Your Legal Rights at Work

Trucking Accident Personal Injury Cases: Q & A

by Lewis Hamilton

The average weight of a mid-size car is 3,497 pounds. However, the typical weight of an 18-wheeler truck is about 80,000 pounds. Due to the vast difference in poundage, a trucking accident that involves a car and a large truck can be catastrophic for the people in the smaller vehicle.

Victims can suffer serious, debilitating injuries or even death. If you or a loved one has been involved in a trucking accident, you may have questions about personal injury cases in which large 18-wheeler trucks are involved. Here are a few questions and answers about personal injury cases that are due to a truck accident:

What types of serious physical injuries are typically involved in a trucking accident?

Here are a few injuries that victims of trucking accidents may incur:

  • Brain injuries
  • Neck and back injuries
  • Spinal injuries
  • Burns
  • Bone fractures
  • Disfiguring scars

What damages are usually compensated in a truck accident case?

There are three categories of damages that are usually awarded in a personal injury case involving commercial trucks:

Special Damages

Special damages involve the expenses that are directly related to the accident, such as medical costs, lost wages and property repair or replacement.


General damages are not directly related to an expense. Instead, they involve retribution for things such as pain and suffering, emotional trauma and detrimental effects on your quality of life.


Punitive damages are awarded as a punishment for the offending party's gross negligence or malicious behavior. In a trucking accident, punitive damages may be sought if the defendant showed willful misconduct in the accident or obvious indifference to the victims. 

Can compensation for a wrongful death be sought?

If you have lost someone you love due to a trucking accident, you may be entitled to full compensation for an estimated value of your loved one's life. No amount of money can repay you for your loss. However, seeking compensation can help discourage a similar trucking accident from happening to another person.

How large is the typical upfront payment for legal fees?

Most personal injury lawyers assume a trucking accident case based on contingency. As payment for their legal representation, they receive a percentage of your awarded compensation. Thus, they only receive reimbursement if you do, and no upfront payment is required.

If you or someone you love has been injured in a trucking accident, contact a personal injury lawyer in your area today for a consultation. Consultations are usually free, and the attorney will be able to advise you of the validity of your case.

For professional legal help, contact a law firm such as Barton Smith & Barton LLP.