What Happens If You Get Into a Car Accident With a Commercial Vehicle?
You probably already know the details of what to do when you’re involved in a car accident. You might even know who to call afterwards and the attorney best suited to help you out. What happens when the other vehicle involved in the accident is a commercial vehicle like a truck or privately-owned bus? Here are some tips to help you get through what can be a very stressful accident:
Who Will You Sue?
The assumption in most accidents is that you sue the driver of the vehicle that hit you. They were, after all, at fault in the accident. However, when it’s a commercial vehicle involved, there are special circumstances that can change you and your lawyer’s approach. You can sue the driver for his or her error in judgment but you can also sue the owner of the truck, the company or corporation that is always found negligent if their employees are acting in the course of their employment. There are a lot of options here and it’s best to speak with an experienced lawyer to figure out which one makes the sense for you.
What If You Just Sue The Owner and Not The Driver?
A lot of times, your lawyer will recommend that you sue the corporation or company that owns the commercial vehicle. The driver, after all, is one person and probably doesn’t have the assets to compensate you fully. A large company, on the other hand, can probably withstand the blow and is more likely to settle out of court and less likely to gain empathy from a court of law.
What If The Driver’s An Independent Contractor?
Most trucking companies or owners of commercial vehicles include some language in their contracts barring them from liability if their drivers are working as independent contractors, people who essentially work for themselves. They might still be found negligent depending on the legal language in the contract but your best bet in this situation is to sue the other driver.