Building a truck accident claim and following it through to a fair resolution takes time and attention. It also requires a detailed understanding of accidents involving trucks and the parties that may hold liability. While the driver of the truck is certainly one party who may have responsibility for the collision and your subsequent injuries, a number of other parties may share some of the liability as well. It all depends on the nature of the accident and what caused or contributed to it.
Many potential defendants in a truck accident claim
The first thing that you must determine when assembling your claim is what caused the wreck to occur. If the truck or its driver caused the accident, you can begin with those defendants.
Next, it is important to determine the business relationship between the driver and the party that hired him or her. If the driver operates as an independent contractor, his or her individual insurer may hold liability. However, if the driver was an employee of a trucking company, then the company itself may hold the liability. In general, placing liability on the shoulders of the employer is preferable, because companies usually carry more coverage than independent contractor drivers do.
However, in some cases, the truck driver did not cause the accident in error or out of negligence. Faulty parts, bad repairs and unsafe loading of cargo may also cause accidents beyond the immediate control of the driver.
For instance, a component in the braking or steering system may fail, leading to the accident. In such a case, an injury claim might name the manufacturer of the component as a defendant. Likewise, a poor repair by a mechanic who does not do the job well may be the root cause of your accident. Thus, the liability will be on the mechanic and/or the repair shop.
Similarly, if the load that the driver hauled failed to stay secure or was packed in a way that did not evenly distribute the weight of the cargo, it might shift in transit and cause an accident. In these instances, the party that packed the load and secured it in the trailer or on the flatbed may be liable.
Strong claims are not thrown together
For those who recently were involved in truck accidents, the most pressing needs are likely medical care for any injuries. You will also need to recuperate and may have to miss some work. Be sure that you have the support and tools that you need to put your energy and time toward recovery. Building a claim that truly protects your rights and addresses all of your losses takes time and attention.