Respondeat Superior in Truck Accident Liability

» Posted by on Apr 30, 2013 in Auto Accident | 1 comment

You may be going “huh?” but when your truck accident lawyer considers this or the dangerous instrumentality doctrine, it refers to a type of liability where the owner of a tool may be held accountable for any damage or injuries it may cause.

If you are going “huh?” again, you should consider that a truck, because of its sheer size and weight, poses a greater danger to other vehicles and people the road than does your ordinary vehicle, and should therefore be operated by a qualified and responsible person. The truck driver, by virtue of the vehicle being controlled, may be considered a tool with a potential for great damage. The “owner” (employer) of that tool is therefore liable for any injury or damage that may result under the dangerous instrumentality doctrine.

Respondeat superior is phrased somewhat differently but may be interpreted to essentially mean the same thing. The liability for a truck accident may be laid at the door of the principal (owner) if it is due to driver negligence while in the execution of regular duties or otherwise functioning as an employee. The employer is liable under the theory that little or no care was given to the hiring of the truck driver, who provide not fit to be in control of a truck, or negligent hiring. There are other ways that an employer may be considered liable for a truck accident, including illegal extension of a truck driver’s work hours or inadequate maintenance of a truck, depending on the circumstances.

Claims against the employer when a commercial truck accident may be considered when the truck driver is incapable of compensating an injured party be he or she ever so willing. An experienced truck accident lawyer would be able to gauge what and how to file a claim against an employer to recover damages resulting from injuries.

1 Comment

  1. Good article. I didn’t know about this issue, so it’s nice to have something explain it a simply, easy-to-understand way.

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