The most important steps to take after a truck accident in Georgia for dealing with insurance, claims, and medical issues
Our commercial truck lawyers advise a list of important steps after being involved in a truck accident. In order for you to protect yourself, we have summarized a list of time-sensitive steps for you below.
If you need help from one of our truck accident lawyers right away, call us at (404) 662-4949 or fill out our consultation form and one of our truck accident lawyers will reach out to you within minutes.
Here are the most important, time-sensitive steps to take after a truck accident in Georgia:
- Contact police and seek medical attention
- Fully document the truck accident
- Retain an experienced and specialized Georgia truck accident lawyer immediately after a truck accident–truck companies are allowed to legally destroy critical evidence if not stopped immediately
- Notify your car insurance company
- See if your car insurance policy has any specific notification requirements
- Never sign any release or give any statement to any insurance claims adjustor
- Remember that Georgia has very specific laws that apply to car and truck accidents
Contact police and seek medical attention
Immediately after a truck accident in Georgia, the victim should dial 911 and seek medical attention for all injuries. Even the most minor pain, that may seem unimportant at the time, needs to be documented to medical professionals and police. There are certain types of injuries such as traumatic brain injury, whiplash, or other injuries that can be masked by adrenaline and shock in the immediate aftermath of the. If these injuries are not documented at the scene of the truck accident, then it may be difficult to tie them back to the truck accident later on.
Fully document the truck accident
After a truck accident in Georgia, it is critical to collect the contact information for any passengers involved in the accident and witnesses. Sometimes, your injuries may make it difficult for you to personally handle these tasks, so friends or family can also assist the victim. This information is very important if you need to hire a truck accident lawyer. Often the truck driver who caused the accident will try to change his story after the fact. So, if you have the contact information for witnesses, it can help your legal team verify the real story about what happened.
Also, if witness information is not obtained on scene, or if it is missing from the police report, it can be had for your attorney to prove that the driver or trucking company was negligent. You can request that police obtain detailed witness statements for you in their investigation, so feel free to be very vocal at the scene about getting all necessary information.
Additionally, be sure you–or a friend or family member–take detailed photos of the damage to all vehicles involved in the truck accident. You can also request that the investigating police officer take photo documentation of the crash scene. These photos will be critical for your truck accident lawyer to use in proving the severity of your injuries.
Retain an experienced and specialized Georgia truck accident lawyer immediately after a truck accident–truck companies are allowed to legally destroy critical evidence if not stopped immediately
When it comes to Georgia commercial truck accidents, it is highly beneficial to hire an experienced truck accident lawyer to protect your rights. There are a lot of complex and specific laws that apply to truck accidents, and you want to make sure your right to compensation is protected.
Trucking companies are supposed to keep records and logs of safety inspections and the truck drivers’ work hours (driving time). These are two main pieces of evidence that your truck accident lawyer will use in the case. Poorly maintained equipment and truck driver fatigue are the leading causes of truck accidents, and these maintenance records and hours logs are very important in proving negligence.
However, truck companies are not legally required to keep these records forever. So, after a certain period of time, a trucking company can legally dispose of truck inspection documents, hours of driving time logs, and other critical records that we use to prove fault. What does this mean for you? It means that it is very important that you reach out to an experienced truck accident lawyer immediately after your accident before the trucking company intentionally destroys these important records.
At Georgia Auto Law, because we only handle car and truck accident cases, our truck accident lawyers have special systems in place to make sure we preserve this critical evidence immediately after being retained by a client. This means that we work very fast to make sure your case is not compromised by more bad faith conduct from the trucking company.
Notify your car insurance company immediately
After a truck accident, your own auto insurance company must be notified. In Georgia, you legally must notify your own car insurance company of the truck accident as soon as possible.
See if your car insurance policy has any specific notification requirements
Many auto insurance policies in Georgia provide for more strict notification requirements, and these notification periods may be much shorter than you would think. It varies by insurance company, and from policy to policy, but some may require you to notify them as quickly as 30 days after the truck accident. Since these requirements are based on the insurance policy, Georgia insurance carriers can change their policy requirements at any time. Many insurance policies have separate requirements for uninsured and underinsured motorist coverage, and these notice requirements can be even more strict. What this means is that if you do not notify your insurance company of the accident, then you may lose your right to any potential coverage under your own policy.
Therefore, it is very important to closely and carefully review your entire auto insurance policy following a truck accident with an experienced Georgia truck accident lawyer who is very familiar with Georgia’s truck accident and auto insurance law.
Never sign any release or give any statements to any insurance claims adjustor
Often, a Georgia auto insurance claims adjuster will try to get the victim of a truck accident to give a statement following the accident. This may seem relatively simple, but you should always refuse to do so before talking to an experienced Georgia truck accident lawyer. You should also never sign a release or allow any adjuster to inspect or look at your vehicle damage.
All too often we have seen people rush and sign adjusters’ documents without first having a Georgia truck accident lawyer review the documents. This is a big mistake, and it could lead to the victim losing the right to sue the at-fault driver and the trucking company for injuries caused by the accident.
Please remember that claims adjusters will often try to get recorded statements early in the claims process in order to “minimize” the injuries (including pain and suffering). Their goal is to use this recorded statement against you later. Even a very limited release for property damage could have unrelated language which may also release personal injuries as well. When in doubt, always speak with your truck accident lawyer first.
Remember that Georgia has very specific laws that apply to car and truck accidents
The laws that apply to Georgia truck accidents are very specific and can be complicated. There are federal regulations, state regulations, and state statutory laws that must be followed in order to make sure a truck accident victim gets the most compensation for his or her accident. It is important to consult with a Georgia truck accident lawyer in order to make sure you are taking the proper legal steps with regard to your truck accident.
Have you been involved in a truck accident in Georgia? We are here to help you.
Georgia Auto Law is the premier law firm in Georgia exclusively helping clients win car and truck accident cases. Car and truck accidents are not just what we do, they are all we do, and we are the only law firm in Georgia handling exclusively auto accident cases.
You are welcome to call one of our auto attorneys at any time, day or night, at (404) 662-4949. You can also complete our consultation form, and one of our car accident specialists will reach out to you within minutes. With our No Fee Pledge™, you pay nothing. There is never any draw-back to calling a Georgia truck accident lawyer for a free consultation. We are here for you.