Oftentimes when someone is killed in an accident because of another driver's negligence, the family wants justice in the form of a criminal conviction. This was the case in Tennessee recently when the family of two people killed in a truck accident sought to have criminal charges pressed against the truck driver.
As some Knoxville residents may remember, the accident occurred in July and killed a young couple on their way to Bonnaroo. The couple was stopped in traffic when the semi-truck behind them failed to brake and, as a result, slammed into their car. The truck driver was cited for failing to exercise due care, yet criminal charges were never sought until recently. However, a grand jury refused to indict the truck driver.
Even when criminal charges fail to bring surviving family members relief they still may have the option of filing a personal injury lawsuit through the civil law system. Unlike the criminal justice system which requires showing proof beyond a reasonable doubt, the civil system only requires a plaintiff to show his claim by a preponderance of the evidence in order to win. This essentially means if the plaintiff's claim is more likely true than not, then compensation may be obtained.
A Knoxville accident attorney can be a powerful tool in filing a lawsuit against a truck driver, a truck company, and/or a truck owner. In addition to attempting to prove negligence and causation, the attorney will seek to maximize the plaintiff's compensation to cover lost wages, medical expenses, and pain and suffering.
A tractor-trailer crash can wreak havoc on the physical, emotional and financial well-being of a family. Whether the criminal justice system provides relief or not, victims and their surviving family members should seek other alternatives to recover their losses.
Source: Eagle Country 99.3, "No Indictment For Trucker In Fatal Wreck," Mike Perleberg, Dec. 4, 2013