When you get into an accident with a commercial truck, the most important part of your claim is determining liability: who is responsible for the damage and your injuries, and who can be held liable? Maybe it’s the driver who was speeding, or the company itself, which failed to maintain its fleet. Maybe the liability falls with the shipper or the broker.
When that truck is a FedEx truck, however, there can be additional concerns when it comes to liability. It is possible to file a lawsuit against the company, but there are some challenges that you could end up facing. This is why you should not accept any settlement offer provided by the company or its insurer before speaking with an experienced Mississippi truck accident lawyer.
Why is it difficult to sue FedEx?
FedEx sells its routes to other individuals and delivery companies that have hired their own contractors. Because of this, if a defective truck part of a poorly maintained truck is the root cause of the crash, then the owner who purchased the route is liable. Even if the truck says “FedEx” on the side, you probably will not be able to hold the parent company accountable.
If the driver is in error, then the challenge is determining whether or not the owner of the route or FedEx could be liable. If the driver is a FedEx employee who was acting within the scope of his or her employment at the time of the collision, then FedEx is liable. If the driver is an employee of another company, then the other company is responsible. Your attorney will need to get information from the driver, including his/her name, route number, and the license plate on the back of the FedEx truck in order to find out.
There is one other scenario where FedEx can be held liable for your injuries, and it relates to hiring practices. All companies owe a duty of care to their customers. As such, they should be using best practices when they hire employees: conducting background checks, calling for references, checking public, online platforms and accounts, etc. If FedEx failed to conduct this type of search and ends up hiring someone with a history of traffic violations (or other disqualifying issues), then the company may be held liable.
Suing FedEx for injuries sustained in a truck accident may be challenging, but there are some tools we can use to help build your case. FedEx often install the latest safety technology in its trucks, and all commercial vehicles have a black box recorder. We can use data from this technology to determine where the two vehicles were at the exact moment of impact. We can also review the driver’s logs to determine if he or she was following the hours-of-service obligations set forth under federal rules, in case a violation of those hours led to the truck accident.
If you get into an accident with a FedEx driver in Mississippi, the right attorney can make all the difference. Merkel & Cocke, P.A. is prepared to help you with whatever you need. To schedule a free consultation with a Mississippi truck accident lawyer form our firm, please call us at 662-799-1633 or fill out the contact form. We represent clients in Clarksdale, Oxford, Jackson, and throughout the Gulf Coast.