When you think about truck accidents, most people focus on what happens when a commercial truck causes a highway accident. The focus is often on recovering damages for the injured motorist. The injured truck driver, however, may have a workers’ compensation claim in Georgia. This article helps commercial drivers understand liability and recovery for their truck accident claim.
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The data presented above is certainly concerning for commercial truck drivers and their families. Wrongful death claims are possible depending on the cause of the accident, such as if a negligent or drunk driver was a fault. The victims’ families may also pursue a workers’ comp settlement with the employer of their deceased loved one. Consulting with a personal injury attorney will help the victim’s family learn which is the best course of action for their claim.
Names for commercial trucks vary significantly throughout America. For legal purposes, a commercial truck driver may receive workers’ compensation if they drive any of the following vehicles:
Though the employers and process for recovery will vary for these commercial truck drivers, especially for drivers of government vehicles, injured truck drivers are still entitled to workers’ comp regardless of the type of truck they drive.
Like any other car accident or workplace accident, a variety of conditions may cause a trucker to be injured either on the job or in a crash. The IIHS lists the following as contributors to commercial truck accidents:
With the above situations, both the truck driver and the employer can be found at fault. If brakes or driver fatigue were the cause of your truck accident, you need to speak with a workers’ comp attorney who specializes in commercial truck claims in order to learn your potential for recovering damages.
Other employment accidents that can injure truckers include:
If you were injured in the above scenario or any other workplace accident, you should file a workers’ comp claim with your employer. Your employer’s insurance company should offer you a fair and reasonable settlement. If not, you can schedule a free consultation with a Georgia workers’ comp attorney.
Interstate truckers are a bit luckier than other injured workers in that they often have the ability to choose which state to file a workers’ claim. The benefits of filing a workers’ comp claim in Georgia include:
Additionally, Georgia offers the following categories for workers’ compensation benefits that include medical expenses and lost wages:
Though Georgia is a desirable state in which to file your claim, your employer may have limited your workers’ compensation options. Speak with a Georgia workers’ comp attorney to learn of your eligibility.
Heavy Duty Trucking (HDT), one of the top trucking publishers, discusses 3 reminders for every injured trucker with their workers’ comp claims. The reminders are:
Truckers often travel great distances and go long periods without speaking to their supervisors or managers. Though a minor accident might not seem as though it needs immediate reporting, lost time could result in less compensation or denied claims for injured truckers. External causes could be blamed for an injury, so either call or email your supervisor as soon as you can to notify them of a work-related accident. Keep track of all your conversations and documents in case you need to prove you reported your injury.
Depending on how close you live to your employers’ office or warehouse, there are often clerical and other positions available for you to work while you’re unable to drive your normal route. Discuss these options with your boss and be sure to receive clearance from your doctor in order to work these positions.
Don’t, however, feel pressured to work a different position if you’re too injured to return to employment. You can’t be fired for receiving workers’ comp, and you can’t be pressured to return to work sooner than you’re ready. If you feel as though your rights are being violated, speak to a Georgia workers’ compensation lawyer as quickly as possible.
Commercial drivers may not realize that protocol needs to be followed in order to return to ordinary employment. Truck drivers need to receive clearance from their physician that states that they’re well enough to return to work. Without this permission, an injured trucker could either be negligent for performing a job they aren’t permitted to do or the driver could jeopardize their workers’ comp claim if their condition becomes worse for returning too soon.