can be gathered about your injuries—photographic evidence in particular is a powerful way to strengthen your case.
Don't let a delay in filing a lawsuit cost you a chance to protect your rights and receive compensation. The sooner you contact a proven truck accident attorney, the quicker an investigation into your claim can be started and a lawsuit filed. Your free consultation with our team at Arnold & Itkin LLP is 100% free and confidential. Our attorneys have been representing injured clients for years and have secured billions of dollars in verdicts and settlements on their behalf.
We are ready to help you file a claim. Contact us to discuss your case with our relentless injury lawyers.
Here is a list of each state and its statute of limitations, with links to each state’s information: