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Category: Truck Accidents

How Is Fault Determined In A Truck Accident?

We determine fault in a truck accident by establishing:

  • The other party owed you a duty of care.
  • They failed to exercise that duty of care.
  • This breach of duty led to a truck accident and your injuries.
  • You now suffer physically, emotionally, and financially.

To support your claims, you can use evidence, such as medical bills, car repair invoices, and other documentation.

Elements We Use to Determine Fault and Negligence in a Truck Accident

According to the National Security Council (NSC), truck accidents tend to be devastating due to the size difference between trucks and other smaller vehicles. Consequently, you’ll most likely be looking at a long recovery time and high medical bills.

Determining fault in a truck accident can be challenging, especially if you don’t have legal representation. This is because you must understand certain legal concepts before you can say for certain that a truck driver or another motorist is liable for all your damages.

As such, your attorney must prove the following four elements to show that the other party or parties were liable for the accident:

Duty of Care

Every road user has a ‘duty of care’ to other motorists that requires them to act in a way that doesn’t cause physical harm. Road users must take reasonable care to ensure that they don’t injure other motorists while behind the wheel. Furthermore, truck drivers must take extra care, as truck accidents can cause catastrophic damage.

For instance, a truck driver shouldn’t speed, as trucks are harder to control at high speed and take longer to stop. Truck drivers should also adjust their driving depending on the weather conditions. If rain, snow, fog, or some other condition reduces visibility, they should pull over to the side of the road or at least drive slower.

This duty of care also extends to trucking companies. They must maintain their fleets and only hire trained, qualified, and safe drivers to operate their trucks. To ensure drivers’ eligibility, the company should run background checks and provide regular health checks and training.

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Breach of Duty

Any party that acts negligently and doesn’t uphold or ‘breaches’ their duty of care can be held liable for a trucking accident. This party could either be the driver, the trucking company, or any other motorist.

The following actions can be defined as negligent behavior:

  • Reckless driving, including speeding and ignoring traffic lights or stop signs
  • Driving while under the influence of alcohol and drugs
  • Any action that distracts the driver from the road, such as texting, watching videos, or using any other in-cab technology
  • Poor vehicle maintenance by the trucking company
  • Unreasonable work schedules that leave drivers exhausted and unable to control their vehicles effectively or properly follow safety rules
  • Overloading or improper loading of cargo
  • Failing to conduct background checks and train drivers regularly


Once your attorney has investigated your case and determined who was responsible for the crash, you must prove that your injuries were caused by the accident. Your attorney will gather medical reports and testimonies that show your injuries resulted from the crash to prove causation.

Insurance providers may try to claim that there’s no connection between your injuries and the crash, so you may want to hire a lawyer to help you establish this connection.


If your attorney can prove a definite link between the crash and your injuries, they’ll negotiate for damages on your behalf. This compensation is meant to cushion you from the financial blow caused by the crash and support you until you’re healed and can work again.

Here are some of the damages your lawyer will negotiate for after a truck accident:

  • Present and future medical expenses
  • Disfigurement, scarring, or loss of limbs
  • Rehabilitation and therapy
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of income and earning capacity
  • Wrongful death

Wrongful death damages typically include the victim’s funeral and burial expenses and treatment costs before succumbing to their injuries.

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