A truck accident lawyer is an attorney who devotes the majority of his or her practice to the issues at stake when trucks are involved in accidents. Some truck accident lawyers are devoted to defending truckers who cause accidents, while others defend other drivers or property owners who may have sustained injury in a truck accident. Still others represent the insurance companies who protect truckers and truck companies, or represent truckers who were injured by faulty trucker equipment. Any and all aspects of a truck accident lawsuit, no matter its contours, are handled by a truck accident lawyer.
The specifics of what a truck accident lawyer actually does vary based on the lawyer’s practice interests and experiences. The practice of truck accident law usually involves an in-depth knowledge of several bodies of law. Personal injury law, insurance law, corporate liability law, and traffic law are among the laws that a successful truck accident attorney must at least be familiar with.
Most trucking accidents are factually complicated. Unlike a car accident, which typically involves only individual drivers and their personal insurance carriers, a truck accident more often than not involves at least one corporate actor. Most trucks are driven for commercial purposes, and truck drivers are typically acting as corporate agents when they drive. It is a truck accident lawyer’s job to determine whether an accident was the trucker’s fault as an individual; the trucker’s fault as a corporate agent; the corporation’s fault; a third-party driver’s fault; a city or national entity’s fault, such as for poorly maintained roads; or a combination of the above.
More than anything else, a truck accident lawyer is a fact-finder. The lawyer’s ultimate goal, of course, is to serve his client, but representation in a truck accident crash — particularly a commercial truck crash — necessarily involves a lot of facts. It is incumbent on a truck accident lawyer to understand not only the facts of the accident, but also the facts that led up to the accident. How long the trucker had been on the road is one consideration, as is the trucking corporation’s policy on how long a trucker can permissibly be behind the wheel without a break. Whether the trucker or any other involved driver was drinking or under the influence of drugs is also something the lawyers will investigate, as is the maintenance and general condition of the road where the accident occurred.
A truck accident attorney is, at his or her core, an accident attorney, and usually also a personal injury advocate. Attorneys in this field are highly specialized, and usually have earned their specialized experience over time. Truck accident lawyers typically begin their practices doing broad work in the accident field. The lawyers hone their experience to truck-related incidents over time, and usually use their past experiences to build their trucking injury practices.