Can I Sue Someone Personally After a Truck Accident?
Can you sue someone personally after a truck accident in Dallas? This legal question may not be as clear cut as it initially seems, due to the law of vicarious liability. In fact, because commercial vehicles are owned by companies, you may end up filing a lawsuit against the trucking company.
Find out if you are able to seek compensation directly from the truck driver who caused your accident with this article. Consider liability for truck accidents and the best way for you to secure compensation for your losses.
Truck Drivers May Be Responsible for Accidents in Dallas
It’s important that you understand that truck drivers may be directly responsible for your accident. Truck drivers frequently cause accidents in the Dallas area if they drive:
- After drinking alcohol or taking drugs.
- While distracted by a mobile device.
- While fatigued after working long hours.
Drivers may also break a number of different traffic laws before they cause an accident. They may exceed the speed limit, change lanes recklessly, or perform other violations of the rules of the road. If a Dallas car accident lawyer demonstrates that the truck driver caused your accident, you could file a lawsuit against the driver.
However, suing the truck driver personally may not always be the best decision in your case, even if the option is available to you.
Truck Company Liability for Collisions in Texas
The trucking company the driver works for could also be liable for your accident in Dallas. There is a legal doctrine called “vicarious liability” that may apply in these cases. Generally, vicarious liability means that your employer may be held responsible for the actions you take while working.
The vicarious liability doctrine may apply in many semi-truck and 18-wheeler accidents in Dallas. However, it would not apply if a driver was operating a large truck while off the clock or while not carrying out work tasks.
The trucking company may also be directly responsible for your accident in a number of other ways. Sometimes, truck companies bear liability for a collision because they:
- Hired drivers who were not appropriately experienced.
- Did not provide drivers with the correct training.
- Failed to perform maintenance on the trucks.
In these cases, you could file a lawsuit against the trucking company, instead of the individual truck driver. You could be able to get a larger amount of compensation from a trucking company from an individual truck driver, in some cases.
Manufacturer Responsibility for Dallas Truck Accidents
You should be aware that the truck manufacturers may sometimes bear a degree of responsibility for truck accidents in Dallas. This is because manufacturers may construct defective vehicles. These vehicles could fail at inopportune moments, leading to a motor vehicle collision.
The company that constructed different parts of a truck – like the wheels or braking system, for example – could also be liable for an accident if these systems have a defect. In these situations, you could be able to seek compensation through a lawsuit against the manufacturing company.
A Dallas truck accident lawyer could assess your case to determine who was at-fault for the collision. This could allow you to decide who you would like to file a lawsuit against after your accident.
Other Options to Get Compensation for a Truck Accident
There were more than 50,000 injury crashes caused by large trucks in the year 2017, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). You should be aware that many of these cases were resolved outside of the court system, without the use of a lawsuit.
In fact, the majority of truck accident claims are handled with a settlement. In order to settle your claim, you may end up negotiating with the insurance agents representing the person who caused your collision. This could include the truck driver, the trucking company, or a vehicle manufacturer.
A lawyer may be able to handle these negotiations for you here in Dallas. This could allow you to get compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages at work, vehicle repair costs, and more.
Speak to a Lawyer After a Truck Accident
Can you sue someone personally after a truck accident in Dallas? In some cases, you may directly sue the truck driver. You could also seek compensation from the trucking company. Find out more by contacting a Dallas car accident lawyer by calling (214) 305-8277 or completing our online contact form.
Start discussing your legal options right now with a free consultation. We may even be able to help you settle your case outside of court.