Experienced Chicago Lawyers – Accidents Resulting from Commercial Driver’s Inadequate Training

Chicago Accident Lawyer - driver training picCommercial vehicles are typically large and difficult to maneuver, especially semi-rigs and 18-wheelers. The lack of maneuverability tends to increase the frequency of accidents, and the sheer mass of these vehicles tends to increase the severity of these accidents. No wonder special training is required before a driver is allowed to operate such vehicles.

Commercial drivers must be issued special commercial driver’s licenses, and they must comply with a host of state and federal regulations. Additionally, the trucking industry has its own safety rules that often go beyond the minimum requirements of state and federal law. Liability can arise when noncompliance with these standards cause an accident, even if no law was broken.

“Negligence Per Se” and Winning Your Claim

Strictly speaking, mere lack of driver training does not serve as the basis for a personal injury claim all by itself. An accident must have resulted, and the accident must have been caused by the driver’s lack of training. This usually involves the violation of a regulation, either by the driver or by some other party (a trucking company that overloaded the truck, for example).

Under Illinois law, the violation of a safety statute usually triggers a presumption of negligence if an accident occurs. This presumption will put the defendant in the nearly impossible position of having to prove that he was not negligent despite his violation of a regulation. Fortunately, our attorneys are quite familiar with trucking industry regulations from numerous prior cases.

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“Two years ago, I was involved in a trucking accident involving a 14-wheeler truck that nearly disabled me for life. Steve fought to make sure that I received the most possible compensation for my injuries. I was about to take the insurance company’s lowball offer, but decided to call Steve first – it was the best decision I’ve made yet.” – Malman Law Client

Some of Our Related Practice Areas

At Malman Law, we always represent victims, never defendants. The following are some of our related areas of practice:

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What do truck driver training regulations cover?

Truck driver training covers many areas, including:

  • Compliance with federal regulations

  • Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) rules

  • Record-keeping requirements

  • Rest requirements

  • Features of the specific truck the driver is driving

  • How to deal with bad weather conditions

  • DUI issues

What is the Entry-Level Driver Training rule?

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, which administers federal trucking regulations, is phasing in a new rule that sets minimum entry-level driver training requirements. The new rule will be fully phased in by February 7, 2020.

Can I sue the truck driver’s employer for failing to train its driver even if the truck driver was an independent contractor rather than an employee?

Although a trucking company is usually automatically liable for the negligent behavior of its employees, this is not the case with an independent contractor. Nevertheless, a trucking company can be held liable for its own negligence, including failure to properly train the drivers they work with. It all depends on the circumstances.

Can I still win a claim if the accident was partly my fault?

Perhaps. Illinois is a modified comparative fault state:

  • If the other party was mostly at fault for the accident, your damages will be reduced in direct proportion to your own percentage of fault (20 percent, for example).

  • If you were mostly at fault for the accident (51 percent or more) you will receive nothing.

  • If each driver’s fault was 50 percent, each driver’s damages will be reduced by 50 percent.

Empty Pockets? No Problem.

At Malman Law, we charge zero upfront fees. It is our job to ensure that, in effect, the opposing party pays our legal fees – not you. Our Zero Fee Guarantee ensures that you’ll never owe us a dime except as a percentage of whatever the opposing party ends up actually paying you. If that turns out to be zero (which happens to only about five percent of our clients), then you will owe us nothing.

“Immediately” Is a Magic Word

It is said that boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Never is that more true than when you are pursuing a Chicago personal injury claim. If you suspect that your Chicago Accident was caused by lack of driver training, call us today at 1-888-836-5975 or simply fill in our online contact form and we will schedule you a free initial case consultation.

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