Are Employers Liable for Distracted Driving Accidents Caused by Their Employees?

What happens when a person is involved in a car accident with a distracted driver who is using his or her motor vehicle for work? Is the driver’s employer liable for providing compensation to the victim for their injuries?

The simple answer is, yes.

The use of smartphones while on the job is a huge concern regarding distracted driving accidents. According to the National Safety Council, motorists are 400% more likely to have a car accident if they are driving distracted by using their phone. While hand-free devices are available, they do not keep people safer.

Vicarious Liability vs. Negligent Supervision

There are two main legal concerns for employers who require their employees to drive: vicarious liability and negligent supervision.

Vicarious liability is when an employer is liable for the negligence his occurs within “the scope of the employee’s work duties.” It is a doctrine of law which asserts that the actions of an agent are essentially the same as the actions of the principle directing the agent.

On the other hand, negligent supervision is another way in which an employer can become liable for employee accidents. Employers should have reasonable safety policies in place and should ensure all of their drivers comply with these safety laws.

If you have been involved in an accident in which employer liability might become an issue, consulting with an experienced attorney is highly recommended. Contact our Toledo personal injury attorney at Williams DeClark Tuschman Co., L.P.A. today.

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