Illinois residents who are victims of truck accidents may be able to hold parties other than the truck driver liable for personal injury claims. Holding third parties liable for trucking accidents may help injured victims recover damages that are sufficient to pay for their losses. While truck drivers may have been negligent, other parties might also share some responsibility for causing these accidents. By identifying all of the parties who should be named as defendants, a truck accident attorney may find more sources for recovery for injured clients.
Third Parties That May be Liable
Trucking companies who employ negligent drivers may be held to be vicariously liable for the actions of their employees. Additionally, other parties might also share liability. For example, if the driver or company leased the truck from someone else, the owner may be liable if a defect or malfunction of the truck caused the accident. Companies that manufactured the truck or its parts might hold liability if the truck or its components were defective, and the defect contributed to the accident and subsequent injury.
Companies or individuals whose jobs involve maintaining and repairing the trucks might be liable if the trucks were repaired improperly or poorly maintained. For example, if the brakes were poorly maintained and contributed to the accident, the company responsible for maintenance and repairs may be held liable. Improperly secured loads or improperly loaded goods may cause accidents. When shipping companies or distributors fail to load trucks properly and secure their goods, they may share liability in resulting truck accidents if the loads shift or fall from the trucks.
The Importance of Identifying All Defendants
Truck accidents often result in catastrophic injuries or deaths that may lead to millions of dollars in losses. When all of the potential defendants are properly identified, there may be additional sources of recovery beyond the insurance held by the drivers and their employers. If all of the potential defendants are not named in a lawsuit, a jury may still allocate a portion of the damages to the unnamed defendants, leading to a reduction in any award. A truck accident attorney may conduct a thorough investigation to uncover all potential defendants so they may be properly named in a lawsuit.