As a truck driver, the company you are working for may be obligated to have your truck insured if they own it. Whether you are an owner-operator or bound by a permanent lease, the party responsible for providing insurance coverage may vary. You might also wish to add certain types of insurance to your truck on your own, even if the company you work for provides coverage.
Every truck on the road must have insurance coverage and knowing who is responsible for providing it is key. Navigating the insurance process after an accident can be complicated. Our truck accident lawyer and team members will make sure you understand your rights and responsibilities, and those of your employer.
Know How the Truck You Drive Should Be Insured
Driving an uninsured vehicle of any type or size is illegal. The Insurance Information Institute (III) affirms that the person or company who owns a commercial truck is responsible for insuring it. That makes your employment status at the trucking company important. As an independent operator, obtaining commercial insurance is your responsibility—whether the truck you drive is leased or owned outright.
Truck insurance is mandatory because it ensures financial responsibility can be met in an accident. If you are a trucking company employee and drive a truck the company owns, they are obligated to provide specific commercial insurance. A truck accident can be costly, so you should ensure your truck is properly covered before accepting employment in the trucking industry.
What Accident Expenses Does Truck Insurance Cover?
If the truck you drive is the at-fault vehicle in an accident, liability insurance compensates for the other involved driver’s recoverable damages. It also covers the costs of any passengers’ losses. Their recoverable damages can include:
- Medical bills
- Property damage
- Pain and suffering
- Mental trauma
- Emotional anxiety
- Physical impairments
Post-accident recoverable damages can also include wrongful death damages. These can include funeral costs, counseling, and a range of additional expenses that are the responsibility of the at-fault party. Your lawyer can evaluate your truck accident case.
The Cost of Driving an Uninsured Truck
According to Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) guidelines, liability insurance is mandatory for all commercial trucks. If an at-fault driver injured you, you could seek compensation from the policy covering the truck. If the truck was not insured, you could seek compensation from the company or individual who owns the truck. Additional types of truck insurance include:
- Motor truck cargo insurance
- Motor truck general liability insurance
- Non-trucking liability insurance
- Passenger accident insurance
- Physical damage coverage
When we represent a truck accident victim, we can help you promptly identify the appropriate insurer to protect your right to pursue compensation before the statute of limitations expires. In addition to paying for your damages, the uninsured party may face additional legal consequences, including fines and fees.
Our Truck Accident Team Can Build Strong Compensation Cases for You
A truck accident can leave you with physical, psychological, and financial damage. To seek compensation, we will:
- Collect and organize supportive evidence
- Manage all communication with the insurer
- Give updates on the case’s progression
- Negotiate with the appropriate insurance company
We will also argue your case in court if we cannot settle it fairly outside of court. Our goal is to help truck accident victims receive the compensation they need to get back to their lives and their families.
How Our Truck Accident Attorney Helps Injured Clients
When you hire our law firm to recover damages after an accident, we collect evidence of fault and handle the insurance claims process. That means we pursue the liable insurance company for compensation. We will:
- Identify the truck’s owner
- Contact the insurance company
- Assign a value to our client’s case
- Negotiate an appropriate settlement
You should not drive an uninsured truck or one whose insurance status is unknown.
Penalties a Truck Driver Could Face for Driving Uninsured
Most states require drivers to be insured. In Ohio, for example, it is illegal to drive any kind of vehicle without carrying insurance according to the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles. Vehicle drivers or owners could face penalties for failing to demonstrate proof of coverage. These penalties include:
- License suspension
- Loss of vehicle registration
Because of these penalties, it’s important for drivers to ensure they are insured before getting on the road.
Truck Accident Victims Can File a Lawsuit To Seek Compensation
If an insurance claim does not result in a fair settlement, truck accident victims could file a lawsuit against the liable party. However, if you plan to file a lawsuit, you will have a limited amount of time to do so. For example:
- Ohio Revised Code Section 2305.10 typically gives accident victims two years to file a personal injury lawsuit
- Ohio Revised Code Section 2125.02 generally allows you to file a wrongful death lawsuit within two years
The statute of limitations that applies to your case can be difficult to interpret on your own. There are also sometimes exceptions to the statute of limitations that could change the amount of time you have to file a lawsuit.
If you were involved in a truck accident, our firm can help you file your insurance claim or lawsuit on time.
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If you are a truck driver who drives for a trucking company, it is in your best interest to make sure your truck is covered before it gets on the road. Our truck accident team will help clarify whether you or the company you work for is obligated to have your truck insured.
Learn more by calling one of our team members at The Fitch Law Firm LLC today for a free consultation.
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