A truck company can be liable if its driver causes an accident. However, not all trucking accidents are automatically the driver’s fault, even after striking someone’s vehicle. For example, a manufacturing company could be liable if defective brakes or tires caused a crash. In both instances, the driver may not have been able to control the truck to avoid hitting another vehicle.
An in-depth investigation can determine what caused a commercial driver to crash. Upon its conclusion, it could find other responsible parties and, therefore, liable for paying victims’ damages. A truck injury attorney from Carrigan & Anderson, PLLC can investigate the crash and determine which negligent parties owe you compensation. They can also advise you on other things you can do after getting into a wreck with an 18-wheeler (semi). Contact us today for help.
Who Else Can Be Liable If a Driver Causes a Truck Accident?
In addition to a commercial truck driver, any of the following could cause a driver to have an accident:
- The truck company (the truck driver’s employer)
- The owner of the truck
- The manufacturer of the truck or its parts
- Repair and maintenance crews
- Cargo loaders or shippers
- Government entities responsible for maintaining the accident site
- A third party, such as a passenger car driver, motorcycle rider, or pedestrian
Your attorney could also find other liable parties in your situation not listed here. If multiple parties are responsible for the crash, they can determine each party’s percentage of fault and assign a financial value to it. They can then demand this amount from them.
We have offices in Houston, Corpus Christi, and Victoria; and will travel to any corner of Texas if we are capable of preventing an injustice.
Proving Negligence Is Key When Suing Parties for Truck Accident Damages
You can expect to run into some opposition when seeking damages. The parties may point the finger at one another about who or what caused the accident to avoid paying you. They may even blame you for the crash.
Your attorney must prove how the parties demonstrated negligence that led to the crash. If you played a part in causing the crash, your attorney can also determine your percentage of fault.
Elements of Negligence
If all four of these elements are present in your case, it means negligence occurred:
- Duty of care: All other road users automatically assume a duty of care when they get behind the wheel. Commercial truck drivers must follow all state and federal laws and regulations and observe local traffic laws. Trucking companies also have a duty of care. They are responsible for hiring qualified drivers with the proper licenses, training, and experience.
- Breached duty of care: A truck driver breaches their duty of care when their actions or inactions harm others. Speeding, driving while drunk, tired, or distracted, or failing to get proper rest are all examples of how truck drivers violate their duty. If a trucking company fails to ensure its fleet is serviced regularly or properly, that’s a breach on its part.
- Causation: Your attorney must show how the party’s actions or inactions directly caused the truck collision. For example, if an investigation finds a truck driver hit someone because they had trouble maneuvering an overloaded trailer, the cargo crew that packed the truck could be liable. Per the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), the legal limit is that tractor-trailers should carry no more than 80,000 pounds. Someone is liable for this error if the truck’s load exceeds this amount. An attorney can determine who that person or entity is.
- Damages: After an accident, you must incur financial and non-financial damages. These include medical expenses, lost income, property damages, and pain and suffering. Your attorney can add up the costs of your losses and determine the monetary compensation you could demand.
Building a negligence case takes time. Your attorney will use evidence that supports your claims about the accident before presenting it to the opposing party’s insurance company or legal representative. This evidence can include:
- Medical records
- Witness testimony
- Expert witness statements
- Police reports
- Photographs, video surveillance footage (e.g., traffic camera, dashboard camera)
- Electronic data recorder (black box)
- Items from the accident scene, such as clothing or debris
Various parties, including the opposing parties’ insurance adjusters, will review the evidence and other factors to determine who is responsible for the collision.
Hiring an attorney who will advocate for you, protect your rights and interests, and ensure you receive fair treatment throughout the legal process can benefit you. They will also fight for a monetary award that meets your post-accident needs. Call Carrigan & Anderson, PLLC now to get started.
What If My Loved One Died in a Crash that a Truck Driver Caused?
If your loved one suffered fatal injuries in an accident with a commercial truck or another large vehicle, you have our deepest condolences. You should know that the process of proving negligence and damages would work similarly. They would investigate to determine which parties are liable and assess the situation for the four elements of negligence.
If you qualify for wrongful death damages, you could recover costs, such as:
- Funeral and burial/cremation expenses
- The decedent’s medical care and rehabilitative therapy costs
- The decedent’s lost household income
- Loss of comfort, companionship, and love
- Loss of inheritance
- Other related expenses
A wrongful death attorney can advise you on how these legal actions work in your state.
Representing the injured in all areas of Texas that extends back over 40 years
Carrigan & Anderson Can Lead Your Truck Accident Case – Call Today
It is serious business when truck drivers hit someone, especially people traveling in smaller vehicles. You can hold a truck company liable if its driver causes an accident. However, while it may be apparent the driver caused the crash, the individual may not owe you compensation. In some cases, third parties not directly involved in the crash may have to pay you instead.
The personal injury attorneys at Carrigan & Anderson can lead your case and determine who should pay you. We have 50-plus years of legal experience that we will use to recover your rightful compensation while you focus on restoring your health. Call us now for a free consultation. We answer calls and text messages seven days a week. The consultation to explore your legal options is free, and we can work on your case without upfront fees or costs.
At Carrigan & Anderson, PLLC we can talk to you about your options and rights.