If you have been injured in a
truck accident, you may be wondering who should be held responsible. Indeed, determining
the right party to sue when an 18-wheeler or other commercial truck is
involved, can be a challenge. There are many different factors involved.
In fact, with commercial trucks, there may be business and other individuals
who may be liable in addition to the truck driver.
Some of the potential parties you may need to sue
Although it will take some investigating and research to determine who
may be responsible for your truck accident, you can at least start with
these common defendants:
- the driver of the truck
- the owner of the truck or trailer
- the person or company that leased the truck or trailer from the owner
- the manufacturer of the truck, tires, or other equipment that may have
caused the accident, or made it more severe, and
- the shipper or freight loader, when injuries were caused by the truck and
Ultimately, the wisest choice is to discuss the facts of your case with a
personal injury attorney who is experienced in trucking accident cases.
Is it possible for trucking companies to avoid liability?
Nearly every person or company that is sued will put forth a defense of
some type in order to avoid liability if possible. Unique to commercial
trucking cases, many businesses will attempt to avoid liability by separating
themselves from the driver of the truck or the vehicle itself. Here are
some examples of ways to do this:
- obtaining the permits necessary only to operate the truck
- leasing the tractor, trailer, or hauling equipment instead of owning it outright
- hiring truck drivers as independent contractors as opposed to employees
In this way, the trucking company may be able to argue that the driver
was not its responsibility, or that, since it does not actually own any
of the equipment, it is not responsible for inspecting, maintaining or
If you have questions regarding truck accidents or any other personal injury
matters, contact us
online or by calling the
Law Office of Cody R. Wix, LLC at (205) 381-4787.