New Mexico Truck Accident Lawyer

In the event that you or a loved one has suffered due to an accident with a tractor-trailer, you need knowledgeable and aggressive legal representation. Contact the New Mexico truck accident attorneys at Will Ferguson & Associates today for a free consultation.

Accidents involving commercial trucks in New Mexico often result in devastating losses for everyone involved. There are various ways truck drivers and their companies might cause these accidents. Will Ferguson & Associates is here to help with the aftermath.

Types of Truck Accidents

New Mexico truck accidents occur in many different ways. Each can cause devastating injuries and damage to property. Commercial trucks deal with the same risks we might face in a passenger vehicle, along with several additional risks:

  • Rollover accidents happen when something causes a semi-truck to roll onto its side, often disrupting multiple lanes of traffic. This can be caused by a sharp turn, braking too hard, or a loss of traction due to poor road conditions.
  • Jackknife accidents are often the result of poor road conditions or truck driver errors. This happens when the trailer portion of a truck swings around as the truck continues to move forward.
  • Wide turn accidents happen when a driver incorrectly calculates how much space the truck needs to safely make a turn. This can cause the truck to collide with another vehicle or even result in a rollover if done too quickly.
  • Accidents involving spills are also risky, especially if the truck carries hazardous materials. It's dangerous enough when a truck dumps a load of groceries across a highway, but a truck carrying gasoline can have explosive consequences when damaged. Truck spills are usually due to problems with the trailer or lack of proper loading, both of which are almost always due to someone's negligence.

The Benefits of Hiring an Experienced Truck Accident Attorney To Help With Your Case

Hiring an experienced truck accident lawyer is essential for navigating truck accident cases. A skilled lawyer will have the necessary resources to investigate and gather evidence that truck accident victims will likely be unable to get on their own. This might include:

  • Safety records of the trucking company
  • The driver's driving history
  • The truck's electronic data recorder
  • The logging device used by the truck driver
  • The truck's black box
  • Any video or photographic evidence of the incident
  • Statements from eyewitnesses

We understand the physical and emotional toll an accident can have on you. You will be treated with respect and prompt service as our truck accident law firm works to help you through the sometimes complicated process of filing your truck accident case so you can focus on taking care of yourself and your loved ones.

How Our Experienced New Mexico Truck Accident Lawyers Can Help You

A skilled truck accident lawyer will help determine and collect everything you are entitled to, which could include compensation for economic damages, payments for medical bills, and lost income payments.

Our truck accident attorneys have decades of experience successfully representing our clients with their truck accident cases. The personal injury lawyers at Will Ferguson & Associates will conduct a thorough truck accident investigation. Our team of investigators will work to gather evidence on your behalf by taking pictures of physical evidence, analyzing the cause of the accident, and determining liability. We will also speak with your insurance and that of the driver and advocate for you on your behalf.

Gathering proper evidence is crucial to building a truck accident lawsuit. Trucking companies have many resources to help them through dealing with accidents, and insurance providers often favor the truck driver. We believe you deserve the same access to resources to help with your truck accident case. The evidence we document, combined with our experience, can make all the difference in your payout.

Trucking accident victims can sometimes be awarded significant punitive damages by the courts in the case of a negligent truck driver or trucking company. Your New Mexico truck accident lawyer will review the facts of your case with experts in the commercial trucking industry to help us form a strategy to win the best outcome possible for your truck accident case.

What You Need To Know About New Mexico Truck Accident Laws

Semi-truck accidents can be some of the most devastating for victims and their families. Due to their size and speed, an accident involving commercial trucks often results in catastrophic injuries. Knowing truck accident laws can help you and your truck accident attorney determine which steps to take following an accident.

New Mexico is an “At-fault” State

Most vehicle accidents are caused by human error. In New Mexico, if someone else caused your motor vehicle accident, you will file your personal injury claims with the at-fault party's insurance company.

It is sometimes unclear who is at fault for the accident, which is where our law firm can most optimize our skills. We are knowledgeable of New Mexico personal injury law and know how to determine which party is liable for the injuries sustained. If you are injured in a truck accident, you will likely be able to pursue claims against both the truck driver and the trucking company.

Even if you are partially at fault, we can help you navigate the claims process, so you get the maximum compensation for your losses.

Modified Comparative Negligence in Albuquerque

Comparative negligence is a law that allows an injured party to receive damages in an accident in proportion to their percentage of fault.

This means if you are in a motor vehicle accident and are found to be 25% at fault, you may be able to collect 75% of the damages from the other driver's insurance company.

Modified comparative negligence means that you can only recover compensation if you are at fault for less than 50% of the accident.

New Mexico is one of only 12 states with pure comparative negligence law. This means you can make a claim even if you are 99% at fault. You are still able to receive compensation from another involved party, even if only for that 1%.

New Mexico Only Requires Drivers To Carry Liability Insurance

Drivers are only required to carry liability insurance on their vehicles with a minimum of:

  • $25,000 for bodily injury or death of one person
  • $50,000 for bodily injury or death of two or more people
  • $10,000 for property damage in any single accident

Liability insurance only protects you financially if you are responsible for someone else's damages. You will not be covered if you are at fault for your own injuries if you only carry liability insurance.

The Statute of Limitations for a Truck Accident Claim is Two Years

A lawsuit for a trucking accident must be filed within two years of the accident according to New Mexico law. Following a truck accident, filing a personal injury claim against the driver and trucking company as soon as possible will make the process much smoother in the long run. This is why it is so important to contact a New Mexico truck accident lawyer as soon as possible after the accident occurs.

Reporting Truck Accidents in New Mexico

If a recent truck accident results in bodily injury or death or if property damage exceeds $500, drivers are legally required to report the accident to New Mexico police.

A report must be filed within 5 days of the accident. An officer can help you complete the report and submit it to the New Mexico Department of Transportation following the crash.

Any accident, regardless of injury or property damage, should be reported to your insurance as soon as possible.

What To Do Immediately After a Truck Accident in New Mexico

After a truck accident, it can be difficult to know what to do next. Serious injuries and emotional shock might affect your ability to react.

Our truck accident lawyers have created the following list to help you through the steps that must be taken following a truck crash.

Contact 911 and Local Authorities

Your first priority is your own well-being. After the accident, make sure you and any passengers are okay. Call 911 to report the accident and receive emergency medical care.

Even if you don't believe you have sustained any severe injuries, adrenaline can mask symptoms, so it is always a good idea to get checked by medical professionals. You may feel fine directly following an accident, but head trauma and internal bleeding could still be present, as well as other injuries you might be unaware of. You might not feel it until the adrenaline has subsided, so it’s always best to seek medical help following an accident.

Take Photos and Videos for Evidence

Almost everyone nowadays has access to a smartphone. After contacting emergency services, be sure to take pictures and video of the accident scene and any vehicles that were involved. 

If you contact a personal injury attorney immediately, we can be at the scene to help with gathering this physical evidence and obtaining contact information of any eyewitnesses. You will have many things to take care of in the time immediately following the accident, and we can take some of this burden from you.

Preserve Every Piece of Documentation

Hold on to any information given to you following the accident. This can include a copy of the police report (or the number of the report), insurance information from the other driver and trucking company, and any kind of damage or injury reports or bills as well as paystubs, correspondence with employers, receipts for repairs, and other bills or proofs of purchase. Any proof of physical or emotional damages should be saved to present to your insurance claim in the event that a civil case must be pursued.

This will all be beneficial when filing your truck accident claim. The more evidence we are able to collect, the better chance you have of receiving your deserved compensation.

Hire an Experienced Car Accident Attorney

The sooner you contact a New Mexico truck accident attorney, the sooner we can help you with your truck accident claims and form a winning case. Our law firm knows the entire process inside and out. We arehere to make your life easier as we navigate the next steps together.

Inform Your Insurance Company

Most insurance companies in New Mexico have a Notice of Occurrence and Cooperation clause, which means you must notify your own insurance company of any accidents.

Awarding your maximum compensation is not their top priority, however. Hiring one of our knowledgeable New Mexico truck accident attorneys will help protect your rights after a commercial truck accident.

File a Car Accident Case

Never accept an insurance settlement without consulting a truck accident lawyer. They may try to take advantage of your lack of legal representation by getting you to agree to far less compensation than you deserve.

An experienced attorney can negotiate with insurance companies so that victims always get the compensation they deserve. If an insurance company does not want to make a fair offer, an attorney can file a civil lawsuit on your behalf. Similarly, if either party does not have insurance coverage, a civil suit filed by a lawyer might be the only way to receive compensation.

What Compensation Can You Get From Truck Accident Claims?

When you are involved in a commercial truck accident caused by commercial vehicles, you are entitled to compensation for both property damage and bodily injury claims.

Damages may include economic, non-economic, and punitive.

Compensation for Truck Accident Injuries

Like other vehicle accidents, semi-truck accidents can cause severe injuries. Due to their size, a collision with a semi-truck can lead to catastrophic damages in comparison to accidents involving smaller passenger vehicles.

It is common for New Mexico truck accident lawyers to help clients recover compensation in the following situations:

  • Fatal injuries of a family member
  • Broken or dislocated bones
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Severe back or neck injuries
  • Amputations or crush injuries
  • Scarring and disfigurement

Medical bills are usually the bulk of compensation awards and may include:

  • Hospitalizations
  • Surgeries
  • Prosthetics
  • Mobility equipment
  • Accommodations for your house or vehicle
  • Rehabilitation
  • Doctor's visits
  • Medications
  • In-home care

Income Loss

You can pursue income compensation if you had to take time off work for recovery. Being forced to take time off results in lost wages. If the accident prevents you from returning to work, you can claim a loss on future income.

Lost wages due to truck accidents should always be claimed in any truck accident case where they are applicable.

Property Damage

Trucking accidents can cause massive damage to personal property. A fully loaded semi-truck can weigh upwards of 80,000 pounds, allowing it to devastate anything in its path. Compensation usually comes in the form of vehicle repairs and replacement. However, this also applies to damage done to roads, homes, or other structures, and the land itself if it has been affected by the accident.

Non-Economic Damages

Non-economic damages refers to physical and emotional losses sustained due to truck accidents.

This is also known as pain and suffering compensation and may include the following losses:

  • Chronic pain
  • Permanent disability
  • Disfigurement
  • Scarring
  • Loss of quality of life
  • Emotional distress
  • Depression and anxiety
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder

Understanding the damages you qualify for is an important part of the claims process. Your skilled New Mexico truck accident lawyer will know how much compensation you are legally entitled to recover so you can receive the maximum settlement. Without a knowledgeable attorney by your side, you may accept less than what you need, which often leads to hardship later.

Punitive Damages

Most trucking accidents occur due to carelessness or negligence on the parts of truck drivers and trucking companies.

However, sometimes this negligence moves into reckless and outright dangerous conduct.

Punitive damages in truck accidents are difficult to claim. You will definitely need a law firm to help hold the trucking company and truck drivers accountable.

Punitive damages are awarded to the injured party to punish the at-fault party and ensure their behavior does not continue. Damages caused during a truck accident case are often greater than those caused by a passenger vehicle, but specific legal criteria must be met before punitive damages will be awarded. A New Mexico truck accident lawyer must prove that at least one of the following criteria is met:

  • Malicious conduct
  • Willful conduct
  • Reckless conduct
  • Wanton conduct

New Mexico law states that every motorist has a "duty of care" regardless of their vehicle. Drivers owe others the basic duty of care to not endanger their safety. Punitive damages will be awarded only if it can be shown that the driver has gone beyond simple negligence and shows indifference or conscious disregard for the safety of others. Punitive damages are more common in accidents that show a clear lack of care, such as head-on collisions or at intersections where someone has ignored traffic signals. Some other instances where punitive damages might be awarded include:

  • Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
  • Overly aggressive driving, which is the operation of a vehicle in a way that is likely to endanger others
  • Reckless driving, such as intentionally driving on the wrong side of the road or on the sidewalk
  • Manufacturer error, meaning the manufacturer of the vehicle is held liable for their faulty product 

Schedule a Free Consultation With Our Truck Accident Lawyers

If you or someone you love has been involved in a trucking accident, you deserve to know all your legal rights and the damages you are entitled to. Our dedicated team will not be intimidated by aggressive insurance carriers or at-fault parties. We will work to negotiate a fair settlement on your behalf. If you have been searching for the right truck accident lawyer, contact Will Ferguson & Associates for a free consultation today.

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    1720 Louisiana Blvd NE #100
    Albuquerque, NM 87110

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      1720 Louisiana Blvd NE #100 Albuquerque, NM 87110
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      333 Rio Rancho Boulevard Northeast Rio Rancho, NM

      1720 Louisiana Blvd NE #100 Albuquerque, NM 87110
      Rio Rancho

      333 Rio Rancho Boulevard Northeast Rio Rancho, NM