Truck companies can be held liable for employees’ accidents

On Behalf of | Oct 16, 2020 | Personal Injury |

Truck accidents can leave you with catastrophic injuries that are painful, debilitating, and long-lasting. These injuries can reshape the way you live your life, and things may never be the same again. You might be depressed over what has been taken from you and overwhelmed by your incurred and anticipated medical expenses, as well as your lost wages. In other words, your damages can be devastating. But as dark as things may seem, there is hope.

Finding accountability for your truck accident

In many car accident personal injury cases, the negligent driver who caused the accident is held accountable. While you can still take this approach in the truck accident context, your lawsuit against a driver in his individual capacity should be supplemental to a lawsuit against his or her employer. This is because truck companies can be held liable for the negligent actions of their employees through something called vicarious liability.

In order for vicarious liability to apply, you need to show that a trucker was performing job duties at the time of the accident during a time when he or she was supposed to be working. You’ll also need to show that the truck company was benefiting from the work being performed by the trucker when the accident occurred.

Anticipate defense arguments

There are a few common defenses to vicarious liability claims. Amongst them are frolic and detour. These defenses essentially argue that a trucker was doing something that deviated from his or her job duties, and therefore the employer shouldn’t be held accountable for the accident in question. By learning as much as you can about your accident, you might be able to present evidence to counter these claims.

Don’t short your damages

A successful vicarious liability claim allows you to reach deeper pockets that are better able to compensate you for the full extent of your damages. So, when it comes to proving the extent of your damages, don’t short change yourself. Instead, work diligently with your attorney to build a case that not only seeks to prove negligence, but also the addresses every aspect of your life that has been affected by your truck accident.