Incorporated in 1819, Shelbyville is the county seat of Bedford County, Tennessee. It is the center of the Tennessee Walking Horse industry. This is a powerful breed of gaited horse known for a flashy running walk with four beats. The Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration, during which more than $650,000 worth of prizes are awarded, takes place in Shelbyville just before Labor Day. The city is located at the intersection of United States Route 231 and United States Route 41A and was once the terminus of a railroad line. It was profiled in a PBS documentary film called Welcome to Shelbyville, which focuses on demographic changes in the city. If you are hurt near Shelbyville by a careless commercial driver, you should retain an aggressive and knowledgeable attorney with experience in truck crash cases . Matt Hardin is a Shelbyville truck accident lawyer skilled in securing compensation for injuries arising from car, truck, or motorcycle wrecks, slip and falls, medical malpractice, wrongful death, defective products, and more.
If you bring a negligence claim after a big rig accident, you will need to show the defendant truck driver’s duty of care, a specific act that breached this duty, a causal link connecting the breach to the accident, and actual damages that you incurred. Often a trucking company is aware of an employee’s negligent driving in the past, or even prior DUIs or accidents. Since it is difficult to find qualified drivers, however, an employer may look the other way with regard to a negligent trucker. This means that trucking companies are often partially responsible for injuries caused by their employees and typically have higher insurance liability limits.
In Tennessee, you can hold a company accountable for its responsibility in a big rig accident under a number of different theories, and a Shelbyville lawyer familiar with truck accident cases can help to identify which ones may be most relevant in your situation. Depending on the circumstances, you may be able to sue the careless driver’s employer under theories of negligent hire, negligent supervision or retention, negligent entrustment, or vicarious liability. For example, a trucking company that runs the mandated background check before hiring a driver may see that he has a record of five accidents, including a DUI. The employer then might be held responsible under a theory of negligent hiring if the commercial driver drinks on the job and crashes into another vehicle.
Alternately, you may be able to sue a trucking company for vicarious liability if its driver is delivering cargo for the benefit of his or her employer and breaks a traffic rule. This doctrine, which a Shelbyville truck accident attorney can discuss in detail, may apply when there is an agency relationship between the negligent person and another party, such as an employer. In general, an agency relationship applies to ordinary employees but not independent contractors.
A trucking company will only be held accountable for a driver’s actions under a theory of vicarious liability if he or she is acting within the scope of employment. Truckers are within the scope of their employment if their actions further an employer’s business, even if they are also furthering their own interests.
The consequences of a big rig accident may be devastating for a Shelbyville resident due to the potential severity of the harm. A personal injury lawyer with experience in this complex area can evaluate whether any regulations were violated by the driver, assess whether you have a viable case, retain appropriate experts, and create effective strategies to assist your pursuit of compensation. Contact Matt Hardin by calling 615-200-1111 or sending a message through our online form.