Who is liable when you are involved in an accident while driving a company car? This is a question we will discuss in the following article. It's important to keep in mind that evidence of the defendant's liability might be obtained through the discovery process, which is governed by a number of laws that can make things potentially quite complex. Specifically, laws surrounding accidents in Connecticut.
While you can read on for further information, we advise you to seek legal advice if you find yourself in such a predicament.
Brandon J. Broderick, Attorney at Law has represented clients in unique situations just like this. We can do the same for you.
Commercial Accidents Are Generally Subject to Connecticut's Comparative Fault Laws
When determining damages, Connecticut uses the "modified comparative fault" method. This means that a plaintiff may receive compensation even if they contributed to the accident in any way. The plaintiff's proportionate share of the accident's liability will be deducted from the award. That said, if the plaintiff is deemed to be more at fault than the defendant, the plaintiff may not be entitled to damages at all. A 51 percent threshold determines whether someone can be awarded damages. In the end, the jury will determine who contributed more to the accident. If the jury determines that the victim was more than 50% at fault for the accident, the plaintiff will not be compensated.
Here's a basic example of how this may work. Let's say you were involved in an accident with a commercial vehicle, and are awarded $100,000 in damages. However, a jury has determined that you were partially at fault because you had changed lanes without using your turn signal. They give you 10% fault in the accident. This means that you would get just $90,000 of the $100,000 judgment, which is 90% of the damages.
In Commercial Vehicle Accidents, Victims Must Prove That One Defendant Is At Fault
The idea of joint and several liability is used by many states. This makes each party responsible for the entire amount of the plaintiff's damages if there are two or more parties involved in an accident, regardless of their percentage of fault. This is not the type of liability in Connecticut, which uses the apportionment rule. This concept states that each defendant is only responsible to the plaintiff for their proportionate share of the damages. Because the plaintiff must establish that each defendant was accountable for at least a portion of the losses, this can be incredibly complex.
The plaintiff will not be entitled to compensation if they are unable to demonstrate that at least one of the defendants contributed to their injuries in some way.
Involved in an Accident With a Commercial Vehicle? Call Us Today
If you believe you may be entitled to damages after a commercial vehicle accident, hiring legal counsel with experience in these cases is very important. You want to ensure your rights are protected and a lawyer can do that for you.
The Connecticut personal injury attorneys at Brandon J. Broderick have extensive experience managing incidents involving commercial vehicles and have been serving the state for years. We take great pleasure in the level of service that our law firm. This involves keeping in touch with you frequently and informing you of developments in your case.
Contact us today by phone to discuss your case.