Any serious motor vehicle accident is devastating, but when a collision involves a large semi-truck or commercial vehicle, victims are even more likely to experience an array of catastrophic consequences. Unfortunately, seeking justice in the form of financial recovery after a large truck accident is often much more difficult than filing a standard car accident claim. The complexity of establishing liability, the numerous parties involved, and various other factors make these types of cases uniquely challenging.
If you or someone you love has been involved in a crash with a semi-truck, 18-wheeler, delivery van, big rig, or similar commercial truck, you need an experienced personal injury attorney by your side. At Ball, Kirk & Holm, our truck accident attorneys in Iowa City have been advocating for the rights of injured Iowans since 1958. We have the experience, resources, and know-how to go up against major trucking companies and their insurance carriers—and we know what it takes to win.
On This Page:
- Common Truck Accident Injuries
- How Do Truck Accident Claims Work?
- Who is Liable After a Truck Accident?
- What Is Third Party Liability?
- What to Do After a Truck Accident
- Get Legal Help Today
Common Truck Accident Injuries
Due to their immense size and weight, large commercial trucks often cause massive destruction when they are involved in accidents with smaller vehicles, like passenger cars, motorcycles, SUVs, and pickup trucks. Sadly, it is the occupants of those smaller vehicles, as opposed to the truck drivers themselves, who tend to suffer the brunt of the resulting injuries and damages. Even with the protections of most modern passenger vehicles—including seatbelts, airbags, and advanced accident technology—victims are likely to sustain severe, life-altering injuries, many of which ultimately prove fatal.
Some of the most common injuries associated with truck accidents include:
- Accidental amputation
- Back and neck injuries, such as whiplash
- Broken bones/fractures
- Brain injuries
- Internal bleeding
- Organ damage
- Soft tissue damage
- Spine injuries
These and other catastrophic injuries often have an enormous, lasting impact on victims and their families, resulting in massive medical bills and ongoing care costs, loss of employment and disability, and nearly unimaginable pain and suffering.
At Ball, Kirk & Holm, our Iowa City truck accident lawyers fight to recover maximum compensation on behalf of severely injured victims, as well as the loved ones of those wrongfully killed in devastating truck accidents throughout Johnson County and the surrounding areas. We can sit down with you to discuss the specific details of your case, including the potential compensation available to you.
How Do Truck Accident Claims Work?
Truck accident claims tend to be far more complicated than traditional car accident claims. This is due to a number of factors, including the issue of liability.
Iowa follows a traditional fault-based system (also known as a “tort” system) when it comes to motor vehicle accident claims. This means injured accident victims must generally bring claims against at-fault parties’ insurance providers to recover compensation for their losses. While it is possible to recover compensation from your own insurance company, depending on the specifics of your policy, this is the most common method resolving these types of claims in the state.
Who is Liable After a Truck Accident?
In most car accident cases, fault is relatively easy to prove. Generally speaking, the person or party who caused the accident is also the liable party, meaning they are legally responsible for the injured party’s damages. However, in truck accident claims, the specific person or party who caused the accident (such as the truck driver) may not necessarily be the liable entity. This is because trucking companies are often liable for these accidents, even when they arise due to the negligent or wrongful conduct of a driver, maintenance crew, or another employee.
Third Party Liability
That being said, liability in a truck accident claim may lay with a third party, such as a manufacturer that created or distributed a defective vehicle part or another motorist who caused the accident by driving negligently. Additionally, a trucking company may argue that it is not liable for a number of reasons, including that the truck driver was an independent contractor, not an employee, or because some other non-related party caused the collision.
Due to their highly complex nature, truck accident claims are best handled by experienced attorneys who know the law and how these types of cases work. At Ball, Kirk & Holm, we are ready to put decades of experience on your side and fight for the full, fair compensation you are owed. We know how to identify the liable party, and we know how to develop personalized legal strategies aimed at securing the best possible results for our clients.
What to Do After a Truck Accident
If you have been involved in an accident with a large truck or commercial vehicle, there are several steps you should take right away to protect your well-being and your rights.
Here’s what to do after a truck accident:
- Call 911 and wait for paramedics and/or the police to arrive. Do not leave the scene and do not move anyone who appears gravely injured unless absolutely necessary.
- Provide a report to the responding law enforcement officer, giving factual details of how the accident occurred and other pertinent information.
- Get the truck driver’s name, contact information, driver’s license number, trucking company/employer information, and insurance information.
- Exchange information with anyone else involved in the accident, including other motorists, pedestrians, or cyclists.
- Take pictures of the scene of the accident, as well as your injuries and any damage to your personal property, including your vehicle.
- Talk to any witnesses who may have seen what happened; get their name(s), contact information, and a brief statement from them (if possible).
- Preserve evidence, such as your damaged vehicle or personal property, the clothing you were wearing, and other relevant items as much as possible.
- Get medical attention as soon as possible if you were not treated at the scene of the accident/transported to a hospital or medical care center.
- Follow all of your doctor’s treatment recommendations, advice, and orders, including not returning to work until cleared to do so.
- Avoid talking to anyone from the trucking company or their insurance provider, such as adjusters, who may try to contact you after the collision.
- Report the accident to your insurance company; be sure to read and understand your policy as it relates to deadlines for reporting accidents to avoid being penalized.
Lastly, one of the most important things you can do after a serious accident, including collisions with large commercial vehicles, is to reach out to an experienced personal injury attorney. At Ball, Kirk & Holm, we help clients understand their rights and pursue the best possible options for recovering. We know that getting back on your feet can be difficult, which is why our team is here to advise and guide you every step of the way.
Choose a Team That Is Ready to Fight for You
When you choose our truck accident lawyers in Iowa City, you can rest assured that we will effectively and aggressively advocate for you and your maximum recovery. We strive to develop meaningful and long-lasting relationships with our clients so that they always have someone to turn to in times of legal hardship. Our team does not follow a one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to handling your case; instead, we tailor our legal strategies to your unique concerns, needs, and goals.
Real Clients, Real Stories
"My experience with Ball,Kirk & Holm was awesome."Terry D.
"Eashaan is a fighter! This law firm won’t disappoint!"Shea R.
The teamwork at Ball, Kirk & Holm were very informative & in constant contact.Russ, Personal Injury Client