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Assigning liability in a truck accident

After having been involved in a truck accident in Kansas City, you are often forced to deal with a number of different issues. There's the medical care you and any loved one's also injured in the crash may need, as well as the potential for further financial losses from having to miss work in order to recuperate. Then there is the matter of having to repair or replace your vehicle. Many of those that have come to see us here at McShane & Brady LLC who have been through similar ordeals have often found that standard insurance coverage is not enough to help cover their costs. If you do need to seek compensation, who is ultimately liable: the truck driver that hit you, or the company that employs them? 

The legal principle of respondeat superior allows you to assign liability to a third party in cases where the one who caused you harm was acting as said party's agent. Per rulings issued by the Missouri Supreme Court, respondeat superior allows an employer to be held liable even in situations where an employee's conduct was deemed to be: 

  • Wrongful
  • Unskillful 
  • Negligent 

The reason why employers are liable even when such elements are present is because it is their responsibility to hire people who are fit to assist in the transaction of their business. 

One important fact to remember about respondeat superior, however, is that an employee must have been acting within the scope of their employment when an accident occurred. In the case of your truck accident, proving that the truck driver was in the course of completing a route when they struck you may indicate just that. 

For more information on who to hold accountable for an accident, please continue to browse through our site. 

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