There are times when it is necessary to lend your car to someone who runs errands or works for you. Unfortunately, there are times when the same people get involved in accidents. You may be held liable on behalf of someone who used your vehicle under these instances under the rule of respondeat superior. This doctrine means that you are liable for the fault of another who was acting on your behalf. It is also referred to in the law as “vicarious liability”. An employer, parent or team leader may be held liable for the wrongdoing of their employees, children or subordinates. This is what vicarious liability means. The reason for this is that generally, employers, parents or team leaders have control over the actions of the negligent parties. Parents get sued because children don’t have the means and the capacity to defend themselves monetarily, especially minors, and because parents likely consented to the use of their vehicles.
If you, on the other hand, are a victim of people who are acting on behalf of someone, you may file claims against the employer, parent or superior of that person to get compensated for the injuries that you may have sustained. Your personal injury lawyer will help you be able to prove the relationship of the negligent party to the one being sued. For example, an employee who accidentally gets involved in a vehicular accident while performing work for his employer may hold the employer liable to compensate you. If your lawyer gets to prove the following criteria, then you may be entitled for a compensation: employer-employee relationship, also, that there is no other way that the employee could have performed his work, and that the conduct of the employees work is out of his control.
If, however, your lawyer failed to prove the existence of an employee-employer relationship as in independent contractors, and the degree of control that the negligent party has of his own actions, then chances are, that person is the only one liable to you. This rule is not only limited to running after employers of negligent employees and parents of careless children, but is also applicable to medical malpractice as well. For example, when a nurse fails to carry out her duty in an operating room, the surgeon or even the whole hospital may be liable to compensate the victim. Exemptions to this rule involve car leasing and rental businesses and airplanes.
In addition, if you are a victim of assault or battery done by an employee, the employer is not liable to compensate you for injuries that you have sustained from the attack. It is important to always consult with a personal injury lawyer to determine what courses of actions are available for your case. There are special cases wherein you may run after the superiors and make them liable; therefore, giving you a more substantial compensation than if you only sued the person who actually caused you to be injured. Your lawyer may convince the judge to rule in your favor and apprehend the employer, parent or even the whole company. On the other hand, if you are an employer, make sure to perform background check and adequate investigation before hiring someone to work for you. These are unusual cases wherein you will be liable without directly causing injury to other people, but cases such as these do exist. It is best to be vigilant.
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