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Tampa Truck Accidents

Our Tampa truck accident lawyers are accepting new cases to help victims of truck accidents fight for their legal rights and get fair, financial compensation under Florida law. Motor vehicle accidents involving trucks can result in significant injuries and damages. The procedure for investigating, building, and filing a truck accident claim can be complex. There are unique issues relating to the trucking industry that a victim must consider to be successful.

Having the proper legal representation can help you ensure a fair resolution, a timely claims process, and adequate compensation for your losses. To us, your case is personal. An experienced Tampa, FL truck accident attorney can help you pursue your claim and make sure that you receive the appropriate remedies.

How Our Tampa Truck Accident Lawyers Can Help

truck making a sharp turnFinding an aggressive and experienced Tampa truck accident lawyer is critical to getting the outcome in the Florida legal system that you’re looking for. An attorney who specializes in truck accidents can help you identify the strengths and weaknesses of your case. There are likely things that you can do to make your case stronger. Your attorney identifies these things and helps you facilitate building your case.

Our Tampa truck accident lawyers offer full-service representation for truck accident victims. When we represent a truck accident client, we handle all of the contact with the insurance company and the other party. Our team works on your behalf, and we work with you during the case-building process.

When you need medical experts to identify and explain your physical injuries, our team can help you find the right professionals to provide medical care and build your claim. Comprehensive legal representation also means preparing your legal documents, forming a legal strategy, and speaking for you in court. Working with our Tampa truck accident attorneys means that we handle every aspect of the legal case for you so that you can turn your attention to your recovery.

[RELATED] How to Claim Compensation After a Tampa Truck Accident

Truck accident cases are different than the typical motor vehicle accidents for many reasons. Whether your accident is with a semi-truck, delivery vehicle like a UPS or FedEx truck or a service truck, the trucking industry is highly regulated and subject to a variety of laws. These laws place weight restrictions on truckloads, put limitations on times, distances and locations where trucks may be driven, require specific training and licenses for truck drivers, and require the truck itself to comply with specific requirements. When a truck driver or truck owner fails to comply with the trucking laws and an accident results, it may give rise to claims for damages against the truck’s insurance, the truck driver, and the business employing the truck driver. A claim may also be the result of the truck driver failing to drive carefully or follow the rules of the road that apply to all drivers.

When you’re pursuing a truck accident claim, it’s critical to consider all of the parties that may be responsible. Truck accident cases are unique among vehicle accident cases because the truck driver is often employed by a large, often out of state, corporation or business. If the truck driver is on the job for their employer when the accident occurs, the corporation or business may be liable. When the employer is located outside the state where the accident occurs, there may be additional issues to be considered in a claim like the appropriate location to file the claim.

An experienced truck accident attorney will be versed on the trucking laws and can identify any potential violations that may apply to your case. A truck accident attorney will also be able to pursue a claim against all responsible parties, including out of state corporations who employ the truck driver. When you work with an attorney, you rely on them to know and apply all of the trucking laws, rules of the road, negligence laws, and Florida court procedures to help you get a fair outcome in the legal process.

What Is a Truck Accident Case Worth?

Every truck accident case is unique. The damages that you should receive in your case depend on your actual losses. When there are significant injuries, a victim may receive payment for emotional losses and mental injuries as well as physical pain from the third-party or parties responsible. Florida’s definition of significant injuries is quite expansive. You may qualify for a third-party claim and not be aware of it.

In general, a victim to such an accident is entitled to compensation to place them back in the position they were before the crash occurred plus compensation to account for any continuing effects of the accident. Some of the damages that a victim may receive include:

  • Medical expenses
  • Auto repairs
  • Property damages
  • Lost wages
  • Pain and suffering
  • Rehabilitation costs
  • Emotional and mental distress
  • Physical disfigurement and scarring
  • Future medical needs
  • Attorney fees and costs

When you’re in a truck accident in Tampa, Florida, you need answers. Our Tampa attorneys for truck accidents explain the FAQs that you need to know.

What Are Tampa Truck Accident Laws?

  • Florida law 627.737 [1] creates no-fault liability for minor accidents. Everyone, including truck drivers, must carry minimum amounts of personal injury protection car insurance.
  • When an accident occurs, each party submits the claim to their own insurer for reimbursement of 80% of medical bills up to $10,000.
  • If an accident produces serious or permanent injuries, the victim may sue the responsible party for a wide range of economic and non-economic damages.
  • Truck drivers have an elevated legal duty to exercise care and caution when on the road.
  • A truck driver’s duty to exercise caution should consider traffic and road conditions in the City of Tampa.
  • If the insurance company doesn’t voluntarily settle a claim fairly, the victim may file a lawsuit in order to enforce their rights.

What Are the Minimum Truck Insurance Requirements in Tampa?

Tampa’s minimum truck insurance requirements range from $300,000 for trucks transporting household goods to $5 million for trucks that transport hazardous materials. Also, all drivers must have a minimum of $10,000 of car insurance in Tampa. These are the same minimums that apply throughout the State of Florida. In addition, if an individual drives for a rideshare company, like Uber or Lyft, they must have additional insurance.

Where Do Tampa Truck Accident Laws Come From?

Tampa truck accident laws may come from any of the following sources:

Does Tampa Have Specific Laws That Relate to Truck Drivers?

Yes, Tampa has specific laws that relate to truck drivers. Tampa has dedicated truck routes established in the City of Tampa ordinances Chapter 25 [3]. A first violation may carry a fine of $75. Subsequent offenses are more costly, with a penalty for a fourth or subsequent offense of $450.

How Many Semi Truck Accidents per Year Are There in Florida?

If you’re wondering how many accidents are caused by semi trucks, Florida keeps records of these types of accidents. According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles [4], there were 31,838 accidents in 2019 involving medium and heavy trucks weighing 10,000 lbs or more. These crashes caused 25 fatalities. Also, trucks under 10,000 lbs or more caused 6,489 accidents and a total of eight deaths.

Can a Truck Driver Be Fired for an Accident in Tampa?

Yes, a truck driver can be fired for an accident in Tampa. Florida is an at-will state, which generally means that an employer does not need a reason to fire an employee. Even employers that waive at-will employment by contract, union agreement or similar agreement still have provisions that allow them to remove drivers whose driving behaviors are dangerous. In fact, hiring or retaining an unqualified driver may give the employer legal liability. Negligent hiring means allowing an incompetent person to drive when the employer knows or should have a reason to know that they are unfit. It may also include inadequate training. Not only can a truck driver be fired for an accident in Tampa, but it may also be necessary to prevent legal liability in the future.

What To Do After a Truck Accident in Tampa?

After a truck accident in Tampa, you should take the following steps:

  • Call the police. The City of Tampa police may respond to investigate and document the accident.
  • Summon emergency care responders if there is any sign of injury.
  • Get the name, license information, employer details and insurance for the truck driver.
  • Take pictures of the scene and gather names and contact information for witnesses as much as you are able.
  • Seek medical care to treat and document any medical injuries.
  • Report the accident to your own insurance company.

What Are Some Causes of Tampa Truck Accidents?

We often get questions like, “What is the number one cause of lift truck accidents?” Here’s everything you need to know about what causes truck accidents in Tampa:

  • Not using sufficient care on hazardous roads, such as Waters Ave. and US 301
  • Failing to leave sufficient following distance, especially in busy stop-and-go driving
  • Parking in active driving lanes and other hazardous places
  • Speeding
  • Driver fatigue; operating for too many hours without sufficient rest
  • Unsecured loads and falling objects
  • Inattention with distractions like texting or trying to multitask while driving
  • Failing to observe traffic laws for stop signs, lane changes and the like

RELATED: Determining Liability and Negligence in Truck Accidents

What Can I Receive in Compensation if I’m Hurt in a Truck Accident?

If you’re hurt in a truck accident, you may receive compensation for financial losses and pain and suffering. In Florida, no-fault laws apply unless you have a serious, permanent or disfiguring injury. If your injuries qualify, you may claim a range of damages, including medical bills, lost wages, mental anguish damages and pain and suffering.

How Is Fault Determined for a Truck Accident?

Fault is determined for a truck accident by looking at all drivers’ actions and comparing them to the standard of a reasonable person. If a driver violates a traffic law, that is compelling evidence of fault if it contributes to the accident in some way. However, any kind of unreasonable behavior that causes an accident may qualify. If multiple parties are at fault, liability may be apportioned between the parties.

How Much Time Do I Have To File a Truck Accident Lawsuit in Tampa?

In Tampa, you have four years from the date of the accident to file a truck accident lawsuit. That’s how much time you have to make your initial filing in court. Even if the insurance company makes promises of payment, it’s still critical to formally start the claim by the deadline unless your case is fully resolved. Missing the deadline may prevent you from receiving the compensation that you deserve.

Can I Hire an Attorney for a Truck Accident in Tampa?

Yes, you can hire an attorney for a truck accident in Tampa. The attorney pursues the case on your behalf. You may hire an attorney of your choice to represent your interests. To learn more about truck accident claims or to see if you qualify to receive compensation after a truck accident, contact our team today at (813) 333-6666 for a free case evaluation.

Sources:

[1] FLA. STAT. § 627.737 (2020) [2] FLA. STAT. § 316-324 (2020) [3] City of Tampa. Truck Route Map and Ordinance. Retrieved 25 February 2021 from https://www.tampa.gov/tss-stormwater/info/truck-map [4] Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. Crash and Citation Reports & Statistics. Retrieved 25 February 2021 from https://www.flhsmv.gov/resources/crash-citation-reports/

Commercial Truck, Delivery Truck and Tow Truck Accidents in Tampa

There are no vehicles on the road that are exempt from Florida negligence laws. Drivers and owners of commercial trucks, delivery trucks, and tow trucks can all be responsible when an accident occurs. An experienced truck accident lawyer knows the legal elements that must be shown to recover damages and will be able to identify the damages for which you may be able to receive compensation.

Read more about liability and negligence in truck accidents.

 

Truck Accident Attorneys With Free Consultations in Tampa

Jack Bernstein, Injury Attorneys has over 36 years of experience representing victims involved in truck accidents in Tampa, Florida. He and his team of attorneys fight to protect your rights and make sure insurance companies and corporations with deep pockets do not abuse the process or bully you into unfair settlements. As your attorney, he will keep the truck driver and company honest and hold them responsible for their negligence.

If you have been in an accident with a commercial truck, call (813) 333-6666 to speak with Jack personally about your case. He will provide legal advice to assist with the claim process and can provide quality representation to help you recover the damages you are entitled to receive.

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