Skip to Content
Truck Owner-Operator Downtime Claim

California Truck Owner-Operator: Get Paid for Downtime Lost Income after an Accident

If you are the owner-operator of a truck, your truck is your business and the source of income for your family. If your truck is not on the road due to damage from an accident, your business is shut down. You are stripped of your income-making capacity.

Time is precious for an owner-operator. Every day that your truck is not rolling, you are getting further behind because you still have to pay your fixed monthly expenses (truck payment, insurance, etc.). Your losses add up quickly. California law requires that the at-fault party’s insurance company pay for your financial business losses. This is known as a “downtime claim.”

The truck accident attorneys at McGee, Lerer & Associates represent truck drivers throughout the state of California on owner-operator downtime claims. Contact us today for a free consultation!

Duty to Mitigate your Downtime Lost Income

The at-fault party’s insurance company will fight your downtime claim and argue that you have a duty to “mitigate your damages,” i.e., minimize your losses. They will argue that you dragged your feet in getting the truck repaired or replaced and that you could have rented a replacement truck during the time that your truck was not on the road. But, with all of your fixed monthly expenses, you may not have the extra money to rent a replacement truck, or you may be unable to rent a truck that has the specialized equipment you need.

Even if you do have the money, it is almost impossible to find a company willing to rent to an individual trucker. If circumstances prevent you from renting a replacement truck, and no conduct on your part delayed your truck's repair or replacement, then the insurance company is not entitled to claim that they owe you less because you failed to mitigate.

How We Calculate Truck Downtime Losses

Insurance companies are not used to paying downtime claims. They don't know what to ask for as proof, and they don't know how to analyze the documents you give them. They scrutinize and nitpick what you do give them, and they ask for more, more, more. They count on the fact that they often wear out truckers, who eventually walk away from the claim. At McGee, Lerer & Associates, we get truckers paid on their downtime claims by breaking it down and making it easy for adjusters to understand the business losses our clients have suffered.

Below are the steps we generally follow to calculate your lost income:

  • We determine your gross income for the 90 days before the accident.
  • We calculate your net income by subtracting all variable expenses (fuel, oil, tolls, etc.).
  • We calculate your daily net loss by dividing your net income by the days you actually drove during the 90 days before the accident.
  • We determine your lost income by multiplying your daily income by the number of days your truck is not on the road.

If the accident happened during a high-income time of year, then those higher numbers will be reflected in our calculation.

Documentation Needed to Prove Truck Downtime Claim

In order to prove the business losses you incur while your truck is down, you will need to provide ample documentation of your earnings in the months before the accident.

The documents we will need include:

  • Tax returns
  • Accountant statements
  • Settlement sheets
  • Profit and loss reports
  • Proof of attempts to mitigate, such as rental truck denial

Downtime Claim if your Truck is Totaled

If your truck was totaled in an accident, the at-fault party’s insurance company will only want to pay your downtime claim through the date you receive the total loss check. However, if your truck was specialized, it may take you more time to find a replacement truck that has the proper equipment. Once you find a truck, it has to be made suitable for operation.

This can mean time and money to obtain U.S. Department of Transportation licenses, approval from the motor carrier to which you are under contract, safety inspections, and replacement of tags, placards, licenses, etc. You are entitled to compensation for your downtime up through the date that you have a replacement truck on the road, as long as there is no delay on your part.

Our California truck accident lawyers will demand payment for your truck downtime.

We will demand that the at-fault party pay you 100% of your downtime losses. Contact our office for a free consultation with a truck accident lawyer.

Why Choose McGee, Lerer & Associates?

What Makes Us Different
  • Five Convenient Locations
    We have 5 offices in Southern California - Los Angeles, Pasadena, Santa Monica, Long Beach & Valencia
  • 24/7 Availability
    We can be available nights and weekends and come to you at the hospital or at home.
  • No Fees Unless We Win
    If we are unsuccessful in our efforts to recover your compensation, you owe nothing. Learn more here.
  • Individual Attention
    We take the time to understand all the unique factors of your case to achieve the best results.

Contact Us Today

100% Free Consultation
  • Please enter your first name.
  • Please enter your last name.
  • Please enter your phone number.
    This isn't a valid phone number.
  • Please enter your email address.
    This isn't a valid email address.
  • Please make a selection.
  • Please enter a message.

Our Previous Clients Tell Their Stories

Learn What It's Like to Work With Our Firm

At McGee, Lerer & Associates, your satisfaction is our priority! See for yourself what our clients have to say about working with us.

    "This law firm is very professional"

    After my car accident, I didn't know what to do. I tried to fix the problem myself, and my insurance ignored me. After speaking with Catherine and her working group Maria and Nick, I have actually been able to achieve what my insurance said would not be po

    "They make you feel like you are their only customer"

    They were always available to answer my messages and questions. I am very grateful to them. I recommend them.

    "Thank you so much, my family and I are very grateful."

    Thank you McGee Lerer & Associates! Your services went beyond expected. You always kept me updated with calls and emails. I am very satisfied with the facility you sent me to. They were excellent!! Doctors and staff were friendly. Thank you so much, my fam

    - L.J.
    "ny questions my wife and I had Catherine or Denise we’ll gladly answer. Once again highly recommend this firm."

    McGee, Lerer and Associates’s, thank you for your help. I highly recommend this firm. Catherine was our lawyer who helped my wife and I out during the whole process of a car accident we were. Denise as well helped us through out the process. Any questions

    - R.A.
    "hey helped me get the medical treatment I needed. I recommend this firm for personal injury cases!"

    After a bad car accident I was referred to McGee, Lerer and Associates. I closely worked wih Catherine and Rachael, who always had time to answer my questions and were concerned with my wellbeing and healing after the accident. They helped me get the medic

    - M.J.
    "I want to thank Catherine and her team for making this process fast and easy for me and my husband. Any questions we had they answered right away."

    I want to thank Catherine and her team for making this process fast and easy for me and my husband. Any questions we had they answered right away.

    - E.A.
    "I Highly recommend them!"

    I'm 24 years old and barley understand my car insurance to be honest. When i got into my accident I was easily discouraged and willing to just accept what happened and not do anything. Luckily a close friend of Catherine's is a customer at my restaurant an

    - M.P.
    "very professional customer service and excellent staff."

    Excelllent team of attorneys. Changed the bad experience of getting into a accident to a positive outcome. I got all the medical help I needed to recover. very professional customer service and excellent staff.

    - N.G.