Oklahoma City Fatal Truck Accident Attorneys
Honoring the Memory of Your Loved One
The loss of a loved one in a fatal truck accident is a devastating event that can leave families reeling from emotional trauma and financial hardship. At Fulmer Sill, we extend our deepest sympathies to those facing such a loss and are committed to providing compassionate, effective legal counsel during these difficult times. Our Oklahoma City fatal truck accident attorneys have extensive experience handling wrongful claims, including those involving commercial trucks. We strive to help grieving families seek justice for their loved ones and secure the compensation that can help them stay financially stable.
Call us at (405) 433-7414 to discuss your legal options with a team that genuinely cares about your emotions and well-being.
Why Commercial Trucks Cause Fatalities
Commercial trucks and big rigs, due to their sheer size and weight, can cause catastrophic damage in traffic collisions, particularly when the other involved vehicles are significantly smaller. A typical commercial truck can weigh up to 80,000 pounds when fully loaded, compared to an average passenger car that weighs about 3,000 pounds. This substantial disparity in size and weight often results in severe, sometimes fatal, consequences when a collision occurs.
Several reasons why trucks can cause fatal accidents include:
- Higher impact force: The significant weight of a truck means it exerts a much higher impact force during a collision. This force can cause severe damage to smaller vehicles and their occupants.
- Longer stopping distance: Trucks require a longer distance to come to a complete stop compared to smaller vehicles. If a truck driver fails to brake in time, it could lead to a deadly crash, especially if the traffic in front of the truck has come to a complete stop.
- Blind spots: Large trucks have large blind spots. If a car is in a truck's blind spot, the truck driver may not see it, increasing the risk of an underride accident, which is often fatal.
- Rollovers: Due to their high center of gravity, trucks are more prone to rollovers, which can be extremely dangerous for motorists in adjacent lanes.
Damages in a Fatal Truck Accident Claim
Oklahoma law allows you to demand compensation from the party that caused your loved one’s loss of life in a truck accident. This financial compensation aims to alleviate the financial burden caused by the accident and provide some form of recovery for the emotional distress experienced. It would be our honor if you let our Oklahoma City fatal truck accident attorneys calculate the damages owed to you and the best way to pursue them.
Damages in a fatal truck accident claim can be divided into three categories:
Economic damages: These damages cover quantifiable losses related to the accident.
- Medical expenses: Costs associated with medical treatment received before the victim's death can be claimed.
- Lost wages: This includes compensation for the income that the deceased would have earned had they survived.
- Loss of earning capacity: If the deceased had a high earning potential, compensation may be awarded for the future income they would have earned.
- Property damage: This refers to any damage caused to the victim's property during the accident.
Non-economic damages: These damages are harder to quantify but equally important.
- Pain and suffering: This includes compensation for the physical pain and emotional distress suffered by the victim before their death.
- Mental anguish: This involves compensation for the emotional distress experienced by the victim’s loved ones.
- Punitive Damages: In cases where the defendant's conduct was particularly egregious or reckless, punitive damages may be awarded. These are intended to punish the defendant and deter similar behavior in the future. Punitive damages are rare, though.
How Much Time Do You Have to Start a Claim?
In Oklahoma, the statute of limitations for filing a wrongful death claim, including those arising from fatal truck accidents, is two years. This means that from the date of the individual's death, you have a two-year window to initiate legal proceedings. However, in some cases, the statute of limitations could be less than two years, such as if the fatal truck accident was caused by a driver hired by or representing a government agency.
Given the complexity and emotional toll of these situations, it's recommended to seek legal guidance as soon as possible after the accident. This can ensure that your claim is filed before the two-year statute of limitations ends and allows for a comprehensive investigation while evidence is still available.
Split Liability in Fatal Truck Accidents
Oklahoma operates under a system known as modified comparative negligence. Under this law, the amount of compensation a person can receive in an injury claim, including wrongful death or fatal truck accident claims, is reduced by their percentage of fault for the accident. For example, if a person is found to be 20% at fault for an accident, they can still recover 80% of their damages from the other party.
However, there's a crucial caveat: If a party is more than 50% at fault, they are barred from seeking any compensation. In the context of fatal truck accidents, this law means that if the decedent was partly to blame for the accident, any damages awarded to their survivors could be reduced proportionately. For instance, if the decedent was 30% responsible for the accident, the total damages awarded would be reduced by 30%.
We Offer Compassionate Legal Counsel – Call Now
In the wake of a fatal truck accident, the compassionate and trauma-informed team at Fulmer Sill understands that no amount of compensation can truly make up for the loss of a loved one. Yet, pursuing a claim or lawsuit can help ease the financial burden of such a tragedy, while also honoring the memory of your loved one by seeking justice. Our Oklahoma City fatal truck accident lawyers are sensitive to the emotional toll these incidents take on families, so we aim to provide support and guidance throughout the legal process that never adds any stress to you. With our experience and dedication, we know how to hold negligent parties accountable for such tragic losses.
Let us make a difference for you and your family after a fatal truck accident. Call (405) 433-7414 or contact our firm online to discuss your legal options.