If you’ve been in a truck accident in the San Luis Obispo area, you may be dealing with the stress of an injury on top of growing bills from the doctor and mechanic. You may be struggling for money to pay for these expenses and feel pressured to quickly accept an offer from an insurance company. Before signing the dotted line, it’s important what to do after being injured in a California truck accident.
Ernst Law Group has been helping the victims of California car and truck accidents seek restitution for over 35 years. If you’ve been injured in an accident with a truck in the San Luis Obispo area, don’t feel as though there’s no one on your side.
Though you may need compensation quickly, there can be delays in a payout or settlement depending on some factors out of your control. In cases like this, an experienced truck accident lawyer in San Luis Obispo helps you find all the sources of compensation available to you in a timely manner. Give us a call at (805) 541-0300 for a free, no-obligation consultation and we can set you on the path to a speedy settlement today.
What to Do After a San Luis Obispo Truck Accident
If you don’t need to take an ambulance to the hospital, the moments after an accident should be spent contacting the authorities, assessing and documenting damage, and gathering information from other drivers.
If you weren’t taken to the hospital immediately, you should see a doctor within 24 hours to ensure any injuries and symptoms are documented and a treatment plan is put in place by a medical professional.
After these initial steps are taken, contact your insurance company and inform them of the accident. Don’t admit fault or wrongdoing, as that may reduce the chance you have at a settlement down the line.
If you believe another driver was at fault in the accident, or even if you believe you were at fault, this is the time to contact a San Luis Obispo car accident lawyer. They’ll provide helpful advice and assistance in the upcoming conversations with insurance companies. There is no legal requirement for you to personally speak with another driver’s insurance when filing a claim with them, so in most cases, it’s best to leave that up to your legal representation.
Once a claim is submitted to insurance, California law requires them to approve or deny the claim within 40 days if you can prove you’re entitled to damages. If there are few complications when determining fault, this can take as little time as a few days. In some cases, especially those in which serious injuries occur or a claim is for a substantial amount of money, proving your claim can take months or even years.
What Determines the Length of a Settlement?
California operates under comparative negligence, meaning parties involved in an accident will be assigned a portion of the blame. A court will reduce the amount awarded to the plaintiff based on their level of responsibility in the accident. If the available evidence indicating fault is scant or unclear, this can cause slowdowns in determining who is responsible for an accident. The process of determining fault can take weeks or months depending on the complexity of the case.
Amount of Damages
The larger your potential claim, the longer the claims process is likely to take. Insurance companies that represent large trucking companies know you need money quickly, so if you’re seeking a significant sum, they will likely do everything in their power to lower the amount owed and drag the process out. Denying the initial offer an insurance company puts forth is likely to slow the process down, but is often recommended due to the low-ball tactics they employ.
Severity of the Accident
If a lot of people are injured or there are serious injuries and property damages, it can take a long time for those involved to recover. Since treatment, therapy, and damages to your vehicle and other property are part of the damages you will seek to recover, this can cause delays during the settlement process.
The Skills of Your Legal Representation
After a California truck accident, you want an attorney that has experience. Knowledge of California’s trucking and vehicle laws, the insurance company tactics, and court procedures are key when going into the claims process. This is the best way to get a settlement that satisfies your needs.
San Luis Obispo Truck Accident Attorneys with Decades of Experience
Our team has been practicing in California for 35 years and has dealt with many cases like yours.
Dealing with the aftermath of an accident can be painful and stressful, and you need money fast. Our seasoned car accident lawyers will be able to help you get started on your path to an adequate settlement as soon as possible.
Before accepting the insurance company’s offer for your injuries, give us a call at (805) 541-0300 for a free consultation. We can help you determine if you’re entitled to more than what they’re offering.