When someone else causes you harm due to their negligence or carelessness, they should be held accountable for any damages they cause. However, holding someone accountable for their actions can be tricky, especially when a large business is involved.
When a truck accident occurs, knowing who is responsible for paying your damages is important. In many cases, the truck driver and the trucking company are both liable for injuries sustained in a truck accident. A truck accident lawyer can help you hold the liable party accountable for your damages.
Federal Regulations for Trucking Companies
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has strict regulations regarding the responsibilities of a commercial truck driver. The FMCSA requires that all drivers must be trained and licensed before operating any vehicle with a gross weight of over 26,000 pounds.
Commercial vehicles are required to have multiple safety features, including:
- Air brakes and trailer brakes
- Anti-lock brake systems (ABS)
- Steering limiters
- Tire pressure monitoring systems (TPM)
Although all commercial trucks have some type of insurance coverage, it is usually not enough to pay for all medical expenses and other losses associated with an accident. This is especially true if multiple vehicles were involved in an accident caused by a single negligent driver, where multiple people suffered injuries from their actions.
Employer’s Duty to Ensure Compliance with Regulations
Trucking companies are required to ensure their drivers have valid a CDL endorsement with no disqualifying convictions or violations on file before hiring them. If they don’t do this, they could be found liable for any damages caused by an inexperienced driver who shouldn’t have been behind the wheel in the first place.
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Who Can Be Held Liable for a Truck Crash?
When a truck accident occurs, there are a number of parties that may be held responsible for the injuries and damages suffered by the victim.
In most cases, the driver is responsible for making sure that their truck is in good working order before leaving on a trip. However, there are many several parties who could also be held responsible for an accident, including:
- The truck driver
- The truck manufacturer
- The trucking company
- A cargo loading team
- A truck maintenance crew
If a truck driver fails to inspect their vehicle and their truck causes an accident due to mechanical failure or other problems with their vehicle, they will be held liable for any injuries caused by their negligence.
Another party often held responsible for a truck accident is the owner of the trucking company who hired them to drive their vehicle on its routes. This person must ensure that all drivers hired have proper licenses and training, as well as adequate insurance coverage in case they cause an accident while on duty.
In addition, they must make sure that all trucks used by their company are safe enough to handle regular road traffic without causing accidents or endangering other motorists.
More than one party can share liability. For example, a truck driver and the trucking company may share joint liability for any injuries suffered because of their negligence or carelessness. This means that if you were injured by a negligent truck driver, you can sue both the driver and the company in certain cases.
Why Is a Truck Accident Lawyer Needed?
After being involved in an accident with a semi-truck, you may wonder: who was at fault? Did you do something wrong, or did the truck driver make a mistake that caused your injury?
In the case of truck accidents, there may be many drivers involved in the accident, making it very difficult to determine who is responsible for causing the accident.
If there is any uncertainty about what happened, then it is best to contact an attorney before agreeing to settle with insurance. A lawyer can help you assess all aspects of the case and make sure that you receive compensation for all injuries sustained by you during the accident.
If You’re Hurt in an Accident, You Have Legal Rights
If you are not sure whether or not your claim will be successful, it is best to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney before making any decisions.
Ultimately, either the truck driver or the trucking company could be held liable after a truck accident. The severity of injuries, as well as state laws and individual circumstances will affect who is held liable for an injury claim or wrongful death suit after a truck accident.
Regardless, injured people have legal rights to pursue compensation for medical bills and other expenses. Contacting a lawyer immediately can help you get the compensation you deserve.