If you were recently the victim of a truck accident as a result of a distracted or negligent truck driver, then the first thing you'll want to do (aside from receiving medical treatment for any injuries) is to begin working with an attorney. Even if the truck driver's insurance company makes you an offer for a settlement, you should consult with a lawyer before you accept; more than likely, they're low-balling you. But you don't want to hire just any lawyer for the job. There are a few specific questions you'll want to ask a trucking accident lawyer (such as one from http://www.gabrielsonlaw.com) before signing any kind of contract.
What Needs to Be Brought to the Consultation?
Before you even schedule your initial consultation for an assessment of your case, find out what you need to bring. More than likely, the lawyer will ask you to bring any documentation you have of the accident itself--including police reports, pictures, and witness statements--along with a map of where the accident occurred. If you have medical expenses for which you're demanding compensation, you should bring records of those as well.
How Do You Stay Up-to-Date on Changing Laws?
These days, trucking accident laws can change on a dime, so it's important that your lawyer is up-to-date on current laws that could affect your case. Specifically, ask your lawyer what kind of professional development courses or training he or she follows to remain on top of changes in laws and regulations.
What Are the Strengths/Weaknesses of the Case?
Once the lawyer has a chance to assess your case and get a decent picture of your side of the story, you'll want to find out what his or her initial thoughts are. Any good lawyer will tell you that they can represent you and help you reach a settlement, but how much does your lawyer think he or she can settle for? What are the specific strengths and challenges that he or she anticipates facing with your case, and how will these challenges be handled? Trucking accident cases often take longer to settle than traditional car accident cases, so you'll want to get an idea of how long you should expect the proceedings to take.
Can the Truck Driver Be Proven At-Fault?
Last but not least, if you live in a tort state (one that assigns legal fault for an accident), you'll want to make sure your lawyer is confident that fault can be proven on behalf of the truck driver him or herself.