The Answers You Need for the Questions You’re Forced to Ask

One of the worst aspects of pursuing a case—whether you’re fighting for injury compensation or trying to settle a divorce—is not knowing what to expect. Before you get yourself knee deep in the details of your case allow us to answer some of your questions first. We’ll help you be more fully prepared and more confident as you move forward.

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  • Can a trucking company be liable for an employee’s distracted driving?

    While any driver can be drawn into a phone conversation or a text exchange, truckers are at a higher risk of distraction due to the nature of the work they do and the amount of time spent behind the wheel. When a truck driver is distracted, you may wonder if they are solely to blame for the crash, or if the trucking company is part of the problem. 

    Rhode Island Truck Accident Lawyer Kirshenbaum and Kirshenbaum

    Employer Liability for Distracted Truck and Delivery Drivers

    If a trucking company is found to be partially liable for your collision, you may be owed compensation for your medical bills and losses under the commercial carrier’s insurance policy.

    An employer might share liability if the accident involved:

    Hands-free devices.

    Employers may provide truckers with hands-free systems or accessories with wireless technology to make and take calls. An attorney can investigate whether these accessories were provided by the company, and whether they were working properly at the time of the crash.

    Outdated equipment.

    The GPS and radio equipment in the truck’s cab could be inherently distracting. For example, CB radios require the use of one hand when speaking, potentially violating Rhode Island’s hands-free law. If the communications equipment is outdated or hasn’t been properly maintained, the trucking company may share liability for the crash.

    Workflow problems.

    A driver may have no choice but to consult the GPS, radio for help, or use electronics while driving if the employer has not created a protocol to address common problems on the road.

    Company policies.

    Employers may be encouraging distracting behaviors or failing to provide reasonably safe alternatives. For example, company records may show that company policy prohibits cell phone use while driving, but witnesses may attest that truckers are not allowed to pull over before answering a call.

    Have You Been Involved In A Rhode Island Truck Accident?

    If you've been hurt in a truck accident you need to speak to an experienced truck accident lawyer as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help truck accident victims in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

     

  • Who is at fault when a tire blowout causes a truck accident?

    Tire blowouts are a major cause of car and truck accidents nationwide. While a sudden loss of tire pressure can cause a small vehicle to run off the road, a blown tire on a commercial truck may cause a trucker to swerve uncontrollably, sending the trailer sideways across multiple lanes and causing a deadly multi-vehicle crash. Rhode Island Truck Accident Lawyer Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum

    Trucking Company Liability When Tire Defects Cause a Crash

    Although a tire blowout may seem like a random event, there are often many things a commercial carrier could have done to prevent it from happening. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has regulations that prevent drivers and carriers from operating trucks with worn or defective parts that could cause a wreck. Our truck crash attorneys can investigate your accident to determine if the tire blowout could have been caused by:

    Lax maintenance.

    Trucking companies have a duty to properly maintain all of the vehicles in their fleet. This includes checking tire pressure levels, repairing punctured tires, and replacing tires that have worn down past recommended tread depth requirements. They also are required to perform regular inspections on all vehicles to ensure there are no mismatched tires or tires with different wear.

    Loading violations.

    A truck that is loaded beyond capacity places extra pressure on the tires, making it more likely that one (or more) will explode in transit. However, trucking companies may allow its truckers or loaders to overload trailers as a cost-cutting measure.

    Defective tires.

    If you or someone you love suffered injuries in a truck accident, the attorneys at Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum can help you get the compensation you deserve—and you won’t pay any attorney fees if the case is not successful.

    Have You Been Involved In A Rhode Island Truck Accident?

    If you've been hurt in a truck accident you need to speak to an experienced truck accident lawyer as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help truck accident victims in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

     

  • How is my crash case different if I was hit by a commercial truck?

    While an accident with any commercial vehicle can complicate your case, a commercial semi truck crash can involve multiple at-fault parties, violations of government regulations, and teams of insurance attorneys working to devalue your case. If you were hurt in a semi crash, it is important to speak with an experienced truck accident attorney about your personal injury case. Rhode Island Truck Accident Lawyer Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum

    Definition of a Commercial Truck

    The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) defines a Commercial Motor Vehicle (CMV) as any vehicle or combination of vehicles used to transport goods or passengers for business purposes. This can include tractor trailers, freight trucks, buses, tanker trucks, and delivery vehicles.

    Federal laws sets forth certain requirements and safety regulations for operators of commercial trucks. The truck involved in your accident will likely be subject to these laws if it:

    • Has a gross vehicle weight rating of 26,001 or more pounds, OR
    • Has a gross combination weight rating of 26,001 or more pounds (including a towed unit with a gross vehicle weight rating of over 10,000 pounds), OR
    • Is used for the purpose of (or is designed to) transport 16 or more passengers including a driver, OR
    • Is used to carry materials that qualify as hazardous under the Hazardous Materials Transportation Act

    An Attorney Can Fight for Your Rights After a Truck Accident

    Vehicles that are operated by large-scale companies are required to have considerable insurance coverage under a commercial policy. Commercial auto insurance policies usually have much higher coverage limits than insurance for passenger vehicles. However, even when a trucking company realizes it is at fault and has the ability to pay for injuries, the company often chooses to fight the claim instead of pay out.

    When trucking companies and their agents fight to avoid liability for accidents, the attorneys Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum can bring them to justice. We work to get you maximum compensation for your injuries, and we do not charge for our services until your claim is resolved. 

    Have You Been Involved In A Rhode Island Truck Accident?

    If you've been hurt in a truck accident you need to speak to an experienced truck accident lawyer as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help truck accident victims in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

     

  • What is a commercial vehicle?

    While the term “commercial vehicle” is most commonly associated with semi trucks, it can apply to any vehicle that is being used for commercial purposes. An accident with a commercial vehicle can be much more complicated than a crash with a passenger car, so it is vital that you contact an experienced truck accident attorney to handle these kinds of personal injury cases. Commercial Vehicle Accident Lawyer Rhode Island Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum

    How an Accident With a Commercial Vehicle Affects Your Injury Claim

    The biggest difference between regular crash cases and a commercial vehicle accident is the amount of insurance available to cover your costs. Vehicles that are owned by a business or used for business purposes are typically covered under a commercial liability insurance policy, which has much higher limits than passenger vehicle policies.

    When an accident involves a commercial vehicle, you may need to pursue a claim against:

    The driver’s employer.

    Operators of semi trucks, school buses, and certain passenger vehicles are required to maintain a commercial driver’s license (CDL). If the employer did not ensure that its employee had proper licensing or its driver did not follow regulations, the trucking company’s insurance carrier could be liable for your injury costs.

    The loading company.

    In many cases, the driver of a tractor-trailer and the company that loads cargo into the truck are two separate entities. If the accident was caused by improper loading (such as carrying too much cargo or failure to secure the load), the loading company’s insurer may be liable for injuries.

    The manufacturer of the vehicle.

    Delivery vans and box trucks that are manufactured improperly can cause severe injuries on the road. The manufacturer of the vehicle or the company that made defective auto components may be held accountable when their negligence causes harm.

    The at-fault driver’s insurance company.

    People who drive a company car (such as a pickup truck for construction) or make extra money using their cars for passenger transport may not need a CDL to operate their vehicles. However, they may be required to carry extra insurance coverage in case they are involved in an accident.

    Trucking companies and their agents fight tenaciously to avoid liability for accidents, but the attorneys Kirshenbaum & Kirshenbaum can bring them to justice. We work to get you maximum compensation for your injuries, and we do not charge for our services until your claim is resolved. Contact us today via our online form to schedule your initial consultation with a lawyer.

    Have You Been Involved In A Rhode Island Truck Accident?

    If you've been hurt in a truck accident you need to speak to an experienced truck accident lawyer as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help truck accident victims in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

     

  • How much does a truck accident lawyer cost?

    Victims of semi-truck accidents are often hesitant to hire an attorney, assuming that any damages they receive will be lost to the law firm’s legal fees. However, personal injury attorneys who represent truck crash clients typically offer no-win, no-fee guarantees, also known as a contingency arrangement. This allows clients to get the help they need without paying legal expenses up front, and they don’t pay if the lawyer doesn’t win. You can afford a truck accident attorney

    Benefits of Hiring a Truck Accident Lawyer on a Contingency Basis

    Our attorneys believe that victims should not be forced to bear the burden of an accident that was not their fault simply because they cannot afford a lawyer. That is why we do not charge hourly rates to work on personal injury cases. We do not charge for our services until your case is resolved—and if you don't win or settle the case, you will not owe us any fees for representing you.

    Our injury attorneys can work with you to make your legal fees affordable by offering:

    Free consultations.

    Our lawyers always begin truck accident cases with a free initial consultation, for a number of reasons. First, it gives clients an opportunity to get their questions answered without taking on additional costs. Second, we are able to evaluate the facts to identify any potential problems before we agree to take the case. Third, it gives both parties a chance to see if they can work together.

    Advancing court costs.

    A legal claim may require filing fees, investigations, outside expert testimony, securing medical records and police reports, and other expenses. Our attorneys understand that injury victims may not have the resources to pay for the ongoing costs of a case, so we pay for all court-related costs up front and are reimbursed when your case is over.

    Fees paid after recovery.

    If your case is successful, our law firm is paid with a portion of your total award or settlement.

    Have You Been Involved In A Rhode Island Truck Accident?

    If you've been hurt in a truck accident you need to speak to an experienced truck accident lawyer as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help truck accident victims in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

     

  • Do I need a lawyer to handle my truck accident case?

    If you are injured in a crash with a semi-truck, you will most likely be contacted by a representative from the trucking company’s insurance company. The insurance agent may sound apologetic and helpful, encouraging you to accept a quick settlement check. However, once you accept payment, you cannot ask for any more compensation—and you are likely to be underpaid for your suffering without an attorney at your side. Hiring a truck accident attorney

    The Value of Speaking to an Attorney After a Truck Accident

    It’s important to avoid a fast settlement because it’s often difficult to tell the extent of your injuries immediately after a crash. How you feel in the days following may be vastly different from how you will feel in a month, and your injuries may not be fully healed a year after the accident. You should never settle your case until you know the full extent of your injuries.

    There are many ways an attorney can benefit your truck accident case even before a lawsuit is filed. An attorney can: 

    Determine whether a settlement is fair.

    Victims typically have no experience negotiating accident compensation, but insurers have years of experience devaluing claims. An offer that seems fair to you could actually be far less than what you are entitled to. A truck accident attorney has familiarity with the types of injuries a wreck can cause, as well as the types of treatment you may need and the future income you may lose due to a disability.

    Prevent you from making simple mistakes.

    An insurance adjuster may ask you to give a recorded statement or sign a medical records release in order to proceed with your claim. Many victims assume this is a necessary formality and don’t realize how these may be used as evidence against them. We can ensure that the trucking company has only the information it needs to process the claim, protecting your privacy and your injury case.

    Protect your whole recovery.

    Rhode Island operates under a pure comparative fault system, meaning your recovery will be reduced by the percentage of your liability. If the trucking company can prove that you were partly to blame for the crash, its insurance company can pay much less in damages. Our legal team can ensure that the trucking company does not unfairly influence the determination of liability, allowing you to recover the full amount of your damages.

    Have You Been Involved In A Rhode Island Truck Accident?

    If you've been hurt in a truck accident you need to speak to an experienced truck accident lawyer as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help truck accident victims in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

     

  • Why can accidents with small trucks be as serious as those with a semi truck?

    Big rigs traveling at highway speeds aren’t the only source of truck accidents. In fact, pedestrians and motorists may have a higher risk of being struck by box trucks or utility vehicles, especially while traveling on city streets. Although these trucks are often smaller than semis, accidents involving these types of trucks can cause serious injuries. Because owners and drivers are bound by the same federal regulations that govern other commercial trucks, victims in these accidents may hold the owners liable for their injuries. Accidents with small trucks

    Small Trucks Can Still Cause Big Injuries

    Box trucks, dump trucks, and other heavy-use vehicles may be smaller than tractor-trailers, but all can be difficult to maneuver and may be overloaded with cargo. Additionally, operators of these vehicles are just as likely as semi truck drivers to make deadly truck driver mistakes that can have fatal consequences for other drivers and passengers.

    Many Rhode Islanders are injured each year by:

    Delivery trucks.

    Speeding is a major contributor to delivery truck crashes, as drivers are put under pressure to meet tight deadlines. Delivery truck accidents are especially common on city streets and in parking lots, as a truck driver may not see pedestrians crossing in front or behind the vehicle.

    Ambulances.

    Ambulances must travel at high speeds in order to save lives, but drivers still have a duty to drive safely and obey traffic laws. A driver who takes a corner too quickly can roll the vehicle, causing injuries to those inside and to other drivers.

    Dump trucks.

    Because dump truck drivers are often paid by the weight of their load, there is a tendency to overload the trucks. This makes it more difficult for the truck to stop, more likely to roll over, and more apt to release hazardous debris onto the roads. Additionally, drivers may try to increase their pay by making more runs than is safe, which can lead to speeding and driving recklessly.

    Utility trucks.

    Utility and service trucks may be outfitted with equipment that can affect the balance and maneuverability of the vehicle (such as cranes and lifts). Drivers who are not properly trained in the operation of these vehicles may accidentally strike nearby cars or even cause traffic backups by colliding with low bridges.

    Have You Been Involved In A Rhode Island Truck Accident?

    If you've been hurt in a truck accident you need to speak to an experienced truck accident lawyer as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help truck accident victims in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

     

  • How long do I have to file my truck accident lawsuit?

    If a negligent truck driver caused your truck accident, it is important to understand the basics of how to file your claim for compensation against the trucker and the trucking company’s insurance company. One of the most important laws you need to understand is the statute of limitations. Statute of limitations for a truck accident claim

    What Is the Statute of Limitations for Filing Your Truck Crash Lawsuit?

    The statute of limitations is the time period you have to file your civil lawsuit against the trucker and trucking company. Every state has its own law setting this deadline. In Rhode Island, how long you have to do so depends on what type of compensation you are asking for. Here are the time periods that could be applicable in your case:

    Personal injury.

    If you are suing for compensation because you suffered personal injuries, the statute of limitations is three years from the date of your truck accident.

    Wrongful death.

    You may file a wrongful death action if a loved one died in a truck collision. You must file your lawsuit within three years of the date of death—not the date of the crash.

    Property damage. 

    The statute of limitations is 10 years from the date of the accident if you are filing a civil suit for property damages. This could include the cost of repairing your vehicle.

    What Happens If the Statute of Limitations Expires?

    If you file a truck accident lawsuit after the statute of limitations has expired, the penalty is harsh. The trucker and trucking company will most likely raise this as a defense, and the judge will dismiss your case.

    Have You Been Involved In A Rhode Island Truck Accident?

    If you've been hurt in a truck accident you need to speak to an experienced truck accident lawyer as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help truck accident victims in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.

     

  • Could another driver be at fault for my truck accident injury?

    Just as dangerous truck driving behavior can cause a crash, the actions of drivers of smaller vehicles can cause accidents, too. In some cases, drivers of passenger vehicles can be liable for causing accidents, even if they were not even injured. Car drivers at fault for truck wrecks

    How Passenger Vehicle Drivers Can Cause Truck Accidents

    All drivers should take extra care when traveling next to semi-trucks. It’s never a good idea to break the law by speeding, texting, or driving under the influence, but those actions can be especially dangerous near trucks. Additionally, you might be found liable in a truck accident if you perform the following risky and unsafe maneuvers:

    • Traveling in a blind spot. Trucks have a number of blind spots along the front, back, and sides, and any vehicles in these areas are at risk of injury. For example, a trucker who swerves to avoid a car that suddenly appears out of a
    • blind spot may strike another car nearby.
    • Tight merging. Smaller cars may be able to squeeze between each other in traffic, but large trucks need far more stopping distance to accommodate a merging vehicle. If a trucker is forced to slam on his brakes to let someone in, a vehicle traveling behind the truck may hit the back of the trailer.
    • Improper passing. Passing a truck is significantly more difficult than passing a smaller vehicle. If a driver passes a truck on a curve, both oncoming and following traffic may be run off the road or suffer collisions when the pass is not completed.
    • Unsafe turns. Drivers often do not accommodate trucks that need to travel on city streets. Smaller cars may attempt to overtake or turn in front of a slow-moving truck, denying the trucker the time and space he needs to complete the turn safely (and placing pedestrians and other road users at risk).

    Have You Been Involved In A Rhode Island Truck Accident?

    If you've been hurt in a truck accident you need to speak to an experienced truck accident lawyer as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Cranston office directly at 401.946.3200 to schedule your free consultation. We help truck accident victims in Providence, Warwick and all areas of Rhode Island.