Accidents involving commercial trucks are traumatic for injured victims and frustrating for everyone involved. The immense size of a tractor-trailer can leave a passenger vehicle irreparably damaged and they often result in catastrophic injuries as well. If you are considering pursuing damages related to a commercial truck accident, it is essential to identify the proper defendant before you proceed. If you fail to do so, you might be left to pay for everything yourself.
The Virginia commercial truck accident lawyers from Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp are able to help you gather, sort, and index all evidence relevant to your case. To learn more about Virginia truck accidents or to get the ball rolling on your claim, reach out to one of our Virginia truck accident attorneys today.
Potential Defendants in a Commercial Truck Accident
After being injured in an accident with a commercial truck, it can be hard to determine exactly who is responsible because of the multiple parties that are involved. From brokers to trucking companies, a litany of people and companies could potentially be liable.
The Truck Operator
When it comes to establishing the responsible party in a commercial truck crash, the most obvious choice is the truck operator. Drivers are commonly named in Injury claims, but not always. The driver might be named in the suit if they are suspected of driving while intoxicated, falling asleep at the wheel, or violating any of the regulations set forth by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.
Truck Company Brokers
Shippers often use brokers to hire trucking companies to haul their merchandise. The broker is responsible for hiring a trucking company that is licensed, qualified, and has a good safety record. If the broker failed to screen the hired trucking company properly, they could be held liable.
It is not uncommon for the person operating the truck to be someone other than the owner. Commercial truck owners are responsible for any repairs and maintenance to their vehicles. Sometimes, tracking down the owner is a complicated task in and of itself since they might not be affiliated with the logo or company printed on the truck itself.
Whether the truck is leased or owned by the company, the truck driver’s employer is frequently named as a defendant, often due to not adequately supervising or screening the drivers they hire. For instance, if the trucking company knew that one of its drivers had already exceeded their hours of service regulations but allowed them to make deliveries anyway, they would most likely be at least partially liable.
If a repair or maintenance company was contracted to service a commercial truck that is then involved in an accident, they could be held responsible if a mechanical defect or malfunction is proven to have played a role in the accident.
If a commercial truck is discovered to have a faulty component that may have caused a serious accident, the manufacturer could be held accountable. Wholesalers who sell defective parts can also be listed as defendants.
Were You Injured In A Virginia Truck Accident?
Identifying the proper defendant or defendants in a commercial truck accident can be extremely complicated, mostly due to the amount of people involved. Brokers and trucking companies will also have a team of lawyers on their side, so it is vital to work with an experienced professional from the beginning.
Reaching out to a law firm with decades of experience handling Virginia commercial truck accidents can make all the difference in the outcome of your case. Our lawyers work hard to collect evidence, study it, and use it to build the strongest possible case to present to a jury.
If you were injured in a collision with a commercial truck, call the Virginia truck accident lawyers at Shapiro, Washburn & Sharp right away at (833) 997-1774 or through our contact form online.