How Much Money Can You Get from an 18-Wheeler Accident?

Involvement in an 18-wheeler accident can have far-reaching consequences. Depending on which of the drivers is liable for the accident, their insurance company may need to make a large payout. The money in the settlement can range from very little to millions of dollars. Many different factors influence this amount. Talking to Des Moines truck accident lawyers may help.

Consequences of a Semi-Truck Accident

Truck accidents in Des Moines, IA happen more often than they should. There are many different reasons for

these accidents, and with more and more 18-wheelers on the road, extreme caution is required from both the drivers and the other vehicles.

Some of the most common causes of Iowa truck accidents include driver negligence and inclement weather. During snow days and other harsh weather days, Des Moines drivers must pay attention to local weather announcements. When the roads become far too icy or dangerous for safe vehicle navigation, the wisest thing to do might be to park the semi by the roadside for a few hours. Because of the magnitude of an 18-wheeler, there's an even greater risk during these kinds of situations. 

When a semi is involved in an accident with one or more other vehicles the consequences can be minor or devastating. Multi-vehicle accidents with piling on the highways are not unheard of during the winter. For the drivers and other passengers, there can be minor bruises, major injuries such as spinal or brain damage, or even death in the worst-case scenario. For the vehicles involved, minor or major damage may occur, including totaling.

Depending on the financial burden caused by the truck accidents in Des Moines, IA and the determination of liability, the insurance of the at-fault driver may have to make a large payout. Because Iowa is an at-fault state, the court must establish liability first, and varying pieces of evidence may be required to prove this. 

In the 12 no-fault states, on the other hand, the insurance company of each driver covers their expenses, regardless of who was at fault in the accident. New York, Michigan, and Florida are just some examples. In some of these states, there is a monetary threshold where the no-fault laws apply, after which the liable driver may be responsible for the settlement balance through their insurance company. 

Consequences of Truck Accident

Average Payout Amounts

It is difficult to establish the exact amounts that the parties involved in truck accidents in Des Moines, IA, might receive without the details of the case. That said, there are still some average settlement statistics available to indicate what accident victims can expect after colliding with a semi-truck.

The money that an accident victim can get from an 18-wheeler accident tends to be higher than smaller vehicle accidents. The reason is that these accidents have the potential to be far more disastrous given the size of the vehicle. If the truck driver is found liable for the accident, through their negligence, for example, the victim might be looking at a settlement in the millions of dollars. When the damage is minor, the payout might be in the $100,000s.

When looking at insurance settlements for truck accidents in Des Moines, IA, it is worth noting that Iowa has a comparative fault system. When the liability is split between the drivers of the vehicles in the accident, the settlement amount can be divided between the parties depending on their comparative fault as a percentage. This determination is made by a court of law based on the available evidence. 

Factors In Truck Accident Case

Factors Affecting the Insurance Payout

The value of the insurance settlement is determined by the monetary and non-monetary consequences of the truck accident. It is also imperative that a full determination of how the accident occurred and who was liable be made. 

The factors below are some of the expenses that can affect the value of the settlement following an 18 wheeler accident in Iowa:

  • The nature of the personal injury and resulting medical expenses

  • The extent of vehicle damages and resulting repair or replacement expenses

  • Loss of income to seek medical care and recovery in the present and the future

  • Pain and suffering as a result of the accident

The more serious the accident and the injuries sustained, the greater the payout amount, provided that the matter of accident liability has been settled. Victims of Iowa 18-wheeler accidents might be looking at no payouts to millions in settlements, depending on all the factors outlined here.