Accidents involving loaded trucks are much different from many other commercial vehicle incidents. The sheer weight of the rig commonly creates extensive damage to every vehicle it contacts, including trucks and SUVs. Victims who are passengers in compact vehicles are actually at great risk of a fatal injury. Trucking companies and their insurers are always working diligently to reduce any amount of damage payouts they will be required to pay, including blaming victim drivers for causing the accident themselves. This can be the case in certain scenarios, but the truth is that the weight of the truck causes additional damage as compared to an unloaded or partial load carrier. The potential problem is that trucking companies may make moves to reduce liability regarding certain material factors in the case. These alterations or evidence denials can be central to a spoliation letter from a representative truck accident law firm.
Understanding a Spoliation Letter
Truck accident attorneys are usually quick to send out a spoliation letter when they see extenuating factors of liability in an accident. Issues such as improper loading by shipping contractors and overweight cargo can also result in additional legal action when they can be established as material case factors, and liable parties could act to remove that evidence if not ordered by the court to refrain from such actions. This is the purpose of a spoliation letter along with requests for certain documentation belonging to potential defendants regarding any evidence that may impact the case.
What a Spoliation Letter May Include
There is any number of issues a truck accident law firm professional will want to be preserved as case evidence. Demands can include but are not limited to:
- Truck maintenance records
- Licenses and permits for both the truck and the driver
- Drivers work record
- Drivers’ alcohol and drug testing results
- Official police report
- Black box records from vehicle
- Truck operational logs
- Driver hour logs
- Correspondence between driver and dispatchers
- GPS information
- Weight records
Judges have the authority to issue orders to hold and provide any of these requested items with copies being supplied to the truck accident law firm representing the injured plaintiffs.
How the Information Applies
All auto accidents center around liability and negligence, and in particular the level of negligence. Extensive levels of negligence can result in a determination of “gross” negligence that not only can establish total fault for causing the accident, but it can also result in punitive damage requests for those who survive or establish wrongful death claims when fatalities are the ultimate result. Fatalities are common in truck accidents where extensive evidence exists pointing to egregious negligence, and liability can be extended to employing trucking companies and shipment contractors when cargo is overloaded and not loaded according to the DOT standards. [North Carolina Truck Accident Lawyers Explain How To Get Compensation After an Accident with a Truck]
Contact A Truck Accident Attorney at Kellum Law Firm
Crafting and submitting a spoliation letter is one of the most important steps that a truck accident attorney will take when building a case for maximum damages following an accident. The preserved and provided information is often what indicates the amount of compensation that is commensurate with the level of negligence in the case, and it can set the stage for additional vicarious liability claims for all negligent actors. Contact our truck accident law firm and let us conduct a complete investigation on your behalf, including compiling the initial spoliation letter as soon as possible.
Material case evidence can fade or even be covered up, and the spoliation letter can stop that process. As always, your initial case review with one of our attorneys is free and you are under no obligation to retain us following your case review.
Addition resources relating to truck accidents and accidents with heavy goods vehicles:
- Truck Accidents On The Rise – Top 5 Reasons
- Major Causes Of Trucking Accidents
- Accidents Occur When Truckers Break The Law