If our Ohio readers of this post have ever been hired to take on jobs, then they may have been asked to sign and read contracts that outline the terms of their employment. In those contracts, the individuals may see if they are designated as employees of the entities which have hired them or independent contractors. While employees are generally considered extensions of their employers and part of the organizations for which they work, independent contractors operate as their own business entities that contract with others to perform work.
This subtle designation can make a big difference in a case of a truck accident. This is because many truck drivers are independent contractors and not employees of the entities for which goods are hauled. That is to say, a driver may operate their own freight hauling business, and as an independent contractor, may contract with a company to deliver the company's goods from one location to another without becoming an employee of the company.
Employers are liable for the negligence and faults of their employees, but independent contractors are not employees. If a truck driver causes losses and injuries through their actions, their status as either an independent contractor or employee may influence who the victim may sue and if their lawsuit will bear results for their recovery.
It is important that victims of truck accidents work with knowledgeable attorneys who can help them parse through these difficult details. Building a list of possible defendants to sue can be tricky, and not knowing how the role of employment or independent contracting factors into a possible truck accident case can make matters hard on a victim. Working with a trained professional can help their case progress as information is collected about their accident.