Phoenix, AZ commercial litigation attorney Chris Begeman talks about his experience in handling trucking and transportation cases.
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We try to get involved early on. Obviously, the investigation early on is very important in these cases. A lot of times evidence gathering will be crucial in the actual defense of the claims. It’s one of those things where if you have a crash scene, you want to be able to get out there, document the actual scene, document the vehicle’s conditions, be able to scan and photograph those vehicles for evidence on the accident reconstruction later on. You obviously want to meet with your client as soon as possible. A lot of times there’s information, especially where it appears there may be clear liability where there’s some details that may actually impact your defense later on. So, being able to speak with not only the driver early on about what happened, the day or two before the accident and also the trucking companies themselves to find out about policies and procedures.
We’ve had plenty of cases where the accident seemed clear on liability, but once you started to unpeel that onion, there were some concerns raised regarding the actual company and the driving of that particular driver. So, the philosophy is to do our early investigation, try to figure out as soon as we possibly can liability for both your driver and for the company. And then try to find out what would be the best resolution. Obviously, in a lot of these cases it’s large damages, large injuries, possibly catastrophic or wrongful death type claims to determine what would be the best path for that client to reach a resolution of their claims. So, it’s multi-stepped process trying to get the investigation performed, so you can do your initial liability assessment by the client with sound advice as to whether or not this is a case they may want to consider settling or when you have a good both liability and potentially damages defenses on. And then provide them a path to try to resolve the case if that’s what they want to do.