Milwaukee Truck Accident Lawyer
Commercial truck accidents can cause a significant amount of damage and often result in severe injuries or death for the victims involved.
If you or someone you love has suffered serious injuries in a truck accident, you may be entitled to compensation. As reputable truck accident attorneys in Milwaukee with more than 150 years of combined legal experience, we are committed to helping you recover the compensation you deserve. Attorney M. Angela Dentice, a partner of our firm, is a founding member of the Association of Plaintiff Interstate Trucking Lawyers of America and is also the first woman President of the Wisconsin Association of Justice. Do not hesitate to schedule a free, no obligation consultation with a member of our legal team. All of our services are provided on a contingency fee basis, which means we only require payment if we recover compensation for your claim.
How Can a Milwaukee Truck Attorney Help?
If you have been injured or lost someone you love in a truck accident, you may have legal options to hold the at-fault party liable for your damages. However, determining liability for commercial truck accidents can be difficult.
A qualified truck accident attorney in Milwaukee can help you establish fault and collect evidence to build a credible case against the liable parties.
After a crash, a trucking company or its insurer will immediately start an investigation into the accident. These companies will attempt to find evidence that can help them deny or reduce the value of the victim’s claim.
At PKSD, our Milwaukee personal injury attorneys are familiar with the tactics insurers and trucking companies use to avoid liability. We will apply our knowledge and experience to help you fight for the compensation you deserve by:
- Reviewing video footage from any available traffic cameras
- Checking the driver’s travel log to determine the number of hours he or she drove before your collision
- Examining the police and accident reports taken from your traffic collision
- Interviewing witnesses who saw your collision
- Obtaining and analyzing the data recovered from the truck’s Electronic Control Module, or “black box”
- Helping ensure the preservation of any evidence obtained by the truck company or its investigator
- Using your medical records and medical history to prove your injuries were directly caused by the accident
- Consulting experts to reconstruct the accident scene and recreate what occurred during the collision
Our truck accident attorneys in Milwaukee will provide you with a free legal consultation to review your claim and the circumstances behind the accident. We will then conduct an investigation to discover which party is liable and work to construct a valid case that supports this allegation.
Call 877-877-2228 to schedule a free consultation with a member of our legal team.
What to do After an Accident
The scene following a collision with a commercial truck accident is disorienting – smashed glass, dented metal, smoke, fire, sirens, flashing lights and other disturbances can be difficult to ignore.
Our Milwaukee truck accident attorneys understand the immediate trauma that truck accident victims endure. However, it is important to obtain as much information as possible from the accident scene. This will help to ensure that the events are retold accurately when you file your claim. People will often remember events differently, and documenting the accident scene can help to support your version of events if your claim is disputed.
Your first priority after any major traffic collision is to make sure you and anyone else involved in the accident is safe. Once you have done this, you should follow these steps:
- Stay calm
- Check for injuries
- Call 9-1-1
- Safely exit your vehicle and remove yourself from the accident scene
- Use your cellphone to take pictures and videos of the scene
- Text yourself the names, email addresses and phone numbers of any witnesses
- Do not sign anything
- Do not provide any of your insurance policy limits to other drivers
- Do not admit fault in the accident
- Only provide information about the accident to the responding law enforcement officer who arrives at the scene
- Contact a skilled truck accident lawyer in Milwaukee to discuss your options
If you have been involved in an accident that was caused by a negligent truck driver, you should act fast to file a claim. Wisconsin is a “fault state” when it comes to liability for auto accidents. This means you will need to file your personal injury claim with the insurance company representing the truck driver or his or her employer.
However, if you are unsure if you have a claim, we provide free consultations to personal injury victims to review the details of your accident to determine if you are entitled to file a lawsuit.
Complete our Free Case Evaluation form if you were injured in a truck accident.
Who is Liable for My Truck Accident?
There are several parties involved in a commercial trucking operation. Each one is responsible for a different role in ensuring the truck functions properly and its cargo is safely loaded.
However, each party associated with a trucking operation may try to deny fault or downplay its involvement to distance itself from the accident and avoid liability.
Our qualified Milwaukee truck accident lawyers will investigate your truck accident to identify which parties were involved and determine their level of fault for causing the accident. These parties can include the:
- Truck’s driver
- Manufacturer of the vehicle or its parts (engine, tires, etc.)
- Owner of the truck or tractor-trailer
- Company that leased the truck from the owner
- Trucking company that employed the driver
- Shipper or loader of the truck’s cargo
The Milwaukee truck accident attorneys at PKSD have a strong understanding of the commercial trucking industry and the roles that individual companies and personnel are responsible for.
We will conduct an in-depth review of the events leading up to the accident and the behavior of the driver or the condition of the truck before the crash. This will include the:
- Truck’s maintenance schedule
- Driver’s performance reviews
- Type of cargo the truck was carrying and its stability during the accident
- Reckless or erratic driving patterns of the truck’s driver
- Trucking company’s policies
It is important that you try to remember any details about the collision that our Milwaukee truck accident attorneys can use to hold the at-fault party liable for your damages.
We can discuss the events and details of your truck accident during a free, no obligation consultation with one of our dedicated truck accident lawyers in Milwaukee.
Call 877-877-2228 to schedule a free consultation.
Common Causes of Truck Accidents
Because of the long hours and distances that commercial trucks endure during a long-haul trip, these vehicles and their drivers are highly susceptible accidents. Our Milwaukee truck accident attorneys have handled a variety of truck accident claims, including accidents caused by:
Truck drivers are 10 times more likely to cause an accident than road hazards, truck maintenance issues, and dangerous weather, according to the Federal Motor Carriers Safety Administration (FMCSA). An error made by a truck driver can stem from negligent or reckless behavior, such as:
- Aggressive driving
- Making a wide turn on busy streets or intersections
- Failing to check the truck’s blind spots before turning
- Inadequate training
- Texting while driving
- Distracted driving
The behavior of commercial truck drivers is heavily regulated by the FMCSA. This includes strict rules prohibiting the use of alcohol or controlled substances when a driver is operating a commercial vehicle.
Additionally, the FMCSA’s regulations require trucking companies to conduct a thorough background check on drivers for alcohol or drug violations before making a hiring decision. Truck drivers are also subjected to frequent drug and alcohol tests by their employers while they are on duty and after an accident involving serious property damage, physical injury or loss of life.
Truck drivers cannot refuse a controlled substance test. If the driver involved in your accident tests positive for a controlled substance or has a blood alcohol concentration of .04 or higher, we may be able to hold him or her liable for your damages.
Driver fatigue and drowsiness can result in serious accidents if a driver fails to maintain lane position or leaves the roadway.
Although the FMCSA has strict regulations to combat truck driver fatigue, it is still a probable factor in 20-40% of truck crashes in the U.S., according to the U.S. Transportation Safety Board.
Often, driver fatigue is caused by trucking companies imposing unrealistic deadlines on their drivers. However, this is illegal and all trucking companies and drivers must follow the FMCSA’s hours of service rule, which includes:
- Truck drivers can only drive a maximum of 11 hours after spending 10 consecutive hours off duty.
- Drivers cannot operate a vehicle after remaining on duty for more than 60 hours in a consecutive seven-day period. Likewise, drivers are prohibited from operating a vehicle for more than 70 hours in a consecutive eight-day period.
Truck drivers are required to record each hour they spend operating a vehicle. Our attorneys will obtain a copy of this log to use as evidence if we find that a driver violated the FMCSA’s operations rule.
Mechanical Failures or Defects
Aside from driver error, many truck accidents are caused by defective vehicle parts or mechanical failures cause by inadequate maintenance. Examples of equipment or vehicle failure include:
- Brake failure
- Defective steering
- Transmission failure
- Improper trailer attachment
- Defective lighting on the side or rear of the vehicle
- Tire blowouts due to wearing or defects
- Improperly secured cargo
If your truck accident was caused by a mechanical failure, our attorneys will review the trucking company’s maintenance records to determine if it performed routine inspections required by the FMCSA. If we discover the trucking company failed to properly maintain and repair its vehicles, it may be liable for your damages.
If we determine that your accident was caused by a defective part, we will identify the part’s manufacturer who could be liable for your damages through a product liability claim.
Improperly Loaded Cargo
Overloaded cargo, or cargo that is not loaded according to regulations, increases the risk of a serious commercial truck accident.
Overloaded or improperly loaded cargo could add so much weight to an already over-sized truck that it causes top-heaviness. This increases the risk of jackknifing or overturning around curves, and could cause cargo to fall off the vehicle, dropping in the middle of the roadway or even falling directly onto another vehicle.
If your vehicle was struck by contents that fell from a commercial truck, our Milwaukee truck accident attorneys will determine which party was responsible for ensuring the cargo was safely loaded and secured onto the vehicle.
Call 877-877-2228 to speak with a skilled truck accident attorney in Milwaukee.
How Can I Be Compensated for My Claim?
Because of the devastation that occurs when a passenger vehicle collides with a truck, the victims involved may be able to pursue several forms of compensation from the at-fault party.
Once our Milwaukee truck accident attorneys determine which party is at fault for the accident, we will fight for the compensation you deserve, which could include:
Our attorneys will pursue compensation for any medical expenses you incurred because of your injuries from the accident. This can include:
- Hospital visits
- Medical transportation
- Medical and imaging tests
- Rehabilitation procedures
- Assistive equipment, such as a wheelchair
If a truck accident injury caused you to miss work and resulted in losing wages or income, our attorneys will help you recover all of the wages you would have earned if the accident had not occurred.
Lost Earning Capacity
If your injury is so severe that you are no longer able to earn an income, our Milwaukee truck accident attorneys will help you pursue damages for loss of earning capacity. This could entitle you to compensation for the future wages your injury prevents you from earning.
Pain and Suffering
Damages for pain and suffering include compensation for the physical pain and emotional distress you have endured since the accident.
Our attorneys will use your medical records and testimony from your treating physicians to describe the extent of your injuries and any pain you may have experienced. We can also include any physiological or emotional anguish, such as depression, anxiety or trauma you may have suffered after the accident.
Our truck accident attorneys in Milwaukee will examine the extent of your pain and the length of time you are expected to suffer when calculating an accurate estimation of the compensation you may be owed.
Loss of Consortium
Through a personal injury lawsuit or wrongful death claim, the victim’s spouse may be awarded damages for loss of consortium. This is intended to compensate the victim’s loved ones for losing the love, support, relationship and companionship the victim provided.
However, proving loss of consortium can be difficult. These damages are typically sought when the victim has either suffered an extremely severe injury or has died from a truck accident.
How Long Do I Have to File a Claim?
In the state of Wisconsin, there is a three-year statute of limitations for truck accident claims, according to Wisconsin Statutes § 893.54. This means that if you have been injured in a truck accident that was not your fault, you have three years from the date of the accident to file a claim.
You should contact an experienced truck accident lawyer in Milwaukee as soon as possible after an accident. This is because there are many steps involved in filing a personal injury lawsuit that will take time to complete before you can file a lawsuit.
Most accident victims will first have to file a claim with the at-fault party’s insurance company, which may also have specific deadlines that must be met. Throughout the insurance claims process, both sides will investigate the collision and negotiate a settlement. If a settlement cannot be reached, our attorneys will file a lawsuit seeking the compensation you deserve. The sooner you contact our attorneys, to begin this process, the more time we will have to complete each step within the statute of limitations.
Contact Our Milwaukee Truck Accident Lawyers
If you have been injured in a truck accident in Wisconsin, it is important to hire a skilled personal injury law firm to protect your rights and help you obtain the financial compensation you deserve.
At the law offices of PKSD, our team of experienced personal injury attorneys are committed to working for the rights of victims of negligence. Attorney Jeff Pitman – a co-founding partner of the firm – has been practicing law for more than 20 years and is a member of the National Board of Trial Advocacy.
We have recovered millions in verdicts and settlements, and will help you fight for the compensation you deserve. We will conduct a full investigation into your truck accident and work with the insurance representatives involved to try to obtain fair compensation for your claim.
If you are in need of a Wisconsin truck accident attorney, contact PKSD’s renowned truck accident attorneys in Milwaukee for a free, no obligation consultation. We are located near the Milwaukee Clerk-Circuit Court and work only on a contingency fee basis. This means there are no upfront costs if we handle your claim.