Visitor Question

Accident driving a truck requiring a commercial drivers license?

Submitted By: Shane (WI)

The construction company that I work for is currently attempting to deny hours for driving the Commercial Drivers License (CDL) truck from the worksite to an offsite location, and vise versa, before and after work.

If I’m “off the clock” driving that commercial vehicle to the offsite location, who is responsible for an accident that occurs in their vehicle? And are there any laws that require individuals to be “on the clock” while driving a commercial vehicle requiring a CDL? Thank you for any information you can provide.

Disclaimer: Our response is not formal legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. It is generic legal information based on the very limited information provided. Do not rely upon the information in our response, or anywhere else on this site, when deciding the proper course of a legal matter. Always get a personalized case review from a local attorney.

Answer

Dear Shane,

If the employer requires you to drive a truck from one location to another, regardless of whether you are “on the clock,” and while driving that truck you are involved in an accident where you were at fault, you may be personally liable and the employer may also be liable. This liability is referred to as “joint and several liability.”

In a case like this, the injured person or persons, or those persons who may have sustained property damage can choose who to pursue for compensation. They may elect to sue you alone, the employer alone, or both of you.

Because it is more likely the employer has “deep pockets,” meaning the employer has higher insurance coverage, you can be confident the employer will be sued.

The above is general information. Laws change frequently, and across jurisdictions. You should get a personalized case evaluation from a licensed attorney. Find a local attorney to give you a free case review here , or call (888) 647-2490.

Best of luck,

Published: April 2, 2015

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