This is the next post in my series on the handling of Laredo, Texas auto accident cases which involve commercial vehicles. My last article provided an overview of topics which this series will be addressing. It also stressed the need to contact an attorney as soon as possible if you or a loved one have been injured. It is important that you contact counsel sooner, rather than later, as such cases can be highly complex. It is important that immediate action be taken so that your rights remain protected. In this article I will discuss one of the things that make such cases complicated – the fact that they may involve multiple defendants. If you or a loved one have been injured then contact my office today to speak with an injury lawyer. My office also serves other areas of south Texas.
Commercial vehicle accidents can involve multiple defendants as employers are responsible for the acts of their employees
Texas law holds employers responsible for the acts of their employees and contractors. This means that if the driver of a commercial vehicle is responsible for an accident then the employer is seen as also having liability. Furthermore, depending on the circumstances, there may be additional third parties who would share liability. This means that if a commercial vehicle causes an accident then the victim can bring a negligence case against a) the driver, b) the owner of the vehicle, and c) any management company which the owner may have hired. Also, if it is shown that the owners/operators were negligent in their hiring and supervision of the driver, then the victim may have a separate cause of action against them on those grounds.
The foregoing concepts are best explained by way of example. Suppose Joe Owner owns a semi-truck and has hired Mike Management to book and schedule hauls and delivery for his trucking service. Owner has also tasked management with hiring a driver for the truck. Management, however, hires a driver without performing a drug test or completing a full background check. The driver, unfortunately, operates the vehicle while impaired on narcotics and causes a serious accident with another Laredo driver. Under this scenario, the victim can sue the driver for obvious reasons. They will also have causes of action against the management company, who employs the driver, as it is responsible for the act of its employee. Finally, a claim for negligence likely exists against both the management company and the owner for their failure to properly screen drivers. While how any case will proceed is always going to depend on the specifics of the situation, this example illustrates why such cases can involve multiple defendants.
A Laredo injury lawyer must properly identify all of the defendants in a commercial accident case
It is important that all of the defendants be named in a commercial accident case. Failing to name a party can result in the victim not receiving all of the compensation to which they are entitled. Naming all of the parties, however, can quickly become complicated as the vehicle may be owned by an entity with a complex corporate structure. It is important that you retain a law firm who is experienced in handling such matters as they are more likely familiar with the steps necessary to identify all potential defendants.
I am a Laredo personal injury lawyer who handles south Texas cases involving commercial vehicles. These can include semi-trucks, delivery vehicles, corporate vans, and more. If you are in need of assistance then contact my office online or by telephone to schedule an initial consultation.