The most common questions most people have after an accident with a truck or other motor vehicle are related to how much money they will receive in the aftermath. Payments come from insurance claims and lawsuits, and the amount of money someone will get is always directly related to the seriousness of their vehicle damage and injuries. 

Insurance claims

After any accident, a driver needs to contact their insurance company and notify them of the damage. Most policies have a deductible that must be paid towards repairs first before any money will be paid out to cover the losses. There is also a liability limit of several thousand dollars on many policies that places a cap on how much an insurance company will pay out to the policy holder and others involved in the collision. Many times it is necessary to contact a personal injury attorney as well if the insurance claim process is insufficient.   

What type of legal cases follow truck accidents?

Truck accidents and motor vehicle lawsuits are actually civil negligence cases in most situations. This is an area of tort law which essentially says the person at fault for the accident must provide adequate compensation to put the victim in the place they were in before the incident occurred. A negligence case has four elements. They are a duty of care, a breach of that duty, causation of harm or injuries, and damages. For the purposes of compensation, damages is the only element that needs to be explained, but there are various types of damages and a number of different factors that determine damages.

Compensation is directly related to the severity of the accident

As a general rule, compensation increases as losses become more severe. Therefore, a truck accident that causes minor vehicle damage or injuries that heal quickly may only be worth a few hundred dollars or more. If someone is seriously injured and requires special medical care for the rest of their life or can no longer work, the defendant may end up owing them millions of dollars to help pay their bills and lost wages. The word damages is the legal term used to describe the sum of money that the defendant will have to pay out to the plaintiff. 

Types of damages available 

Economic damages can be quantified based on the person’s losses such as medical bills and repair estimates. 

Punitive damages are additional amounts added onto the plaintiff’s losses meant to punish a defendant or acted recklessly or egregiously to cause an injury. 

Non-economic damages are a less defined amount that is meant to compensate a victim for emotional pain and suffering. The best accident lawyers know how to argue for large amounts of non-economic damages for their clients in front of a jury.  

When someone dies, there may even be a wrongful death lawsuit, which provides many of the same damages as a negligence case, plus expenses for funerals, burials, and administration of the dead person’s estate. 

Learn more about getting paid after a truck accident

There are lawyers in your city who handle all kinds of accidents, and they can explain more about compensation and damages to you. Use the listings on to find a local legal professional.