Vehicle Accident While Working - Introduction
When a person is involved in a vehicle accident while working, the applicable law can be very complicated. Regardless of when or how a car accident happens, the party responsible for the accident may be liable for any injuries that occur as a result of the accident. The main legal issue that is raised when a person is injured in a vehicle accident on the job is that there may be multiple sources of recovery.
One potential source of recovery is from workers’ compensation benefits; if you were acting within the scope of your employment, you may be able to file a claim for workers’ compensation. For example, if you were delivering documents or picking up office supplies, these activities would be within the scope of your employment, and any injury you sustain would likely be covered under workers compensation. If however, you stopped by to see a friend at work and were injured there, it would likely not be covered. In addition, if you are injured do to a problem with a company vehicle, you may have a claim against your employer for negligently maintaining the vehicle. If you are at fault for an accident that occurs while you are working, your employer may be liable through the doctrine of respondeat superior, which makes employees liable for the tortious acts of their employees that occur within the scope of their employment.
If you are injured in a vehicle accident that was another person’s fault, you may have a negligence claim against the responsible party or parties for any injuries or property damage you may have sustained. Under Florida law, every motor vehicle operator is required to have the following minimum levels of insurance coverage:
- $10,000 in Personal Injury Protection Insurance (PIP) – PIP insurance covers and medical expenses or loss of wages that you may incur in an accident, regardless of fault. If the accident was the other driver’s fault and your expenses exceed this amount, you may be able to make a claim on their insurance or sue them for negligence.
- $10,000 in Property Damage Insurance (PDL) – PDL insurance covers any damage to property that a driver may cause when involved in a motor vehicle crash.
In addition to these types of insurance, some drivers may carry additional kinds of insurance, such as bodily injury liability insurance (BIL) or uninsured motorist insurance (UM). BIL insurance covers any liability a driver may incur by causing injury or death to another person. If a driver carries this type of insurance, you may be able to make a claim against his or her policy if your medical expenses exceed your PIP coverage.
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Uninsured motorist insurance covers a driver for injuries caused by and uninsured or under-insured motorists that similarly exceed your PIP coverage. In addition, if your medical bills reach another driver’s BIL policy limit, your UM insurance will cover the remainder to the maximum of your policy limit. Because of the complex issues that can arise in an on-the-job car accident, it is important to consult with an attorney experienced in handling these types of cases. An attorney can advise you of your legal rights and can further assist in determining whether and against whom you may have legal claims.
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Understand your legal rights when you are involved in a car accident. Schedule an appointment or contact us at 954-961-5100 for more information or to discuss your free consultation. We speak English and Spanish.