Unlike a typical car accident, the liability in a truck accident can fall on multiple parties. The truck driver is the most obvious. Yet, the trucking company itself may also be held liable in certain situations. Have you heard of negligent hiring?
One way a trucking company can be responsible for a wreck is if the company was negligent in its hiring practices. In this article, our Dallas lawyers will explain negligent hiring and related issues and describe how it can affect a personal injury case.
What Is Negligent Hiring in Trucking?
It takes a high degree of driving skill to safely operate a commercial truck. Trucking companies are responsible for properly vetting drivers and hiring only those who have the right qualifications and experience.
Additionally, trucking companies must conduct background checks on applicants to discover any history of traffic offenses, criminal convictions, violations of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s regulations, and other red flags in the applicant’s record.
Negligent hiring is a legal claim that can be brought by an injured person in the aftermath of a truck wreck. When you claim negligent hiring, you claim the trucking company failed to use reasonable care when hiring the driver.
Examples of possibly negligent hiring practices include:
- Hiring truck drivers who do not hold a commercial driver’s license (CDL) as required by Texas and federal law
- Failure to conduct adequate background checks before hiring a driver
- Ignoring an applicant’s prior DUI(s) or moving violations
- Ignoring an applicant’s prior failed drug or alcohol tests
- Hiring a driver known to have a health condition that makes him/her a dangerous driver (poor vision, for example)
If an attorney can prove actions like these on the part of the trucking company, then the company may be held liable for injuries, death and property damage caused by the driver.
Hiring Practices Impacted by COVID-19
The COVID-19 pandemic caused demand for truck drivers to surge as people rely more and more on Amazon and other online stores for all kinds of goods. Amazon hired 100,000 more distribution workers back in March to be able to meet increasing demand.
The heavy demand for more drivers could cause trucking companies to relax their hiring standards, and as a result, put a higher number of questionable drivers on the road. Anyone injured in a truck accident should be sure their attorney considers the possibility of a negligent hiring claim.
Our Dallas Attorneys Can Evaluate Your Truck Wreck Claim
The Dallas-based law firm of Ted B. Lyon & Associates is one of Texas’s leading personal injury firms. Call 800-TedLyon or send us a message to schedule a free initial consultation and claim evaluation.