Is the Driver an Employee or Independent Contractor?- To show that a driver is an employee of the trucking company and not an owner-operator of a rig, you will need to focus on how much control the company has over the trucker’s schedule and ability to enter into contracts with other trucking companies. Call Bobe & Snell Law Office LLC  now at (470) 268-5802 If you have been involved in a commercial vehicle accident.

A truck driver’s employer can be responsible for an accident caused by a truck driver under a legal theory called respondeat superior, meaning “let the master answer.” Contact Bobe & Snell Law Office LLC today at (470) 268-5802 If you have been involved in a commercial vehicle accident.

If the trucker who hit you was negligent (careless), you can bring an injury-related insurance claim or lawsuit against the driver after the accident. You will also want to look into other potentially liable parties, like the truck driver’s employer. Call us now at (470) 268-5802 If you have been involved in a commercial vehicle accident.

Distracted driving- Unfortunately, some drivers use their cell phones or any other electronic device while driving and they don’t pay attention to what is happening on the road leading to distracted driving. Any form of distraction that can divert the attention of the driver away from the road – even for a second or two – can easily lead to a fatal head-on collision. Call Bobe & Snell Law Office LLC today at (470) 268-5802 If you lost a loved one in a fatal car accident that occurred due to someone else’s negligence.

Accidents involving commercial trucks are much more complicated than a typical car accident claim. In a commercial truck accident, you will probably be able to file claims against more people and companies, including: truck driver, truck driver’s employer, owner of the truck. Contact Bobe & Snell Law Office LLC today at (470) 268-5802 If you have been involved in a commercial vehicle accident.

Atlanta Commercial Vehicle Accident Lawyer

Atlanta Commercial Vehicle Accident Lawyer: Driver and Company Liability for Commercial Truck Accidents.

After a truck accident, is the driver on the legal hook or is an employer or business financially responsible? When you have been injured in an accident involving a big rig, semi-trailer, or commercial truck, the most important thing after seeking medical attention is to partner with an experienced, professional, reliable and dedicated Atlanta commercial vehicle accident lawyer to protect your rights.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, over 5,000 people were killed and an estimated 159,000 people were injured in crashes involving large trucks in 2019. Many large trucks are commercial trucks, including delivery trucks, 18-wheelers, big rigs, and tanker trucks.

If you have been injured in an accident involving a commercial truck, you need to know:

  • the truck driver’s employer and others might be on the hook for your losses, and
  • state and federal regulations might help you prove the driver was at fault for the accident.

Who Is Legally Responsible for a Commercial Vehicle Accident?

Accidents involving commercial trucks are much more complicated than a typical car accident claim. In a typical two-car accident case, you might be able to sue the at-fault driver and file a claim with an insurance company.

In a commercial truck accident, you will probably be able to file claims against more people and companies, including:

  • truck driver
  • truck driver’s employer
  • owner of the truck
  • cargo owner and loader, and
  • truck maintenance company.

Not all commercial truck accidents involve all of these entities. For example, some truck drivers are independent contractors who own their own big rigs.

Truck Driver Liability

Commercial truck accidents happen for all kinds of reasons. Some accidents are caused by driver errors, some occur due to bad weather conditions or faulty road designs, and others are caused by equipment failures.

For example, a truck driver might speed to get to the next truck stop, make an unsafe lane change, or rear-end a car stopped in traffic. Drivers who are tired or under the influence of drugs or alcohol are more likely to make mistakes and cause accidents.

If the trucker who hit you was negligent (careless), you can bring an injury-related insurance claim or lawsuit against the driver after the accident. You will also want to look into other potentially liable parties, like the truck driver’s employer.

Is the Truck Driver’s Employer Liable?

A truck driver’s employer can be responsible for an accident caused by a truck driver under a legal theory called respondeat superior, meaning “let the master answer.”

Under this theory, an employer can be liable for an employee’s actions if the employee was working at the time of the accident for the employer’s benefit. But trucking companies often try to avoid liability by arguing that the driver is an independent contractor and not an employee or that the driver wasn’t working at the time of the accident.

Therefore, you need an experienced Atlanta commercial vehicle accident lawyer to help you gather enough evidence to build a strong case to hold a truck driver’s employer liable.

Let’s now take a closer look at these arguments

Is the Driver an Employee or Independent Contractor?

Laws vary from state to state, but to show that a driver is an employee of the trucking company and not an owner-operator of a rig, you will need to focus on how much control the company has over the trucker’s schedule and ability to enter into contracts with other trucking companies.

You will also want to look at how the trucking company pays the driver and who is responsible for paying for the truck’s registration, permit, and insurance.

Courts and insurance companies will ask these questions and more to decide how much liability to assign to the driver and the trucking company.

For example, if a truck driver uses his own truck, pays for his own liability insurance coverage, buys his own gas, assumes the cost of maintenance and repairs, gets paid on a “per route” basis, and receives no benefits from the trucking company, the driver is probably an independent contractor.

However, if the trucking company leases the truck from the driver, controls the driver’s routes, and obtains the necessary permits, the company will probably be responsible for accidents involving the truck.

When Are Drivers Acting Within the Scope of Employment?

For a trucking company to be liable, the truck driver must be an employee who was working at the time of an accident for the employer’s benefit (or “acting within the scope of employment”). Courts tend to look at:

  • the nature, time, and place of the employee’s conduct
  • the intent of the employee at the time of the accident
  • the type of work the employee was hired to do
  • the amount of freedom an employee typically has in performing duties, and
  • the incidental acts the employer should reasonably expect an employee to do.

For example, if a truck driver rear-ends you while making a delivery, the driver’s employer will probably be liable for your accident-related losses because the truck driver was acting “within the scope of employment” at the time of the accident.

But let’s say a truck driver leaves work early to go to a basketball game and hits you outside of the stadium. Here, the driver’s employer will argue that the company isn’t liable for the driver’s negligence because the driver was not acting “within the scope of employment” at the time of the accident.

How Do Multiple Defendants Affect a Truck Accident Lawsuit?

When you (the “plaintiff”) file a personal injury lawsuit against more than one party or entity (the “defendants”), the defendants might be equally responsible for your losses (damages), or they might only be responsible for the portion of your damages they caused.

For example, a tired truck driver might share partial responsibility for an accident, along with the manufacturer of faulty tires. You can sue the driver (or the driver’s employer), as well as the tire manufacturer.

The defendants will have to sort out their share of fault to reach a settlement or let the jury decide at trial. You should consult an experienced Atlanta commercial vehicle accident lawyer to help you identify all potential defendants in your lawsuit.

What If the Driver’s Acts Were Intentional?

Generally, employers aren’t liable for intentional torts (like assaults) committed by employees. Employees are typically not acting “within the scope of employment” when they steal credit card information, for example, or punch customers in the face.

So, if a truck driver slams into you because you are sleeping with the truck driver’s spouse, the trucking company probably isn’t liable for the truck driver’s actions.

State and Federal Trucking Regulations

Truck drivers, owners, and manufacturers must comply with state and federal regulations. Regulators control how long a driver can go without rest, how much weight a rig can haul, and many other aspects of the trucking industry.

When a commercial truck is involved in an accident, there is a good chance that a state, federal, or local law was violated. Proving a violation of law greatly increases an injured person’s chances of winning an insurance settlement or in court.

State and federal regulations typically require truck drivers and owners to have more insurance than non-commercial drivers. Defendants who have higher insurance policy limits have deeper pockets are more likely to be able to compensate you for the full value of your claim.

Talk to a Lawyer

Commercial truck accidents are more complicated than the average car accident case. You might be able to handle your case yourself, but you might short-change yourself if you do.

Learn more about commercial truck accident claims/lawsuits, and talk to a lawyer. An experienced Atlanta commercial vehicle accident lawyer can help you make an insurance claim, negotiate a settlement, and represent you in court.

Atlanta Commercial Vehicle Accident Lawyer

If you have been involved in a commercial vehicle accident, contact Bobe & Snell Law Office LLC today to talk to an attorney with vast experience handling commercial vehicle accident cases. Call us now at (470) 268-5802 or contact us online to schedule a FREE, no-obligation case review/ consultation.

Commercial Vehicle Accident Lawyer

Atlanta Commercial Vehicle Accident Lawyer

 

When choosing a personal injury lawyer, you want to limit your search to lawyers who handle the same type of case as your injury case. Contact Bobe & Snell Law Office LLC, at (470) 268-5802 To get the quality legal representation you need.

Auto Accident Injury Attorney

Millions of people are injured each year in auto accidents that were not their fault. They suffer physical injuries, financial losses, and emotional trauma. Sadly, many of these injuries were avoidable had it not been for someone else’s carelessness or negligence. If you sustained a personal injury in a car accident, you might be entitled to compensation for your damages. Thankfully, an experienced and reliable auto accident injury attorney can help you seek justice and get the compensation that you deserve. The party or parties that caused the accident should be held responsible for your injuries.

Compensation for a personal injury claim can include money for your medical care, loss of income, physical pain, emotional distress, loss of quality of life, disabilities, and other damages.

The first step is to choose the best attorney to handle your case. Working with an experienced personal injury attorney can give you a better chance of a positive outcome in your case/claim.

Choosing A Lawyer for Your Case

When choosing a personal injury lawyer, you want to limit your search to lawyers who handle the same type of case as your injury case. Some lawyers practice many different types of law, such as personal injury, family law, and estate law.

However, some law firms and attorneys limit their practice to representing accident victims and their families. Therefore, they are generally strong and experienced legal advocates for the rights of accident victims. Because they limit their practice to personal injury cases, they also have developed substantial knowledge, skills, and resources related to personal injury law.

Personal injury law encompasses a wide variety of injury claims. Cases may involve injuries related to car accidents, slip and fall accidents, nursing home abuse, construction accidents, or countless other situations that can cause injuries.

It’s important that you look for an attorney who handles your specific type of personal injury claim. For example, if your case involves a defective product, you need to choose a lawyer with substantial experience handling those types of cases.

You can usually find a list of the types of cases an attorney handles on the law firm’s website. It is also acceptable and wise to ask the attorney directly during your first meeting how much experience the attorney has handling cases similar to your case.

Verify the Attorney is Licensed to Practice Law

Before scheduling a consultation with an attorney, you should check to ensure that the lawyer is admitted to practice law in Georgia and is in good standing with the State Bar of Georgia.

The Bar has a “Find a Lawyer” feature on its website. You can use that feature to search for the attorney. The results provide you with the attorney’s bar number, mailing address, and contact information.

You can also see when the auto accident injury attorney was admitted to practice in Georgia, where he graduated from law school, and a 10-year discipline history.

Meet with the Attorney for a Consultation

Contact the office to schedule a consultation with the lawyer. Most personal injury lawyers offer a free consultation, so it does not cost you anything to meet with them to discuss your case.

The free consultation is an opportunity for you and the lawyer to get to know each other. It is also a time for the lawyer to learn about your injury claim and for you to learn about your legal rights.

Important questions to keep in mind to rate the attorney after your consultation include:

  • Did the lawyer listen to you and address each of your questions or concerns?
  • Were you able to communicate effectively with the lawyer?
  • Do you feel as if you can trust the attorney?
  • Could you be open and honest about all matters?
  • Did the attorney seem impatient and rushed, or did he appear calm and unhurried as he answered your questions?
  • Do you believe you were treated with respect and compassion?

It is vital that you have a good working relationship with your personal injury attorney. The success of your case depends on your ability to communicate well with your lawyer. If you felt uncomfortable in any way, you may want to continue your search for an auto accident injury lawyer.

Prepare a List of Questions for Your Consultation 

In addition to getting to know the lawyer, your consultation is also a chance to obtain legal advice. The more information and details you can provide the lawyer, the better advice you can receive.

Therefore, prepare for your consultation by writing down any questions you might want to ask the lawyer. The questions may relate to your case, the attorney’s experience handling cases similar to your case, the attorney’s track record, and any other important subjects.

An important question to ask a lawyer is will he/she be handling or supervising your case directly. It is good that a law firm has sufficient staff to work on cases. However, when you hire a lawyer, you want to know that the lawyer is handling your case instead of your case being passed off to an associate or paralegal.

Make sure that you bring copies of accident reports, insurance claims, medical records, and other documents and information that can help the auto accident injury attorney Atlanta understand what happened to you.

Discuss the Attorneys’ Fees with the Lawyer

Many personal injury attorneys accept cases on a contingency fee basis. What that means for you is that you can hire an attorney without paying any attorneys’ fees upfront. You only pay the attorneys’ fees after the attorney recovers compensation for your personal injury claim.

The fee is based on a percentage of the recovery in your case. Make sure you clarify whether the percentage changes if the case goes to court.

Also, you need to discuss who pays for the costs. Lawyers handle costs in different ways. Many lawyers pay the costs as the case progresses and obtain reimbursement from the settlement proceeds.

Ensure that you discuss who is responsible for the costs if the attorney does not recover any money for your claim. Do not sign a retainer agreement until you are clear on all terms regarding fees and costs.

Take Time to Think About Your Decision

Avoid making decisions about hiring an attorney while sitting in the office. Take a day or two to consider what you learned during the consultation. If you trust the lawyer and feel confident in your decision, contact the law firm to set up an appointment to retain the lawyer.

During this time, you might want to research the attorney online. Read the information on the lawyer’s website and reviews from peers or previous clients. If you discover any issues or have questions, call the lawyer to clear up those matters before you meet to sign the retainer agreement.

Don’t Underestimate the Costs Associated With a Catastrophic Injury

One of the defining characteristics of a catastrophic injury following a car accident is the need for ongoing care. Sometimes, victims require permanent and even around-the-clock care. The costs associated with this level of care can be astronomical.

Insurance companies often try to capitalize on the fact that car accident victims often don’t have in-depth knowledge of the personal injury laws designed to protect them. They might offer you money right away. Even though it can be tempting to get money in your pocket quickly, these settlement offers rarely account for the full costs of your injury.

Our experienced, reputable, and dedicated auto accident injury attorney at Bobe & Snell Law Office LLC will put in the work to assess the true value of your car accident injury claim. Catastrophic injury victims are often entitled to compensation for:

  • Medical bills, including emergency room costs and hospitalization
  • Lost wages
  • Surgeries
  • Future medical expenses
  • Lost future earning capacity
  • Rehabilitative care
  • Physical therapy
  • Long-term care
  • Emotional distress
  • Pain and suffering
  • PTSD
  • Loss of your independence
  • Diminished quality of life
  • Damages for wrongful death

You are entitled to be compensated for all costs associated with your injury if someone else’s careless actions were to blame. That includes the emotional toll the injury will undoubtedly take on you and your family.

Never accept a settlement offer without first running it by a personal injury lawyer. Whenever you are ready to take the next step, our legal team is standing by to take your call.

Get Started Today

You have a difficult road ahead if you or a loved one have suffered a catastrophic injury. You deserve financial help. To get the quality legal representation you need, contact us at (470) 268-5802 or contact us online to schedule a FREE, no-obligation consultation today. We want to hear about what happened to you because we want to help.

Auto Accident Injury Attorney

At Bobe & Snell Law Office LLC, our auto accident injury lawyers are passionate about helping injured car accident victims seek the compensation they deserve for their damages and injuries. We have a team of dedicated legal professionals who will protect your best interests and help you get justice.

Auto Accident Injury Attorney

Auto Accident Injury Attorney

You should look for an attorney who is well versed in state and national transportation laws, can deal with insurance and healthcare companies, and knows how to prepare and settle a claim or case effectively. Call  Bobe & Snell Law Office LLC today at (470) 268-5802 you can trust Atlanta vehicle accident lawyers.

You should take legal action against the party at fault for the crash to hold him or her responsible for their actions. Recovering monetary compensation following a car accident is not an easy task. Call Bobe & Snell Law Office LLC, today at (470) 268-5802 we will do our very best to properly evaluate the harm that your car crash injuries will cause you.