Personal Injury Articles for the Injured of NJ

When Injured in a Truck Accident, Do You Need a Lawyer?

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Wed, Apr 18, 2018

By Francis M. Smith

When you first begin the process of seeking compensation for your injuries after a truck accident, the insurance adjuster representing the trucking company will most likely try to convince you that hiring a lawyer is unnecessary and expensive, or that your claim will be resolved more quickly and efficiently if you don’t “go to the trouble” of getting a lawyer. In reality, however, injured plaintiffs who work with an attorney receive more money on average in compensation for their injuries than accident victims who pursue their claims unrepresented, even after legal fees and costs are factored in. The insurance adjuster would much rather you go into the injury claim process unrepresented in the hope that your inexperience with the legal process and the stress of your injuries will render you overwhelmed and easier to take advantage of.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Truck Accidents, settlement compensation

What You Need to Know About Insurance Companies When Injured in a Truck Accident

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Fri, Apr 13, 2018

By Francis M. Smith

After you’ve been injured in a truck accident, a representative from the insurance provider representing the trucking company is almost certain to contact you very promptly. The insurance adjuster or investigator who speaks to you will most likely be very friendly and assure you that he wants to help get your claim resolved quickly and easily, and all he needs to make that happen is for you to answer a few questions and sign some release forms. He will probably assure you that you don’t need a lawyer, and that the process will be easier and you will save money without an attorney. However, none of this is true. An insurance adjuster’s job is to protect his employer’s financial resources from “unnecessary losses” like paying out injury claims. No matter how friendly and helpful the insurance adjuster tries to appear, he is not on your side and is not concerned with your best interests. Instead, he hopes to take advantage of the average injured claimant’s lack of experience with the injury claim process to trick accident victims into making mistakes that will hurt their cases and reduce the amount of compensation they can recover.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Truck Accidents, insurance adjuster

Hit By A Truck: What Are The Damages In Your Case?

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Mon, Apr 09, 2018

By Francis M. Smith

When you pursue a truck accident case after a serious crash, you should be seeking more than simply the costs of your medical bills and the repairs to your car. The purpose of a personal injury suit is to restore you fully to your pre-accident state of being, as far as it is possible to do so. This means that any sort of harm you have suffered as a result of your accident should be compensated in some manner, even if it’s difficult to assign a dollar value to some of the ways your life has been impacted by your injuries.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Truck Accidents, injury compensation

How are Truck Accident Injuries’ Medical Bills Paid?

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Fri, Mar 30, 2018

By Francis M. Smith

While the intent of pursuing an injury claim against the parties responsible for your commercial truck accident is, in part, to be compensated for the costs of the medical treatment you received for your accident injuries, rarely does the insurance company representing the other driver actually pay your medical bills directly. In fact, if the insurance adjuster offers to do so, it’s likely that he is simply trying to appease you in order to resolve your claim quickly – and for much less money than you actually deserve for your injuries. In most cases, your medical costs will need to be paid by another means initially, which will then be reimbursed out of your eventual settlement or court-ordered damages.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Truck Accidents, injury compensation

Medical Treatment after a Truck Accident

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Fri, Mar 16, 2018

By Francis M. Smith

After any serious automotive accident – but especially if you’ve been hurt in a crash involving a commercial truck – the very first thing you should do is seek appropriate medical treatment for your injuries. Prompt treatment will help increase your chance of a full recovery, and obtaining medical care right away provides a clear record of your injuries, which can prove essential later on if you need to pursue a personal injury claim against the trucking company responsible for your accident.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Truck Accidents

What Causes Semi Truck Accidents?

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Mon, Feb 26, 2018

By Francis M. Smith

After any serious automotive accident, one of the first questions on the minds of those affected by the crash is, “What caused this to happen?” This is even more the case in the aftermath of commercial semi truck accidents, given the severity of the injuries and the size of the lawsuits that often result from such crashes. The reasons for wanting an answer may vary; the injured accident victim and his or her attorney may need to know whose negligence was responsible for the crash, while the trucking company and regulatory agencies are motivated to determine how they can reduce the likelihood of similar accidents happening in the future. Regardless of the motivation, the search for answers often begins with the vehicle’s driver, then moves on to the vehicle itself, and then to the circumstances surrounding the accident. Any or all of these sources may hold a partial explanation of what caused the crash, and by thoroughly exploring all the factors at work in the accident, you and your attorney can assemble a complete picture of what happened.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Truck Accidents

Understanding Federal Trucking Safety Regulations

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Wed, Feb 21, 2018

By Francis M. Smith

Large commercial trucks serve a pivotal role in the American economy, transporting the materials and products that are so enmeshed in our everyday lives. Unfortunately, these semi trucks also have the potential to be extremely dangerous. Any truck with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of 10,000 pounds or more is classed as a large truck – the vehicles we think of as semis, tractor trailers, big rigs, and 18-wheelers fall under this classification. Many of these vehicles are much larger than the threshold of 10,000 pounds; the maximum legal weight before the truck is considered overloaded is 80,000 pounds, nearly half of which is made up of the combined weight of the empty truck and trailer. Studies addressing large truck accidents have demonstrated that the vast majority of these crashes involve trucks weighing in excess of 26,000 pounds. Coupled with the fact that the weight and momentum of these large vehicles make their crashes particularly devastating for any passenger cars involved in the accident, these facts make semi truck safety all the more worthy of regulatory attention.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Truck Accidents

When Injured in a Semi Truck Accident in NJ, Who is at Fault?

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Mon, Feb 19, 2018

By Francis M. Smith

When pursuing an injury claim following any kind of automotive accident, the question of fault is one of the most important matters to address. Your attorney must be able to prove that some other party was negligent in some way that resulted in your injuries. The issue of fault and liability becomes significantly more complex when the vehicle that caused your accident was a commercial semi truck. Several different individuals and companies are involved in the operation, loading, maintenance, and oversight of these large trucks, and the more parties who influence or affect a vehicle, the more different ways there are for something to go wrong. Figuring out exactly which of these potential problems played a role in causing your accident, and therefore who should be included as a defendant in your lawsuit, is one of the tasks facing your attorney in the early stages of the handling of your case.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Truck Accidents, injury compensation

Tips on Calling Your Insurer after an Accident with a Truck

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Mon, Feb 12, 2018

By Francis M. Smith

Following any serious car accident, it can be difficult to know how to proceed or who you can turn to. Your vehicle has probably suffered major damage and might be totaled, and you or your passengers may be injured. You’ve heard how dangerous it can be to interact with the other driver’s insurance company, how their insurance adjuster will try to twist the things you say to paint the accident as your fault rather than his client’s (especially when the other vehicle was a large commercial truck, because of the high stakes usually associated with semi truck accidents) – but what does that mean for dealing with your own insurance company?

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Truck Accidents, injury compensation, insurance company

How Insurance Companies Value Truck Accident Claims

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Fri, Feb 09, 2018

By Francis M. Smith

The personal injury damages an accident victim receives as a result of an automotive accident are intended to help the injured person to be “made whole” to the greatest extent possible – that is, to be restored to their pre-accident state, or as close to it as financial compensation and medical technology permits. Though the dollar values of some accident damage awards and settlements can sound impressively high to a third-party observer, they are an imperfect form of recompense at best; given the choice, practically every injured plaintiff would rather the accident had never happened in the first place than to receive a settlement or injury damages. Ironically this is especially true in the case of semi truck accidents, despite the often impressive sums involved in resolving these claims. Because of the huge difference in size and weight between a passenger vehicle and an 18-wheeler, the injuries that result from crashes between the two are generally devastating, if not fatal.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Truck Accidents, insurance company, settlement compensation

How does a personal injury attorney prepare to win a semi truck accident suit?

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Wed, Jan 31, 2018

By Francis M. Smith

When you begin working with an attorney on your truck accident injury case, your attorney will need to take action almost immediately. One of the first stages in dealing with any injury claim involves investigating the circumstances of the accident and collecting evidence to support your account of the events that resulted in your injury. Some of the evidence that your attorney will gather must be preserved quickly, or else it may be lost. Photographs should be taken of the accident scene as quickly as possible, ideally before the crash is cleared away, and while any signs of the accident are still present. Eyewitnesses should be interviewed while the events of the incident remain fresh in the minds of those involved. However, when your accident involves a commercial semi truck, there are many more items of time-sensitive evidence that your lawyer must take steps to secure. The more evidence supporting your case that your attorney has at his disposal, the more likely you will achieve a fair and successful outcome to your injury lawsuit.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Truck Accidents

Alarming Semi Truck Accident Statistics

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Mon, Jan 29, 2018

By Francis M. Smith

Large commercial trucks play an integral role in our consumer-driven economy, transporting materials and goods across the country. These trucks are an ever-present feature on our highways, so commonplace that it’s easy to forget the very real danger they pose to other drivers and road users in the event that something goes wrong. Semi trucks are huge vehicles, topping out at a legal maximum of 80,000 pounds fully loaded, and all that weight means they impart massive force on impact during a collision. The huge mass of a tractor trailer also means that it takes longer to stop than a smaller vehicle, and this problem is compounded by adverse conditions such as poor brakes or slippery roads. Because semi trucks have a much higher ground clearance than passenger automobiles, a collision between the two may result in the passenger car being crushed underneath the larger truck.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Truck Accidents

What Kind of Evidence Needs to be Preserved in Truck Accidents?

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Fri, Jan 26, 2018

By Francis M. Smith

Accidents involving commercial semi trucks differ from collisions between passenger vehicles in a few key ways. Most obviously, the massive size and weight of an 18-wheeler means that it has a great deal more destructive potential than any sedan or SUV, resulting in much greater property damage and more severe injuries, on average. As a direct consequence of this, and due to the size and wealth of the trucking companies that own these vehicles, injury lawsuits involving semi trucks generally involve much higher financial stakes than the average automotive injury claim. Because of the large sums of money at risk, trucking companies and their insurance providers are quick to get on top of any accident involving one of their vehicles, often sending an insurance adjuster out to the accident site within hours of the crash. Their investigators act swiftly to gain control of the situation and turn matters to their favor in any way they can – making it all the more important for your attorney to begin his own investigation as quickly as possible.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Truck Accidents

How Are Semi Truck Accidents Different from Car Accidents?

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Mon, Jan 22, 2018

By Francis M. Smith

Car accidents are not uncommon, and in the aftermath of a serious crash, it's natural to reach out to friends and family with similar experiences for guidance on how to proceed. However, some kinds of automotive accidents are very different than others, and the experience of friends who have dealt with an accident involving another passenger car may not be very useful if you find yourself injured after a crash with a commercial truck, be it a box truck or a semi truck. These collisions are unlike average car accidents in several respects, and require the help of an experienced attorney to ensure that your rights are protected.

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Topics: Car Accidents, Truck Accidents

Truck Accidents- New Technology Offers Hope - Maybe

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Wed, Aug 09, 2017

By Francis M. Smith

Any motor vehicle accident has the potential to result in devastating injuries or loss of life, but for a number of reasons, crashes involving large commercial trucks are of particular concern for trucking companies and regulatory agencies. Accidents involving these trucks can be particularly deadly, both because of their sheer mass and due to the height difference between a tractor trailer and a consumer sedan. So we can readily understand that technologies that improve the safety of large commercial trucks and help to reduce the risk of accidents are immensely valuable, both for the companies that operate these vehicles and for the motorists who share the road with the trucks.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Truck Accidents

Dangerous Trucks

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Mon, Dec 21, 2015

  By Francis M. Smith

Travel of any kind has its risks. For instance, some people refuse to fly because they're afraid of a plane crash. Airline crashes are tragedies, but part of the reason every crash stays in the headlines for so long is because they're rare. By contrast, road accidents involving heavy trucks are only becoming more frequent as the regulations governing commercial trucking are loosened, but these deadly accidents don't typically make the national headlines unless a famous figure is involved – such as the multiple-vehicle crash on the New Jersey Turnpike in recent memory that seriously injured comedian Tracy Morgan, killed his friend and passenger James McNair, and hurt eight other people.

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Topics: Injuries, Motor Vehicle Accidents, Car Accidents, Truck Accidents

Should Commercial Truck Drivers Work Longer Before Taking Mandated Breaks?

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Wed, Dec 09, 2015

By Francis M. Smith

Anyone who gets behind the wheel of a motor vehicle should take precautions against the dangers of drowsy and distracted driving. However, commercial truck drivers – who spend long hours driving vehicles that are dozens of feet long and weigh tens of thousands of pounds – are at particular risk of driving without sufficient rest, and the potential consequences of a truck driver nodding off at the wheel are truly devastating. According to the Truck Safety Coalition, the average year sees 4,000 deaths and close to 100,000 injuries as a result of crashes involving large commercial trucks. 96 percent of the fatalities in accidents involving a large truck and a passenger vehicle come from the passenger car. Over the last four years, the number of fatalities and injuries from large truck accidents have risen appreciably. And yet, according to the Department of Transportation, the minimum insurance requirements for large commercial vehicles have not been raised in 30 years, even in the face of inflation, rising medical costs, and an increase in disability claims resulting from truck crashes.

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Topics: Injuries, Motor Vehicle Accidents, Car Accidents, Truck Accidents

Tracy Morgan Files NJ Lawsuit for Injuries from Truck Accident

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Fri, Aug 29, 2014

By Francis M. Smith

When one is fortunate enough never to have been the victim of a serious automotive accident, it's easy to think of car crashes as things that happen to other people. Unfortunately it's not always possible to maintain that illusion of safety; whether you suffer a car accident yourself, know a friend or family member who has been injured in a crash, or hear about a celebrity or public figure who was involved in a serious accident nearby, the reality of these dangers becomes all too apparent. Many people here in New Jersey experienced this realization last June, when actor and comedian Tracy Morgan was severely injured in an accident in which a commercial truck allegedly struck his vehicle from the rear. A friend of Morgan's, also a comedian, was killed in the accident, and the driver of the truck involved has been charged with vehicular homicide under New Jersey state law.

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Topics: Injuries, Motor Vehicle Accidents, Truck Accidents

Frank Smith Car Accident $1,975,000 Recovery Featured by NJ Jury Verdict Review & Analysis

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Tue, Aug 26, 2014

By Francis M. Smith

Riding in the back seat of her son’s car, my 69-year old client felt safe and secure. No one expected a pick-up truck to run a red light and crash into her side of the car. The impact was so fast and sudden, her son had no way to evade the collision, which left her with multiple pelvic fractures, a sacral fracture, knee and shoulder ligament tears. a mild traumatic brain injury, and dizziness that was caused by a vestibular (inner ear) dysfunction.

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Topics: Car Accidents, Success Stories, Truck Accidents

Use of Life Expectancy Tables in Personal Injury Cases

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Wed, Jun 11, 2014

By Francis M. Smith

Some personal injury cases are straightforward: another car crashes into yours and your leg is broken, requiring immediate treatment and several months of physical therapy in order to enable you to recover fully and resume your customary activities. But sometimes the injuries suffered by an accident victim are of a severity or a nature that he or she is left with a permanent disability, a lifelong condition, or an increased risk of future health problems. Joint damage may render a patient more likely to develop arthritis later in life and at an earlier age, and head trauma can leave a victim more vulnerable to sustaining serious damage from subsequent head injuries. So how are these permanent injuries and increased risks adjudicated when it's time to work out how much you deserve in fair compensation for your injuries?

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Topics: Injuries, Motor Vehicle Accidents, Car Accidents, Trip and Fall, Motorcycle Accident, Permanent Injury, Dangerous Premises, Automobile Litigation, Dog Bites, Brain Injury, Construction Accidents, Herniated Disc, Bulging Disc, Evidence, Workplace Injury, Workplace Accidents, Sports Injuries, Truck Accidents

The 6 Most Common Causes of Truck Accidents

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Mon, Mar 03, 2014

By Francis M. Smith

Trucking accidents are all too common, around the country and certainly here in New Jersey. One news report from just a few days ago tells the story: a New Jersey bus driver was killed after his bus crashed into a jack-knifed tractor-trailer on Route 22, sending 32 bus passengers and the truck driver to the hospital.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Truck Accidents

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