Motor vehicle accidents involving semi-trucks often leave those involved with serious injuries. This is because the sheer size and weight of these big rigs can destroy passenger vehicles, rendering their safety features less effective. Those truck accident victims who suffer catastrophic injuries may have a long road to recovery ahead of them littered with physical, emotional, and financial challenges.
While these victims may be able to recover compensation for their losses through a personal injury lawsuit levied against a negligent trucker, the stark reality is that many of these truckers are simply unable to pay out large judgments against them. This is because most truckers aren’t rich, and the damages victims suffer are quite extensive. As a result, truck accident victims who suffer the most serious injuries could be left in a situation where they have won their case, but they won’t be made whole.
Fortunately, there is an additional legal avenue available to these victims: a vicarious liability claim. A vicarious liability claim allows a truck accident victim to try to hold a negligent trucker’s employer accountable for the actions of its employee. By doing so, truck accident victims have the ability to reach into a larger pool of resources that are much more likely to satisfy the full extent of damages suffered.
In order to prove a vicarious liability claim, though, a truck accident victim has to prove certain legal elements, such as the fact that the trucker was performing his job duties at the time of the accident and was actually on the clock. This may sound easy enough, but trucking companies have creative ways of arguing that a negligent trucker was operating outside the scope of his or her employment at the time of the accident in question. This means that truck accident victims need to be prepared to rebut these claims while making arguments that support their theory of the case. Attorneys who are experienced in going head-to-head with truckers and their employers stand ready to assist with this process.