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What Happens if I Get in an Accident in a Company Vehicle

Having a company car is a huge benefit, particularly if your job requires you to travel frequently. Having a car is excellent, but you shouldn’t have to worry about maintenance or damage caused by driving so many miles while you are working for someone else.

But there are disadvantages to company cars, particularly in terms of car accidents. Car accidents involving business vehicles can be highly complex situations. Speaking with a company car accident lawyer could be beneficial to understand your rights better if you’ve been in any of these accidents.

Who Pays for the Company’s Car Accident Damage?

If you are in an accident with the company’s car, figuring out who pays afterward becomes a little complicated. Your employer can be held vicariously or accountable for the other party’s losses. In other cases, you might be to blame.

Who pays will depend on why you were using a company vehicle and the specifics of the accident. If you find yourself in this sort of situation, it’s critical to comprehend how Nevada law deals with all aspects involving these types of cases. After that, you can discuss how the specifics of your case might impact the result with your car accident attorney.

Liability for an Accident Using a Company Car

According to the legal doctrine of vicarious liability, if you are in an accident in Nevada while driving a company car, the company or company’s insurance will usually provide coverage for bodily injury and/or property damage caused by the driver while they are driving for work. This is because employees act as the employer’s agent when they drive for work purposes. Another name for vicarious liability is respondeat superior. You will be responsible for the accident you are not working at the time of the accident. 

Contact our team of Las Vegas car accident attorneys at Hinds Injury Law Las Vegas to protect your rights following an accident in a company vehicle. We’ll give serious consideration to the specifics of your accident and fight for your right to just compensation.

What Is Vicarious Liability?

It is legally possible to hold someone liable for the actions of another person through vicarious liability. It means that if an employee drives a company car and gets into an accident, the employer is held responsible under the theories of vicarious liability is respondeat superior.

When Does Vicarious Liability Apply?

Determining whether an employee is acting in the course of their employment at the time of the accident is the main criterion for determining whether vicarious liability applies. 

For example, a plumber is sent to a house call by a plumbing company. The employee hits and injures a driver while running a stop sign. The other driver may then use vicarious liability to file a lawsuit against the employer. While traveling to the customer appointment on company time, the employee was performing their job as an employee. 

Vicarious liability could be applicable in any of the following situations:

  • Traveling to or from a client appointment;
  • Doing errands for work;
  • Going to a meeting for training; and.or
  • Any other place where your employer tells you to drive.

When Is Vicarious Liability Not Applicable?

Vicarious liability is usually not applicable in the following cases:

  • Driving to or from work;
  • Taking a coffee break or any non-work related detour while driving to an appointment;
  • Going somewhere other than where the employer tells you to go;
  • Committing a crime such as drunk driving; and/or
  • Driving for other purposes not related to your job.

Payment of Damages in an Accident With a Company Car

In Nevada, the person who caused the accident is responsible for any injuries sustained. The responsible party’s insurance covers the costs if it exists:

  • Your employer is most likely to take responsibility for your actions if you were the cause of the accident. The commercial auto insurance of your employer would cover the damages.
  • You can be held responsible if you started the collision while not using a company car for official business. You may have to compensate the company for any expenses. (However, it’s rare.)
  • If someone else caused the accident, they’re liable for the damages suffered. Usually, your employer would claim with the insurer of the person who was at fault.

It can be challenging to demonstrate that you use a car for work-related purposes sometimes, and you most likely do not want to use your personal auto policy or be personally liable. You might want to get in touch with a law firm if your company tries to argue that you weren’t utilizing the car for work-related purposes, thereby trying to deny coverage and making you personally liable.

It’s critical to understand your rights if you use a company car for business purposes. However, the damages should normally be covered by your employer. Additionally, get in touch with a Las Vegas car accident lawyer if you’re concerned about being held accountable or if you were intoxicated at the time of the crash.

Company Car Accidents and Independent Contractors

If you are considered an independent contractor, the person who hired you is not responsible if you get into an accident. Think of your gardener driving to your house to mow your lawn.  If they get into an accident while driving to or from your home, you are usually not liable for damages they caused to a third party.   

If you drive for work, your company may offer auto insurance coverage. Some independent contractors, though, are required to get and maintain their own insurance. Whatever insurance you’ve got should cover the expenses if you were at fault for the accident.

You are also not responsible if another driver causes the collision. You must submit a claim to the driver’s insurance company.

Insurance Coverage Following a Company Car Accident

Insurance Coverage Following a Company Car Accident

There are two kinds of insurance that you may be eligible for as an employee:

It is liability insurance that we have discussed above. This insurance protects against losses such as:

  • Pain and suffering
  • Medications
  • Medical Bills
  • Lost wages

Workers’ compensation provides benefits if your injuries from an accident keep you from working. You may receive benefits through workers’ compensation for:

  • Disability benefits
  • Medical costs
  • Approximately two-thirds of lost wages

After the accident, discuss your insurance options with your employer and follow up with an attorney. 

An experienced worker’s comp attorney can explain all of your benefits and try to maximize the amount of money you get.  Speak with a personal injury or worker’s comp lawyer if you are having trouble being compensated for a car crash at work. We will assess your case at Hinds Injury Law Las Vegas,  advise you of your legal options, and assist you in pursuing compensation.

Contact us online or give us a call at (702) 940-1234 to arrange a FREE, no-risk consultation.

What to Do Following an Accident Using a Company Car?

After the incident, record what happened as much as you can. The following are some things that you should do:

  • Prioritize safety and adhere to protocol following an accident.
  • Speak with a lawyer before offering an apology or admitting responsibility.
  • Report the accident by giving the police a call.
  • If you have any life-threatening injuries, call 911 for an ambulance.
  • Exchange insurance details and contact information with the other driver following the proper documentation procedure.
  • Take photos of the accident scene and your injuries for thorough documentation.
  • Get the witness’s contact information.
  • Report the accident to your employer following safety protocols and company procedure.

It is also advisable to speak with a knowledgeable lawyer. Understanding your rights is essential even if your company handles the lawsuit.

Employers ought to consider the best interests of their workers, but this isn’t always the case. Speak with a personal injury lawyer to make sure you understand how to defend yourself.

Third-Party Responsibility for Injuries Sustained in an Accident with a Company Car

Any personal injuries (not property related) an employee sustains at work while they are on the clock are covered by the employer’s workers’ compensation insurance. It also includes injuries from accidents involving business vehicles. Workers’ compensation pays fair and necessary medical expenses. There may also be coverage for a portion of missed income and other associated expenses. 

Should you suffer injuries in a car accident, you should seek workers’ compensation benefits. If a third party caused the collision, you might be entitled to sue them for physical harm as well. It may also apply to other drivers. If you suffer direct financial losses, such as missed income and hospital expenses, you can be entitled to damages. 

Compensation for intangible losses, such as psychological discomfort, pain and suffering, and mental pain, is also permitted in personal injury claims. Here are some instances of third parties that might be responsible for the accident:

  • A cargo or shipping company that might have loaded the car too much or incorrectly. It typically occurs in the case of big commercial trucks.
  • The person in charge of car inspection and maintenance.
  • The party in charge of maintaining the roads.
  • The manufacturer, distributor, or supplier of a car or auto part that is faulty.

An extensive investigation is necessary to identify the responsible party and the underlying cause of an accident. This should be completed as soon as feasible to save important evidence and assemble a compelling case.

If you are an independent contractor who was in a car accident, the situation gets more complicated. In certain situations, employers are not held to the same standard of responsibility. In the unlikely event that your conduct caused the accident, you may be liable for the damages.

How Does a Company Car Accident Affect Fault?

You have to be at fault for the accident for the other party to seek compensation from your employer, even if your employer paid for or maintains the company car. Further, Nevada has comparative negligence, which means that if you bear a more significant portion of the blame for the accident than anybody else, you cannot collect damages from them due to the fact that you are more to blame for the accident.  This law can be found at NRS 41.141.  

Another reason attorneys and drivers want commercial or business policies to provide insurance coverage is because these policies usually have a higher money limit than a personal auto policy.  This is called “looking for deep pockets.”  However, your employer cannot be held accountable unless you were the cause of the collision or you and anyone else at fault are less at fault than the party seeking damages.  Just as in accident situations involving non-company cars, the same criteria for determining fault and demonstrating negligence apply here.

What Happens If You Are Not at Fault?

The company’s car accident will be handled like any other typical scenario if you are not at fault for the incident. Information will be shared, and whoever caused the injuries and other personal losses will be held liable. Additionally, a second claim will be made by your employer’s insurance provider to recover the cost of the vehicle damage.

If you were employed at the time of the injury, workers’ compensation may potentially apply to this accident, depending on the laws of your state. You can find out what might apply in your case and the potential value of your car accident claim from a personal injury attorney.

Vehicle Insurance, Workers’ Compensation, or Both?

There are state-specific laws that deal with situations like this. Workers’ compensation benefits would typically kick in first if an employee was hurt while driving a company car, with the remainder of the losses being covered by the policy of the auto insurance company.

The other insurance policy will cover the remaining lost wages, missed benefits, and any applicable damages, such as pain and suffering since worker’s compensation only covers a portion of lost wages and medical expenses.

As you can see, both insurance companies are going to be very aggressive in their attempts to force the other to pay for most of the costs, which makes the situation very complicated. Unfortunately, this may result in the victim getting caught during the fight.

For this reason, having a car accident attorney handle your claim is essential. As a victim of an injury, your lawyer will fight for your rights and make sure the insurance company handles you fairly.

What About Off-Clock Company Car Accidents?

You will not be eligible for worker’s compensation benefits if you are hurt in a company car accident while you aren’t on the clock. The at-fault driver’s insurance company will cover your damages and injuries if you aren’t at fault for the incident.

What Can You Expect Following a Company Car Accident in Which You Are at Fault?

If the accident occurred while you were working and your actions caused the accident with the business car, your employer’s insurance would pay for it. Vicarious liability rules apply to your employer, meaning they are accountable for your acts while you are working for them. 

On the other hand, you will be responsible for the accident if you are not working when it happens. The company is solely liable for your activities while you are at work, even though you’re driving a company car. Having personal auto insurance that covers company cars is essential. You can be held personally responsible for the accident’s damages if you do not have this coverage.

Personal Injury Attorney in Las Vegas Nevada

How do We Help You with Your Compensation Request?

We pursue compensation on your behalf by pursuing the at-fault driver and their auto insurance. If required, we can also assist you in pursuing compensation from your employer or their car insurance company. We also take the following actions to demonstrate your compensation claim:

  • Determining who is at fault
  • Proving their negligence
  • Proving the severity of your injuries
  • Proving your subsequent loss of income
  • Getting a copy of your auto accident report documentation

Your vehicle accident report gives us a wealth of important information that strengthens your case. It provides us with the other driver’s insurance company’s contact information. It can also reveal the accident’s cause and any additional factors. Lastly, it tells us about the first impact and injuries that appear.

Free Legal Consultation With Personal Injury Lawyers in Las Vegas

Contact Hinds Injury Law Las Vegas right away if you were in a car accident with a company’s vehicle and require legal representation to ensure that you receive just compensation. We will not allow your employer or the insurance company to intimidate you into taking less than you deserve. To arrange a free, no-obligation consultation about your case, get in touch with our team of accident attorneys today.