Online shopping and the use of delivery services has become a common practice by millions of Americans. The ability to shop online is saving shoppers time, money, and the stress of dealing with crowded retail stores. The roads are filled with delivery trucks like UPS, FedEx, DHL and Amazon Prime. With this becoming the new norm, the number of commercial delivery trucks on the road has significantly increased.
Naturally, the more delivery trucks on the road, the higher the chance of one of them being involved an accident. Some of the leading causes of delivery truck accidents include:
– Fatigued drivers
– Speeding or other reckless driving to meet deadlines
– Distracted driving
– Poorly secured loads
– Inexperienced drivers
– Improperly maintained vehicles
– Poor road and weather conditions
Just like any other accident, you can directly sue the driver who caused the collision so long as you can prove that the party was negligent. If successful, you may recover for property damage, present and future medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering etc.
Additionally, the delivery truck driver is not the only one who may be held liable. Although the driver may be the one who caused the accident, his employer may be liable for your damages.
Under the principle of “vicarious liability”, a third party may be legally responsible for actions that cause harm, even if that party is not the direct cause of harm. There must be a legally significant relationship between the person who caused the injury and the third party. In an employee/ employer scenario, the employee must have been acting within the course and scope of his or her employment at the time of the accident in order for the employer to be found liable. Delivery companies typically have insurance policies that provide more coverage than a driver’s personal policy, so you are more likely to receive fair compensation if you sue the driver’s employer under the principle of vicarious liability.
However, the delivery company will not always be liable. For example, if the driver was acting in their personal capacity, such as making a detour to run an errand while driving the company vehicle, the employer would not be held legally responsible for any damages. Or, if the driver was hired as an independent contractor, not an employee, the company will not likely be liable.
Determining who may be liable for your injuries can be complicated. Companies like FedEx and UPS generally hire their drivers as employees. But, Amazon typically contracts with drivers to deliver packages to its customers, and the vehicles used for the deliveries are often rentals. In order to establish who is liable for your injuries, it is best to hire an experienced attorney to assist you after your accident.
If you or someone you love has been involved in an automobile accident with a commercial delivery truck, call us today for a free consultation! PHONE CARDONE at 504-522-3333, 833-597-1818 (toll-free), 225-706-3920 (Baton Rouge office), or email us at email@example.com.