Deliveries and shipping are at all time highs, and with the approaching holiday season even more delivery drivers will be on New Jersey’s roads. Whether it's a UPS, Fed-Ex or Amazon delivery vehicle or a delivery vehicle from a smaller, local company, New Jersey motorists are at risk of getting into a truck accident. In this blog post, we’ll review your options for suing if you’re hit by a delivery driver.
Delivery Truck Accident Liability
It can be challenging to work through determining liability in a delivery truck accident, due to the number of different parties involved. The complexity of a delivery truck accident is one of the key reasons to consult with an experienced truck accident attorney to understand your case and your options. The amount of any settlement will depend on the specific facts and circumstances, including the extent of a victim’s physical, emotional and financial harm and available insurance coverage. An expert in truck accident cases will know how to gather and analyze evidence to determine liability and calculate potential damages in your case.
Delivery Company Liability
If a commercial truck hits you while in the course of delivering packages, the business itself may be legally liable for the accidents and injuries that occur. Delivery companies must adhere to strict guidelines and laws regarding the maintenance of their fleet of delivery trucks and ensuring their drivers are properly trained, certified and educated. When a delivery company fails in its duty of care, it can be liable for damages in an accident.
In some cases, the truck itself may be owned by another company. It may be possible that the trucking company is liable if they failed to properly maintain or inspect the trucks. Another scenario is that the trucking company fails to replace or repair damaged or defective parts.
Delivery Driver Negligence
Delivery driver negligence is a common cause of truck accidents. In fact, driver fatigue is one of most common causes of accidents in the trucking industry. Companies may offer incentives for drivers to meet goals that may cause them to work longer hours or operate the truck negligently. Other types of delivery driver negligence include:
- Impaired driving, due to alcohol or drug use
- Distracted driving
- Failure to yield the right of way
- Failure to comply with traffic laws, signals and signs
Truck accidents commonly involve more than one liable party. In other words, it may be possible to sue both the driver and delivery company if you are hit by a delivery vehicle. If you’re hit by a food delivery driver using their own vehicle like UberEats, you may be entitled to compensation under their liability plans.
Compensation If You’re Hit by a Delivery Vehicle
Filing a lawsuit after you’re hit by a delivery driver would likely be a type of personal injury claim. Your claim would seek compensation for your losses resulting from the accident. Losses are categorized into types of damages. Economic damages include tangible losses like medical bills and lost wages. You may also have suffered non-economic losses such as pain and suffering. Compensation could include:
- Medical costs, including medical bills, prescriptions, physical therapy, rehabilitation services and the costs of getting to and from medical appointment
- Lost income for the time missed from work. If you’re unable to return to work, you may be entitled to compensation for your lost earning capacity
- Pain and suffering, which compensates for the physical and/or emotional stress associated with an accident and the injuries caused by it. The amount of compensation you can receive for pain and suffering typically depends on the severity of your injury.
- Loss of enjoyment. If you can no longer do things that once gave you enjoyment before the accident, like playing a sport or a musical instrument, you could receive compensation for your ‘loss of enjoyment.’
Generally, the more serious and potentially life-changing an injury is, the higher the amount of the award compensation. A truck accident lawyer will advise you and help determine a compensation amount to demand from the at-fault parties.
Brandon J. Broderick Can Help You Recover Compensation
Determining liability if you’re hit by a delivery vehicle can be complicated. And, insurance companies will try to avoid paying you the full amount of damages, pressuring you to settle quickly. You should always be careful of signing anything when you are in an accident with a delivery driver. Talk with an attorney who has the experience to help you get the compensation you need.
At Brandon J. Broderick, our knowledgeable truck accident attorneys have decades of experience helping those who are injured by another party’s negligence or recklessness. Contact us for a free consultation. One of our trusted team members will listen to your story, learn about your case, and can advise you on the next steps. Many of our clients feel a sense of relief once they make that first phone call. Contact us today.