We Won $48.5 Million in a Truck Accident Case
In this case, we took more than 60 depositions in five different states. Because of Stephenson’s tireless advocacy, shortly before the trial was to commence, the defendants settled the case for $48.5 million.
Our UPS Truck Accident Attorney Helps Win Compensation
UPS is one of the largest package delivery services in the world, and their drivers are under extreme pressure to get large numbers of packages delivered in the shortest period of time. Because they are in such a hurry, drivers may cut corners and speed, back up and make turns too quickly, or try to beat a light . . . all of which increase the chances of being in an accident!
UPS accident data shows that 3 to 4 reported UPS truck crashes take place in the U.S. each day. Due to the size and heaviness of UPS trucks, unfortunate accident victims may be left seriously injured and facing long, painful recoveries, and medical and household bills mount up at a time they are unable to work. Some injuries are severe enough to lead to death.
If you or a loved one has been injured or someone has died in an accident with a UPS truck, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses through insurance or a personal injury lawsuit. However, lawsuits involving commercial trucks are especially complicated due to the federal and state laws involved, and the fact that you are not only dealing with the truck driver, but also a large corporation with deep pockets and a team of lawyers.
How a UPS Truck Accident Attorney Can Help
UPS Has Lawyers — You Should, Too
While trucking companies like UPS are required to carry substantial insurance, insurance companies are interested in their bottom line and want to pay as little as possible.
UPS has its insurance policy through Liberty Mutual, a huge insurance giant with a team of agents and lawyers working to minimize or deny benefits and fight your lawsuit. They may contact you soon after the accident and make an offer to settle your claim quickly. This is often a lowball offer, and they hope that you may be tempted to accept it quickly. If you do, this may keep you from being able to receive what you are entitled to or getting additional benefits should your injuries worsen and your costs increase.
It is very difficult to fight a large corporation like UPS on your own. Even though company representatives and insurance agents may attempt to sound friendly, they are not on your side. They are skilled at asking questions that are designed to get you to make damaging recorded statements about your accident, such as admitting you were partially at fault, which can negatively affect the outcome of your case. Tell them to talk to your attorney, and let the attorney take over all aspects of your case to prevent costly mistakes and make sure everything is done correctly and according to the law.
When you have a UPS truck accident attorney on your side, they should:
- Meet with you to hear your version of how the accident happened and determine who the responsible parties may be
- Evaluate whether you have a valid case, what it may be worth and the settlement to fight for
- Ensure that you get proper medical treatment and that everything is documented
- Investigate the accident and gather and preserve evidence such as from traffic cameras and police and medical reports
- Interview witnesses, police officers, and first responders
- Hire experts to reconstruct the accident and testify on your behalf
- Hire experts to evaluate your costs and injuries and testify as to how they affect your life now and into the future
- File all forms and paperwork and make court appearances in accordance with Texas requirements
- Handle all communications with insurance companies and their attorneys and negotiate for a fair settlement
- Build your case and take it to trial if necessary.
Your UPS truck accident lawyer should be skilled at evaluating how much in damages you should receive and know how to negotiate with the insurer to receive a fair settlement. In most situations, it is desirable to have your attorney settle the case out of court, as it avoids the higher fees and unpredictability of a trial that could drag on for years. However, should negotiations break down, your lawyer can help you file a lawsuit for the damages you received and advocate for and represent you on each step of the legal process in order to fight for just compensation. This involves handling all investigations and legal requirements, from filing pretrial motions, to discovery, to presenting evidence and making closing arguments, to filing an appeal if necessary.
An experienced truck accident attorney can guide you as to what you should and should not say and do before you accept low offers or make mistakes that can hurt your case.
Damage Awards Our UPS Accident Lawyers May Win
In a successful UPS accident lawsuit in Indiana, our attorneys may win an award that covers the damages you received. In Indiana, these are called compensatory damages and include both your economic monetary losses and your noneconomic damages as well.
These are costs which can be calculated, such as:
- Medical and rehabilitative bills and equipment
- Costs of continuing care
- Lost wages and future earning capacity
- Property damage.
These are for loses that do not have a specific dollar value but negatively impact your life. These may include:
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish and emotional distress
- Permanent disability
- Disfigurement and permanent scarring
- Loss of consortium
- Loss of quality and enjoyment of life.
In some rare cases, punitive damages may also be awarded to punish negligent parties for willful negligence or especially egregious behavior, and to act as a deterrent for similar misconduct in the future.
The amount of damages you may be awarded vary greatly and could range from the thousands to millions of dollars, depending on the circumstances of the case. In general, if your injuries involve permanent damage and require long-term care, or if a death is involved, the settlement will be higher than if you received minor injuries that will heal in a few months.
If your case goes to trial, it may result in a higher settlement (but will often take longer to resolve). In cases against UPS, if the driver of the delivery truck was a UPS employee and not an independent contractor, it can make a big difference in the settlement amount, as you can then sue the company, which carries much more insurance than a private driver would. This is because under the law of vicarious liability, a company is responsible for the negligent actions of their employees when they are working within the scope of employment, but not usually for independent contractors.
Most UPS drivers are employees, so in a UPS truck accident lawsuit, you would be suing the company first and then the driver. You could also sue other negligent parties who may have contributed to the accident and could be defendants in the case.
Your UPS accident lawyers will evaluate your individual situation and determine who the defendants should be and what type of settlement is reasonable to go after.
UPS Truck Attorney Must Prove Negligence
To win your case, your UPS accident attorney must be able to show that another party, the defendant in the case, was negligent and at fault for causing the accident. To prove this legally, your UPS truck attorney must show the existence of the following elements:
- Duty – The defendant owed you a duty of care not to cause harm.
- Breach – The defendant breached that duty by acting or failing to act.
- Cause – This breach caused a crash and your injuries.
- Damages – You suffered damages, monetary or otherwise, as a result.
Depending on the circumstances, in addition to UPS and its driver, liable parties may include:
- Other negligent drivers who may have been involved in the accident
- Supervisors who failed to properly train and supervise drivers or failed to take actions if a driver exhibited unsafe practices
- The manufacturer of the truck or its equipment or parts, if these failed and caused the accident
- The mechanic responsible for maintaining the truck
- The employee who improperly loaded the cargo and caused the truck to be unbalanced
- The municipality or road repair company responsible for maintaining the road, if poor road conditions caused the crash.
Any or all of these parties may be found negligent and at fault for contributing to the accident, and they all may have insurance and assets that can go toward a settlement award.
What to Do if Involved in a UPS Truck Accident
After any crash, the steps you take will directly affect your case. If you are involved in an accident with a UPS truck and you are physically able to, take the following steps:
- Call 911, get police response, and ask for a police report.
- Take photos or videos to document the crash and damage to both vehicles.
- Obtain medical treatment and follow your doctor’s orders.
- Document your injuries and treatments you have received and how your injuries affect your life, your ability to work, and your relationships.
- Avoid talking to insurance companies and get legal help as soon as possible. Guidance from your own attorney will help protect your rights and keep you from making costly mistakes.
Call Our UPS Truck Accident Lawyers for Accident Help
UPS truck accidents are complicated and require extensive investigation and skill, but an experienced UPS commercial trucking accident lawyer at Stephenson Rife is fully prepared to go up against large trucking firms and their attorneys and fight for the settlement you deserve. No matter what legal challenge your case involves, we provide caring, confident and cost-effective service you can count on, which is why we are the law firm that other law firms consult in difficult cases.
Don’t delay, as it takes time to investigate and build your case, and there are time limits for filing a lawsuit. Indiana has a statute of limitations, a deadline for filing, which is generally two years from the date of the accident for personal injury cases (Indiana code section 34-11-2-4 (1). If you do not file on time, the courts are likely to refuse to hear your case.
Let us start working for you while evidence is fresh and witnesses can be found. At Stephenson Rife, we provide a free, no-obligation consultation to discuss the circumstances of your accident and determine the best way to move forward. We work on a contingency basis, which means there are no fees to you unless and until we win your case, so you have nothing to lose.
Find out what our UPS truck accident lawyer can do for you by contacting us or calling (317) 680-2350 for your free consultation today.
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Attorney Brady Rife
Attorney Brady Rife has developed a diverse civil litigation practice for plaintiffs throughout Indiana. Brady is heavily involved in serious personal injury matters, complex business and commercial disputes, and insurance litigation in state and federal courts. Some of the firm’s most successful cases include winning a $48 million settlement against a large corporation in a fatal vehicle crash in New Mexico and a $14 million dollar settlement against a national trucking company in Illinois. The firm handles cases across the United States. [ Attorney Bio ]