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Legally Reviewed by:

Jonathan Rosenfeld
J.D

December 30, 2022

Over $400 Million worth of case results

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Co-driver injury truck accidents can be severe and costly, making it essential for drivers to have the correct type of coverage in place.

Proper coverage for such instances is critical as it can help protect drivers from paying out of pocket for costly claims or litigation fees.

Co-driver injury truck accident insurance should be tailored to the individual’s needs and provide comprehensive protection, including medical expenses and liability coverage. This ensures that all parties are adequately compensated if an unexpected accident occurs.

Were you injured in a truck accident while your co-driver operated the vehicle? The personal injury attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC can aggressively pursue compensation against all workers’ compensation insurance policies from the parties involved, including hired truck drivers, independent contractors, and the trucking company.

Call a Chicago truck accident lawyer at (888) 424-5757, fill out the contact form for additional information, or schedule a free consultation to discuss your case.

Co-Driver Injury Truck Accident

A co-driver may have legal claims against the truck driver if they are injured in an accident.

When Co-Driver Truck Injury Accidents Occur

Co-driving is a system where one driver sleeps or rests while the other drives. This can effectively cover long distances but also carries risks for the co-driver.

Truck accidents can be devastating, especially when they involve two drivers. Unfortunately, recent clarifications of federal regulations have made it so that co-drivers are sometimes treated differently than drivers in an accident.

Employers may try to push the truckers toward filing for workers’ comp benefits instead of suing them because filing a workers’ comp claim will only increase the company’s premiums.

A lawsuit could cost the company much more if the case goes to trial.

An Employee or Independent Contractor When Injured in a Collision?

When a truck driver is injured in a co-driver injury truck accident while not on the clock, they may not be considered an employee of the trucking company.

The driver still has the right to sue the employer for damages as if they were a guest or co-driver in the passenger seat.

The first step when seeking compensation after a co-driver injury truck accident should be to claim the trucking company’s insurance policy.

If this claim is denied, it may be necessary to claim the personal insurance policies of all involved parties.

When a Truck’s Co-Driver Is Responsible for Causing a Crash

Truckers and co-drivers are responsible for the safety of their cargo, other drivers on the road, and themselves.

While the truck driver is usually held accountable for any accidents, a co-driver can also be partially liable in certain situations.

If a co-driver commits a negligent or reckless act contributing to an accident, they can be held accountable for any damages from the collision.

A co-driver could be liable for the following:

  • Ignoring dangerous conditions
  • Not wearing proper restraints like seat belts
  • Failing to follow federal rules and regulations
  • Falling asleep behind the wheel

How the Off-Duty Driver Can Recover Lost Income and Pay for Medical Bills When Workers’ Comp Benefits Are Unavailable

Off-duty truckers injured in a co-driver injury truck accident are not covered by workers’ compensation, making it difficult to recover lost income and pay medical bills.

In this case, the driver must seek other means of recovering lost wages and paying medical bills.

Trucking companies may try to deny liability for an off-duty driver’s injuries, so it is vital to have an experienced truck accident attorney who can determine if you are eligible for workers’ compensation benefits.

Workers’ compensation insurance covers employees for certain expenses from injuries sustained while working, but independent contractors may not be eligible depending on the specific facts of the job.

Liability for a Co-Driver Injury Truck Accident

The co-driver can also sustain injuries if the other driver gets into an accident.

Liability for these injuries depends on the circumstances of the accident and whether or not the co-drivers negligence contributed to it.

Can a CoDriver Receive Workers’ Compensation Insurance Coverage?

Workers’ compensation insurance is an essential protection for injured employees while operating commercial trucks, delivery vans, and tractor-trailers.

It covers medical expenses, lost wages, and property damage.

However, it’s important to note that independent truckers who suffered injuries may not be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits, depending on the specific facts of what happened when they were behind the wheel.

A co-driver injury truck accident attorney can help determine your workers’ compensation benefits eligibility.

The Trucking Company’s Insurance

When a truck driver is injured in an accident, they may not be able to receive compensation through workers’ compensation insurance.

The trucking company’s insurance can be pursued for compensation in such cases.

Trucking companies’ policy limits are more likely to cover damages than other drivers’ personal policies.

A private settlement may also provide more damages than a workers’ compensation claim.

Co-driving is a popular way for drivers to cover more ground quickly. It involves two people taking turns driving, one sleeping while the other driving.

If the driver gets into an accident while the co-driver is asleep, the co-driver can sustain serious injuries.

Distracting the Driver

Distractions can be hazardous for truckers. Even a momentary distraction can have serious consequences, such as a truck accident or death.

Examples of distractions include a co-driver showing pictures on their phone to the driver, talking to the driver, or playing music loudly.

Ignoring a Dangerous Condition

As a co-driver, you are responsible for intervening if the primary driver cannot perform their job. It includes instances where the driver may fall asleep or be under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Co-drivers in the passenger seat of a truck have an essential responsibility to ensure the truck driver’s safety and others on the road.

They may witness truckers driving unsafely due to fatigue, intoxication, texting or other distracted driving practices, or illness.

In these truck accident cases, co-drivers must act and intervene if the primary driver cannot perform their job.

The co-driver could be liable if the other driver operating the vehicle is not mentally or physically suited to drive and causes an accident.

Violating Trucking Regulations

Trucking regulations are in place to ensure the safety of motorists and others on the road.

When these regulations are violated, it can lead to severe consequences for the driver and their employer.

Truckers can be held liable for any resulting truck crash if they allow the other to violate regulations.

Inexperience

Inexperience is a significant factor in commercial vehicle accidents.

Companies that hire inexperienced truckers or rush their employees through driver training can cause serious accidents.

Co-drivers must have a valid commercial driver’s license and the experience and skills to operate the truck.

If an inexperienced co-driver operates the truck, they may be held responsible for any damages involving accident victims.

Recovering Compensation After a Truck Accident

Recovering compensation after a trucking accident can be complicated, especially if more than one driver is involved.

Litigation may be necessary for a fair outcome, so your truck accident attorneys must be prepared to aggressively litigate your case if needed.

Hire Personal Injury Lawyers Specializing in Holding the Truck Driver and Trucking Company Accountable for Damages

Was your co-driver operating the vehicle when your trucking accident occurred?

Were you sitting in the passenger seat or the sleeper cab when the other driver behind the wheel faced dangerous conditions that led to the crash?

The experienced truck accident attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, LLC can determine co-driver liability to ensure you recover maximum compensation through the trucking company’s insurance policy.

We will conduct a thorough investigation, review your medical records, and ensure all responsible parties are held legally accountable for your damages.

Call our law firm at (888) 424-5757 or use the contact form to schedule a free consultation.

We accept every workers’ compensation claim and wrongful death lawsuit on a contingency fee basis, meaning you do not pay us until we secure compensation.

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