Owners of delivery firms hope their drivers complete their runs on time. Yet, in fulfilling this duty, one of your employees may have collided with an automobile. An accident could cause your company to face a large insurance claim to pay for the driver’s damages. Before you work with your insurance company to process this claim, it’s crucial to know which driver was at fault, and how you can defend your business.
Assigning fault in delivery accidents is difficult, since drivers and businesses can both play a part. Your company could face full or partial fault if:
- Officials attribute the accident to your driver’s excessive speed or rushing to meet a quota
- You own the vehicle in question, and an inspector determines it failed to meet state or federal inspection standards
- The delivery driver leaves your premises with improperly secured cargo
Determining fault is further complicated if your driver is an independent contractor. In this case, s/he may still operate within the limits of your company’s rules, so your business may bear some responsibility. Having a clear arrangement with your drivers can save your firm from further liability after an accident.
Defending your business
The first step of defense that all delivery company owners must take is carrying proper insurance. Your business policy must include commercial auto insurance, which will keep you from paying the other driver’s damages out of pocket. Furthermore, it’s crucial to establish the other motorist’s role. If s/he was at partial fault for the accident, the percentage of the burden your business shoulders may decrease. If you feel that your company is facing misplaced fault, consulting with a business attorney can help you navigate the road ahead.