What Do I Do if I Had a Car Accident in a Company/Work Vehicle?

What Do I Do if I Had a Car Accident in a Company/Work Vehicle?

A man sustains a back injury after an accident in a company vehicle.

After an accident, who typically foots the bill for damage to a company vehicle? Simply put, it depends. It depends on the accident’s specifics, the type of damage, and the employer’s particular liability insurance policy. But, of course, if the other driver was at fault, they should be held responsible and forced to pay damages. Yet, if one is found to be the at-fault motorist, it boils down to insurance coverage.

Accident in Work Vehicle in St. Louis

Employer, employee, and vicarious liability are the three primary categories of liability plans that most insurance providers have in place for company cars. Who is responsible for paying depends on which policies the employer’s insurance provider provides.

Employer Responsibility

The costs are covered by the business, not the employee, if an employer’s auto insurance policy protects a corporate automobile. However, there are guidelines for what is and is not acceptable. The driver’s behavior and actions at the time of the collision must have been in accordance with the corporate agreement for the employer to be held liable for the accident.
Smaller businesses might not be able to pay as much auto insurance as larger businesses with several drivers and huge fleets of vehicles.

Employee Responsibility

Some businesses hold employees personally accountable for any and all car damage. In this situation, the motorist is liable for all costs associated with the collision, including any property damage, medical expenses, and other expenses.

If they caused the accident, they must also resolve any third-party claims against them by other accident victims through their insurance company. Depending on the business, the employer may cover the expenses upfront and ask the employee to reimburse them or instruct them to file a claim with their insurer.

Vicarious Liability

The vicarious liability clause is the one that covers company vehicles the most frequently. Liability for an accident involving a business automobile is, in essence, determined using a sliding scale.

Any accident or work-related harm incurred while operating a company vehicle for business purposes during regular business hours is subject to vicarious liability, as long as the employee was not intoxicated or acting recklessly while driving and was instead doing a work-related activity or an allowed act.

Any person operating a corporate vehicle must read and comprehend the details of vicarious responsibility and employee rights before getting behind the wheel because coverage can vary based on the environment.

What Happens if a Car Accident Occurs While Driving a Personal Vehicle While Driving for Work in Missouri?

Anytime someone uses their vehicle for work-related activities, they should check with their employer to see if they are covered. Typically, it is up to the car’s owner to make independent arrangements for personal liability insurance.

Some organizations may arrange insurance if a person’s own car is absolutely required for carrying out work obligations; nevertheless, this is not the standard. Therefore, drivers should consider whether using their personal vehicle for work is worthwhile before doing so.

When to Get in Touch with Your Insurance Company

Anyone engaged in a car accident at work while driving their own automobile should contact their insurer as soon as possible. It is also essential to look into the company’s workers’ compensation insurance, as in some cases, this may help to compensate for lost pay.

Always get information from the other party after an automobile collision, and make sure a police report is filed on the spot. A person has a better chance of getting a favorable result if they can provide their insurance provider or employer with more information and proof.

Speaking with a qualified legal professional with experience in personal injury and auto accidents is also essential. To further explore their case, anyone can set up a free appointment with Goldblatt + Singer, the St. Louis Injury Law Firm.

What Happens if a Car Accident Occurs While Driving a Company Car for Personal Purposes?

According to the principle of vicarious liability, an employee who gets into an accident in a corporate car while using it for personal rather than business-related purposes may not be entitled to insurance and is therefore responsible. For example, a person might not have insurance if an accident happened while driving a company automobile for personal travel.

However, the specific boundaries between what is acceptable and what is not are hazy. A typical vicarious liability policy’s language is as follows:

“The activities of the staff at the scene of any automobile accidents should be within the scope of employment.”

When using a business vehicle for personal errands, it is doubtful that an accident will be reimbursed. In addition, the driver is unlikely to succeed with corporate insurance if the employer determines that the activities are unrelated to the job.

What Constitutes “Acting in the Course of Employment”?

A driver must have been performing an activity that is directly relevant to, or at the very least closely related to, their job position to act within the scope of their employment. For example, the at-fault driver could have to file a claim with their insurance if they cannot show that the employee’s car accident was caused by their employment.

For instance, a delivery employee who suffers a personal injury while using a corporate vehicle to deliver a package acts entirely within the course of their employment. However, it probably wouldn’t be accepted if they got into an accident while parking in a mall on their day off.

An additional example might be a worker from an office who drives to the post office on their way home. This is allowed if it can be proven that they were stealing business documents. Posting a private gift after leaving the office, however, is not. The tricky part is that, in theory, you are finishing a vital work assignment by driving home from work.

What Are the Claims for a Workplace Car Accident?

A driver who has been hurt may be able to make several claims. However, the other motorist (or whoever is to blame) or their insurance should first pay for any medical expenses related to the injuries caused. This covers continuing medical care, medications, and examinations.

Additionally, they can claim lost wages through the claim or, if appropriate, through workers’ compensation. In essence, lost wages are any income a person would have received in the absence of their injury. Car accident victims may also be entitled to reimbursement for their costs, such as parking fees, transportation charges, and essential medical expenditures.

The value of a personal injury case, even one involving an incident in a business vehicle, can depend on various factors. Our knowledgeable personal injury lawyers are always available to meet with clients for a free consultation and review potential settlements.

Why Speak with a Missouri Car Accident Lawyer?

Car accidents are complicated, and dealing with an organization’s insurance coverage just makes them more so. In addition, the processes may be challenging due to a variety of issues, including accusations of comparative negligence and employers that refuse to make payments in situations where they are responsible.

A knowledgeable car accident attorney in St. Louis is the only one who can guarantee that each client receives the compensation to which they are entitled and that all blame is placed at the right door. As a result, the victim can concentrate on making a full recovery rather than dealing with company insurance and the headache of discussions.

Set up a Free Consultation with Goldblatt + Singer Right Away

Profit from the attorney-client connection and our free case review service. In car accident lawsuits, our firm consistently achieves favorable settlements. Meet soon with an auto accident attorney with experience at Goldblatt + Singer, the St. Louis Injury Law Firm, who is eager to represent you. It is typical for accidents to take some time to organize when they occur in any type of vehicle. This incident might be considerably more upsetting if it involved a work vehicle. Allow us to handle the laborious tasks. Call us at (314) 231-4100 or contact us online.

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