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Employer Negligence

When Trucking Companies Are Careless, People Get Hurt. We Can Help.

Employer Negligence & Truck Accidents

Our Houston Truck Accident Lawyers Explain Negligence & Your Rights

In some cases of serious truck accidents, a truck employer may be at least partially responsible. The companies that regulate truck operations and maintenance are responsible for the safety of their vehicles and the reliability of their employees. When accidents happen, it is important to investigate whether their action or inaction played a role. Federal trucking regulations are put in place to protect the safety and well-being of truck drivers and others on the road. Trucking companies must follow these regulations when employing drivers throughout the U.S. When companies fail to observe the laws set forth for safe truck operation, accidents are much more likely to occur.

Truck Companies Have a Responsibility to Hire Safe Truck Drivers

Many big rig drivers on the road are employed or contracted by small companies. However, the safety directors of these companies may not fully understand their responsibilities. They may hire and retain unsuitable or unsafe drivers. Employers of truck drivers have a legal obligation to perform random testing and background checks and to take reasonable measures to ensure their drivers are properly trained, licensed, and, most importantly, safe.

Truck companies have a duty to make sure a driver is "qualified" according to specific criteria, such as:

  • Having a valid commercial motor vehicle driver's license (CDL)
  • Being able to safely operate a tractor-trailer
  • Being able to complete a driver's road test that examines safe driving techniques
  • Knowing how to use emergency equipment and make pre-trip inspections

In many cases, the truck company must also perform drug and alcohol testing before hiring, after the driver has been in an accident with an injury or fatality, or when the company suspects they've been using drugs or alcohol on duty. Additionally, the company must randomly test 10% of its drivers for alcohol and 50% of its drivers for drugs each year. Regulations also require trucking companies to annually review each trucker's driving record, which includes checking for traffic law violations from the previous 12 months and any "disqualifying" offenses.

Other Examples of Truck Employer Negligence

When trucking companies disregard standard hours of service requirements by requiring truckers to complete more hours of driving time than is typically thought to be safe, they are putting these drivers at risk. Truck driver fatigue can lead to dangerous, even fatal 18-wheeler accidents. However, disregarding hours-of-service regulations is just one example of negligence. Many other instances can also lead to serious accidents.

Additional examples of truck employer negligence taken may include:

  • Inadequate training / failure to train
  • Inadequate vehicle inspection
  • Failure to properly load vehicles
  • Disregard of trucking regulations

It is the responsibility of truck companies to ensure their vehicles and drivers are safe. When this isn’t the case, the employer and/or company should be held liable for the accidents and injuries that result. You can have confidence in the team at Arnold & Itkin. We can find all the parties responsible caused your accident in order to pursue maximum financial compensation. We deliver the best future for our clients by winning the best results.

Negligent Hiring Practices

Trucking companies have a responsibility to other motorists to ensure they have the proper screening methods in place to hire only the best and most qualified people to drive their fleet of trucks. However, the trucking industry has historically faced a shortage of quality drivers. This can lead to relaxed hiring standards that put unsafe truck drivers on the road. If an unqualified truck driver's negligence caused an accident, the trucking company can be held liable for negligent hiring practices.

Negligent hiring practices occur when a trucking company does not implement proper screening and training to ensure that its truck drivers are qualified to operate the vehicle safely. Many factors can go into determining whether or not a trucking company has negligent hiring practices.

Basic screening of all applicants should include the following:

  • Verifying that the applicant has a valid commercial driver's license
  • Running a background check on the applicants criminal history
  • Reviewing the applicants past driving record and accident history
  • Requiring the applicant to pass a drug test
  • Ensuring the applicant does not have problems with alcohol or prescription medication abuse
  • Having a doctor perform a physical to ensure the applicant is medically fit to operate a commercial truck

Trucking companies have a duty to eliminate candidates who do not meet those basic criteria. In fact, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration requires employers to not only verify that drivers have a CDL, but also to obtain an employment and driving history for the applicant's previous three years. A failure to do so would constitute negligent hiring practices and would make the trucking company liable for any injuries caused by the truck driver's negligence.

The Link Between Employer Negligence & Truck Accidents

When Arnold & Itkin LLP begins working on a truck accident case, we thoroughly investigate the records of the trucking company and the driver, using available databases and information sources. Our trucking accident attorneys find out if the driver has had chemical dependency problems or if the company shows a pattern of employing those who do. We collect records of tickets issued, moving violations, and Department of Transportation background checks. We take every necessary measure to thoroughly investigate all records at hand and all of the circumstances of the collision itself to determine its cause.

We have years of experience and a long track record of success in these and other cases involving negligence. We get to the bottom of the situation and build a strong, convincing case for presentation to a jury. There is no excuse for negligent hiring of truck drivers. Call today to let us fight for you.

Case Results

Check Out Our Victories

  • $12 Million Massive Settlement Obtained for Truck Driver Arnold & Itkin is proud to announce that our firm has secured a $12 million settlement on behalf a truck driver who was crushed by his own cargo—which then led directly to a stroke. The driver, who was 56 years old at the time, now requires costly ...
  • $10 Million Settlement Obtained for Family Affected by Fatal Vehicle Accident Our firm represented the family of two people who were killed after their vehicle was hit by an 18-wheeler running a red light. We were successful in reaching an eight figure settlement on their behalf.
  • $10 Million Settlement Won for Family Against Negligent Trucking Company Attorneys Kurt Arnold, Caj Boatright, and Ces Tavares represented a family who had lost their father in a tragic 18-wheeler accident. He was driving home when a trucker made a dangerous maneuver and caused a massive collision. The trucking company ...
  • $3.2 Million Settlement Reached for Injured Husband & Wife Attorney Cory Itkin represented a husband and wife who were injured after being hit by two semi-trucks. The wife sustained back injures while the husband was knocked unconscious; he needed several surgeries. Our firm was successful in reaching a ...
  • $2.1 Million Settlement Obtained for Truck Accident Victim Arnold & Itkin LLP secured a multimillion-dollar settlement for a man who suffered severe neck and back injuries in a truck accident. Our firm aggressively pursued the case until the defendant settled with our client days before trial.
  • $2 Million Large Settlement Obtained for Grieving Family Arnold & Itkin is proud to have secured a massive settlement for a family who lost their loved one due to the negligence and reckless action of a commercial vehicle driver. Our work will allow our clients to live in financial stability while they ...
  • $1.6 Million Large Settlement Reached for Victim of Severe Truck Accident Truck accident attorneys at Arnold & Itkin secured a sizable settlement for a client who was rear-ended by an 18-wheeler on the highway. Her injuries required multiple surgeries, but the defendants refused to take responsibility. Her $1.6 million ...
  • $1.5 Million Big Rig Accident Victim Received Jury Verdict Arnold & Itkin LLP obtained a $1.5 million verdict on behalf of a client who suffered a torn meniscus when he was bumped by a tractor trailer. We are especially pleased with this result because the defendants accepted no responsibility for the injury ...
  • $1.5 Million Jury Verdict Ruled in Favor of Longshoreman Arnold & Itkin obtained a $1.55 million verdict on behalf of a client who was seriously injured when a yard mule driver collided with the pickup truck in which he was standing. The defendants only offered to settle for $35,000 while denying the ...
  • $1.49 Million Settlement for Man Struck by a Truck Our firm helped represent a client who was severely injured after he was struck by a truck. We helped recover $1.49 million on his behalf.
See All Results

Arnold & Itkin was great to me—to my family. They'll just get through the good and bad times. They were just on it. They work together as a team better than anybody I've ever been around.

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