Who can be sued after a truck accident?

by | May 5, 2021 | Truck Accidents

Truck accidents are serious personal injury events that often result in significant injuries and fatalities. When a New Jersey resident is involved in a roadway collision with a large truck or commercial vehicle, they may be left with pain, suffering, and confusion over what their rights and next steps should be. For many, litigation is a good option that avails those in need to the damages the rightfully deserve.

Few victims of truck accidents know how to prepare and litigate their own personal injury claims, but attorney who work in this field can support them and offer strong representation for them in court. One service that a personal injury lawyers provide is the preparation of legal pleadings. Through illegal pleading a victim may list the defendants they want to include in their case. This post will introduce some of the possible defendants that a truck accident victim may wish to sue for the recovery of their damages. No part of this post should be read as legal guidance or advice.

Possible defendants in a truck accident claim

One of the most obvious parties that a truck accident victim may wish to sue is the driver of the truck that hurt them. The driver may not own the truck that was involved in the crash. The driver may also be employed by a tracking or delivery company. Therefore, victims may choose to extend their pleadings to include defendants such as the entity that put the truck and driver on the road for deliveries, the owner of the truck if it is a separate party, and even the insurance company that covered the driver and truck during the time of the accident. Increasing the defendants on a personal injury pleading gives a victim a wide breadth of coverage for seeking the recovery of their losses.

Understanding the independent contractor vs. employee distinction

One factor that may influence who a truck accident victim can sue is whether the driver is an employee or independent contractor. Employees are extensions of the companies they work for and if an employee makes a mistake, the employing entity may be liable.

Independent contractors, however, are not employees of the entities they work for. They are separate workers who perform tasks for another company but do not stand as representatives of them. If the driver is an independent contractor, then a victim may have a more limited breadth of parties to include in their personal injury pleadings.

Every personal injury case is different. When a large truck is involved in a crash, it is important that the victims seek legal help to ensure that their rights to seek their damages are protected. Different defendants may be relevant in different claims. A personal injury attorney can help a victim sort through the important facts and details of their pending case.