The standard for calculating truck collision damages is subject to the enlightened conscience of a fair and impartial jury. There is no set formula. An experienced truck wreck lawyer is able to explain to a jury how to put a monetary value on a lifetime of limitations, also known as pain and suffering. Speak with a lawyer to learn more about, or help in, calculating Atlanta truck accident damages.
Damages an Auto Insurance Typically Covers
One thing people may not understand or appreciate about truck accident cases in Atlanta is that 18-wheelers or tractor-trailers are not supposed to use the downtown connector to Atlanta unless they are making a downtown delivery. In other words, a long-haul truck driving through Metro Atlanta must go around downtown on I-285, which is the perimeter interstate that circles the metro area.
An experienced attorney can look through the documents, the bills of lading, and the other load documents that show the truck’s origin and destination. It is possible that the truck driver was prohibited from using the downtown connector and should not have been driving on it. This could affect the amount a person can recover after calculating Atlanta truck accident damages.
The injured person’s auto insurance covers at least three categories:
- Medical payments
- Property damage
- Uninsured/underinsured motorist (UM) coverage
Medical payments are available on most Georgia policies and generally covers somewhere between $5,000 and $50,000. The amount is stated on the person’s declaration page in their insurance policy and shows the available medical coverage.
This is non-fault coverage. In other words, it does not matter whether the person fell asleep, ran off the road and hit a tree, or if a truck was at fault for the accident. The plaintiff can use their own policy or MedPay coverage to pay deductibles, co-insurance, and ER visits that were not covered.
Calculating Atlanta truck accident damages could prove to be difficult at times, particularly when there is a dispute about the underlying fault for the crash. For example, if a truck that strikes a person accepts responsibility to some degree, the adjuster for the at-fault insurance company also accepts some responsibility. In these scenarios, the property damage may be directly paid by the trucking company’s insurance.
Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist (UM) Coverage
A large truck insurance policy provides at least $1,000,000 of coverage. When a person’s injuries are potentially worth more than that, they should contact a law firm to notify their own insurance company of a possible UM claim. If the value is inaccessible, regardless of the truck company policy, the person can look to their own policy to collect the excess value up to the limits of their UM insurance.
Liability is proving that someone other than the injured person acted negligently and caused the crash and harm. Determining where the liability falls could prove to be important when calculating Atlanta truck accident damages. There are multiple layers of liability:
- Rules of the road
- Perception-reaction time
- Medical causation
The first layer of liability is the rules of the road that pertain to trucks and truck drivers that go beyond the simple rules that apply to every other driver. These rules address how trucks are loaded, how long they are driven, driver fatigue, driver distraction, braking adjustments, whether the safety equipment on the truck is properly functioning, and analysis of the speed of the truck.
Perception-Reaction Time and Medical Causation
The second layer is an analysis of perception-reaction time, which is when a truck driver should have perceived the hazard and taken evasive action. The same rule applies to the driver of the other vehicle.
The third part of liability is medical causation. Truck accident lawyers spend a lot of time reviewing medical records and consulting with medical experts to analyze whether the person’s injuries and limitations were caused by the truck accident or were due to a pre-existing condition or aging.
Role of an Attorney
As a part of their investigation, a lawyer must gather the evidence and anecdotes, find witnesses, and interview the victim to fully understand their losses. The lawyer must prepare to tell the jury that the person suffered harm and should be compensated. They must be able to tell the story in such a way that makes it compelling to 12 strangers in a jury box. An attorney must be wel-equipped in calculating Atlanta truck accident damages in order for the person to receive the compensation they deserve. Get in touch with truck collision lawyer today for help.