Iowa City, IACrashes involving large commercial trucks are a common source of injuries and fatalities in Iowa and other states around the country. These kinds of crashes are often a source of serious expense for everyone involved, and trucking companies are required to have special insurance to cover these large amounts of damage. Despite these costs, anyone who has been hurt by a truck driver has the right to take legal action to have their losses covered. 

Why the company is sued rather than the individual driver

In most cases the trucking company that owns and maintains the vehicle will be attached to the lawsuit. This is for a few reasons. There are agency principles in the law which make employers liable for the actions of drivers and others engaged in their standard job duties. As a practical matter, the employer is also going to be the carrier of the fleet insurance that can cover large amounts of damage caused in highway accidents.  

There are some cases where the driver is an individual contractor and may be sued in their individual capacity. After an accident, an attorney can help any accident victim decide who is the proper defendant for the lawsuit.

Finding the right amount of damages

The amount of loss caused in any collision is highly variable. However, the structure of a negligence lawsuit against the trucking business remains very similar. The attorney for the plaintiff can calculate damages from a number of different sources, and then summarize them in the complaint that starts the lawsuit. This includes property damage and repair costs, treatment at a hospital and from other doctors for injuries and health problems, the person’s lost income and wages while they recover, and even damages related to physical pain and trauma that are more difficult to estimate. 

As a general rule, these costs tend to increase with the severity of the accident. For example, someone who is disabled and cannot walk because of their injuries will receive much more compensation than a victim who fully recovers and returns to normal within weeks. 

A settlement agreement

While the plaintiff can choose to go to trial, this does not happen often for a number of reasons. Trials tend to be more expensive, and it is possible that the jury will side with the defendant, meaning the victim receives nothing. Settlements also tend to be more efficient and cost effective. 

Learning more about lawsuits against trucking companies

Eells and Tronvold Law Offices is a trusted firm that deals with truck accidents and other injury cases in Iowa. Their attorneys can meet with anyone who needs advice after a collision. 

Firm contact info:

Eells and Tronvold Law Offices

1921 51st Street NE, Cedar Rapids, IA 52402-2400

319-393-1020

www.eellsandtronvold.com

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