EXPERIENCE MATTERS...
LET US PROVE IT TO YOU.

view our case results read client reviews

Personal Injury Blog

Submit

How Truck Accidents Differ From Standard Auto Accidents

Thursday, February 01, 2018

 


Accidents between automobiles happen every day, and in most cases, they are pretty straight-forward. Unusually one party is at least mostly responsible and their insurance covers the damages of the other party. Unfortunately, if you have been involved in an accident with a truck, you will fight getting that coverage for your damages, and your injuries will be just ever so more likely complex. This is why when in an accident with a truck, there are a few extra things to consider.

Extra Factors in Truck Accidents

The most obvious new factors to consider are that trucks are much bigger than cars and are often hauling heavy loads of freight. Obviously, this will result in more serious accidents for the auto driver involved while the truck might be relatively unscathed. Bigger injuries, bigger damages, and because of that, bigger costs are involved. However, if those were the only factors to consider, truck accidents would still be more straight-forward, the problem lies with the lesser known factors to consider in trucking accidents.

Dealing With Bigger Insurance Policies

Unlike your standard auto policy, the insurance policy on a commercial truck is much larger due to the size of the vehicle and the amount of damage that one can inflict on a smaller vehicle. As these insurance policies can be worth so much more to those involved in an accident, the insurance company will put infinitely more effort in escaping liability.

You can be assured when dealing with an insurance adjuster in charge of the truck's insurance, they will be their most experienced employee and well-versed in complex tactics to leave you with nothing or, at least, much less than you deserve.

Different Regulations

As trucks often work interstate, the company will be under the thumb of a number of different regulations administered by the Department of Transportation and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. Regulations dictate specific maintenance of the truck, inspections, and logbooks of the driver. These regulations are many and complex in nature, which can open up new avenues for compensation, but also make determining liability for the uninformed motorist very difficult.

Multiple Liabilities

As mentioned above, the many regulations that govern trucks mean that it might not just be the truck driver that is liable. The truck driver might have been on the road too long by falsifying their log book, but the trucking company could have also been neglectful in their maintenance or inspections that lead to malfunctions. Furthermore, if a specific part was faulty, the manufacturer of the truck can also bear some of the blame.

For this reason, you need to be diligent in determining what caused the accident and who can be held liable for it, or otherwise cut yourself off from potential compensation. This is where the help of a skilled attorney comes in.

Need Legal Representation?

While standard auto accidents can benefit from legal representation, it becomes a must for trucking accidents. While lawyers who handle auto accidents also do trucking accidents, dealing with trucking accidents often requires slightly more experience. A good truck accident lawyer will know how to navigate the complex waters of trucking regulation to find true liability and they will also be well-versed in the new tactics that trucking insurance will employ in order to escape paying you what you are owed.

If you were involved in an accident with one of the many trucks that use the roadways in the Los Angeles area, contact us today. Let the Law Firm of Freeman & Freeman put our years of experience to work making sure your likely substantial damages are covered in full so you aren't stuck with the bill.

 

Who is Responsible for Accidents with Student Drivers?

Thursday, January 04, 2018

At one point, every single driver that travels the road was a learning student. They learned the rules of the road and then began to put them into practice under the instruction and supervision of a driving instructor. While an instructor's job is to make sure a student learns to drive safely, it is also part of their job to make sure they don't get into any accidents. Unfortunately, the thing about accidents is that no matter how hard you try to prevent them, they still happen. However, an accident with a student driver is tricky business. As they are not yet fully-fledged drivers and don't have insurance, does that automatically make you, the adult driver, responsible for covering the damage?

Negligence in Student Driver Accidents

If you, the adult driver, were the negligent party in an accident with the student driver, then it would work very much the same as a regular auto accident. Your insurance may be held on the hook for damages to both vehicles. However, if it can be proven that the student driver was the negligent one, then things will happen a little differently. Instead of the student being held responsible, since they have no insurance, instead the instructor will be held responsible.

If the instructor is part of a driving school, typically they have top-notch auto insurance and there is very little to worry about. However, quality of auto insurance can vary if the instructor comes as part a high school driver's education program, yet that doesn't change their liability. Similarly, if you got into an accident with a learning student while they were logging driving practice hours on their learner's permit with a parent, it will be the parent's auto insurance that will be used to cover your damages.

It is also important to remember that it is a driving instructor's job to intervene in dangerous situations to prevent accidents. In these cases, you may be able to hold the instructor as well as the driving school responsible for any injuries you sustained if they did not take enough precaution to prevent the accident. If the student was speeding or conditions on the road were not safe for driving, it is the instructor's duty to intervene in order to prevent accidents. If accidents happened as a result of that, then the instructor's skills can be called into question and the driving school can be pursued for negligent hiring practices.

However, this route should only be pursued if you were grievously injured in an accident. Otherwise, it will not result in much other than just ruining someone's life for a simple accident.

What to Do After an Accident with a Student Driver?

Actions taken after an auto accident with a student driver are actually very similar to any other auto accident. After the accident has occurred, you should:

  • Gather Information - Get the name of the student, the driving instructor, and the driving school as well as any insurance information. You may also want to gather witness statements, if possible, to verify how the accident happened and who appeared to be at fault.
  • Call the Police - It is crucial to call the police after an accident so they can create a police report. This is excellent evidence for your claim.
  • Take Photos - Be sure to snap as many photos as need be to document the damage to both vehicles, the scene of the accident, and any injuries that were the result of the accident.

Have you been in an accident with a student driver in the Los Angeles area only to find that the instructor is pushing back against covering the damage? Contact us today so the Law Office of Freeman & Freeman can help you.

Who is at Fault in a Jaywalking Pedestrian Accident?

Thursday, December 07, 2017

Almost everyone has jaywalked at some point in their life. Maybe at first, you are very diligent about making sure there are no cars even in sight, but after enough jaywalking, you tend to get a little lax with making sure things are safe. This is where jaywalking becomes dangerous as well as illegal.

Jaywalking is illegal for a very good reason. If you get hit at a crosswalk, usually it is because a car was going a little too fast. However, in jaywalking cases, often a car isn't slowing down at all, which can lead to catastrophic injury or even death. In these cases, you or your family may be able to file a personal injury case for compensation, but can you even recover damages if you were jaywalking?

California law states that a pedestrian must yield the right of way to motor vehicles if they are crossing anywhere other than a crosswalk. However, this does not mean that a pedestrian will have no right to damages if they were injured while illegally jaywalking. California is also a comparative negligence state, which means that if the driver also shared a percentage of the fault in the accident, they may be able to pay a percentage of the damages. Unfortunately, if you are determined to be more than fifty percent at fault for the accident, you cannot recover damages and you may need to pay for the other parties injuries.

Jaywalking is something you shouldn't be doing, but people still do it. However, it can make pedestrian accident cases much more difficult, which is why you need a skilled attorney on your side to make sure you can and should pursue damages for your injuries. If you have been in a pedestrian accident in the greater Los Angeles area, contact us today.

Truck Accidents: Let The Professionals Handle This!

Thursday, November 02, 2017


Protect Yourself From The Dangers Of The Road

Deteriorating road conditions. Road rage. Drivers under the influence. And now self-driving vehicles. What else do you have to be concerned about? Oh, of course. Truck accidents..........

Truck Accidents Are Caused By:

A multitude of things. Perhaps road conditions had deteriorated to the point that traveling them was unsafe. Possibly the truck wasn't maintained properly and was unable to stop in time. Or the truck had a defective part from the manufacturer that caused the collision. Even improperly secured cargo causes truck accidents. 

However, in many truck accidents, the driver is at fault. Maybe the driver was on their cell phone, texting or talking with someone. Or possibly under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol. Or driving too fast for conditions or in violation of the speed limit. Because of demanding work schedules, some who drive professionally are tired to the point of falling asleep at the wheel!

What A Victim May Suffer

The immediate damage of truck accidents is obvious physical issues: broken bones, lacerations, etc. However, long-lasting unseen damages need to be considered. Among these are psychological trauma that afflicts indefinitely, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). And some problems that are physical, such as heart problems brought on by the stress, deserve fair compensation. 

What A Qualified Law Firm Will Do

In a nutshell, they investigate all factors to make sure the innocent victim isn't victimized again by unfair (or no) compensation. The victim of a truck accident is best served by accident scene investigators, if necessary. Top-notch attorney representation provides this. And if a case is accepted but not won, there is no fee. 

If you were involved in a truck accident, before you talk to anyone, contact us for a free consultation!

Road Rage Increases the Chances of Serious Auto Accidents

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Incidents involving road rage and aggressive driving appear frequently in the news. For example, this local news article on Southern California freeways highlights some of the angry or out-of-control behaviors.

Road rage and aggressive driving more generally contribute to numerous accidents ranging from minor fender-benders to fatal crashes.

What are some of the ways that road rage increases the likelihood of a crash?

  • Drivers become more focused on each other instead of keeping enough of their attention on the road.
  • The overwhelming anger they feel also proves to be a distraction.
  • They may act on their anger by tailgating, cutting each other off, swerving violently into different lanes, or attempting to run each other off the road. In some cases, one driver may even try to run into another.
  • Their aggression may push them to ignore various traffic laws; they may wind up speeding, for instance, or disregarding red lights and stop signs.
  • Drivers may improperly park and exit their vehicles to confront each other.

Tendencies towards road rage and aggressive driving need to be curbed before they develop into something out-of-control and incredibly dangerous. Drivers are responsible for finding ways to manage their anger and dial it down. Techniques for anger management and stress reduction are essential; these include deep breathing exercises and speaking aloud reminders to yourself that the rage and aggressive behaviors aren't worth it – they can wind up costing you your life and well-being.

If you're on the receiving end of road rage, it's important to take steps not to let it escalate. For example, don't respond to any rude gestures or maintain eye contact with angry drivers. Try to safely put space between them and you. If you're feeling threatened on the road, you can contact law enforcement to report the aggressive or criminal behavior.

Hopefully, you'll be able to avoid accidents stemming from road rage or aggressive driving. Should you suffer an accident, don't hesitate to contact us to discuss your case and receive dedicated legal assistance.


Office Locations

21900 Burbank Boulevard
Third Floor
Woodland Hills, CA 91367-7418

P: 818-992-2919
F: 818-992-2940


From our offices in Woodland Hills, California, Freeman & Freeman, LLP, provides legal advice and representation for clients in communities throughout the state, including those in Burbank, Glendale, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Van Nuys, Tarzana, Santa Clarita, Agoura Hills, Reseda, Canoga Park, Chatsworth, Northridge, Granada Hills, Pacoima, Panorama City, North Hollywood, Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Lancaster, Palmdale and Alhambra.