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Employer Liability for Bus Accidents

Posted on:7/29/2012
Bus accidents can result in serious injuries to the passengers and others on the road. Bus accidents can sometimes be fatal.


Bus accidents can result in serious injuries to the passengers and others on the road. Bus accidents can sometimes be fatal. If the bus driver’s negligence caused the accident, then the driver can be held liable for negligence. The bus company can also be held liable for negligent hiring.

The courts have not established a fixed formula of inquiry or mandated background investigations in all hiring situations, but have more or less established a sliding scale. First, they determine if the employer owes any duty to the injured person and second they assess whether the employer's lack of inquiry caused the injury. The first test appears to be geared to the degree of exposure to the public and the nature of the job performed.

The more public exposure, the greater the need for inquiries. Obviously bus drivers who have the care of many people during the course of the day and security persons who have access to hotel rooms are high public-exposure occupations.

Causation, the second test, turns on the nature of the exposure. Injuries in a bus accident would probably be attributable to the bus company if the driver had a drunk driving record and the company never bothered to find out about it, but the fact that the company did not know he had not made alimony payments probably would not reasonably connect the company to the accident.

The negligent continuation of employment, negligent training, and negligent supervision theories are just logical extensions of negligent hiring. They become factors after the employment relationship has been established. In short, the liability potential does not end once the pre-hiring investigations have been completed.


  
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