Typically, a trucking company is liable for damages arising out of any accident that a truck driver under its employment causes. For a claim to hold the company liable in a trucking accident, the accident must have occurred within the scope of the driver’s employment and the driver must have contributed to or caused the truck accident.
If the trucker is driving the large truck, then it is likely that the trucker was acting within the scope of employment, and the trucking company is liable for damages.
Does the driver’s employment status affect liability?
Much of the trucking company’s liability in your accident will depend on the relationship between the trucking company and the truck driver. To hold the trucking company liable for your damages, it must have employed the driver. Therefore, if you have suffered injuries in a trucking accident, you must prove that the truck driver was an employee of the company, and not an independent contractor. Companies are generally not liable for the actions of independent contractors.
For instance, if the truck driver was an independent contractor and not an employee on the payroll of the trucking company, then the company is may not be liable for your injuries. But talk to an attorney about whether the driver’s relationship with the trucking company may constitute an employer-employee relationship, even if the company claims the driver is an independent contractor.
If it turns out that the driver was an independent contractor, you may be able to hold the truck driver liable for damages by filing an insurance claim or lawsuit.
The Truck Company May Be Directly Liable Too
The information above refers to a truck company’s vicarious liability for an accident that one of its employees causes. But in some cases, the truck company may be directly at fault for an accident.
For example, if a truck company employed an unqualified driver or failed to maintain the truck that was in the accident, then it may be directly responsible for contributing to the accident. Review fault, negligence, and liability with an attorney to better understand who’s at fault in a truck accident as well as truck accident liability.
Call Julie Johnson in Dallas for Legal Help
If you were in an accident, get the medical help you need right away and then start consulting with a lawyer about your legal rights to recover damages. Call 214-290-8001 to speak with attorney Julie Johnson or fill out our online contact form to set up a consultation to review your case and ability to hold a truck driver or trucking liable for your injuries and damages.