Seriously Injured by a Semi Truck in Minnesota? Here are 10 Tips

If you or a loved one was seriously injured by a semi truck in Minnesota, here are 10 tips to help you protect your legal rights. Some of the this may seem like it was written in too light a tone, but we know the last thing you need is an attorney who is stuffy and unfeeling. One reason we are good at what we do (over $20 million for one client) is that we are approachable and our clients feel comfortable telling us their stories.

Truck Accident Lawyer
Attorneys Fred Pritzker and Eric Hageman (Hags when you know him) inspect a vehicle.
  1. You may not even get out of the hospital before you are contacted by the insurance companies of the truck driver and a trucking company. Don’t talk to these people. It is not that we are suggesting you be rude, but these people are not on your side, and you may say something that hurts your case.
  2. Don’t wait too long to hire a lawyer because you may miss your opportunity to file a lawsuit and get the payout you deserve.
  3. You can usually get compensation from the other driver if you were less than 50% at fault. For example, you are driving 10 miles over the speed limit on a Minnesota road when a semitrailer runs a red light and broadsides your vehicle. Yes, you were driving over the speed limit, but the other driver will probably be considered more at fault, depending on other factors.
  4. Do not assume you do not have a case if the police or Minnesota State Patrol report says you were 100% at fault. We have won cases that would have looked hopeless to most people. In one of those cases, it took an analysis of black box evidence, witness testimony and corporate documents to find enough evidence to prove that the wife of our client was wrongfully run over by the trailer wheels of an 18-wheeler. The other side continued to deny fault, but we took the case to trial and proved that the semi truck driver was at fault.
  5. You need to act quickly to hire a lawyer who will gather evidence before it is destroyed. In wrongful death and catastrophic injury cases, we hire accident reconstruction specialists, and we visit the scene of the accident. There have been times when our experts has found evidence that was missed by the police or state patrol. If you wait too long, this kind of evidence may no longer be available.
  6. Have your lawyer find out if the truck driver or the trucking company was grossly negligent. If there is evidence of this, you may have a “punitive damages” claim, meaning you can get more money because the driver and/or company behaved very badly.
  7. If you are married, your spouse may be able to get money for loss of income and for changes in your life together caused by the crash, called “loss of consortium” by lawyers.  This is a standard claim made for married couples.
  8. You need to hire a lawyer who understands that the state where a lawsuit is filed is critically important. This is called “venue” in legalese. For example, if a commercial driver from Kansas working for a company based in Iowa causes serious injuries to someone on a Minnesota road, there are three states your lawyer will need to consider.
  9. Social networking about your injuries or posting photos and video of yourself should not be done because attorneys working for the other side’s insurance company may find that information and use it against you. You were in a crash and your leg was crushed. After months of surgeries and rehabilitation, you are able to walk, but have severe gait issues and are in constant pain. You post a video of yourself dancing and smiling. You know you can do that through the pain, but a lawyer could twist that into you lying about your pain. Everything can be interpreted in many ways. Be careful what you post.
  10. Commercial truck cases are different than other traffic accidents. Additional laws apply and there are teams of lawyers against you. They travel in packs. You need a lawyer who has taken down Goliath with one stone. Contact attorneys Fred Pritzker and Eric Hageman at 612-338-0202 or 1-888-377-8900 (toll free), or use our free consultation form, which is the better choice after hours and weekends.

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Category: Accidents
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