When another person inflicts serious injury upon a Knoxville resident, there is often a strong desire to hold that person accountable. The situation can become more complex when multiple parties are at fault for the tragedy.
For example, when an employee of a company injures an individual in a car accident, the injured person may want to hold not only the employee liable, but the company as well. Fortunately, the law allows this accountability in certain situations through a concept known as vicarious liability, where one person or entity can be held responsible for the conduct of someone else who was under their control.
Recently, this principle was put in place in a lawsuit involving a fatal crash between two school buses that killed two young kids and a teacher's aide. The crash occurred when a bus driver, who was texting and driving, crossed the middle of the highway and struck the bus the victims were passengers on. The resulting accident resulted in the deaths of the three victims. The mother of one of the deceased students originally sued the bus contractor and his driver. However, in a recent filing in the lawsuit, the mother added the school system, as well as a separate bus contractor and the driver of the bus the victims were riding in.
It remains to be seen how the lawsuit will be resolved, but the case illustrates how an injured plaintiff can sue multiple defendants to hold all of the defendants accountable for the crash. Whether there is vicarious liability because one defendant controlled or was responsible for another, or whether the defendants were jointly responsible for the accident, the plaintiff can seek to obtain a judgment against multiple defendants.
Source: Knoxville News Sentinel, "Family makes new claims in amended bus crash lawsuit," Lydia X. McCoy, July 8, 2015