To recover financial compensation through a personal injury claim, a plaintiff must prove that another party is liable for their accident. Most often, a personal injury claim is brought directly against the defendant whose negligence (unsafe conduct) caused the accident.
That being said, other parties may bear responsibility as well. Through a theory called vicarious liability, a supervisory party may be held liable for a subordinate’s negligence. Here, our Buffalo personal injury lawyers explain what you should know about vicarious liability in New York.
Vicarious liability is essentially a form of secondary, indirect liability. It may be imposed in cases where a principal is, ultimately, responsible for the wrongful actions of an agent. As noted by the Cornell Legal Information Institute, vicarious liability does not require the third party to be “present” at the time of the accident. Indeed, one of the key things that separates vicarious liability from other forms of liability is that it does not require direct participation in the careless or reckless act. The principal’s liability is based on the negligent actions of their agent.
Vicarious liability is important because the principal (the vicarious defendant) often has greater financial resources than does the actual tortfeasor (the agent that committed the wrongful act). Bringing a claim against a third party on the grounds of vicarious liability may allow an injured person to get access to full and fair financial compensation for their damages.
Here are three common examples of personal injury claims where vicarious liability may be an issue:
At Richmond Vona, LLC, our New York personal injury attorneys are relentless in pursuing financial compensation for injured victims. If you have questions about vicarious liability, we are here to help. For a free review of your personal injury claim, please contact us today or call (716) 300-5885. We serve communities throughout Western New York, including Erie County, Niagara County, Monroe County, and Ontario County.