Is an employer liable for an employee’s car accident?
In most instances, if you are driving in a company car, your employer will be liable for any damages that result from an accident due to “respondent superior,” which is old English for “vicarious liability.”
The law holds employers responsible for any negligence by their employees when they drive company vehicles, but only in certain circumstances. In contrast, the employee is engaged in the scope of work-related activities.
The “scope of work activities” definition is where things can get a little complex.
For example, if you are a truck driver delivering materials for your company, you get into an accident where you are at fault. Your employer would be liable for any damages or injuries due to vicarious liability. However, you get into an accident if you are a truck driver and decide to run a personal errand on the way back from making a delivery. You would be liable because you would not be engaged in work-related activities as outlined by the scope of your work position.
The definition of work-related activities means that they have to be either an activity authorized by an employer or related to an activity authorized by an employer for the employer to be held liable.
It is also important to know what type of insurance your employer has. If your employer has collision insurance, you would be covered as an employee, but if they don’t, the onus may rest with you. That is why before you get behind the wheel of a company car, you must know what your employer’s insurance allows and what type of coverage they have.
Is the employer liable for an employee car accident by Criminal Activity?
Another way an employer’s responsibility might be negated is if the negligent employee driving the company car was engaging in a criminal act at the time of the accident. Imagine that same truck driver decided to have a couple of drinks before they drove the company vehicle, and they got into an accident on the way to their delivery. Because they are breaking the law by driving while intoxicated, the employer would no longer be liable for their negligence.
Although company vehicles sound like a vast perk -and they can be- it is essential to know your responsibilities and what type of insurance your employer carries before you get behind the wheel. Also employeer liable for forklift accidents, in the same way.
It is good to seek advice from a third party, like a car accident lawyer, who can help with the company vehicles legalities. Taking out your insurance policy will ensure that you are covered either way, but you need to know if you have to insure yourself before you accept the use of a company car.
Faq’s bbout employer liable for an employee’s accident?
Employers liable for employee accidents while on breaks?
Employers are only liable for employee accidents while on breaks if the break is considered to be part of the work day.
Employers are usually not liable for employee accidents while on breaks, unless the break is considered to be part of the work day.
For example, if an employee takes a smoke break and is injured, the employer would not usually be held liable.
However, if an employee is required to take a break during their shift in order to eat lunch, and is injured during that time, the employer may be held liable.
The same would apply if an employee is injured while taking a break to attend a mandatory safety meeting. In general, employers are only liable for employee accidents while on breaks if the break is considered to be part of the work day.