Commercial Vehicle Accident Lawyer Michigan
Being involved in any car accident can be scary and traumatizing, but a commercial vehicle accident has the potential to be even worse. With the massive size and weight of commercial trucks compared to passenger cars, it’s easy to see how they can cause so much damage. But what happens when you’ve been injured in a commercial truck accident? Where do you go from there? For starters, you should contact an experienced commercial vehicle accident lawyer in Michigan.
The commercial vehicle accident attorneys at Lipton Law don’t just handle accidents involving big rigs, tractor-trailers, and commercial trucks. We also handle commercial motor vehicle accidents involving other types of commercial vehicles. If you’ve been injured in a commercial vehicle crash due to someone else’s negligence, the Michigan truck accident lawyers with our firm are here to help you fight for your right to just compensation. To schedule your free consultation with our personal injury law firm, please call our office at 248-557-1688 today.
When most people think of a commercial motor vehicle accident, they likely picture a very large, very heavy semi-truck. However, commercial motor vehicles encompass much more than commercial trucks. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, a commercial vehicle is “any self-propelled or towed motor vehicle used on a highway in interstate commerce to transport passengers or property” when any of the following apply.
- It has a gross vehicle weight rating or gross combination weight rating of 10,001 lbs or more,
- Is used or designed to transport over 8 passengers for compensation,
- Is designed/used to transport more than 15 passengers, not for compensation, or
- Is designed/used to transport hazardous materials in such quantities as to require placarding.
Types of Commercial Vehicle Accidents
As we stated before, commercial vehicles come in many different shapes and sizes aside from 18-wheelers. There are three basic categories of commercial vehicles, including commercial trucks, commercial vans, and buses. Within these categories, these vehicles are divided into even more subcategories. More specific types of commercial vehicles include the following.
- Pickup trucks
- Box trucks
- Transit buses
- Motor coaches
- Step vans
- Passenger vans
- Cargo vans
- Commercial cars
A commercial motor vehicle crash can happen between any of the above vehicles and another vehicle. But what are the most common types of car accidents involving commercial vehicles? We outline these below.
- Rollover car accident
- Rear ended accidents
- T-bone car accident
- Head-on collision
- Jackknife truck accident
- Sideswipe accidents
- DUI accidents
- Distracted driving accident
- Dangerous road accidents
- Amazon truck accidents
If you have suffered serious injuries from the negligence of another person, you deserve compensation for those injuries. Contact an experienced truck accident lawyer with Lipton Law as soon as possible for qualified representation.
How Are Commercial Vehicle Accidents Different from Car Accidents?
Commercial vehicle and truck accidents have the potential to be far more devastating than the typical car accident. Although this sounds like common knowledge, few people understand all the reasons why this is the case. Below, we outline several distinctions between commercial truck accidents and regular car accidents.
- Size and weight differences: A commercial truck or vehicle is usually much larger and much heavier than a regular passenger vehicle. They’re also much more difficult to operate, which is why many of them require special licenses. A truck driver must constantly watch their blind spots and accommodate the size and weight of their vehicle. Failure to do so could result in serious truck crashes and injuries.
- Maintenance requirements: Any large commercial truck or vehicle must also receive extensive routine maintenance to ensure the vehicles are safe for the road. Because they spend so much time on the road, they sustain a lot of wear and tear. Failing to maintain these vehicles properly could result in multiple parties being held accountable in the event of an accident.
- More damage and worse injuries: In a commercial truck crash, the higher momentum leads to worse crashes and more serious injuries. If a large truck strikes a smaller vehicle, the occupants may suffer catastrophic injuries. Additionally, the insurance company for the commercial vehicle is likely to fight claimants on their cases.
- Multiple liable parties: In a standard car accident case, only the parties involved in the crash could be held liable. In commercial truck accidents, however, many parties could be liable. Examples include the truck driver, the trucking company, manufacturers, maintenance crews, and more.
- Different forms of evidence: Car accidents are generally limited to the evidence at the crash scene. In a commercial trucking accident, evidence can include black box data, maintenance logs, cargo manifests, and many other pieces of evidence.
Who Is Liable for a Commercial Vehicle Accident in Michigan?
Michigan has a no-fault system, meaning accident victims must file a claim with their no-fault insurance company rather than suing the responsible party. Drivers in Michigan must carry no-fault insurance, as this will cover their expenses after an accident, no matter who is to blame. However, you can still file a truck accident claim against those responsible for the accident.
To do this, we strongly recommend speaking with experienced commercial truck accident attorneys. Claimants must work with their attorneys to gather substantial evidence supporting their claims against truck drivers, trucking companies, and other liable parties. A truck accident attorney in Michigan will have all the knowledge and training necessary to litigate these cases.
Michigan truck accident law can be complicated for those who are unfamiliar with it. Your attorney must show that the truck driver, trucking company, or other party acted negligently and broke Michigan law or federal commercial regulations.
What’s more, is that Michigan also follows comparative negligence laws. This means that to recover damages, you must be less than 50% at fault for the accident. If the other party is mostly to blame, you could sue the following parties in a truck accident case.
- Truck drivers
- Trucking companies
- Maintenance crews
- Truck and truck parts manufacturers
- Vendors who service the carrier
- Cargo loaders
For a better understanding of how to proceed in your case, we recommend contacting an experienced truck accident attorney as soon as possible.
What Is a Commercial Vehicle Accident Lawyer?
A commercial vehicle accident lawyer in Michigan handles more than just truck accident cases. They handle cases involving any kind of commercial vehicle, including tractor-trailers, vans, buses, and other commercial vehicles. Generally, they are personal injury lawyers who handle lawsuits and claims on behalf of injured truck accident victims.
At Lipton Law, we have extensive experience helping injured victims file commercial truck accident lawsuits against large trucking companies. We understand that it can be frustrating to fight against a large trucking company with teams of lawyers on their side. That’s why we offer the power and experience of a large firm while giving you the personal care and attention of a boutique law firm. A commercial trucking accident lawyer with our firm will handle all the red tap and heavy lifting while you focus on recovering from your injuries.
What Does a Commercial Vehicle Accident Lawyer Do?
To put it simply, a commercial truck accident lawyer will handle every step of your truck accident claim so you can focus on your health and recovery. Below, we outline just a few of the ways we help our clients with their truck accident cases.
As we mentioned previously, commercial truck accidents are much more complicated than the average car accident. Many people assume that the truck driver is completely to blame, but it often isn’t that simple. There may be multiple defendants involved in a commercial truck accident case. Examples of potential defendants include truck drivers, trucking companies, shipping companies, truck manufacturers, and even government agencies.
Other issues can arise if the truck driver is an independent contractor for the trucking company. Without the help of an experienced truck accident lawyer, it is very difficult to identify all liable parties on your own. Our Michigan personal injury attorneys have what it takes to hold all responsible parties accountable for your losses after an accident.
When you face both the trucking company and its insurance company, you’re facing two large entities with teams of lawyers on their side. Either in court or in compiling your personal injury lawsuit, we will do all of the following as we craft a strong case for you.
- Identifying the responsible parties and their insurance companies
- Investigating your case and collecting evidence to support it, including evidence from the scene, police reports, the truck’s electronic control module, black box data, eyewitness testimony, and much more
- Compiling all of your losses and expenses from the accident to negotiate a fair commercial truck accident settlement
- Taking your case to court and litigating on your behalf for fair compensation
You deserve full and fair compensation for the injuries that another negligent party caused you. When an insurance or truck company refuses to reach a fair settlement, we will help you file a personal injury claim in court.
If your case goes to court, you must be able to prove that you have a legitimate claim against the responsible parties. To do this, you must be able to show all the elements of negligence in personal injury truck accident claims.
- You were owed a duty of care by the truck driver or other liable parties.
- The liable parties breached that duty of care with their actions or negligence.
- The breach caused your injuries and losses.
- You suffered actual damages or losses because of the accident.
If you can prove these elements and support your claim with substantial evidence, you’ll have a higher chance of a successful commercial truck accident claim.
What Causes Commercial Vehicle Accidents in Michigan?
Commercial truck accidents can happen for several reasons, both driver-related and otherwise. Below, we list some of the most common truck accident causes in Michigan.
- Driver fatigue from working long hours with little sleep
- Driving drunk or under the influence of drugs
- Distracted driving or texting while driving
- Reckless driving or speeding
- Poor vehicle maintenance practices
- Bad weather or dangerous road conditions
- Inadequate driver training
- Pressure from the trucking company to meet strict deadlines
Any of the parties involved in getting commercial vehicles from point A to point B could make mistakes that result in an accident. Commercial trucking accidents are often very serious, and they require a lot of evidence. A personal injury attorney with Lipton Law will be here to help answer all your truck accident questions and to give you the support you need during this tough time.
What Are the Most Common Injuries in Commercial Vehicle Accidents?
Commercial truck crashes are very serious, and they can result in injuries of all severities. They may even result in wrongful death. Some of the most common injuries sustained in commercial truck accidents include the following.
- Orthopedic injuries, such as broken bones
- Head trauma
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Back and spinal cord injuries
- Burn injuries
- Neck injuries
- Cuts, bruises, and lacerations
- Internal injuries
The full list of possible injuries is much longer, but the above list is a good example of how severe truck crashes can be. If you suffer injuries from a truck crash, you deserve compensation for those injuries. Our legal team is here to fight for the rights of commercial truck accident victims.
What to Do After a Commercial Vehicle Accident in Michigan
Immediately following an accident involving a commercial vehicle, you should proceed cautiously. Oftentimes, the accident scene is very dangerous, and you never know what cargo the vehicle was carrying. After commercial and semi-truck accidents, we recommend taking the following steps.
- Call 911 as soon as possible. Check your own health, as well as the health of your passengers and others involved in the crash. Wait for the police and ambulance to arrive, then get a copy of the police report to use as evidence.
- Get medical attention. Even if you don’t feel any pain or injuries, you should always see a doctor after a crash. The rush of adrenaline in your body might dull your pain, or prevent you from feeling it at all. Seeing a doctor as soon as possible after the accident will tie your injuries more closely to the accident.
- Gather evidence from the scene. Only do this if you have no injuries and if law enforcement has arrived at the scene. Take pictures and videos of the scene, then gather contact information from witnesses.
- Refrain from getting your car repaired. Before any repairs, you should have your car appraised for a repair estimate. This estimate is crucial for filing a claim with your insurance company.
- Do not admit fault. Even if you did contribute to the accident, do not admit fault to anyone, especially not the insurance company. However, you shouldn’t lie, either. It’s always best to let your attorney handle these conversations.
- Contact a personal injury lawyer. When you work with an attorney for your case, they will handle all the negotiations and litigation while you focus on your recovery.
How to File a Commercial Vehicle Accident Lawsuit
In Michigan, you’ll need to begin your claim by filing with your no-fault insurance company. Your attorney can help you file this claim, as even no-fault insurance companies are often difficult to work with. After you have filed your claim, you may still have a considerable amount of damages remaining. In this case, you and your attorney can file a personal injury lawsuit against the responsible parties.
Your attorney will gather and prepare all the necessary documents to file the claim in court. The Michigan personal injury statute of limitations is three years after the injury or death of the victim. Filing your claim sooner than later is always preferable, as the longer you wait, the more your credibility may be questioned.
Then, your lawyer will serve the defendant with the claim and wait for a response. The defendant will then answer the complaint with legal defenses. This is when your case proceeds to trial. The first step in the trial is to gather evidence for your case.
You will then proceed to the discovery phase, which can include depositions, subpoenas, interrogatories, requests for production, and requests for admissions. The case then moves to pre-trial motions and settlement negotiations. If the parties involved cannot reach a settlement agreement, the case proceeds to trial.
How Much Is a Commercial Vehicle Accident Case Worth?
Depending on the severity of the accident, the estimated worth of a commercial truck accident case can vary greatly. Some cases may be worth over ten thousand dollars, while others may be worth hundreds of thousands or even millions. Knowing the average payout for commercial accident claims won’t help, as each case is unique. To determine the worth of your case, your attorney will add up your losses and expenses. You may receive compensation for the following losses.
- Lost wages
- Medical expenses
- Property damage
- Wrongful death
- Loss of consortium
- Lost earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Disability or disfigurement
Our commercial truck accident lawyers will help evaluate the worth of your case so that you can fight for the compensation you deserve. Don’t wait to contact an attorney, call us today at 248-557-1688 for a free consultation.
Do I Need a Commercial Vehicle Accident Attorney?
While you are not required to hire an attorney for your case, we strongly recommend doing so. These cases are often exceedingly complex, which means you need a seasoned attorney to ensure that you don’t lose your right to recover compensation. Your lawyer will help you navigate your claim and give you the space you need to recover from your injuries fully. Additionally, they will ensure that you meet all filing requirements, including filing before the statute of limitations has passed. Failure to file on time could result in losing your right to compensation completely.
Additionally, many commercial vehicles are driven for large companies, such as Amazon. If you are involved in an Amazon truck accident, you may be up against teams of lawyers when you file a claim. Working with an experienced commercial accident lawyer is crucial for building the strongest case possible.
Why Choose Lipton Law for Your Commercial Accident Claim?
Lipton Law has considerable experience handling Michigan truck accident claims, as well as claims involving other types of commercial vehicles. Our knowledge and passion for our craft will work in your favor from the very beginning of your case to the very end. Don’t let insurance and trucking companies push you around after your accident. Contact Lipton Law for compassionate and aggressive representation from the best truck accident lawyer in Michigan.
Contact a Michigan Commercial Vehicle Accident Attorney with Lipton Law
If you have been seriously injured in a commercial truck accident, it is crucial that you contact an experienced truck accident attorney as soon as possible. The Michigan truck accident attorneys at Lipton Law are aggressive when fighting for our clients’ rights. We are also compassionate about what you’re going through. While you focus on recovering from your injuries, our truck accident law firm will fight for your right to just compensation. To schedule your free consultation with an experienced commercial truck accident lawyer, please call our office at 248-557-1688 today.