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Who's Responsible For Damages If You're Hit By A Moving Truck?

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When you get into an accident with a moving van, it's easy to think it will be handled just like any other vehicle collision, but that's not true. How challenging it'll be to collect compensation for your injuries and losses and who actually writes the check will depend on a couple of factors. Here are a couple of ways an accident with a moving truck may play out so you can plan your case accordingly.

The Accident was Caused by a Moving Truck Renter

If you were in an accident with a moving truck that was rented by a customer (e.g., U-Haul), whether you'll get paid will depend on what type of insurance coverage the person has. Most moving truck rental facilities recommend customers purchase supplemental liability insurance. If this is the case in your accident, then you would submit a claim against this policy and the moving truck company's insurance provider would pay you.

On the other hand, if the customer didn't sign up for supplemental insurance through the truck rental facility, you would need to file a claim against the driver's personal policy. This is where things can get tricky. If the person doesn't have auto insurance or the person's policy doesn't cover accidents in truck rentals, your chances of getting compensated lower significantly because you'll have to sue the person directly for the money. Even though you may win your case, you still may not receive any money if the person doesn't have any cash or assets you can confiscate.

In this situation, you and your attorney would need to do an asset check and look at other factors (e.g., the possibility of future income) to determine whether it's worth the time and expense pursuing the claim in court.

The Accident Was Caused by a Moving Company Employee

For accidents caused by a moving company employee, then you would file a claim against the company's insurance policy. Out of these two scenarios, this will be the most straightforward. All you'll need to do is prove the employee was liable for the accident and the moving company's insurance provider should pay your claim.

However, just because something should be simple doesn't mean it actually will be. The insurance provider will look for any way to avoid paying your claim to save money. For instance, the adjuster may claim the employee didn't actually have permission to use the vehicle or was using it during personal time. If the court accepts the company's defense, you would be stuck going after the employee for damages.

It's essential you hire an attorney who can anticipate these issues and help you develop a strategy to deal with them. For more information about this type of auto accident or help litigating a case, contact an automobile accident attorney.