We Won A $48.5 Million Truck Accident 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.
Garbage trucks pose a unique threat to other motorists and pedestrians due to their massive size and the frequent and sudden stops they make. When a garbage truck is involved in a collision with a smaller vehicle, the injuries that result can be catastrophic and even lead to death. Survivors of accidents with garbage trucks may face long, painful recoveries, extreme suffering, expensive rehabilitation and continuing care, and be left dealing with mounting bills at a time they are unable to work.
If you or a loved one has been injured or someone has died in an Indiana garbage truck accident that was another party’s fault, you may be entitled to compensation for your costs, losses and the damages you received. However, garbage truck accident cases are further complicated by the fact that the services are often owned or operated by local governments, and many government employees are typically exempt from civil lawsuits under Indiana state law.
At this difficult time when you are trying to recover from your traumatic accident, there is help available from the Indiana garbage truck lawyers at Stephenson Rife, LLP. Our truck accident lawyers in Indianapolis know how to deal with the complex laws, municipalities, and multiple parties and insurers involved with a garbage truck. We understand the difficulties survivors of traumatic accidents face, and we have the knowledge and resources to build a strong case with the best chances for winning a favorable verdict or settlement.
We provide a free consultation to discuss the details of your accident and determine the best way to move forward. You pay nothing unless and until we win your case, so call us today.
Our Garbage Truck Accident Lawyer Helps You Win
Why Choose Stephenson Rife?
There are many attorneys out there, and it’s important for you to find one you can trust to get the results you need. Here are some reasons why we think you should choose Stephenson Rife to represent you:
- We are experienced. We have been meeting the needs of people throughout Indiana since 1976. Mike Stephenson has 40 years of experience handling injuries, and is a trusted advisor to many individuals and companies.
- We get results and win large settlements, such as the $48.5 million we won in a truck accident case. We have a strong record of success for a wide range of personal injury cases. You can read our clients’ testimonials and about their cases.
- We handle all required legal requirements, forms, paperwork, and court appearances.
- We deal and negotiate with insurance companies, so you won’t have to.
- We are recognized for our expertise and are the law firm that other law firms consult.
- We offer free initial consultations to get you started.
- We are able to provide cost-effective legal services to keep fees low, and you pay us nothing unless we win and you get your money.
How Our Garbage Truck Accident Attorney Works for You
It is important to begin investigations quickly after a garbage truck accident, while evidence can be found and preserved. When you have Stephenson Rife on your side, we will get to work for you immediately. We will:
- Meet with you and listen to your version of what happened and determine if you have a valid case and what kind of settlement we should be fighting for.
- Examine relevant Indiana laws regarding any municipalities that are involved with the accident to determine if filing a lawsuit is possible.
- Determine whether there are other liable parties who may be sued and what insurance may be available.
- Investigate your case and gather evidence by examining the crash scene, examining truck maintenance and employer training records, interviewing eyewitness and first responders, and examining police, ambulance, doctor, and hospital records.
- Negotiate with insurance companies and their attorneys for a fair settlement.
- Hire experts to testify on your behalf. Experts may include engineers who can reconstruct the accident and truck mechanics to inspect the garbage truck and determine whether maintenance issues or defective parts caused the crash. Additional experts may be used to testify as to the extent of your injuries, and the physical and emotional effects on you and your family.
- Build your case and take it to trial if an agreement with insurance cannot be reached.
Garbage Truck Accident Lawyer in Indianapolis Must Prove Negligence
Garbage truck accidents present unique challenges, especially if there are multiple parties or a municipality is involved. If a municipality or government agency owns the garbage truck, sovereign immunity rules that protect governments need to be considered. In addition, there may be other liable parties, such as the manufacturer of the truck or its parts, if there was an equipment failure, or the company that was responsible for road repair and cleaning up afterwards, if this was not done correctly.
To win your truck accident case, our Indiana truck accident attorneys would have to prove that another party, the defendant in the case, was at fault and negligent and therefore should be held liable for causing the accident. To prove fault legally, we 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 action or failure to act caused an accident that resulted in your injuries.
- Damages — You suffered damages as a result.
In garbage truck accident cases, multiple parties may be held responsible, including:
- The garbage truck driver, if the driver was impaired, fatigued, careless, or speeding
- The owner of the truck or a private garbage company
- Other sanitation workers if they failed to load garbage properly and debris fell on the road
- The manufacturer of the truck or its parts, if these were defective and failed
- A municipality or road repair company responsible for road repairs
- A government entity or municipality, if they owned the garbage truck or hired the driver and were not exempt by law
- A worker responsible for truck maintenance.
Any or all of these parties may be at fault for contributing to the accident, and they all may have insurance and assets that can go toward a settlement award, so our attorneys would look to name them all as defendants in a lawsuit.
Damage Awards Our Garbage Truck Accident Attorneys in Indianapolis May Recover
In a successful case, you should receive compensatory damages that cover both your economic damages which can be calculated, and your non-monetary damages that do not have a specific dollar value but negatively impact your life. These may include:
- Medical and rehabilitative bills and equipment
- Costs of continuing care
- Modifications to your home or vehicle
- Loss wages and future earning capacity
- Property damage
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish and emotional distress
- Permanent disability
- Disfigurement and permanent scarring
- Loss of 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.
Garbage Truck Accident Attorneys Answer Your Questions
After an accident with a garbage truck, it’s natural to be confused and have questions and concerns. The following are some answers to questions our attorneys are frequently asked:
How much will my damage award be?
Damage amounts vary greatly according to the factors involved. Severe injuries that involve permanent damage and require long-term care or death often result in a higher settlement and may range into the hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars. If there are multiple parties at fault and they all have insurance and assets, the settlement may be higher.
Are there time limits for filing a case?
Yes, Indiana has a statute of limitations, a deadline for filing a case. According to Indiana law, Indiana Code (IC) 34-11-2-4(3), you generally must file a claim for personal injury within two years from the date of the accident, or two years from the death for wrongful death cases.
What if a family member has died in a garbage truck accident?
When a garbage truck accident results in a death, our attorneys may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit under The Indiana Adult Wrongful Death Act (AWDA), Indiana Code 34-23-1-2. Claims must be filed within two (2) years of the death, and the damages include reasonable medical, hospital, funeral and burial expenses, and lost earnings of such deceased person.
Can I still receive compensation if I am partially to blame for the crash?
Yes, according to Indiana code (IC 34 article 51 chapter 2), you could still receive compensation even if you are partially to blame for a crash, as long as you are less than 51 percent at fault. However, your settlement will be reduced by the percentage of fault that you bear.
Why do I need to have an attorney?
In most cases, garbage truck companies and their insurance companies have a team of powerful injury lawyers, investigators, and insurance adjusters working to minimize your settlement, so it’s hard to fight them on your own. Our Stephenson Rife garbage truck accident attorneys know how to investigate and build your case, and will aggressively negotiate with insurers and take your case to trial if necessary.
Call Our Garbage Truck Attorneys in Indiana to Get Justice
Garbage truck accidents, require extensive investigation and experience, so contact our commercial trucking accident lawyers as soon as possible after your accident.
At Stephenson Rife, we pursue positive results, no matter what legal challenge your case involves. Let us take the burden off you by handling all legal hurdles, negotiations with insurance companies and their attorneys, paperwork, and court appearances involved with proving liability and winning the settlement you deserve.
Don’t delay. Find out what we can do for you by calling us today at (317) 680-2350 for your free consultation. We work on a contingency basis, so there are no fees to you unless and until we win your case.
GET HELP NOW CALL (317) 680-2350
Attorney Mike Stephenson
Attorney Mike Stephenson has 40 years of experience and is a trusted advisor to many individuals and companies. His current practice is dominated by civil litigation in state and federal courts. He focuses much of his time on handling catastrophic injuries caused by all types of accidents, including motor vehicle, trucking, workplace injuries, product liability, just to name a few. Mike is a proven advocate and trial attorney. He has served as lead trial counsel in more than 100 civil jury trials, and has handled litigation in 18 states. [ Attorney Bio ]
Table Of Contents
- Our Garbage Truck Accident Lawyer Helps You Win
- Garbage Truck Accident Lawyer in Indianapolis Must Prove Negligence
- Damage Awards Our Garbage Truck Accident Attorneys in Indianapolis May Recover
- Garbage Truck Accident Attorneys Answer Your Questions
- Call Our Garbage Truck Attorneys in Indiana to Get Justice