If you are injured in an accident caused by the negligence of a lorry driver, you could be entitled to claim compensation for your suffering. In this claims article, we’ll explain how to claim compensation if you’ve been injured in a lorry accident. We’ll show you what forms of negligence could cause such an accident and how the claims process works.
Our team can help if you are thinking about claiming compensation against a lorry driver. They’ll begin by working with you to review the merits of your case and provide free legal advice about your next steps too. If your claim appears to have a reasonable chance of being successful, they’ll introduce you to one of our personal injury solicitors. Should they agree to represent you, you’ll benefit from their legal experience and skills on a No Win, No Fee basis. As a result, you won’t pay for your solicitor’s work if the claim is lost and you won’t need to pay them upfront either.
To learn more about how LGV and HGV claims work, please read on. Alternatively, If you’d like to contact us about your claim today, please call us on 0800 652 1345 right away.
What’s the difference between LGVs and HGVs?
LGV stands for Large Goods Vehicle whereas HGV stands for Heavy Goods Vehicle. However, in terms of licensing, the two terms essentially mean exactly the same thing and they are interchangeable.
HGVs and LGVs are commercial lorries that have a combined mass of over 3.5tonnes (3,500kg). There are many different vehicles that fit into this category including:
- Articulated lorries (often used to transport goods across the UK).
- Livestock trucks.
- Emergency services vehicles.
- Refrigerated lorries.
- Snow ploughs.
- Cement mixers.
- Tow trucks.
- Highway maintenance vehicles.
- Car transporters.
- Tankers (to transport liquids).
- Flatbed lorries.
It’s important to point out that vehicles with a combined mass of below 3.5 tonnes are often referred to as Light Goods Vehicles which is why there is some confusion about the acronym LGV. For the purposes of this article, we are talking about compensation claims for accidents involving the types of vehicles listed above.
Can I claim compensation for an accident with an HGV?
According to the Road Traffic Act 1988, all road users must try to keep each other safe by driving in a safe manner. This is called their duty of care. If a personal injury solicitor is to take on your claim, they will want to verify that:
- The lorry driver was negligent in some way (breaching their duty of care); and
- An accident resulted because of that accident; and
- You sustained injuries during the accident.
If all of the above is true in your case, you could be compensated and one of our solicitors might offer to represent you during your claim. To help establish how the HGV accident occurred and what injuries you sustained, you’ll need to supply some evidence. We’ll explain what you could use to do this later on in this guide.
Forms of HGV driver negligence that cause lorry accidents
There are many reasons why you might be entitled to compensation if you’ve been injured in an accident caused by an HGV driver. Some examples include where you’ve been injured because:
- A lorry collided with you because the driver wasn’t paying attention.
- An accident occurred because the driver had driven for too many hours and was tired.
- You were hit by a lorry while cycling.
- A lorry driver caused an accident whilst under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- The lorry driver was driving aggressively (road rage).
- A lorry pulled out on you without slowing in an accident on a roundabout.
- A lorry hit a pedestrian because the driver was checking their phone, radio or satnav.
- A poorly maintained lorry collided with you because the driver could not stop in time.
These are just some examples of when you could be compensated for LGV and HGV accidents. If you would like to check if you’ve got a valid claim, get in touch today.
Common injuries from being hit by a lorry
It isn’t really practical to list every type of injury that could result from being hit by a lorry here. However, to give you some idea of the more common types of claims, we’ve listed some examples below:
- Spine injuries.
- Fractured bones or crush injuries.
- Head injuries including brain damage.
- Cuts, bruises, lacerations.
- Puncture wounds.
- Ligament, tendon and soft tissue injuries.
- Fatal injuries.
- Mental trauma.
- Leg injuries.
Whatever form of injury you’ve sustained, if it was caused by the negligence of a lorry or truck driver, we could help you start a compensation claim. Please get in touch if you’d like further information.
What could I be compensated for?
When you make a claim for a road traffic collision involving a lorry, any settlement would be based on the injuries you’ve suffered and any financial losses you’ve sustained. Some examples of what a settlement could be based on include:
- The short-term and long-term pain and suffering caused by your injuries and any subsequent treatment.
- Compensation for any loss of amenity caused by the lorry accident.
- Any loss of income (plus any reduction to your future earnings).
- Any mental harm caused by the accident.
- The cost of private medical treatment.
- Care costs if you’ve hired a carer or a friend has supported you.
- The price of modifying your home or vehicle to make dealing with any disabilities easier.
- Travel expenses linked to your injuries.
When you claim compensation for a lorry or truck accident, you must try to include all aspects of your suffering. That’s important because if you forget something, you can’t request further compensation once your claim has been settled.
Our solicitors specialise in road accident claims and could help to try and secure the maximum level of compensation for you if your HGV accident claim is accepted. So, call 0800 652 1345 today to see if you’ve got a chance of being compensated.
Fatal HGV accident claims
Accidents involving lorries result in a number of fatalities every year in Britain and the UK. While we understand that compensation won’t make your loss any better, there may come a point where you might want to seek damages if you’ve lost a loved one following an RTA.
Initially, you could seek damages on behalf of the deceased’s estate. Also, partners or parents could receive a bereavement payment according to the Fatal Accidents Act 1976.
Additionally, anybody who was financially dependent on the deceased’s income or benefits could seek further compensation and the claim could also cover any costs caused by their death such as funeral expenses.
If you’d like us to help you with this type of fatal accident claim, please get in touch and speak to one of our specialists. You won’t be put under any pressure and we’ll work at a speed that suits you wherever possible.
Providing proof for a successful HGV accident claim
When making claims for injuries sustained from an accident with a Heavy Goods vehicle, you’ll need to supply proof to substantiate your allegations. Your case is likely to be handled by the defendant’s insurers so you’ll need to show why their client was to blame and how you suffered as a result. To help with this, you could:
- Take photographs at the scene. It is a good idea to try and take pictures from a variety of angles at the accident scene if it’s safe to do so. These images can help to clarify who was responsible for the accident.
- Obtain dashcam/CCTV recordings. If there is any dashcam or CCTV footage of the lorry accident you should ask the owner for a copy. If the HGV or LGV had a dashcam, your solicitor may need to act on your behalf to secure the relevant data.
- Get medical treatment. Your medical files can be used to help prove how seriously you were injured. For that reason, if you were treated at A&E or a minor injuries unit, you should ask for a copy of the relevant notes to be sent to you.
- Ask witnesses for their details. In some cases, your case can stall if liability can’t be proven for the accident. As such, if anybody else witnessed what happened, you should ask them for their contact details in case a statement is needed from them later on.
- Swap details with the lorry driver. Without admitting liability for any part of the accident, you should give the HGV driver your details and take a note of theirs. Additionally, you should record the registration plate, make, model and colour of their vehicle. Importantly, some lorries may have a different registration on the trailer compared to the cab so it’s worth checking both.
As well as this evidence, your solicitor may need to arrange for a medical assessment to be carried out independently. This can usually be booked with a specialist at a local venue. During your meeting, the specialist will assess your injuries and discuss them with you. Once finished, they’ll prepare a report to explain what injuries you’ve suffered and your prognosis for the future.
Claiming compensation if the lorry driver cannot be identified
In some cases, it might not be possible to identify the driver of the lorry that caused your accident. This might be the case if:
- They did not realise they’d collided with you.
- English was not their first language.
- They refused to provide their contact details.
In such cases, your solicitor could still help you to get compensated. Using the Motor Insurers Bureau (MIB), your solicitor may be able to trace an insurance company linked to the lorry. Alternatively, the MIB might be able to compensate you directly if the driver was uninsured or cannot be traced. Please get in touch to find out more.
Claim time limits for HGV accidents
As with other types of personal injury claims, there is a 3-year time limit for claims relating to lorry accidents. You shouldn’t wait until the end of the limitation period, though, because your solicitor will need time to gather evidence and medical reports before the claim is filed.
If liability for the HGV accident can be established quickly and you’ve recovered from your injuries, you could receive your compensation in around 6 to 9-months. Where things aren’t as clear cut or extra negotiation is required, the process can take longer than a year.
No Win, No Fee HGV accident compensation claims
If you do decide to take action and claim for your injuries following an HGV accident, you probably won’t want to risk your money on solicitors fees. Luckily, ours provide a No Win, No Fee arrangement for all claims they take on.
That means they’ll work on your case without needing you to pay them in advance. Also, if the claim is lost, you won’t have to pay for their work either. In fact, the only time your solicitor will be paid for their work is if you are compensated.
When that happens, your solicitor will deduct a success fee from any settlement. By law, our solicitors can only retain 25% of your compensation when working on a No Win, No Fee basis.
Want to check if you could claim in this way? If so, please call today.
Start your HGV lorry accident claim today
To begin a claim with us today, you simply need to call our friendly team of claims advisors on 0800 652 1345. There’s nothing to lose by calling us as we’ll review your chances for free and explain your options whatever you decide to do, and again, any claims that are taken on by our solicitors will be managed on a No Win, No Fee basis.
Thanks for reading our article on HGV accident claims, and please use live chat if you have any further questions, or request your free consultation here.