Driving a company vehicle has plenty of perks, but there may also be a few pitfalls.
If you use a professional vehicle to deliver goods and services, provide a service to customers, or to transport people, it’s important to know what happens if you get into a car accident in a company vehicle.
This guide will help you navigate what will happen, along with what should happen so you can be prepared.
The first thing you may wonder is who will be held responsible after the accident. In most cases, it likely falls on the shoulders of your employer as long as you were working within the scope of your employment.
The term “scope of employment” usually means you were driving the vehicle while performing tasks related to your job. Technically, you should also be driving it while on the clock and not after-hours.
If you happen to be driving the company vehicle on personal time, the fault will likely shift to you. It may also lean heavily on the company’s current insurance policy.
If you’re ever in doubt, ask your employer for a copy of their auto insurance policy so you have a clearer picture of who might be to blame. As a general rule, you should never drive a company-owned vehicle outside of working tasks or regular business hours.
Know the Law if you Get Into a Car Accident in a Company Vehicle
Every state has its own set of laws that pertain to automobile accidents. Get familiar with your local laws so you’re better prepared if something happens.
In most cases, the employer has a set amount of liability that will cover the costs incurred as a result of the accident. However, if an investigation shows that you were texting while driving, for example, you might be left holding the bag. This applies even if you were “on the clock” if it turns out you were being negligible while driving.
If you find yourself in a predicament after a car accident in a company vehicle, it’s best to consult an experienced attorney like The Benton Law Firm. A good attorney will guide you through the process and help you determine what your rights and responsibilities are.
Find out if your employer’s collision coverage extends to the employees. This could be crucial when it comes to who covers things like your personal medical bills or time lost at work.
Doing your research in advance is the best way to protect yourself in the event of an accident.
Understanding Your Rights Is Key
Of course, no one wants to get into a car accident in a company vehicle. It can cause stress, worry, and plenty of confusion if you’re not prepared. By understanding your employer’s insurance policy and knowing your responsibilities, you can avoid these headaches ahead of time.
If you’ve been injured in a car accident or need a consultation, contact us today.