In the Missouri Association of Trial Attorney’s Winter 2022 Magazine, The Missouri Trial Attorney, JJ wrote a lengthy article on truck crash cases and reaching an early resolution.
JJ, one of our firm’s preeminent truck crash attorneys, begins the article by discussing what typically happens following a truck crash. He writes:
Most of the interstate motor carriers currently doing business are relatively small and carry between $750,000-$1 million of insurance coverage. [Catastrophic injury or wrongful death] cases where the damages far exceed the available insurance are the norm. In these situations, the insurance carrier has a strong incentive to pay the limits of its coverage as soon as it can in return for a full and comprehensive release.
In many cases, attorneys representing injured parties and wrongful death beneficiaries leave millions of dollars of critical compensation on the table by demanding and/or accepting these early settlements.
There will almost always be some relevant unknowns, and failing to act based on lack of information can result in indecision and prejudicial stagnation, but attorneys evaluating truck crash claims should be acutely aware of a variety of factors on the front end of a case.
He goes on to discuss and address these elements in more detail, and provides insights into what attorneys should be on the lookout for when taking on a truck crash case. This includes:
- Hidden Motor Carriers
- Other Tortfeasors in the Freight Chain
- Other Tortfeasors Outside the Freight Chain
- Interstate versus Intrastate
- Product Liability
- Additional/Excess/Umbrella Coverage
JJ encourages other attorneys to not always take the initial policy limit payment, but to dig deeper and ask the questions that need to be asked in order to properly represent the client’s best interest. It might take more time and money, but this additional effort might result in more than money. It could lead to bringing organizations and people to justice who were being careless on the road, thereby putting lives in danger. It could ensure what happens to one person, doesn’t happen to another again.