My husband was hit by a dump truck and now they are tying to sue him what can we do?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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My husband was hit by a dump truck and now they are tying to sue him what can we do?

My husband was headed to work when he pulled on to the hwy which is a four lane he pulled to the far left lane and had already made it about 50 yards down the road when a dump truck came up behind him and struck the left side of his truck which resulted in the dump truck turning over. When the state trooper arrived he wrote my husband a ticket for failure to yield right away. Well today he had to go to court for the ticket and they found him guilty and said he was at fault. Now with that said he wants to appeal it because he said he wasn’t at fault. The state trooper never asked for my husbands statement after the accident nor did he receive a statement from a witness who saw it happen. Now he is being sued for a substantial amount of money for this dump truck. What can we do?

Asked on January 5, 2017 under Accident Law, Alabama


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Two different issues here:
1) An appeal of the ticket--you can only appeal based on the evidence that was at the original trial, so if there was no favorable evidence for your husband presented then, it may be very difficult to appeal, unless you can show some clear legal error made by the judge.
2) Being sued: this will be uphill, since they can introduce the finding on the ticket against you, but since the suit is in a separate court system (civil court, not municipal or traffic court) and will result (if not settled) in a new trial at which new evidence can be introduced, you can in that trial have the witnesss you refer to testify, and also introduce any other evidence you may have in your favor. That said, if previously found at fault, assume that there is a better-than-even chance that you will lose any lawsuit; you may wish to try to settle, or if you can't settle for anything you can afford, to consider bankruptcy (bankruptcy works against this sort of court debt).

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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