“Logo” Liability in Alaska Truck Accident Cases


They can be among the most destructive, deadly of all traffic crashes, so it is a relief to know that truck accidents are relatively rare in Alaska. According to the National Safety Council (NSC), there is an annual average of 10 fatal collisions involving semis, 18-wheelers, tractor-trailers, and other large commercial vehicles. This represents approximately 12.5% of the total number of deadly motor vehicle accidents, since the vast majority of crashes involve automobiles.

However, despite the fact that they are rare, truck collisions disproportionately affect the occupants of the smaller vehicles involved. With a quick look at the size of a semi, you can probably guess that these individuals are more likely to suffer serious, catastrophic injuries or be killed. Fortunately, Alaska personal injury laws allow you to pursue a range of potential parties. You might be surprised to learn that you might seek compensation under the theory of “logo” liability. An Anchorage, AK truck accident attorney can explain the details, and an overview is helpful.


How Logo Liability Works

You have probably noticed how companies use the sides of a truck’s trailer for purposes of advertising, and this method of promotion carries important legal implications. Often, trucking companies use a strategy of leases and independent contractors to transport freight. The benefit of this approach is that an organization can only be held vicariously liable for an employee, not contractors. Trucking companies could get off scot-free using this defense in a truck accident claim.


Logo liability favors truck accident victims by creating an exception to the rule. Federal regulations require that any lease agreement between a commercial carrier and driver include a statement that the company assumes complete responsibility. Courts have interpreted the language to mean that the organization’s logo must be displayed on the truck for the duration of the lease. The appearance of marketing and promotions content creates the presumption of employee status for the driver, allowing logo liability to attach.


Other Theories of Liability

In addition to logo liability, a truck accident could encompass multiple, possibly overlapping, principles of liability. Obviously, the truck driver is a potential party under the theory of negligence. You would need to prove that the truck operator failed to exercise reasonable care while driving, and this misconduct caused the accident. Plus:

  • You could pursue the trucking company under the theory of vicarious liability if the driver is properly classified as an employee.
  • The trucking company could be negligent in running its business. You would need to show that the organization did not exercise reasonable care, such as when hiring and training drivers, making repairs to vehicles, conducting inspections, and other aspects of operations.


Our Alaska Truck Accident Lawyers Will Pursue All At-Fault Parties

In a serious truck collision that causes massive destruction and severe injuries, it may be wise to develop a strategy around logo liability. To learn more, please contact Power & Power Law at 907-222-9990 or via our website. We can set up a no-cost case review at our offices in Anchorage, Alaska.