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Commercial Vehicle Accidents

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What Is a Commercial Vehicle?

A commercial vehicle, such as an eighteen-wheeler or bus, is used to professionally transport goods or people. When accident occurs between a passenger and commercial vehicles, who is responsible is based on who is negligent.

What Is Negligence in Commercial Vehicle Accidents?

Negligence occurs when a driver fails to use the amount of care a driver would use in the same or similar circumstances. In other words, a driver has a duty not to cause harm to pedestrians and other drivers.

How Do I Prove the Commercial Driver Was Negligent in My Vehicle Accident?

An injured person must show the commercial driver was negligent by proving:

  • The defendant owed the injured person a duty to exercise reasonable care to avoid causing injuries.
  • The defendant failed to exercise reasonable care. This is referred to as a breach of duty.
  • The defendant’s failure to exercise reasonable care caused the injury suffered by the victim.
  • The victim’s injuries led to damages such as lost wages, medical bills, and pain and suffering.

Is the Commercial Driver Always Liable for the Automobile Accident?

No. Some accidents are the fault of the driver in the passenger vehicle. Also, a commercial driver may not be solely liable for the accident even if he caused the accident. “Respondeat superior” is a liability theory holding the company responsible for the vehicle accident. An employer is responsible for an employee’s wrongful actions if the actions were:

  • Unintentional
  • Done within the scope of employment

What If the Commercial Driver’s Act Was Intentional?

An employer may not be liable when a driver intentionally causes an automobile accident. Intentional acts falls in the category of intentional torts like:

  • Assault
  • Battery
  • Kidnapping

Should I Meet with an Attorney Regarding My Commercial Vehicle Accident?

Contact a personal injury attorney whether you were a driver of a passenger or commercial vehicle involved in an accident. These types of vehicle accidents are complex because there is more than one possible defendant involved. Speak to an attorney to understand more about your case. 

Photo of page author Taelonnda Sewell

, LegalMatch Legal Writer

Last Modified: 04-16-2015 10:54 AM PDT

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