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Don't take that initial settlement offer after a truck accident

Highways in Kentucky – throughout the United States, in fact – are filled with tractor-trailers and semitrucks moving goods from one place to another. Commercial truck drivers are just as likely to be distracted or make an error on the road as any driver is and cause an accident.

But what happens if you're injured in an accident with a big truck?

A trucking company representative or its insurer just might come to you with a settlement offer. But you shouldn't take the first offer that comes along, at least not without advice from an attorney who has experience in such cases. While you think the settlement offer will be enough to pay what your health insurance didn't pay for your stay in the hospital and for the damage to your car, an attorney will be able to tell you what other costs you could incur down the road and just what you're entitled to.

It might be advantageous to you instead to file an injury lawsuit in civil court to seek the proper amount of compensation for your injuries. That doesn't mean you'll have to go to court, however.

You and the trucking company could avoid litigation through an out-of-court settlement that is done through mediation, arbitration or negotiation instead of through an offer made to you in your living room. Through the out-of-court settlement, you will have a representative at your side.

Coming to an agreement out of court usually is faster and less expensive than going to court. It's also a less contentious way to work with the other party and can lead to an amicable agreement.

There are two primary kinds of settlements: structured and lump sum. The latter is just that. You get the money all at once to put an end to the case. In a structured settlement, you will receive incremental payments over a set time span.

There are pros and cons to settling in a truck accident case. Ask your attorney to explain both to you before deciding what course of action to take.

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U.S.COURT OF APPEALS Fayette Country Bar Association KENTUCKY BAR ASSOCIATION | 1871 KENTUCKY JUSTICE ASSOCIATION UNITED STATES DISTRICK COURT EASTERN DISTRICT OF KENTUCKY DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE | United States Of America

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