Side-Impact Truck Accidents in Columbia

Side-impact truck accidents in Columbia can lead to catastrophic injuries and death due to the size and weight of the vehicle. These accidents, also known as T-bone accidents, occur when the front of a commercial truck crashes into the side of another vehicle.

When you are injured in a side-impact crash caused by the negligence of a truck driver, you could receive compensation for your injuries or related monetary losses with help from an experienced truck accident attorney. Side-impact crashes can involve different types of commercial trucks, including tractor-trailers, semi-trucks, delivery trucks, tow trucks, or box trucks.

Establishing Negligence for a Side-Impact Crash

An injured person must first establish a duty of care to prove negligence in a claim due to a side-impact truck crash in Columbia. Truck drivers generally have a duty of care to operate their vehicle in accordance with state and federal laws and not endanger others around them on the road.

Next, they must establish the defendant breached that duty of care. Common factors used to establish breach are driver errors, violations of traffic laws, vehicle defects, drunk driving, and driver fatigue due to excessive work hours.

The injured party must also prove the at-fault party’s breach caused their harm or injuries, and finally, they must show they suffered real damages as a result of the accident.

When the driver or a passenger does not survive the accident, the state’s wrongful death statute allows their close relatives to bring a claim under Missouri Annotated Statutes § 537.080. Surviving parents, siblings, children, and other close descendants can pursue the lawsuit on behalf of a deceased relative.

Examples of Damages From Side-Impact Truck Crashes

When an injured person can establish a claim in Columbia from a T-bone truck accident, they can seek economic, noneconomic, and punitive damages. Economic damages include direct monetary losses, such as lost employment income, medical costs, and property damage.

Noneconomic losses do not have a measurable dollar value but can help compensate an injured party when their life quality is significantly changed by the accident. These losses can cover disfigurement and other permanent disabilities, emotional and physical pain and suffering, the loss of consortium with a spouse or life partner, and other damages that impair the enjoyment of living.

The injured party can also seek punitive damages when a truck driver or trucking company employee intentionally harms a victim or acts with deliberate reckless disregard for public safety. The state does not place a monetary cap on economic, noneconomic, and punitive damages from side-impact truck accidents.

Laws to Consider

Plaintiffs in a personal injury case have a limited amount of time to file a claim in Columbia for a side-impact crash due to a truck driver’s negligence. The state has a five-year statute of limitations for personal injury claims under Mo. Ann. Stat. § 516.120 starting from the date of the accident.

Since side-impact crashes can result from negligence by both parties, the state’s doctrine of pure comparative negligence, Mo. Ann. Stat. § 537.765, could also impact a plaintiff’s ability to recover damages. The amount of recoverable damages is affected by the plaintiff’s percentage of fault in causing the accident.

For instance, a plaintiff can only recover up to 60 percent of the damages sought when a court determines they contributed 40 percent of the negligence that caused the accident at issue, and even when the court rules that the plaintiff contributed a majority of the negligence at issue, they can still recover damages.

Contact an Attorney When You Are Harmed By Side-Impact Truck Accidents in Columbia

A lawyer at the Law Office of Chris Miller could consult with you about the validity of your claims when you are injured by side-impact truck accidents in Columbia. Obtaining an attorney as soon as possible is critical to protecting your legal rights under the state’s time limits to file personal injury claims.

Proving negligence is not simple, and an attorney could advise you on the necessary evidence to help establish your claim. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.


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