Preserving Evidence in Trucking Injury Cases: Motor Carrier Certificates, Engine Control Module Data and More

Crafting Spoliation Letters, Securing Key Documentation, and Challenging Evidence Destruction

Recording of a 90-minute CLE webinar with Q&A


Conducted on Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Recorded event now available

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Program Materials

This CLE webinar will discuss best practices to preserve critical evidence in trucking injury cases. The panel will explain the components of an effective spoliation letter, key pieces of evidence needed in trucking accident cases, and strategies for challenging the destruction of evidence after a spoliation letter is issued.

Description

Immediately preserving evidence is crucial in trucking accident cases. Truck drivers and motor carriers are legally obligated to maintain certain driving records for a prescribed period of time. These documents contain critical information that can help prove negligence, including evidence of driver fatigue or an overloaded tractor trailer. Counsel must request these documents quickly because waiting too long after an accident can doom a case.

The best way for personal injury lawyers to protect and secure key evidence is to issue a preservation of evidence letter—also called a spoliation letter—right away. The spoliation letter requires trucking companies to preserve critical evidence that they might otherwise destroy. Failure to preserve documents and information in response to a spoliation letter could result in an adverse ruling, discovery sanctions or criminal liability for the trucking company.

A carefully constructed preservation letter can help personal injury attorneys prove “notice” in a later spoliation claim over missing evidence.

Listen as our panel of experienced trucking injury litigators examines legal and practical strategies for preserving key evidence in trucking accident cases. The panel will discuss documents and information that should be requested in the spoliation letter and best practices for leveraging the preservation letter in future disputes over missing evidence.

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Outline

  1. Key evidence in trucking injury cases
    1. Motor carrier certificates and filings
    2. Downloaded data from the engine control module
    3. All documents required by federal law (driver’s qualifications, driver’s logs, etc.)
  2. Drafting a comprehensive spoliation letter—best practices
  3. Challenging the destruction of evidence—key considerations

Benefits

The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • What types of evidence should personal injury attorneys request from truck drivers and trucking companies immediately following a trucking accident?
  • What are some best practices for personal injury attorneys when drafting spoliation letters?
  • What tactics should personal injury attorneys use if they believe evidence has been destroyed in violation of a spoliation letter?

Faculty

Kestner, Peter
Peter Kestner

Atty
McEwen & Kestner

Mr. Kestner has extensive experience with truck accident cases, both as a private attorney and representative for...  |  Read More

Leizerman, Michael
Michael J. Leizerman

Managing Partner
Leizerman & Associates

Mr. Leizerman’s entire caseload consists of catastrophic truck crash claims, including a recent settlement of $34...  |  Read More

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