Alpharetta Truck Accident Attorney

HS Law represents victims in Alpharetta and the Greater Atlanta area who have been personally injured by a tractor-trailer or commercial vehicle.

Alpharetta is a hub for commercial activity, with countless trucks passing through every day. While this brings economic benefits, it also increases the risk of truck accidents on our roads. These incidents are often catastrophic, leading to severe injuries or even fatalities.  Understanding your rights and options after such a traumatic event is critical.

If you or a loved one has been involved in a commercial truck accident in Alpharetta, you need experienced legal representation to help you secure maximum compensation. At Horst Shewmaker, we have years of experience with truck accident claims and we will handle your case with the attention it deserves. Contact our law office to schedule a free consultation and learn how we can help you achieve the best possible outcome.

Why Hire Us for Your Truck Accident Claim?

When you’ve been injured in a truck accident in Alpharetta, our skilled personal injury lawyers bring a blend of compassion, dedication, and legal acumen to the table. When you hire our law firm for your claim, you benefit from the following advantages:

  • Extensive Experience: Our team has handled thousands of personal injury cases across Georgia. In fact, before we began representing injured persons, we were defense attorneys representing truck drivers, trucking companies, and their insurers.  This experience equips us with the insights and strategies needed to navigate even the most challenging claims.
  • Proven Track Record: Our firm has secured millions of dollars in damages for our clients, demonstrating our ability to achieve substantial results in personal injury claims.
  • Personalized Attention: At Horst Shewmaker, we treat each case with personal attention. We see our clients as family and represent them with the same passion and dedication we would for our own loved ones.
  • Extensive Assistance: Beyond legal representation, we assist with securing medical care and rehabilitation services to aid your recovery, without any immediate financial strain on you.
  • Client-Focused Legal Strategy: We tailor our strategies to the unique aspects of each case, whether it involves tough negotiations with the trucking company insurer or presenting a compelling case at trial. Our approach is always aligned with achieving the best outcome for you.
  • Ongoing Support: Our relationship with our clients doesn’t end with a favorable settlement or verdict. We remain a supportive partner throughout your recovery process, ensuring that you and your family continue to receive the support you need.

At Horst Shewmaker, we understand the hardships that truck accident victims face. By entrusting your case to us, you choose a firm that not only fights for your legal rights but also provides a pathway to recovery. Reach out today to schedule a free consultation with one of our Alpharetta personal injury attorneys.

Causes of Truck Accidents in Alpharetta

Many factors contribute to truck accidents, each potentially compounding the risks faced by truck drivers and other road users. They include:

  • Driver Fatigue: Long hours on the road without enough rest can lead to fatigue, impairing a commercial truck driver’s reflexes and decision-making abilities. This is one of the leading causes of truck accidents, as drowsy drivers may not react quickly enough to prevent collisions.
  • Distracted Driving: Activities that divert the driver’s attention from the road, such as texting, using a phone, eating, or adjusting the radio, increase the risk of an accident. A moment’s distraction can be enough to cause a serious accident.
  • Going Past the Speed Limit: Speeding is especially dangerous for commercial trucks due to their large mass and longer stopping distances. Excessive speeds diminish a commercial driver’s ability to react to road conditions and traffic changes, raising the chances of crashes.
  • Insufficient Training or Experience: Operating a large truck safely requires specific skills and knowledge. Inexperienced or poorly trained operators may not handle their vehicles safely, leading to driver errors on the road.
  • Mechanical Failure: Failures in critical systems like brakes or tires can lead to catastrophic accidents. Regular inspections and maintenance are necessary to prevent such failures.
  • Improper Loading: The way cargo is loaded can impact the stability and maneuverability of a truck. Improperly secured or unevenly distributed loads can cause trucks to tip over or veer off course.

Common Truck Accident Injuries

Truck accidents are often more severe than other collisions due to the size and weight of these vehicles. Understanding the common types of injuries can help you recognize the importance of seeking immediate and comprehensive medical evaluation, even if you don’t think you’ve been hurt. These injuries include:

  • Cuts and lacerations
  • Whiplash
  • Head and neck injuries
  • Facial injuries
  • Broken bones
  • Internal injuries and internal bleeding
  • Amputations
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries (TBI)

Symptoms like minor aches can sometimes signal more serious injuries that, if left untreated, could result in long-term damage. At Horst Shewmaker we understand the profound impact these injuries can have on your life and will pursue the compensation needed to cover medical treatments, lost wages, and other related costs. Contact us to discuss how we can support your recovery and legal claim.

The most common car accident injuries

  • Spinal Injuries
  • Whiplash
  • Internal Bleeding
  • Broken Bones

What To Do After a Truck Accident

After a truck accident in Alpharetta, there are certain steps you should take at the scene to ensure your safety and strengthen a future personal injury claim. Below is a step-by-step guide on what to do immediately following an accident with a commercial vehicle:

  • Stay Calm and Check for Injuries: Before anything else, check yourself and any passengers for injuries. If anyone is injured, call 911 immediately and request an ambulance.
  • Exchange Information with the Other Driver: Keep your interactions with the truck driver brief and factual. Avoid discussing fault or details of the accident beyond what is necessary to ensure safety.
  • Call the Police: They will document the scene and gather necessary information. When the police arrive, provide them with straightforward facts about what occurred. Avoid making any admissions of fault or giving more information than what is asked. Make sure you get the police report number as well.
  • Document the Scene: If it is safe to do so, take pictures of the accident scene, including all vehicles involved, any visible damages, and the surrounding area. These photos can be critical in your case. If anyone saw the accident, get their contact information so your lawyer can obtain witness statements later.
  • Seek Medical Attention: Even if you don’t think you’re badly hurt, get medical attention immediately. Adrenaline can mask pain, and some injuries may not be immediately apparent.
  • Follow-up with Medical Care: Depending on the nature of your injuries, you may need to see various specialists. If you are transported to a hospital, cooperate fully with all medical staff and see your primary care doctor if pain sets in later. If you have joint or spinal issues, a chiropractor might be needed. For bone, joint, or tendon injuries, an orthopedic consultation may also be necessary.
  • Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer: As soon as you are able, contact an experienced truck accident attorney. At Horst Shewmaker, we can help you collect evidence, file your claim, deal with the truck company and its insurance carrier, and demand fair compensation from all responsible parties.

What to do at the scene of the truck accident

Following your accident with a truck, your first interaction will likely be with the driver of the commercial vehicle.

Interacting with the driver of the commercial vehicle

Your emotion might be running high immediately after the accident. Now is not the time to establish fault or blame.

Tips for interacting with other drivers

  • Limit your interactions. Do not debate who caused the accident or argue.
  • Call 911 to report the car accident and wait for police to arrive. Your 911 calls are transcribed and will be requested if a lawsuit is filed. Lawyers obtain these transcripts by filing an open records requests.
  • Do not get out of your vehicle if you are injured or road conditions are unsafe.
  • If it is safe to exit your vehicle and you are physically able, take photographs of the vehicles. Photos can be vital to your case.

Talking to police officers at the scene of a wreck

After calling 911, a police officer will arrive on the scene. The police officers job is to collect information. Your job is to provide them with the facts.

Tips for talking with police officers

  • When police arrive on scene, try your best to remain calm.
  • Limit your conversation to the facts of what happened.
  • Do not make any admission of fault.
  • Do not add any unsolicited information. For example, some people tell police that they were in a rush to get somewhere or they were looking at their child in the back seat.
  • Keep your statement short and sweet. If the other driver turned left in front of you, simply tell the officer that and stop talking. If you were hit from behind, tell the officer that and stop talking.
  • Do not worry about getting the other driver’s insurance information. The police officer will obtain his or her insurance information and other relevant information and include it in an accident report. Most reports are available within 3 to 5 business days.

Typically, the officer will provide you with the report number. If the officer does not, you need to ask him or her for the report number. You or your lawyer will need this to order the report.

Finally, the police officer will ask you if you need medical assistance. Always err on the side of caution. Your adrenaline will likely be running high and masking pain.

We highly recommend getting checked out by a medical professional after any accident with a commercial vehicle. If you tell the officer you need medical help, he or she can quickly dispatch an ambulance to transport you to the emergency room to treat your injuries.

Side note: If you start feeling pain hours or days later, it is not too late. Some symptoms take time to surface. Go seek medical attention immediately and contact the attorneys at HS.

WE GET RESULTS

$3.0 Million

Tractor-Trailer Accident

$1.6 Million

Wrongful Death Car Accident

$760,000

Car Accident Neck Injury

$875,000

Car Accident Back Injury

Receiving Medical Treatment

After your accident there are a few different places you might receive medical treatment.

Medical treatment immediately after the accident

If you were seriously injured or requested medical assistance from emergency personnel at the accident scene you will be transported by an EMT to the hospital where you will be treated by the staff nurses and doctors.

Tips for talking to medical professionals

  • Limit your conversation to injuries related to the car accident.
  • But be sure to tell the doctor about all injuries related to your car accident. While you may be focused on what is causing the most immediate pain, do not forget to tell the doctor about all injuries. For example, you may suffer a broken wrist that is very painful in a car accident and also have minor neck pain.
  • If you don’t report the initial injury, insurance companies will try to argue that any injury not initially reported was the result of subsequent accident or injury.
  • If asked to rate your pain on a scale of 0 to 10, do not “try to be tough”. If you pain is an 8 out of 10, be honest and report that number.
  • Do not downplay your pain. Doctors need honest answers to provide the best treatment possible. By downplaying legitimate injuries, you are giving insurance companies the evidence they need to minimize the value of your case.

Other medical treatment options

  • Primary Care Doctor. If pain arises after you leave the scene of the accident, you should schedule an appointment with your primary care doctor.
  • Chiropractic Professional. Licensed health-care providers who treat injuries and damages to your joints. In many cases, a chiropractor will use an x-ray to assess your injuries.
  • Orthopedic Doctor.  These physicians can help diagnose, and treat, injuries to your joints, tendons, and bones. In many cases, an orthopedic doctor will be able to assess your injuries using an MRI or x-ray.

Types of Damages You Can Sue For After a Truck Accident

Generally, you are entitled to pursue all damages that were caused by the truck accident. These damages include:

  • Property damage. Includes vehicle repairs, transportation costs and diminished value of your vehicle
  • Medical costs. Current medical bills, future medical bills
  • Lost Wages. Including past and future lost wages.
  • Pain and Suffering. Including past, present, and future pain and suffering.
  • Punitive Damages. Every trucking case brings with it a chance for the injured party to recover punitive damages. In a trucking case, the opportunity to recover punitive damages is much more common.

The types of damages you have suffered will help determine the value of your case.

Compensation in a Truck Crash Claim

When you are injured in a truck crash caused by another party’s negligence, you may be eligible to seek financial compensation for a range of economic and non-economic damages. They include:

  • Property Damage: This includes costs associated with repairing or replacing your vehicle, expenses for alternative transportation while your vehicle is being repaired, and compensation for the reduced value of your vehicle due to the accident (known as diminished value).
  • Medical Expenses: Most truck accidents involve high treatment costs. This includes current medical bills as well as estimated costs for ongoing medical care required as a result of the accident.
  • Lost Wages: If you can’t work after the crash, you can claim income as well as any future income lost due to long-term injuries or permanent disability.
  • Pain and Suffering: This category includes compensation for both physical and emotional distress suffered due to catastrophic injuries.
  • Loss of Quality of Life: If you’re in constant pain and unable to carry out activities you used to enjoy, you can demand compensation for your reduced quality of life.
  • Punitive Damages: These damages are awarded to punish the defendant for particularly reckless or irresponsible behavior. This is more common in trucking accidents than in typical car accidents, especially if the trucking company violated safety regulations.

 At Horst Shewmaker, our skilled truck accident attorneys will assess all aspects of your claim and demand full compensation for the wide range of damages you have suffered. We are dedicated to pursuing every possible avenue to secure the best result for our clients.

How Much Does It Cost to Hire an Alpharetta Truck Accident Lawyer?

At Horst Shewmaker, our dedicated attorneys operate on a contingency fee. This means you will not face any upfront costs or hourly rates when you choose us for your representation. We only get paid if we secure compensation for you, either through a fair settlement or a court award. Typically, the fee is a percentage of the total recovery amount, which is agreed upon at the beginning of our engagement. 

It is important to note that while the contingency fee covers the cost of our legal services, there are additional expenses that may be incurred while building your case. These can include charges for obtaining medical records, fees for expert witnesses, and various court costs. In many cases, our firm will cover these costs upfront and then deduct them from your settlement or award at the conclusion of your case. We maintain full transparency regarding any potential costs from the outset, ensuring there are no surprises.

We encourage potential clients to reach out for a free and confidential consultation. During this meeting, our experienced attorneys will discuss the specifics of your case, explain the likely costs involved, and outline how we can assist you in achieving your compensation. This initial consultation is an opportunity for you to understand the legal process and for us to establish a plan that best supports your recovery and goals.

Get a Free Consultation From an Alpharetta Truck Accident Lawyer

If you or a loved one has been involved in a truck accident in Alpharetta, don’t hesitate to reach out to Horst Shewmaker. Our legal team is equipped to handle your case with the utmost care and professionalism and, with our no-win, no-fee policy, you can pursue your claim without any financial risk. Our experienced truck accident lawyers understand the challenges you are facing and are here to ensure that you receive the maximum compensation possible. For more information or to seek legal assistance, call 404-400-1175 or contact us online today.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

I was just involved in an accident with a big truck, can I wait before hiring a truck accident attorney?

No, and we cannot emphasize strongly enough the importance of not waiting. Oftentimes when an 18 wheeler is involved in a wreck, that sets off a chain reaction of events. Trucking companies have in place what is known as a rapid response team. On the team is the trucking company’s safety director, the company’s insurer, a defense attorney, an accident reconstructionist, and an investigator. Those folks receive word of an accident usually before the police have arrived at the scene. They immediately jump into action to take steps to protect their interests. That means that, even in the best of circumstances, the trucking company is several steps ahead of the injured party. Delaying retaining counsel only serves to further prejudice your rights. Do not wait. Please call a truck accident attorney at HS immediately to begin the process of protecting you.

I have heard the term spoliation. What does it mean and how is it relevant to truck accidents?

Spoliation refers to the destruction of evidence. Most people do not know that federal law permits trucking companies to destroy (or purge) certain documents after the passage of a certain time period. If those documents would have been critical to your case, you are simply out of luck. After being hired to represent the victim of a truck accident, HS Law will rush to preserve documents, videos, and other materials before they are destroyed, ruined, or lost. We do this by sending a preservation letter to the trucking company which demands that all materials relevant to your claim be preserved until your claim is resolved. Should the trucking company fail to preserve the materials, a judge can issue significant sanctions against the trucking company.

Most personal injury lawyers claim they are truck accident attorneys. How is HS Law different?

It is true that almost all personal injury attorneys advertise they handle truck accidents. However, that does not mean they are truck accident attorneys or even that they know what they are doing. At HS Law, our trucking lawyers were former defense attorneys who specialized representing truck drivers, trucking companies, and their insurers. For years it was our job to minimize (and in some occasions eliminate) the injured person’s recovery. We know the other side’s play book. It gives us a tremendous advantage in representing you after a trucking accident.

Do truck drivers have to be more skilled than regular motorists when operating commercial vehicles?

Yes. Most people realize that anyone driving an 18 wheeler must have a commercial driver’s license (CDL). But there is so much more to it than that. Under the Code of Federal Regulations (C.F.R.), virtually every aspect of truck driving is regulated. These regulations, known as the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations (FMCSR), are numerous and they must be closely adhered to for a truck driver and the trucking company to “run legal.” When a client hires HS Law, one of our primary goals is to determine whether a driver and company are running legal or whether their decision to forgo the regulations is what lead to your accident and injuries.

What are some of the laws and regulations that typically govern truck accident cases that are not typically associated with car accident cases?

There are too many to list here, but one of the most important applies to drug and alcohol testing. Federal law provides a truck driver must be subjected to post-accident drug and alcohol testing when (1) the wreck involves a fatality, (2) the truck driver is cited and any of the vehicles involved in the crash are towed away, or (3) the truck driver is cited and someone receives medical attention away from the scene of the crash. Obtaining the drug and alcohol tests is often a key part of HS Law’s work when investigating a truck accident.

More information on drug tests following a truck accident.

I had a wreck with a commercial vehicle, but not an 18 wheeler. Is my accident more like a car accident or more like a truck accident?

Most likely, your accident is more like a truck accident. The reason being is that at least some of the federal regulations will apply to the driver and/or company which hit you. Vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) exceeding 10,001 pounds are subject to many of the same federal regulations for which drivers and companies of 18 wheelers must follow. For instance, the regulations are applicable to vehicles like a Ford F-350 truck when that vehicle is being used commercially.

I did not cause the accident with the commercial vehicle but my driving record is not very good. Is that something of which I should be concerned in bringing a claim against a trucking company?

No. Unless you have a conviction for a driving offense which was punishable by death or imprisonment in excess of one year (i.e., a felony), driving related offenses are irrelevant and inadmissible as against the person bringing the claim.

If my driving record does not matter, does the driving record of the truck driver matter?

Yes. A truck driver’s record is significant and something HS Law will scrutinize. All companies which employ drivers of 18 wheelers are required by federal law to investigate a driver’s record before hiring him. This is done through a multi-layered process, including examining a truck driver’s motor vehicle report (MVR). And this process does not simply happen at the time the driver is hired, but rather trucking companies are required to annually review a driver’s driving record. Unsafe drivers having a pattern or policy of dangerous driving can lead to the injured person recovering punitive damages against the driver and/or company.

Do trucking accidents require the use of expert witnesses?

Sometimes. In some instances certain aspects of the wreck are so complicated that only someone with specialized training can resolve the complexity. At HS Law, we have a rolodex of some of the best experts in the country ready to help us investigate your case should the circumstances warrant it.

What types of damages can my truck accident attorney recover due to the truck driver’s negligence?

Generally, you are entitled to pursue all damages that were caused by the truck accident. These damages include property damage (including vehicle repairs, transportation costs and diminished value of your vehicle), current medical bills, future medical bills, past lost wages, future lost wages, and past, present, and future pain and suffering. In addition, every trucking case brings with it a chance for the injured party to recover punitive damages. Punitive damages are virtually never recovered in a car accident case unless the defendant driver was under the influence or committed a hit-and-run. In a trucking case, the opportunity to recover punitive damages is much more common.

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