Car Accidents When the Driver is on the Job

A common issue that arises itself in auto accident cases is an employer’s liability for an accident caused by an employee. Generally speaking, California employers can be found liable for the actions caused by their employees if the employee was acting within the “scope of employment”. Legally speaking, the term “scope of employment” refers to…
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Car Accidents When the Driver is on the Job

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A common issue that arises itself in auto accident cases is an employer’s liability for an accident caused by an employee. Generally speaking, California employers can be found liable for the actions caused by their employees if the employee was acting within the “scope of employment”.

Legally speaking, the term "scope of employment" refers to the actions or activities an employee might reasonably undertake as part of his or her job. An employer is responsible for actions an employee takes within the scope of employment, which means the employer can be liable by third parties who are injured by the employee's conduct. For example, an employer would likely be held liable for injuries a delivery driver caused when hitting a bicyclist while driving to drop off food for a customer. Conversely, the employer would likely not be liable if the same driver caused harm if he or she hit a pedestrian while using the delivery van as the getaway car in a bank robbery.

What is Scope of Employment?

While the scope of employment rule appears to be rather easy to define, it is not always apparent when an employee is acting within the scope of duty. Indeed, courts often struggle with the issue as well. Some instances, however, have long been considered within the scope of employment rule, including:

• A waiter who spills a scalding drink on a diner;

• A Thai food delivery man causing an accident on the way to dropping off an order;

• A salesperson who causes an accident while making a sales call on a potential customer (even if the salesperson was driving his or her personal vehicle at the time).

This list is not exhaustive. To discuss the facts of your specific case, contact experienced personal injury lawyers.

Workers are usually not considered to be working within the scope of their employment while they commute to and from work in their own vehicles, but a number of real-world situations can cast doubt as to when the work commute actually starts and stops as far as the law is concerned (i.e., Is the employee expected to use his or her personal vehicle to conduct business? Do they commute in a company owned vehicle? Was there a work-related activity or phone call that interrupted the commute drive?). Not surprisingly, things can get even more complicated when employees perform personal errands that are sandwiched between work-related tasks during business hours.

If you were injured in an auto accident by a driver who was 'on the job', you may be able to seek financial compensation from the employer. For a free consultation and to discuss your potential for financial recovery, contact the injury attorneys at the Ghozland Law Firm today.

 

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Our employment & personal injury attorneys recognize that the individuals we work with are typically going through overwhelming and stressful times in their lives. When an individual hires us, we strive to provide the client with the strong legal representation and effective counsel they need to receive fair and just compensation. Our experienced attorneys are dedicated to helping our clients in their time of need. Our employment & personal injury team is comprised of well-respected lawyers who have been involved in several multi-million dollar settlements, earning us membership in the Million Dollar Advocates Forum®. This further demonstrates our ability to take on complex accident cases.

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With over 40 years of experience, we have handled many slip and fall cases. I can provide you with the caliber of legal services that is normally available only to large companies, due to my experience in large-scale litigation that has resulted in awards of millions of dollars on many occasions. In 2014, Michael Ghozland was named “Street Fighter of the Year” by Consumer Attorneys of California in 2014. Because of my outstanding trial record, winning your case will probably mean obtaining a private settlement, with no need to ever step into a courtroom. Insurance companies know my reputation, and most of them would rather settle than face me in a slip and fall lawsuit.