Being involved in an accident can leave you confused, scared, and traumatized. Commercial truck and tractor-trailer accidents can be even more devastating and overwhelming than regular car accidents.
After a trucking accident in the Pacific Northwest, it’s important to understand your options, especially if you have a potential claim or lawsuit on your hands. It may not always be clear who is at fault and why. There are more complexities when it comes to trucking accidents, which is why you need a knowledgeable and dedicated team of Washington truck accident attorneys, like our team at Gilbert Law.
You can sue the Washington truck driver or truck company directly
There are many reasons behind trucking accidents throughout the Pacific Northwest – often explained by the driver’s negligence or the employer’s policies.
These are some common causes of trucking accidents:
- Distracted driving
- Intoxicated driver
- Driver fatigue
- Failure to yield
- Improper backing up or loading
- Improper parking (creating a roadway hazard)
But it can be hard to know who to blame sometimes. Maybe a driver was fatigued because they felt pressured to keep going by their employer.
Here are some more examples that might involve the employer:
- Brake failure and other maintenance issues
- Trucking company negligence, like inadequate hiring or training
- Failure to meet trucking regulations
- Failure to keep up routine truck maintenance
- Overloading the truck or failing to secure the cargo
When a truck driver acts irresponsibly or negligently, it’s important to hold them accountable. But it’s also important to make sure the trucking company is doing its part to keep its employees and the roads safe.
Both parties can be liable, and we can help you figure out who to sue for the injuries or damages you sustained in the accident.
When it comes to a trucking accident, other parties could be to blame
If you were involved in a trucking accident in the Pacific Northwest, you might assume only the driver or the trucking company is to blame.
But there may be other parties that played a role in causing the accident, including:
- The cargo shipper
- Other transportation vendors
- The truck manufacturer
- The truck parts manufacturer
- Government agencies
- Another driver
A dedicated team of trucking accident lawyers can look over your case and investigate thoroughly to make sure you are compensated and justice is served.
Washington, Oregon, Montana, and Wyoming are comparative fault states
When suing a truck driver for an accident, it’s not just a question of whether they are liable or not.
Courts throughout the Pacific Northwest have to look at every party’s role in the accident when determining compensation for damages because they are comparative fault states.
Here is the comparative fault law at a glance:
- Comparative fault
- In Washington state, if the court finds the trucker driver liable, they might also decide you are 15% at fault as well. This means that at the end of calculating the damages you are entitled to, they would be reduced by 15%.
- The courts of Washington can find anyone liable for whatever percent they deem necessary.
- Modified comparative fault
- In Oregon, Montana, and Wyoming, courts operate under a slightly modified version of the concept.
- If you are found less than 51% liable for an accident, you are entitled to all suffered damages. Even if you were a little bit at fault, your total compensation would not be reduced as long as you met the threshold.
Note: There is no code or guidelines for how fault is determined. That’s why you need an experienced team of attorneys to build your case so you can get all the compensation you deserve.
Contact our dedicated attorneys at Gilbert Law
Whatever the circumstances of the trucking accident, you can confide in the legal counsel of the Spokane Washington truck accident attorneys at Gilbert Law Firm. We know how devastating a trucking accident can be, but we have the experience to help you through so you can recover and get the compensation you deserve.
We will fight for you and work diligently on your case, just as we have for every one of our clients. Please reach out and tell us about your case!
Disclaimer: The blog published by the Gilbert Law Firm marketing team for informational purposes only and is not considered legal advice or a substitute for legal advice. There is no attorney-client relationship between the reader and the blog publisher. Readers are urged to consult their own legal counsel on any specific legal questions concerning a specific situation.