Does a company have any liability if a delivery person is involved in an accident driving his/her own personal vehicle?

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Does a company have any liability if a delivery person is involved in an accident driving his/her own personal vehicle?

Our daughter was driving her own vehicle while making a delivery for a pizza chain. She ran a red light and struck an oncoming vehicle. She is covered under our insurance policy.

Asked on October 3, 2010 under Accident Law, Kansas

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

The company may very well be liable if your daughter was, as you write, on the job (making a delivery) when the accident occured. Employers are liable for many of the negligent acts of their employees done in the course of their employment, whether or not they are in a company vehicle or on company premises. HOWEVER, that would liability to third parties--such as the oncoming vehicle and its owner. It is, unfortunately, not likely that you daughter could claim against her employer when she was the one who either negligently (carelessly) or intentionally drove through a red light; employees cannot make their employers liable to them by their (the employees') own bad acts.

On the other hand, if your daughter was injured, it's possible she may be liable for worker's compensation as an employee injured on the job. You should speak with an attorney to see what recourse your daughter might have on the specific situations of her accident and employment.


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