Is The Driver Or The Trucking Company Responsible In A Trucking Accident?
Many accident victims wonder whether the driver or the trucking company will be liable for their trucking accident. Even when a commercial driver’s negligence causes a Texas truck accident, it is often the trucking company who pays.
If you suffered injuries in a Texas truck accident and need a knowledgeable attorney to fight for fair compensation, Lovins Trosclair, PLLC is here for you. We handle all aspects of your case, from identifying the liable parties to building your case to filing your claim, negotiating a settlement, and, if necessary, taking your case to trial.
We have offices in Austin (512-535-1649) and Dallas (214-484-1930) and handle trucking cases throughout Texas and the United States. Call us to schedule a time to discuss your case with us for free.
How does a liable trucking company change my accident case?
The law holds companies and individuals accountable based on the severity of the injuries and damages they cause. Since smaller passenger cars are no match for large commercial trucks, the injuries sustained in trucking accidents tend to be severe and life altering. There is a greater likelihood of larger medical bills, the need for lifelong care, and permanent physical disabilities. The damages that result from these injuries can add up to hundreds of thousands of dollars, if not millions.
While holding a trucking company accountable will mean a higher possible recovery, it also means going up against a large company with experienced lawyers and insurers who will fight tooth and nail to give you the smallest recovery they can.
How do I prove the trucking company was liable?
Establishing liability in a truck accident case hinges on what caused the accident. If a fatigued, aggressive, drunk, or otherwise negligent driver caused your accident, you will hold the trucking company liable under the doctrine of vicarious liability.
Vicarious liability, also known as respondeat superior, holds employers accountable for their employees’ actions — so long as the employee acted in the scope of his/her employment. A trucking company can be vicariously liable for any of the following:
- A driver who caused an accident after violating hours of service rules
- A driver who caused a wreck while texting or talking on the phone
- An accident that occurred due to improperly loaded or secured cargo
- An intoxicated driver who caused an accident
In some cases, we see truck accident claims where the trucking company itself acted negligently. There are a few ways this can occur. Negligent hiring or training practices can lead to unqualified or inexperienced drivers who are more likely to cause accidents.
Another way trucking companies act negligently and cause crashes is by failing to follow a strict plan for driver drinking or drug use. In some cases, the trucking company allows a driver who has failed several drug or alcohol tests to continue driving. Trucking companies need to have a drug testing plan in place, and have a clear outline of the steps taken when a driver fails a test. Putting a driver who they know drives drunk or drugged back on the streets is negligence.
Trucking companies also often play a role in drivers who routinely violate hours of service rules. Trucking companies set tight schedules and may offer bonuses for drivers who deliver loads faster. Sometimes, they even blatantly tell drivers to not rest as long as the law mandates or encourage drivers to falsifying records. When a driver falls asleep at the wheel or makes a mistake due to drowsy driving, these trucking companies are to blame.
How can a Texas truck accident lawyer help me identify the liable parties?
If you suffered injuries in a Texas truck accident, it is vital to contact a knowledgeable truck accident attorney as soon as possible after the crash. After a truck accident, much of the evidence necessary to identify the liable parties and prove your case is in the hands of the trucking company. Without legal representation, this evidence will be subject to destruction.
As soon as we accept a truck accident case, we send a spoliation letter that notifies the trucking company of our intent to pursue a civil claim. This letter also outlines potential evidence in the case, and demands the company protect this evidence from destruction. Obtaining and analyzing this evidence is a key part of our investigation into the cause of your crash, along with other tools such as accident reconstruction.
Once we have identified the liable parties, we will represent you to the end. We will handle all communication and negotiation with the trucking company’s insurer so you can focus on going to the doctor and recovering from your injuries.
Insurers will fight to give you as little as possible after an accident. If we believe the insurer is not offering you a fair settlement, we will take it to court.
Lovins Trosclair, PLLC, Texas Truck Accident Attorneys in Austin and Dallas
At Lovins Trosclair, PLLC, our lawyers have the skill and resources necessary to identify all potentially liable parties in your Texas truck accident claim. We build strong cases for our clients, helping them recover the largest payouts possible. If you suffered injuries in a truck accident in Dallas or Austin, call us today to schedule a time to discuss your case with one of our Texas trucking accident lawyers.
To schedule an appointment with our Austin team, call 512-535-1649.
For appointments at our Dallas office, call 214-484-1930.