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What are the Differences Between Truck Accident and Car Accident Claims in North Carolina?

Riddle Brantley LLP   |  April 3, 2023   |  

The differences between truck and car accident claims in North Carolina include the severity of injuries, complexity of investigations, and the difficulty of the state’s contributory negligence doctrine. Contributory negligence means that a person who was injured in any part due to their own negligence may not collect financial damages from the party accused of causing the accident.

If this has happened to you, contact us at Riddle & Brantley. We believe that Justice Counts! We have over 70 attorneys, case managers, paralegals, investigators, and support staff to help. We can confidently handle even the most complex of cases. Our North Carolina injury attorneys have over 220 years of combined legal experience. Reach out today for a free consultation.

Why Are Truck Accidents More Dangerous?

A crash between a car and a truck is more dangerous because of the obvious difference in size and mass. Therefore, you and your passengers are more likely to sustain serious injuries. Cars typically weigh about three tons. They share the road with trucks as large as 18-wheelers which can weigh as much as 80,000 pounds (40 tons).

In addition, the top-heavy nature of a truck makes it more likely to roll over in an accident. Large trucks often also have more prominent blind spots and require a longer distance for stopping, which can create dangerous situations, such as:

Truck Accident Lawsuits Can Be Complicated

Truck accident cases are usually complex because multiple entities may be held liable. Therefore, representation by an experienced truck accident lawyer is essential because it’s not always obvious who a claim may involve. Your lawyer will probably extend their investigation beyond the truck driver. To further complicate matters, the driver may be self-employed, work for a company that owns the truck, or lease the vehicle. Liable parties may include the following:

  1. Truck lessor
  2. Truck owner
  3. Truck manufacturer
  4. Truck driver’s employer
  5. Manufacturer of defective truck part(s)
  6. Manufacturer of flammable/explosive cargo
  7. City or state for negligent road maintenance and design
  8. Pavement marking companies
  9. Construction companies

North Carolina is a Strict Contributory Negligence State

After an accident, the truck driver or their insurance company could allege you are partially liable because of a driving infraction. This would bar you from recovery under North Carolina’s strict contributory negligence doctrine — even though the truck driver was overwhelmingly at fault.

However, a skilled lawyer can refute this claim by arguing the following:

  1. Proving the truck driver acted with gross negligence
  2. Proving the truck driver had the “last clear chance” to avoid the accident

How Can We Help: Contact Us for a Free Consultation

Our experienced car and truck accident attorneys at Riddle & Brantley can investigate your truck accident and bring a claim or lawsuit against all responsible parties. We can retain experts to prove the truck driver’s fault and the extent of your injuries. We’ll vigorously oppose a defense of contributory negligence and press your claims at trial or in negotiations. We offer aggressive representation on a contingency basis, which means we don’t receive attorney fees unless we win and you receive financial compensation.

Justice Counts for accident victims in North Carolina — we are ready to help however we can. Please call 1-800-525-7111 today to schedule a free consultation.

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