What should I do first after a Louisiana truck accident?

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Kirk A. Guidry - Personal Injury - General - Super Lawyers

Answered by: Kirk A. Guidry

Located in Baton Rouge, LADué Guidry Piedrahita Andrews L.C.

Baton Rouge, LA
Phone: 225-929-7481
Fax: 225-924-4519

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Being involved in a collision with an 18-wheeler or other large vehicle is frightening, at the very least. In the worst cases, it is catastrophic and life-changing. Under such circumstances, it can be tough to know what to do in order to start reclaiming control of your situation.

Here are some of the first and most important steps to take after a truck accident in our state:

Seek medical attention. This may seem obvious, especially if you suffered severe injuries. However, many people with supposedly “minor” injuries make the mistake of thinking that they don’t really need to see a doctor. Buoyed up by adrenaline, however, accident victims don’t always realize the true extent of their injuries until days or even weeks later. Your health and well-being are of first importance. Let a medical professional evaluate your situation.

Gather and preserve the evidence. Gathering all the evidence is key to developing a strong personal injury claim and to ultimately recover fair compensation for your losses. However, evidence of collisions disappears very quickly. Tire marks on the road can wash away. The memories of witnesses can become cloudy. Most significantly, electronic evidence — such as data from the truck’s black box or online vehicle maintenance records — can be “misplaced” or even erased.

The best way to preserve the evidence at the scene is to contact a lawyer immediately. Personal injury attorneys who handle truck accidents on a regular basis know exactly how to obtain critical evidence in the fastest and most efficient way.

Avoid talking to the other side’s insurance company. Trucking company insurers will aggressively seek to discredit your claim. In fact, these insurance companies are so aggressive that they will often fly their own investigators to the accident scene while the vehicles are still on the road.

They may comb through your background and spy on your activities, looking for reasons to discredit you. They may call and ask for a statement, trying to twist your words. They may also show up at your house with a checkbook, pressuring you to accept a small settlement that is worth far less than you deserve.

Don’t fall for these tactics. Get an experienced and determined lawyer on your side. You want an advocate who has seen all these tricks before and can counter them. With the help of an attorney, you can fight for the money you need to get your life back on track again.

Disclaimer: The answer is intended to be for informational purposes only. It should not be relied on as legal advice, nor construed as a form of attorney-client relationship.

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