Average Semi Truck Accident Settlement
What is the average semi truck accident settlement? Injury and fatality accidents involving semi-trucks and other big rigs are unfortunately common. The United States sees about half a million accidents with 18-wheelers every year. If you are one of these thousands of people this year, you may have a valid claim for compensation. It’s normal to wonder your semi-truck accident claim might be worth. Contact a Virginia personal injury attorney as soon as possible after an accident. They will be able to help you gauge the situation.
What Is a Normal 18-Wheeler Accident Settlement in Virginia?
Semi truck accident settlements are usually higher because commercially licensed drivers have higher insurance requirements for commercial carries. Also, there are often many parties involved in commercial motor vehicle accidents liability claim. In addition, tractor trailers often cause more damage due to their size. For these reasons, semi truck accident settlements in Virginia are often higher.
Commercial drivers of semi trucks must hold a commercial driver’s license. This is known as a CDL. In order to obtain a CDL, drivers have to undergo a lot of training. They must know the Department of Transportation safety requirements, as well as the laws of each state they drive through. Commercial drivers have to train under someone with a full commercial license before they can drive alone. In addition to these minimum requirements, US tractor trailer drivers are often subject to additional requirements for the company they drive for.
The addition training that commercial drivers get means they are held to a higher standard than regular drivers. There are a maximum number of hours truck drivers are allowed to drive on any given day. If a trucker drivers more than those hours, and they end up hurting someone in a semi truck accident then criminal penalties can result. In addition to criminal penalties, the trucker would face personal liability if that was the reason for the semi truck accident.
The nature of a CDL means that commercial drivers must exercise more due care than a driver of a non commercial vehicle. Weather conditions often play a role in semi truck accidents, and CDL drivers must take care to drive appropriately for the weather conditions. Police will investigate serious truck accidents. Frequently, CDL drivers get charged when their is evidence that the driver did not follow state or federal rules.
There area a wide range of settlements for semi-truck accidents. Therefore, there is no true “average” settlement. The value of a semi-truck accident claim is highly dependent on the circumstances of the case. The compensation you are eligible to receive depends on several factors. They include your financial losses, the scope and permanence of your injuries, and the degree to which the other driver was at fault. The quality of your legal representation may also impact your settlement. The insurance companies that cover 18-wheelers are notoriously difficult to deal with.
Many semi-truck accident lawsuit plaintiffs receive millions of dollars. However, this amount varies greatly depending on the facts. Some cases settle for as little as $10,000-$15,000. To estimate how much your individual claim may be worth, you must understand how we calculate damages.
How Does One Calculate Damages in a Semi Truck Accident Case?
There are two kinds of damages in personal injury cases: compensatory and punitive.
Punitive damages punish the defendant for extremely harmful behavior. Not every semi-truck accident claim will include punitive damages. Due to stories of juries gone wild, many states place caps on the amount of punitive damages. Virginia state law limits the total amount of punitive damages in personal injury cases to $350,000.
Compensatory damages do not intend to punish the defendant. Rather, they seek to compensate a plaintiff for her economic and non-economic losses. Economic damages are also called special damages. They have a tangible financial value. This includes hospital bills, ongoing medical expenses, and lost wages. Non-economic damages, sometimes referred to as general damages, do not have a specific dollar amount. However, they do carry great intrinsic value. These damages include pain and suffering, mental anguish, and loss of enjoyment of life. To calculate non-economic damages, an attorney will determine the amount of economic damages, then multiply it. Less serious cases may have a multiplier of 1.5. Truly horrific cases sometimes receive 5 times the economic damages.
Virginia Truck Accident Attorney
If you were injured in an accident involving a semi-truck, tractor trailer, 18-wheeler, or other commercial vehicles, you need the help of a dedicated personal injury attorney. For strong, aggressive legal representation contact the attorneys at Leavitt & Martin PLLC. Call (804) 873-4004 for a free consultation today.