Recover from your
commercial vehicle accident

Common Types of commercial vehicle accidents

Truck Rollovers

Rear-End Collisions

Head-On Collisions

Jackknife Accidents

T-Bone Accidents

Sideswipe Accidents

Wide Turn Accidents

Distracted or Drowsy Driving

The Whiting approach to
personal injury law

Jason Whiting Approach Personal Injury

Why having a trial mindset is important even if you don’t go to trial.

Settlements with insurance companies happen because they want to avoid the risk of a bigger verdict in court. 

Even if the plan is to settle out of court, approaching the claim or case by considering what might happen in court has great value. Evaluating your case this way means seeing the facts and circumstances through the lens of seven jurors listening to the evidence. 

Because of Jason Whiting’s experience as an insurance claims adjuster and defense attorney for insurance companies, he understands that processing your case facts with a trial mindset is the best way to provide sound counsel and help you achieve maximum compensation.

Important questions about Commercial Vehicle Accidents

Sure, if you value a quick, lowball settlement more than you value maximum fair compensation (and some people do). Based on Jason’s years of experience as a claims adjuster and insurance lawyer, he is confident that his help will net you more money than you otherwise would facing the insurance company alone. Why is that? Insurance adjusters settle personal injury claims to avoid the risk of an even bigger verdict in court if the case doesn’t settle. If you have no lawyer—the insurance company has no real risk. If you have a decent lawyer—they carry some risk. If you have a skilled trial lawyer like Jason—huge risk. Simple as that.

Many injured Virginians think they don’t have to pay their medical bills because the at-fault party’s insurance company will pay them.  The at-fault party (or most likely his or her auto insurance company) is responsible for your medical bills but does not pay those bills as they become due. Rather, the bills are considered as part of the personal injury settlement amount (or verdict if the case is tried). Therefore, while your personal injury claim is pending, you are still responsible for whatever portion of copays or deductibles you might owe after your health insurance processes and pays the bills. In other words, you must absorb the cost of your medical treatment in the near-term. This is not ideal, but it is the reality of the process.

The biggest question for this topic is: will your health insurance pay medical bills after a car accident? The answer is yes. Many injured Virginians assume their medical bills should be submitted to an auto policy claim but they should be submitted instead to their personal health insurance. 

Why? It’s the proper process and you stand to get more money in your pocket from your personal injury case too.

Your car insurance company should be involved even if you are not at fault. Not only will they protect you if the other driver tries to blame you, but you likely have no-fault coverages that your lawyer will want to use to recover more money for your benefit.

Tip: If you are going to hire a lawyer, do not give any recorded statements without consulting that lawyer first.

Many injured Virginians assume their auto policy coverages have nothing to do with the accident since they are not at fault. This is false.

Under Virginia law, accidents that are not your fault should not raise your rates. And it is very possible that your auto insurance policy includes coverages that will drastically increase your financial recovery, like “underinsured motorist coverage” and “medical expense benefits” (often called “MedPay”). In fact, most clients would recover less money if they did not pursue claims in both directions—at-fault driver’s auto policy and their own auto coverages. We will pursue all avenues of recovery and discuss what’s best for you.

Jason approaches cases by evaluating the facts as if they are going to court; however, you will only go to court if you decide to – it is always your decision. Jason will make recommendations about whether to accept any settlement offers or file a lawsuit. He offers sound counsel, not pressure, because ultimately it’s your decision.

More than 90% of personal injury claims settle outside of court. Although, sometimes filing suit and litigating for a while is necessary to obtain maximum compensation from the insurance company.

GDC personal injury cases are decided by a judge, not a jury. They are less formal, less stressful, and quicker. The most you can be awarded in GDC for personal injuries is $50,000 plus costs and interest. We typically recommend GDC for cases that are not obviously worth more than $65,000 (taking into account potential costs of circuit court litigation).

Circuit Court personal injury cases are usually decided by a jury. Unlike GDC, these cases typically last a year or more and involve a lot of formal discovery and expert witnesses. The upside is that you can sue for as much money as your case might be worth. 

So where would we file your case? That depends on the projected value of your case and on your goals—some clients value the efficiency of GDC, especially if we are not confident that a Circuit Court case would ultimately prove more lucrative in the long run. This is evaluated on a case by case basis.

Liability And Fault

Who is at fault in a commercial vehicle accident case? 

Identifying fault in a commercial vehicle accident case requires a comprehensive assessment of factors contributing to the collision. It may involve multiple parties, including the commercial driver, the company, or even a third party. For example, a delivery truck making an abrupt lane change resulting in a collision could lead to shared fault between the driver and the trucking company. Jason takes care of these cases by meticulously evaluating evidence, considering traffic laws, road conditions, and witness statements to determine liability accurately.

How is fault determined in a commercial vehicle collision? 

Determining fault in a commercial vehicle collision relies on a meticulous examination of available evidence. This can encompass police reports, eyewitness accounts, photographs of the scene, and expert analysis. For instance, if a commercial truck rear-ends a smaller vehicle due to inadequate braking distance, the extent of damage, skid marks, and the truck driver’s logbook may establish fault. Jason will collaborate with experts to reconstruct the accident, ensuring a thorough understanding of fault and liability.

What role does negligence play in commercial vehicle accident claims? 

Negligence is a cornerstone of commercial vehicle accident claims, representing the failure to exercise reasonable care, resulting in harm. In a commercial vehicle context, negligence might involve a driver’s failure to adhere to safety regulations or a company’s inadequate vehicle maintenance. Demonstrating negligence is vital for attributing responsibility and pursuing compensation. Jason examines evidence to show how negligent actions led to the accident, incorporating factors such as driver records, company policies, and industry standards.

Insurance and coverage

What insurance coverage is available for commercial vehicle accidents? 

Insurance coverage for commercial vehicle accidents includes liability coverage, addressing injuries and property damage caused to others. Additionally, property damage coverage facilitates repairs or replacement of the commercial vehicle. Uninsured/underinsured motorist coverage safeguards you if the at-fault party lacks sufficient insurance to fully and fairly compensate the victim. With experience as an insurance adjuster and lawyer previously representing insurance companies, Jason is well equipped to guide you in understanding your coverage to make informed decisions. 

How does commercial vehicle insurance differ from auto insurance in a personal injury case?

Commercial vehicle insurance diverges from auto insurance due to unique considerations. While both provide liability coverage, commercial vehicles often entail distinct limits and nuances. In personal injury cases, the severity of commercial vehicle accident injuries may necessitate different compensation. Jason knows how to interpret these distinctions, ensuring you’re not disadvantaged in negotiations due to these variances.

Can I seek compensation from the at-fault driver’s insurance? 

Indeed, seeking compensation from the at-fault driver’s insurance is customary practice. If another driver is responsible for the accident, their liability coverage should encompass medical expenses, property damage, and other damages like pain and suffering, lost wages, loss of earning capacity in the future, and other expected losses. Nonetheless, insurance companies aim to minimize payouts, emphasizing the importance of our accomplished legal team. Jason will skillfully navigate the negotiation process, ensuring that you receive the full compensation you deserve and your rights are safeguarded throughout. He leverages his comfort in the courtroom to get settlements outside the courtroom.

Compensation and damages

What types of compensation can I seek after a commercial vehicle injury? 

After a car accident injury, you can pursue various forms of compensation to address the financial and emotional aftermath of the incident. These include: 

  • Medical expenses, encompassing various treatments, surgeries, medications, and ongoing therapies. 
  • Compensation for lost wages – both current income loss and potential future earnings impacted by the injury. 
  • Pain and suffering compensation acknowledges the physical discomfort, emotional distress, and diminished quality of life resulting from the accident. 
  • Additionally, in cases of wrongful death, compensation extends to loss of companionship, funeral costs, and related expenses. 

Jason evaluates all eligible damages to ensure you receive comprehensive compensation for the losses you’ve incurred. 

How is compensation calculated in a commercial vehicle injury claim? 

Calculating compensation involves assessing both economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages, like medical bills and property damage, are quantifiable with invoices and records. Non-economic damages, encompassing pain and suffering and emotional distress, are more challenging to quantify but often include before-and-after evidence from witnesses who know you well. Jason takes care to meticulously evaluate the extent of your injuries, their impact on your life, and potential long-term effects to ascertain a just compensation amount.

Can I recover medical expenses, lost wages, and costs for pain and suffering? 

Absolutely. In a commercial vehicle injury claim, you’re entitled to recover medical expenses resulting from the accident, including hospital bills, medications, rehabilitation, and ongoing treatments. Lost wages compensation factors in both immediate and future income loss due to your injury’s impact on your ability to work. Additionally, pain and suffering compensation acknowledges the physical and emotional anguish caused by the accident. Jason is your advocate for all forms of compensation, ensuring the appropriate reimbursement for the multifaceted aftermath of the accident.

Jason Whiting

“I understand how insurance adjusters work because I used to be one. I also represented insurance companies for many years. If you’ve been injured by a driver in southwest Virginia, you deserve a skilled trial lawyer to give you a powerful voice.”

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