If you have been injured in an accident with a delivery van or other commercial vehicle in California, you may be entitled to compensation from the company that operates the vehicle. We recommend that you speak with a San Jose truck accident lawyer from our firm. The attorneys at Needham Kepner & Fish LLP stand ready to evaluate your case. We have decades of experience as advocates for injury victims in San Jose, Sacramento and San Francisco.
Employers are generally exempt from liability under the going and coming rule, which holds that a company is not responsible when its employees are involved in accidents on their way to or from work. But that is not the end of the story. The rule has what is known as the required vehicle exception. If employees’ use of their personal vehicles benefits the employer or if the employer has come to rely on or expect the employees to use their personal vehicles on a regular basis, the employer may be held liable for any damage caused by the vehicles.
In the 2010 case of Lobo v. Tamco, an employee of Tamco was on his way home from work in his personal car when he crashed into and killed a deputy on a motorcycle. The deputy’s family sued Tamco. The lower court ruled that Tamco could not be held liable because of the going and coming rule, which absolves an employer from liability for a tort occurring on an employee’s way to or from work. The deputy’s family appealed the decision based on the required vehicle exception.
The Tamco employee was a quality control manager and part of his job was to visit the company’s customers. Tamco reimbursed his mileage. As a result, the appeals court overruled the lower court and held that the required vehicle exception — which classifies the drive to and from work in a vehicle used in relation to the employer’s business as being within the scope of employment — applied because Tamco benefited from the employee’s personal car.
Uncovering who is liable for your injuries is crucial. Our dedicated team of truck accident lawyers in San Jose will review your case and file suit against all proper parties who are responsible for causing you harm.
The attorneys at Needham Kepner & Fish LLP have decades of experience handling commercial vehicle collisions. If your condition prevents you from visiting our office, we will visit you at your home or hospital bed. Our lawyers are available for weekend and evening meetings.
To schedule a free consultation, call us today at (408) 716-1668 or use our online form. We handle injury cases on a contingent fee basis, which means that you pay us nothing unless you recover compensation.