If you are injured in an accident involving a commercial truck, you may find it difficult to determine who is financially responsible. Even if the truck driver is clearly at fault, he or she may not be the only party who is responsible for compensating you for your injuries. So how do you know who is liable in a truck crash? Let's take a look at when the truck driver may be liable vs. when a company may be liable for a truck accident.
When the Truck Driver is at Fault in a Road Accident
A truck driver can be held liable for a truck accident in many situations. The truck driver may be held solely responsible if he or she was intoxicated with alcohol or drugs, was distracted or was breaking the law (speeding, improper turns, etc.). The truck driver can also be held liable in an accident if he or she failed to maintain proper log hours and rest breaks, was fatigued or drowsy or had a health condition that should have been treated.
Commercial Truck Company Liable in An Accident
A trucking company that hires a truck driver can also be held responsible for a truck accident. This is less common and is more difficult to prove, but it is possible. Situations that may warrant a trucking company being held responsible include incomplete inspections, cutting corners on safety, pressuring the truck driver to alter logs in order to meet deadlines faster or failing to properly train drivers. The trucking company can also be held liable if they do not properly maintain the trucks that they own, allowing trucks to operate with recalled parts or knowingly utilize faulty equipment.
Determining Liability with Commercial Truck Accidents
If you are injured in a truck accident, the best thing that you can do is contact a skilled California truck accident attorney. As a victim, it is your burden to prove that your injuries are the result of negligence - be it on the part of a truck driver or trucking company. To do this, you will need the help of an attorney and expert witnesses. At AZ Legal, we have the skills and resources you need to hold the responsible party accountable and get the compensation that you deserve.