Can A Passenger Vehicle Be Liable in Truck Accidents

Florida roads are always busy with both passenger vehicles and large commercial trucks.  Unfortunately, accidents involving these vehicles can be devastating, often resulting in serious injuries, potentially death and significant property damage.  

While the sheer size and weight of trucks often lead to them being perceived as the primarily liable party,  passenger vehicles can also be found at fault in certain situations. Here at Louis Berk Law Firm, our commitment is to pursue justice. Our Orlando Truck Accident Attorneys can help you find the at-fault party and give you the compensation you deserve.

In today´s blog post, we will see how passenger vehicles can be liable in Florida truck accidents.

Understanding Comparative Negligence System

In our blog posts, we often talk about how Florida follows a pure comparative negligence system. This means the fault for an accident is apportioned among all parties involved, including the truck driver and the occupants of the passenger vehicle.  

The percentage of fault attributed to each party directly impacts their ability to recover damages.  For example, if a passenger car driver is found 70% at fault and the truck driver 30% at fault, the car driver’s compensation would be reduced by 70%.

Cases Where a Passenger Vehicle Can Be Liable

In a truck accident, a passenger vehicle driver can be found liable for a portion of the damages if their actions contributed to the accident. Our Orlando Truck Accident Attorneys can help in these situations determining the liability. Here are some common scenarios:

  • Speeding: Exceeding the speed limit is a major violation that can significantly increase the risk of an accident. If a passenger car driver speeds up and results in a collision with a truck, they will likely be found partially at fault.
  • Reckless Driving: Reckless driving behaviors like unsafe lane changes, aggressive tailgating, or ignoring traffic signals can be a significant contributing factor to an accident. A passenger car driver exhibiting such behaviors could be held liable.
  • Distracted Driving: Using a cell phone, eating, or engaging in any activity that diverts attention from the road leads to distracted driving. If a passenger car driver is distracted and hits a truck, they could be found at fault.
  • Failing to Yield Right of Way: Disregarding traffic signs or signals that grant a truck the right of way can lead to an accident. A passenger car driver who fails to yield can be held liable for the resulting collision.
  • Driving Under the Influence (DUI): Driving under the influence of alcohol or any intoxicating substance is a serious offense that significantly impairs driving ability. If a passenger car driver is intoxicated and causes an accident with a truck, they will likely be found mostly, if not entirely, at fault.

Mitigating Passenger Vehicle Liability

If you’re a passenger vehicle driver involved in a truck accident, taking certain steps can help minimize your assigned fault, such as remaining at the scene and contacting an experienced attorney like the ones from our firm. 

Even if you’re partially at fault behind a truck accident, you might still be entitled to compensation under Florida’s pure comparative negligence system.  Our Orlando Truck Accident Attorneys will work to negotiate a settlement or pursue litigation to recover damages for your medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and vehicle damage,  with the amount adjusted based on your percentage of fault.

Additional Considerations

  • Passenger Liability: Depending on the specific circumstances of the accident, passengers in the at-fault passenger vehicle might also be held liable for their share of the damages.
  • Truck Driver’s Fault: It’s important to remember that the truck driver and/or the trucking company can also be found liable for the accident. Factors like fatigued driving, violations of trucking regulations, improper vehicle maintenance, or driving under the influence can all contribute to truck driver fault.

Contact us for more Updates

While the size and weight of trucks often make them a significant factor in accidents, passenger vehicles can also be found liable in Florida. Understanding the pure comparative negligence system and the scenarios where passenger vehicle drivers can be held at fault is crucial. 

Our team can help you understand Florida´s legal system. If you’ve been involved in a truck accident, consulting a qualified personal injury attorney can help you determine your rights more accurately. Our attorneys navigate the legal process, determine fault, and fight for the compensation you deserve. Remember, even if you share some of the blame, you might still be entitled to recover damages.

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