Preserving Truck Crash Evidence Against Spoliation
To successfully pursue a truck accident injury claim, you must be able to provide proof of fault. That means you must be able to identify the person or people whose actions led to your injuries, and back up your claim with credible evidence.
Even though you may think your injuries speak for themselves, to convince insurance and truck companies that you deserve compensation, you’re going to need to show them that you have the upper hand. Unfortunately, securing the proper evidence you need can be more difficult than you think—especially if the truck company has caught wind of your intentions.
Truck driver logs, dispatcher recordings, onboard travel reports, and many other records can all shed light on what happened before and during the truck crash. These documents and recordings are essential to proving the credibility of your claim. However, it is possible for truck drivers and truck companies to destroy these vital bits of evidence in an attempt to avoid liability. Yes, such actions are illegal…but sometimes trucking companies do it anyway, if they think they can get away with it.
That is unless you have a veteran attorney like Steve Lee on your side, who can anticipate these crimes and prevent the destruction of evidence with a simple letter.
The Spoliation Letter
A canny attorney can prevent the destruction of records by preemptively sending the trucking company a spoliation letter. A spoliation letter is correspondence that informs the company that legal action may be imminent. Furthermore, it lists various types of evidence that they must preserve and provide by legal decree.
Spoliation letters typically contain the following information:
- Notification of legal action and representation.
- A description of the accident that is being represented, including the date and location of the truck accident.
- A summary of accident events. If the driver received a citation, that would be noted here.
- A demand that evidence be preserved.
- An outline of the evidence needed from the company.
- Copies of accident reports and other documents.
Although the letter can specify a variety of records that’s your attorney may want to review, it’s important that the following essentials are included for investigation and review:
- The tractor and trailer involved in the crash.
- Copies of daily driving logs.
- Inspection reports.
- Repair and maintenance records.
- Videos related to the truck or scene of accident, if truck was equipped with camera.
- Data or printout from on-board recording devices.
- Correspondence of any type pertaining to the accident.
- Delivery and cargo orders, including delivery deadlines.
- The complete employment file for the truck driver, including training, testing, and certification records.
While this letter can prevent truck companies from losing or destroying valuable claim information, your attorney can further protect your claim with other legal maneuvers as well, such as restraining orders, warrants, and gag orders. It is because of these resourceful options that you need to think about securing legal counsel as soon as possible.
The sooner you talk with Steve Lee, the sooner he can secure the evidence that may be vital to your claim’s success. Call our office today at 713-921-4171 to set up your FREE initial consultation, and see how his legal skills can help protect you after a catastrophic truck accident.