How Have Trucking Companies Avoided Liability After Truck Accidents?
Trucking accidents can actually be more complicated in determining liability than other vehicle accidents. If you have been a victim of a trucking accident, you’re probably realizing that there are many parties involved in figuring out who was responsible for the cause of the accident. The trucking industry is a little more intricate as well, so the liability investigation might require a little more knowledge of the various players that could be involved.
How Did Trucking Operators and Companies Avoid Responsibility?
Since there are many ways and reasons that a trucking accident can happen, there are unfortunately many ways that a trucking company could attempt to bypass liability through some sneaky methods. Trucking companies obtain the basic permits they need to operate the truck, but the company usually does not own the trailer, tractor, or equipment associated with the supplies in the truck. Instead, the company will lease or rent the equipment from the operator. The company also doesn’t directly employ the drivers, but instead hires them as independent contractors. The company then gives the owner a sign to place inside the truck that lists the name of the trucking company and its associated permit numbers. This notice will make it seem that the truck is actually owned by the company, and that the driver is an employee of the company.
When a truck was involved in an accident and the trucking company was sued, the company attempted to argue a few things. They would claim that the driver is not legally the company’s employee, so the company was not liable for the driver’s negligence and/or error. They would also argue that the company did not actually own the equipment, so it was not responsible for the maintenance or repair of the equipment. Fortunately, federal law now mandates that all companies that have a trucking permit are responsible for any accidents involving a truck with the sign or name written on the truck.
If you were involved in a truck accident, and you believe that the trucking company is at fault, you have the right to fight for compensation of your injuries and damage to your vehicle. Contact our Oak Creek personal injury attorneys today for your free consultation.