Dallas Truck Accident Attorneys – Don’t Settle For Less
YOU CAN TRUST OUR FAMILY TO FIGHT FOR YOURS™
If you were hurt in a commercial vehicle or big truck accident, our skilled Dallas attorneys fight tenaciously to ensure the maximum available settlement while offering you the lowest contingency fee. We handle your case the way we would want our own case handled.
Mullen & Mullen is consistently recognized by TopVerdict for obtaining some of the largest recoveries in the entire state of Texas. In the last 3 years our firm made the Texas “Top 50 Personal Injury Settlements” list 43 times. One of those years we had 19 of the “Top 50” results and all of them were for clients injured in motor vehicle accidents. Our stellar results allow us to offer a below industry standard 29% pre-suit contingency fee which means more money in your pocket.
Our experienced local team has an incredibly strong work ethic and truly cares. We’ve been privileged to serve North Texas for over 40 years. This is our backyard. Call (214) 747-5240 now for a free consultation and some excellent advice.
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What Your Attorney Says
“We hold commercial drivers to a higher duty of responsibility – these are supposed to be professional drivers.”
Trucking and other commercial accident cases require you to act with real urgency. Insurance companies often send defense attorneys and “crisis teams” to the scene of these wrecks to minimize the company’s exposure and influence the outcome of investigations. If you were injured in a commercial vehicle collision they are already strategizing to delay, deny, defend or even dismiss your claims.
It’s common for critical evidence to conveniently become misplaced or lost entirely. That’s why as soon as Mullen & Mullen is retained on commercial cases we quickly send thorough spoliation letters and demands to preserve specific evidence.
Many firms don’t utilize experts unless a lawsuit has been filed, but we routinely retain experts such as accident reconstructionists, life care planners, and vocational rehabilitation consultants. We commonly perform inspections and download data from the electronic control modules of involved vehicles. Our pre-suit efforts significantly increase the odds of you obtaining an early insurance policy limits settlement without the stress associated with costly and time-consuming litigation.
Believe it or not, some attorneys truly don’t get involved in a personal injury case until it’s ready to be evaluated and presented. At that point the cake has already been baked and the only thing left to do is serve it. If an ingredient is missing, it’s usually too late to do anything about it. At Mullen & Mullen, clients have access to their attorneys from the get-go and at every stage throughout the case development process. In fact, most of our clients have an attorney’s personal cell phone number.
You also deserve a firm with in-depth medical knowledge. Linking causation of your injuries to your accident may sound simple, but it’s often anything but. Some injuries don’t reveal on any imaging studies. Other times, your MRI may show a significant disc herniation or tendon/ligament tear, but the same imaging also reveals asymptomatic spinal disc protrusions/bulges/herniations, minor tears in joint cartilage, arthritis, etc. Commercial insurance companies will undoubtedly suggest your pain and discomfort is due to those pre-existing conditions instead of your actual injury. If you don’t have acute objective findings demonstrated on imaging studies, they’ll argue you’re not even hurt.
Recently, we had a client whose MRI was completely normal. We successfully advocated that her lack of findings was expected since she was diagnosed with facet joint syndrome – which is a clinical diagnosis not based on imaging. Furthermore, we produced prior medical records demonstrating she never complained of similar symptoms before her accident. She underwent a rhizotomy procedure. We retained a certified lifecare planner expert who calculated her future medical costs since – even though her pain has resolved for now – that might not always be the case.
Ultimately, this client was ecstatic when we recovered the full remaining liability policy limits of $968,844.03 without even having to litigate her case. We are exceedingly confident this was one of the largest recoveries in Texas for facet joint injuries and it was made possible by a deep understanding of our client’s specific injury.
Shane V. Mullen
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Top-Rated Dallas Truck Accident Lawyers Who Recover Maximum Compensation
If you or a loved one suffered injuries in a truck accident, you need the best lawyer you can find to fight for your rights, seek justice on your behalf, and help you secure the maximum compensation available. At Mullen & Mullen Law Firm in Dallas, we understand the physical, emotional, and financial toll these collisions can have on individuals and their families. That’s why we are here to provide unparalleled legal representation and guide you through every step of the legal process.
Experience and Expertise
Our top-rated Dallas attorneys won a Texas “Top 10” truck accident personal injury settlement in 2021, according to TopVerdict.com. As a matter of fact, 19 of the Texas “Top 50” personal injury settlements in 2021 were for Mullen & Mullen clients. One of our claims made the Top 10 list, eight made the Top 11-20 list, and ten made the Top 21-50 list. Several were for commercial vehicle accidents. That’s why we can say with 100% confidence we’ll help you recover maximum compensation – especially when factoring in our reduced contingency fee.
Mullen & Mullen lawyers have the skills and experience necessary to handle your commercial vehicle accident case. With a deep understanding of trucking laws, regulations, and industry practices, our team has successfully handled hundreds of these claims, consistently achieving favorable outcomes for our clients. We are well-versed in the complexities of these claims, including investigating the accident, identifying responsible parties, gathering evidence, and developing a strong case.
Mullen & Mullen’s experienced lawyers bring extensive expertise to the table in Dallas truck accident cases. With a deep understanding of trucking laws, regulations, and industry practices, our team has successfully handled numerous claims, consistently achieving favorable outcomes for our clients. Our legal team is well-versed in the complexities of these claims, including investigating the accident, identifying liable parties, gathering evidence, and building a strong case.
Our Dallas Truck Accident Claims that Made TopVerdict’s “Top 50” Highest Settlements in Texas List in the Last 3 Years
- $1,300,000; Motorist v. Commercial Driver
- $1,000,000; Motorist v. Inattentive Commercial Driver
- $1,000,000; 18-Wheeler Driver v. Commercial Motorist
- $996,292; Auto Driver v. Commercial Truck Driver
- $978,569.77; Auto Driver v. Commercial Driver
- $968,844; Motorist v. Truck Driver
- $960,576.60; Commercial Driver v. Commercial Driver
- $954,543.87; Commercial Driver v. Commercial Driver
- $845,000; Motorist v. Commercial Truck Driver
- $663,354.69; Passenger in a Vehicle v. 18-Wheeler Driver
- $600,000; Injured Driver v. Commercial Driver
- $550,000; Motorist v. Tow Truck Driver
- $542,350; Commercial Driver v. Negligent Motorist
- $500,000; Injured Driver v. Commercial Driver
- $425,000; Motorist v. Semi-Trailer Truck Driver
- $350,000; Motorist v. 18-Wheeler Driver
- $348,055; Professional Driver v. Negligent Motorist
- $325,000; Commercial Driver v. Premises Owner
Pay No Medical Bills Until Your Claim is Settled
Hurt in a wreck due to a careless 18-wheeler or other commercial driver in Dallas? If so, you likely now have several significant problems that you shouldn’t have to deal with.
Medical Bills Piling Up
Due to their large size, semi-trucks and other commercial vehicles often cause devastating injuries, and even death. Major injuries, unfortunately, equate to a heap of medical bills accumulating as you read this. Fortunately, we can connect you with quality medical professionals and institutions willing to delay payment until after you win your claim. That means you pay nothing out of your pocket up-front to receive the medical attention you need and deserve.
Dealing with Your Existing Medical Bills
Worried about how you’ll pay off the medical bills you currently have? Don’t sweat it. We will eventually help you make those go away too and – while your claim is pending – we can advise you on how to set-up small payment plans with providers to prevent collection efforts that could impact your credit.
We Hold Commercial Drivers Responsible
Trucking companies and insurance companies don’t like to pay. They fight cases aggressively and often delay or deny valid claims. Fortunately, you have our 95+ years of combined experience on your side. We’ve been assisting victims of commercial wrecks for four decades. We often know the insurance carrier’s next move before they even make it. They know who we are and that we’ll do everything we can to make sure you are treated fairly.
Paying Your Bills While You Wait for Your Claim to Resolve
An unexpected wreck can turn your life upside down and leave you needing immediate financial assistance to stay afloat. We have established relationships with the major “law loan” companies. These loan companies typically advance you 5-10% of your claim’s potential final settlement value. We have negotiated with these law loan companies to offer a lower interest rate to Mullen & Mullen clients. Once you retain us as your counsel, you can usually have access to a loan once liability and insurance coverage have been confirmed. These law loan companies trust our assessments of cases based on our track record of success. It’s an excellent solution if you have no other financial resources available.
Quality, Not Quantity
It’s up to you to prove your claim. Fail to prove it, and you won’t recover any compensation for your injuries or financial damages. The compensation you recover depends highly on your lawyer’s experience and personal commitment to winning you maximum compensation. We have more than 95 years of combined experience and – because we’re not a volume firm – focus on fewer cases. That means your case will get the time and attention it needs and deserves so that you have the best opportunity to be fully compensated for your damages.
Keeping Your Spirits Up
Make no mistake about it, a commercial truck accident is highly stressful at best, and completely turns your world upside down at worst. Our firm has relationships with counselors who can help you deal with the fallout from your wreck. It is very common for injury victims to experience post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) resulting from a motor vehicle collision. A counselor can help you deal with stress, anxiety, depression, or any other mental health issues you are experiencing.
Comprehensive Legal Support
Mullen & Mullen Law Firm in Dallas is committed to providing comprehensive legal support to our clients throughout the entire process. From the initial consultation to the resolution of your truck accident case, we will be by your side, offering guidance, support, and aggressive representation. Our lawyers will take the time to understand the specifics of your case, assess the damages you have suffered, and develop a personalized strategy tailored to your unique needs. We are not a volume firm that runs some sort of “assembly line”.
Investigation and Evidence Collection
Investigating a commercial truck accident requires specialized knowledge and resources. Our skilled team – when necessary – will thoroughly investigate the accident scene, interview witnesses, and consult with accident reconstruction experts to establish liability. Mullen & Mullen Law Firm also routinely gathers crucial evidence such as black box data if available to build a strong case on your behalf from the get-go. Other evidence such as logbooks, maintenance records, and other relevant evidence can be obtained in litigation should that route become necessary.
Identifying All Responsible Parties
Commercial truck accidents often involve multiple parties, each potentially liable for the damages caused. Our experienced lawyers will diligently assess the circumstances surrounding your case to identify all responsible parties. This may include the truck driver, trucking company, vehicle manufacturers, maintenance providers, and others. Holding all liable parties accountable is crucial in ensuring you receive the full compensation you deserve.
Aggressive Negotiation and Litigation
Mullen & Mullen will aggressively negotiate with insurance companies and opposing counsel to seek a fair settlement that covers your medical expenses, lost wages, pain & suffering, mental anguish, impairment, and other damages resulting from the truck accident. If a fair settlement cannot be reached, our top-rated lawyers are prepared to take your case to court and continue to fight tirelessly on your behalf. Mullen & Mullen Law Firm attorneys have their own proven track record of success in the courtroom as well as relationships with top litigators across the State of Texas.
At our Dallas law firm, you are more than just a case number. We understand the physical, emotional, and financial hardships you may be facing in the aftermath of a commercial truck accident. That’s why we prioritize open and honest communication with our clients, keep you informed about the progress of your case, and address any concerns or questions you have along the way. Mullen & Mullen Law Firm provides compassionate support and personalized attention. We always place your best interests at the forefront of our legal strategy.
Schedule a Free Consultation
If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident in Dallas, do not delay seeking legal representation. Contact our top-rated lawyers today to schedule a consultation. We offer a free, no-obligation case evaluation where we can discuss the details of your case, answer any questions you have, and outline the best course of action to pursue. Remember, there may be time limitations on filing a claim, so it is essential to act promptly to protect your rights.
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Why Choose Mullen & Mullen?
We believe we offer as much value as any firm in DFW based on the following factors:
- 40 years in business and a combined 95+ years of experience winning commercial truck accident claims with circumstances like yours.
- Direct access by phone to your lawyer and the ability to text your dedicated legal team 24/7
- Potentially thousands or even tens of thousands of extra dollars in your pocket because we charge just a 29% contingency fee (most firms charge 33.3%-35%) when your claim settles out of court (most Mullen & Mullen claims do).
- Save additional money thanks to our in-house private investigators. Most firms contract these services out, which costs you a lot more.
- Connections to medical professionals and institutions who will delay billing you until after you win your claim.
- Connections to every other possible service you could need during this stressful time (auto repair, financial services, counseling, and more).
- Kind and caring lawyers who are easy to talk to.
Take a minute to learn about each of our attorneys:
Managing Partner, Attorney Shane V. Mullen
Attorney Shane Mullen has 21 years of experience representing truck accident claims. He knew he wanted to be a lawyer beginning in the third grade. Since that time, he’s grown to become an excellent commercial truck accident lawyer and has won several million dollar and multimillion dollar claims. That’s allowed him to become a member of the Million Dollar and Multimillion Dollar Advocates Forums. He’s also now a member of Rue Ratings’ Best Attorneys of America. Both organizations are based on merit. They’re invite-only and accept just the top 1% of all lawyers in America. That means Shane earned his way into both and did not buy or network his way in.
Associate Attorney, Joseph R. Morrison
Attorney Joseph Morrison Attorney Joseph Morrison has 19 years of experience and a list of achievements similar in length to Shane’s. He also has won several million-dollar and multimillion dollar claims of his own. Just like Shane, this has qualified him to become a member of both the Million Dollar and Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forums. He’s also a member of The National Trial Lawyers: Top 100 Civil Plaintiff Trial Lawyers. Again, all these organizations are invite-only and based completely on merit. You cannot network or buy your way in!
What should you take away from all this? No matter which attorney handles your truck accident claim, you’re in great hands with Mullen & Mullen Law Firm.
Firm Founder, Attorney Regis L. Mullen
Attorney Regis Mullen has 56 years of experience and began his legal career by litigating on behalf of the insurance companies in order to learn their tactics. After doing that, he switched over to representing injury victims and hasn’t looked back. Now he uses all that knowledge he accumulated working for insurers on your behalf.
Testimonials From Dallas Clients Injured by Commercial Truck Drivers
Jennifer Foster’s Review
“I have three children under the ages of 6, the youngest one is disabled. I was unable to care for my children, after I was hit by an 18-wheeler. My financial support was lost. When I hired the Mullen & Mullen Law Firm, they immediately earned my trust. They made it easy for me.”
Josie Gonzales’s Review
“I was hit by a commercial vehicle… They made sure all my medical needs and expenses were taken care of. I have recovered from my injuries. Shane is a great attorney and I was awarded the maximum. I highly recommend this law firm. They were very professional & sincerely cared about me.”
Review from Shonye B.
“I was hit by a commercial truck while stopped at a stop light. Joseph did his absolute best to get me what I deserved. Mullen and Mullen are the best.
Review from Moll M.
“Joseph Morrison did a fabulous job with handling my accident with a commercial vehicle. I was injured and required surgery. Joseph made sure all my bills were covered and handled my case with a caring attitude making sure I received a good settlement. I truly appreciated Joseph and his staff! I would recommend Mullen and Mullen to family and friends.”
Review from Mark M
“My aunt had met with an accident when a truck rammed into her car. She had suffered severe injuries and had to be kept in the hospital for a long time. Needless to say, the expenses added up to quite a bit, so I was determined to fight for adequate compensation from the other party. It was my friend who recommended your firm to me. Mullen & Mullen is certainly different from the other law firms that I have come across so far. They offered me a free consultation and the contingency charges were very lenient. The best part is that they helped me through all the procedures and ensured that we received the money that was due.”
J. Melville’s Review
“Mullen and Mullen was incredible in terms of both how understanding they were to my problems as well as in settling my case quickly and fast. A truck from a local construction company ran into my parked car and pretty much totaled it a few months back. Initially they refused to pay me a dime, and even threatened to bury me in litigation. But as soon as Mullen & Mullen took up my case up, things went so much better. I was compensated for my loss, and I didn’t even have to go to court for it. Those guys do an incredible job.”
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Case Studies About Dallas Truck Accident Claims We’ve Settled
- $962,500 Settlement for client with neck injury requiring surgery
- $932,500 Settlement for client with a lumbar disc herniation and annular fissure
- $787,500 Settlement for client with neck injury requiring surgery
- $574,000 Settlement for client with foot injury
You Can Afford The Best Truck Accident Lawyer in Dallas Because You Pay Nothing Until After You Win
Not only will you not pay anything out of pocket until your settlement has been won, you could receive thousands more in your pocket when it’s all said and done because Mullen & Mullen Law Firm charges just a 29% contingency fee versus the industry standard of 33.3%-35% for cases that settled without litigation. This 4.3% savings can really be significant. For example, on a $500,000 truck accident settlement it would mean $21,500 more in your pocket.
Common Types of Injuries Sustained in Trucking Accidents
Truck accidents can have devastating consequences due to the size and weight disparity between commercial trucks and passenger vehicles. These accidents often result in severe injuries that can have a long-term physical, emotional, and financial impact on victims. Understanding the most common types of injuries sustained in commercial truck accidents is essential for both accident victims and their legal representatives in pursuing compensation and justice.
Truck accidents can lead to traumatic brain injuries, ranging from mild concussions to severe brain damage. The sudden impact or violent jolt can cause the head to hit objects within the vehicle, resulting in cognitive impairments, memory loss, difficulty concentrating, personality changes, and long-term complications. Timely diagnosis and appropriate medical intervention are crucial for managing and treating TBIs.
Spinal Cord Injuries
The forceful impact in truck accident can damage the spinal cord, leading to partial or complete paralysis. Spinal cord injuries can result in loss of sensation, impaired motor function, and a significant impact on an individual’s daily life. Rehabilitation, adaptive equipment, and long-term care are often necessary to support individuals with spinal cord injuries.
Back and Neck Injuries
Whiplash, herniated discs, spinal fractures, facet joint syndrome, and other back and neck injuries are common in truck accidents. The sudden jerking motion during a collision can strain or damage the muscles, ligaments, and vertebrae, leading to chronic pain, limited mobility, and long-term discomfort. Physical therapy, pain management, and sometimes surgical interventions may be required for recovery.
Broken Bones and Fractures
The immense force involved in truck accidents can cause fractures and broken bones throughout the body. Limbs, ribs, pelvis, and skull fractures are particularly common. These injuries often require immediate medical attention, surgical intervention, immobilization through casts or braces, and extensive rehabilitation to restore functionality.
Truck accidents can result in significant internal injuries due to the impact of the collision. Organs such as the liver, spleen, kidneys, or lungs may be damaged, leading to internal bleeding, organ failure, and life-threatening conditions. Prompt medical evaluation and treatment are critical to address internal injuries, as they may not be immediately apparent.
Cuts, Lacerations, and Bruises
The shattered glass, debris, and objects inside the vehicle can cause cuts, lacerations, and severe bruising. These injuries can range from minor wounds to deep lacerations requiring stitches or reconstructive surgery. In some cases, scarring or disfigurement may result, leading to both physical and emotional distress.
Truck accidents involving fires or explosions can result in burn injuries. The severity of burns can vary, ranging from first-degree burns to more severe third-degree burns that affect deeper layers of the skin and underlying tissues. Burn injuries often require specialized medical treatment, including wound care, skin grafts, and extensive rehabilitation.
Truck accidents can have a profound psychological impact on the individuals involved. Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, depression, and phobias are common psychological consequences. Victims may experience flashbacks, nightmares, social withdrawal, and difficulty resuming daily activities. Psychological support and therapy are vital for their recovery.
It is important to note that the severity and type of injuries can vary depending on various factors, including the speed of the collision, the angle of impact, use of safety restraints, and the size of the vehicles involved. Seeking immediate medical attention after a commercial truck accident is crucial, even if injuries may not appear severe at first, as some injuries may have delayed onset symptoms.
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About Commercial Truck Accident Claims
In commercial truck accident claims the stakes are usually very high. Our experienced lawyers have the knowledge, skills, and financial stability necessary to take on the trucking company and their insurance carrier and recover compensation. Mullen & Mullen Law Firm will make sure the at-fault driver and the company they work for are held responsible for your injuries.
A Private Investigator Hired by the Trucking Company Could Try and Secretly Video You
Be mindful of the situations you place yourself in as you recover from your injuries, as insurance companies use anything they can against you. They know they have increased exposure when an 18-wheeler or other commercial truck is involved. Trucking companies typically have minimum liability insurance policies of $1,000,000.00 and most major insurance companies have stand-alone departments just to deal with these accident injury claims.
We Have In-House Private Investigators to Work on Your Case
At Mullen & Mullen Law Firm, we employ two in-house accident investigators who will quickly request a copy of the Texas Peace Officer’s Crash Report if available. They routinely take photos and video footage of all vehicles involved and of the accident scene. They also attempt to locate any witnesses if necessary to further establish liability. If no witnesses are identified in the police report, our investigators have been trained to canvas the scene for potential witnesses.
Our Attorneys Will Conduct Witness Interviews and Obtain Affidavits
Our lawyers routinely interview and obtain affidavits from located witnesses and will also run public record database searches and utilize the FOIA (Freedom of Information Act) to request various records associated with the wreck, the driver of the semi-truck, and/or the company that employs the driver.
What Organizations May Have Records Related to My Truck Accident?
Depending on the facts and circumstances of your collision, the following agencies may have documents that could assist your personal injury case:
- Texas Department of Public Safety
- United States Department of Transportation
- Federal Highway Administration
- Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration
- Federal Office of Motor Carrier and Highway Safety
- National Driver Register
- National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
- National Transportation Safety Board
- Texas Department of Transportation
- Texas Transportation Commission
Our lawyers routinely request documents from various government entities. If you retain Mullen & Mullen Law Firm, we will quickly and efficiently secure all available documents that could be helpful in your case including police officer body worn camera footage when available.
What Texas Rules and Regulations are Commercial Drivers and Trucking Companies Subjected to?
18-wheeler drivers and the companies they work for are generally subject to a substantial number of rules and regulations. Depending on the circumstances of your case, the following could be applicable:
- Federal Hazardous Materials Regulations
- State of Texas Hazardous Materials Regulations
- State of Texas Motor Carrier Safety Regulations
- Texas Transportation Code
Our attorneys are knowledgeable regarding various rules and regulations applicable to commercial truck drivers. We will identify any possible violations by the trucking company and its driver.
Claiming Damages with Insurance Companies After Your Truck Accident
When should you file claims for injuries and damages after an accident with a commercial truck? You should set up various insurance claims as soon as you are able. Do not think that just because the truck driver said he or she was “sorry” at the scene that liability will be accepted by the trucking company or its insurance carrier. Semi-tractor-trailer drivers operate on a point system and can lose their commercial driver’s license if they accumulate too many points. As a result, they will often have a strong motivation to not be truthful.
What Claims Should Be Established with the Trucking Company or Your Insurance Company?
You might have several insurance claims to set-up following an 18-wheeler wreck. Below you will find just a few of the potential claims we can help you establish:
- Liability claim against the 18-wheeler driver (property damage as well as injury damages).
- Liability claim against the company the truck driver was working for at the time of the accident (property damage as well as injury damages).
- PIP monies through your own automobile insurance policy to reimburse you for medical expenses and/or money you have lost if you are unable to work.
- MedPay monies through your insurance or the at-fault party’s insurance (Offset allowed if you obtain a settlement)
What Are the Typical Liability Limits of a Commercial Vehicle Policy?
Most policies will have insurance coverage in place of at least $250,000 per person / $500,000 per accident. Often, they will have coverage limits of $1,000,000 per person / $2,000,000 per accident.
Example: If three persons are injured in the same semi accident, and the at-fault driver’s policy limits are $250,000 per person / $500,000 per accident, the most any single person could get under the insurance policy is $250,000, and the most the liability carrier would have to pay out in total is $500,000, even if combined damages were well more than that amount.
It is very important to explore all potential sources of insurance coverage if you have suffered traumatic or life-altering injuries in an 18-wheeler accident. Our Dallas lawyers are adept at verifying whether the semi-tractor-trailer may be covered under separate insurance policies or an umbrella policy, thus maximizing your potential recovery.
Does it Matter if the Driver was an Independent Contractor?
Yes. Employers are generally not liable for the negligent actions of an independent contractor. Texas follows the doctrine of Respondeat Superior, however, and companies are liable for the negligent actions (or omissions) of an employee while said employee is in the course and scope of his or her employment for the company. For example, if you were injured in an 18-wheeler accident with a Swift Transportation truck, the driver and Swift Transportation would both be proper Defendants in a lawsuit.
The amount of available insurance proceeds could depend on whether the semi-tractor-trailer driver was an independent contractor (coverage for the driver only) or employee (coverage for the driver + coverage for the trucking company). Our lawyers are familiar with the factors used to determine the status of the driver and can make legal arguments to establish that the driver was an employee even if the trucking company claims the at-fault driver was an independent contractor.
The company’s policy limits don’t matter if they have significant assets. For example, if you suffered devastating injuries due to a JB Hunt 18-wheeler, you wouldn’t need to be concerned with the insurance limits since JB Hunt has millions and millions of dollars that could be seized in a judgment.
Vehicle Repair or Replacement After a Commercial Truck Accident
Should I take my car to the repair shop the trucking company’s insurance carrier recommended to me?
No way. The body shops recommended by their company’s liability carrier are recommended for an easy to guess reason, i.e., they charge less for repairs. The trucking company and its carrier want your automobile damage to be very low so they can argue you were involved in a “minor” collision. Have an estimate performed by the auto dealership or a body repair shop of your own choosing.
Do You Get a Rental Vehicle if You are Involved in a Commercial Accident?
Yes, but usually only if your automobile can be repaired and isn’t totaled. If your vehicle is fixable and drivable, you can generally get a like and similar rental car for the time it would take to fix your car. If it’s a total loss, then you may likely only recover the fair market value of your automobile and insurance companies do not generally reimburse you for the cost of a rental car once your vehicle has been deemed a “total loss”.
Can You Assist Me with Obtaining a Rental Car?
Yes, our lawyers are happy to help you upon request in securing a rental vehicle while your automobile is being repaired, or while the liability carrier for the trucking company is determining whether your automobile is a “total loss”.
Can I Recover Damages for the Diminished Value of my Automobile?
Yes, generally. Establishing diminished value often requires an expert report. Our law firm is happy to advance the money on your behalf to obtain an expert report if the damage to your car warrants it.
How Much Can I Recover for My Vehicle if it is Considered a “Total Loss”?
If your car is totaled following an 18-wheeler accident, then you can recover only the fair market value of your vehicle. The fair market value is measured by what similar vehicles are being sold for on the open market. Fair market value is not measured by Kelly Blue Book or NADA Book Value.
Securing a Law Loan
Do companies exist that loan money based on securing an interest in your settlement?
Yes, but many of these law loan companies charge a ridiculous interest rate. Most law loan companies require you to be represented to qualify for a loan. Our legal team routinely help clients secure loans that charge a flat fee, as opposed to a continuously compounding loan. This sometimes saves our clients thousands of dollars.
Getting Necessary Medical Treatment
Should you go to the hospital if you have pain and discomfort? Absolutely. If you experience pain and discomfort following an 18-wheeler or other commercial vehicle accident, you should be safe and get checked out. Large semi-tractor-trailers weigh thousands of pounds. It is best to be cautious and get examined because it’s the safe thing to do and also because the insurance carrier for the trucking company will attempt say you weren’t hurt that bad if you don’t.
What if My Health Insurance Carrier Pays Some of My Medical Bills?
If your health insurance carrier, Medicare, or Medicaid makes payments on your behalf for injuries related to your 18-wheeler or commercial truck accident, the halth insurance carrier or agency is generally entitled to be reimbursed out of your settlement proceeds – a right known as subrogation.
The amount the carrier or agency is entitled to be reimbursed can differ, but our Dallas truck accident attorneys are almost always able to secure a reduction of health insurance liens or workers’ compensation liens.
Do Medical Providers Exist Who Have Experience in Treating These Types of Injuries?
Yes. Many doctors refuse to treat patients who have been injured in truck accident cases because they fear getting deposed or otherwise drawn into a legal battle. Some healthcare providers do exist, however, that are willing to provide services for commercial truck accident injury victims.
Our attorneys will assist you in securing all the medical attention you require following the collision. Mullen & Mullen Law Firm has been in business for over 40 years and we have strong relationships with various healthcare providers who primarily assist people hurt in accidents.
Upon your request, we can help you locate a local doctor who will agree to delay billing you for medical services until the conclusion of your truck accident case. Mullen & Mullen’s lawyers work with pain management physicians, surgeons, physical therapists, chiropractors, neurologists, hospitals, surgical facilities, imaging facilities, and other providers who are willing to forego payment until the settlement of your claim, even if you require a surgery.
Can You Recover Lost Wages Because of the Accident?
Yes. The trucking company or insurance company, however, will want your loss of earnings to be well documented. In the past our lawyers have helped 18-wheeler accident victims establish a legal right to these damages, by utilizing fact witness affidavits, company correspondence, bank statements, and certified tax and earnings documents.
An Example: Our attorneys represented a young female whose job was classified as “Light” according to exertional demands. She underwent a Physical Performance Examination that indicated she did not have the capacity to perform at the “Light” exertion level. She was held out of work until she could perform her job duties without the risk of aggravating her injuries.
Can You Recover Damages for Loss of Earning Capacity?
Yes. Loss of earning capacity is the total amount of wages you will lose over the course of your lifetime due to your injuries adjusted to net present value.
Our truck accident attorneys utilize both Economists and Vocational Rehabilitation Consultants when needed to establish past lost wages or loss of earning capacity in the future.
What Other Monies are Available?
You might be entitled to the following monetary damages in addition to those described above:
- Past reasonable and necessary medical expenses
- Future reasonable and necessary medical expenses
Mullen & Mullen Law Firm frequently uses life care planners on 18-wheeler accident and commercial cases. We front the cost of the expert report if you have sustained life-altering injuries and will need life-long accommodation.
- Automobile repair costs
- Replacement car cost; and
- Diminished value.
Pain, Suffering, Mental Anguish & Impairment
If you have been involved in a commercial truck accident you may be entitled to non-economic damages for:
- Pain and suffering – both past and future
- Mental anguish – both past and future
- Physical impairment – both past and future; and
- Other non-economic damages.
Non-economic damages, unlike economic damages, are generally not ascertainable to a fixed degree. For example, if you made $5,000 a month and were injured in a truck accident that caused you to miss four months of work, your loss of earnings damages is clearly $20,000. Your individual pain, suffering, and mental anguish cannot be as easily quantified though and a jury would have complete discretion in computing these damages.
Mullen & Mullen Law Firm will often oversee preparation of a “day in the life” video. In fact, our firm has an in-house videographer. A video demonstrating a typical day in “your shoes” can often be the difference between a good settlement and a great settlement. Our attorneys have the experience to allow you to answer questions that detail your unique story and illustrate the devastating impact of your accident.
This not an exhaustive list and your attorney should carefully review your case to ascertain all available damages under the facts and circumstances of your case.
Can I Get Punitive Damages?
Punitive damages are designed to punish wrongdoers for reckless or grossly negligent conduct. In Texas these damages are generally difficult to obtain and must be examined on a case-by-case basis.
The potential for punitive damages should be explored in every case involving an 18-wheeler or commercial vehicle. Some situations where a finding of recklessness or gross negligence might be warranted include:
- If the driver was found to be driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol,
- If the driver was found to be driving while intoxicated,
- If the driver violated his or her requirements to stop and rest for a minimum number of hours,
- If the driver failed to properly secure his or her load; and
- If the driver was operating his or her vehicle at a reckless speed.
What is the Value of your Truck Accident Claim?
Most attorneys will tell you what you want to hear, even though they realize your case value is directly tied to the extent of the injuries you sustained and other factors that could influence a jury, such as if the driver was texting when the collision occurred. Mullen & Mullen Law Firm offers guidance on expected case settlement value, only after we have reviewed all case documents and evaluated the arguments raised by the insurance adjuster. Would you want a surgeon to offer an opinion without reviewing medical records?
If you have suffered an objective injury, as opposed to a sprain or strain, your claim will have enhanced value. Measurable or easily observed injuries include things like fractured or broken bones, herniated or extruded discs, and other injuries which require surgery like a fusion or discectomy.
What if the Trucking Company is Arguing I Was Also Negligent?
If you are found to be negligent, the percentage of fault assigned to you by the jury is deducted from the total verdict. For example, if the jurors awarded $50,000 in damages but determined you were 20% at fault, the final verdict would be adjusted to $40,000.
If you were partly negligent, are you barred from obtaining a recovery in a commercial truck accident? No, except if the jury determines you are more than 50% at fault for the wreck. Recovery is possible even if the jury determines liability for the 18-wheeler accident should be apportioned 50/50, although the total damages awarded would be reduced by 50%.
What are “Reasonable and Necessary” Medical Bills?
Texas law states you are allowed to seek recovery of the monies you paid or incurred to doctors and other medical professionals. The medical bills must be both reasonable and necessary. Trucking companies almost always argue that at least some of the accident victim’s treatment was unreasonable or unnecessary. They usually retain a medical doctor to perform a “peer review”.
What is a Pre-existing Condition?
Our firm routinely requests and reviews pre-accident medical records so that the “Eggshell Plaintiff” doctrine can be argued if applicable. In addition, securing past medical records often leads to the best evidence of pain, suffering, mental anguish, and impairment.
What if You Decline the Trucking Company’s Last Settlement Offer?
You have the right to initiate litigation against the driver and the company he or she was working for if you choose to decline their final settlement offer.
Should You Settle or Initiate Litigation?
All injury claims should be evaluated on an individual basis. Sometimes a $50,000 offer before initiating litigation ends up being more money in your pockets than a $70,000 offer made after a lawsuit has been filed.
Consider these factors:
- Attorney fees will always increase if litigation is involved.
- Case expenses, especially on commercial truck accident claims, usually dramatically increase in litigation.
- Litigation is very time-consuming and often lasts 9-12 months.
- Your health insurance company or a workers’ compensation company might be more receptive to reducing a lien prior to the commencement of litigation.
It’s Important to Obtain Records Related to the Truck’s Daily Log and Driver Management System
Daily Log and Driver Management System
Commercial drivers are only allowed to drive a certain number of consecutive hours before the law requires them to stop and rest. The truck’s daily log will demonstrate how many miles the driver drove that day. The driver management system should indicate geographical position, hours in service, load balance, and stability data, among other things.
Importance of Obtaining the Driver’s Qualification File
Documents generated or maintained pursuant to Title 49 of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations, parts 382, 383, and 391, constitute the Driver Qualification File. This can be used to determine if he/she was qualified to safely operate the vehicle. These records are especially useful in combination with the driver’s investigative history and personnel files.
Can the Truck’s GPS System be Used to Strengthen Your Claim?
Yes, if GPS data is available it will be discoverable in litigation and can be used to strengthen your claim. GPS data will show where the truck was, at what time, and the route of travel it took. It is critical to quickly retain us as counsel so we can send a spoliation of evidence letter demanding that all relevant evidence – such as GPS data – be preserved.
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Truck Accident Statistics in Dallas, TX
Truck accidents bring devastating consequences: injuries, property damage, and loss of life. In Dallas, Texas, with its busy highways, understanding accident statistics is crucial. The data, until 2021, offers insights into the truck accident landscape.
Total Number of Truck Accidents
In recent years, Dallas has experienced a significant number of truck accidents. In 2020, Dallas County had 7,771 truck crashes, causing 60 fatalities and over 1,000 injuries (TxDOT). It’s important to note that these figures include accidents of varying degrees, ranging from minor incidents to severe collisions.
Fatalities and Injuries
Truck accidents tend to have a higher fatality and injury rate due to the sheer size and weight of commercial vehicles. Between 2016 and 2020, the number of fatalities resulting from truck accidents in Dallas County showed a fluctuating trend. In 2016, there were 80 fatalities, which decreased to 59 in 2017, then increased to 83 in 2018, dropped to 68 in 2019, and finally reached 60 in 2020. These figures highlight the need for ongoing efforts to reduce the number of fatalities.
Truck accidents in Dallas have various causes: fatigue, distraction, impaired driving, speeding, lane changes, mechanical failures, and weather. Raising awareness, stricter regulations, and better training can reduce these risks.
Time and Location
Analyzing the time and location patterns of truck accidents in Dallas can provide valuable insights for accident prevention initiatives. Certain months have higher rates of such accidents due to factors like holidays or weather. And major highways like I-35E, I-30, and I-635 experience the most volume.
Dallas, state, and federal agencies implemented safety measures to reduce truck accidents. These include:
- regular inspections of commercial vehicles to ensure they meet safety standards
- enforcement of trucking regulations like hours-of-service rules
- improving road infrastructure
- implementing stricter penalties for traffic violations
- promoting public awareness campaigns regarding safe driving practices around trucks
It is crucial to note that these statistics are constantly evolving. Government bodies, law enforcement agencies, and community organizations are always implementing new measures to reduce accidents.
Talk to a Highly Skilled Lawyer about Your Truck Accident Today.
Call (214) 747-5240 for Help Now!
Mullen & Mullen Law Firm
1825 Market Center Blvd #200
Dallas, TX 75207
We will come to your home, office, or hospital room if it makes it easier on you! No in-person meeting required. Virtual consultations and sign-ups are available.
Joseph R. Morrison is the Senior Associate Attorney at Mullen & Mullen Law Firm in Dallas, TX, where he represents people personally injured due to the negligence of others. He was recognized by VerdictSearch for obtaining a Top 5 Premises Liability verdict in the State of Texas, and has been quoted in the ABA Journal.