Dealing with the aftermath of a serious truck accident can be an overwhelming experience, both emotionally and practically. In addition to physical and emotional recovery, important legal issues must be addressed at an already stressful time.
Figuring out who might be at fault and financially responsible can add undue stress. However, if you don’t explore and pursue all the potentially liable parties, you can put your claim and financial recovery at risk.
A Buffalo truck accident lawyer‘s role is to examine all these liability avenues to build a strong case and give you the best chance at recovering the maximum compensation possible. Let’s take a look at what parties could be held liable in a truck accident case.
Parties Within The Trucking Company
The trucking company that employs the truck driver will often be named in a lawsuit following a commercial truck accident. The company can be held liable through the legal doctrine of vicarious liability, as the truck driver was working for them when the crash occurred.
Companies have a duty to only hire safe, qualified drivers and establish rigorous training protocols. Failing to properly screen applicants or prepare them for the immense responsibility of operating an 18-wheeler on public roads may constitute negligence.
Additionally, trucking companies must ensure their vehicles are properly maintained and meet all federal regulations. If faulty equipment, such as bad brakes, contributed to the crash, the company could share in liability.
Other Potentially Liable Parties:
- Trucking company executives and managers
- Safety directors
- Maintenance supervisors
While executives are typically not directly involved in day-to-day operations, their policy decisions can influence safety outcomes. Negligent hiring, training, or maintenance procedures that contributed to the crash could implicate them.
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The Truck Driver
The truck driver who caused the accident will likely bear at least partial responsibility. Their duty is to operate the vehicle safely and abide by all traffic laws. Violations such as speeding, distraction, impairment, or negligence could establish liability.
However, the driver may share fault with other parties like their trucking company or third parties. Their percentage of liability will depend on the specific circumstances leading to the crash.
Other motorists or entities whose negligence contributed to the truck accident may also be named as defendants:
- Other drivers – e.g. distracted or reckless driving near the truck
- Automotive manufacturers – if a vehicle defect caused the crash
- Government agencies – failed road maintenance, improper signage
- Cargo loaders – improperly secured/weighted freight
- Parts suppliers – faulty brakes, tires, other components
Multiple Defendants Strengthen Your Case
The involvement of multiple liable parties not only expands options for recovery but can strengthen your overall claim. Showing the crash resulted from failures at multiple levels highlights the extent of negligence.
While complex, skilled truck accident attorneys know how to strategically build these types of cases to maximize compensation for their injured clients.
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Investigating Liable Parties
Here are the steps a lawyer may take to determine liability after a truck crash:
- Review police reports for crash details and initial fault determinations
- Analyze truck driver qualifications, training, and driving history
- Investigate trucking company policies, maintenance records
- Inspect crash scene and vehicles; order preservation of critical evidence
- Consult accident reconstruction and trucking safety experts
- Interview witnesses
- Research similar crashes/defects involving the truck or third parties
Why an Attorney Is Essential for Navigating Liability
The burden of proving liability falls on the plaintiff – the injured victim(s). Without legal guidance, crash victims may struggle to identify all potentially negligent parties or prove their responsibility.
Trucking companies have legal teams vigorously defending their interests. They will work to shift blame elsewhere or introduce doubt regarding liability.
Experienced truck accident lawyers have the resources and knowledge to build irrefutable liability claims. They can bring pressure on multiple fronts to secure the maximum recovery possible for plaintiffs.
Financial Recovery Options in Truck Injury Lawsuits
Holding negligent parties legally and financially accountable is critical for injured victims and their families. Some compensation sources they may recover from a lawsuit include:
- Damages for medical bills, both current and future treatment
- Income loss from missed work time
- Loss of future earning capacity if disabilities prevent returning to work
- Pain and suffering damages
- Loss of consortium for impact on family relationships
- Punitive damages in cases of gross negligence or reckless conduct
Securing fair compensation allows victims to focus energy on healing rather than financial stressors. This recovery can provide long-term medical care and assist in getting their lives back on track.
Contact a Truck Accident Law Firm Today to Learn More About Potentially Liable Parties In Your Accident
Determining accountability in a commercial trucking accident claim is not a simple task, which is why seeking legal counsel is advised. The personal injury lawyers at Richmond Vona have extensive expertise in investigating these types of cases from every angle.
Our singular focus is obtaining the full and fair recovery that clients deserve. While no law firm can undo the harms of loss or injury, Richmond Vona is prepared to fight vigorously on your behalf and help ensure your rights are upheld.
Individuals have already overcome so much in the aftermath of these accidents, but the firm is here to shoulder the burden of navigating the legal process so your energy can be refocused on healing. Please contact us today for a free consultation.