Timelines for Commercial Trucking Cases

If you work on commercial trucking cases, you know they can be complicated by many factors. TrialLine timeline software helps organize trucking cases so they are easier to explain to your staff, mediators, and juries. 

Here’s a few ways we’ve used TrialLine in commercial trucking cases:


1. – When a trucking company wants to call a driver an “independent contractor” rather than an “employee,” I’ve used a timeline to show every time the driver represented himself as an employee (through financial applications, credit cards, short-term loans, resumes, job applications, etc.), by wearing a trucking company uniform, responding to customer service issues as an employee, signing delivery statements as the company, using company computers and office space, and most importantly, every time the trucking company directed the workflow and not the result (as outlined in this very important IRS rule). In most cases, a trucking company can’t pass the liability to a contractor if they have broken the rules of the contractor/seller relationship.


2. – It’s not unusual for a driver to blame an equipment failure for an accident rather than admitting they were negligent. This can be good or bad, but often it’s hard to prove with certainty (i.e. Is there evidence the brakes went out? No. But could the brakes have gone out? Yes.). I’ve used TrialLine to create timelines of vehicle manufacturer recommended maintenance and repairs and compared those dates to the trucking company’s invoices and maintenance records on a vehicle. It’s a great way to prove that maintenance was spotty, always behind, or never completed at all – and that a trucking company had little regard for the safety of its vehicles.


3. – While not always easy to admit, a timeline of previous driver infractions, training (or lack thereof), and missed dates for certifications, etc. is a great way to prove a history of driver disregard. You can show big gaps between when a driver started work and how many days, weeks, or months they had to get their certifications (or their failure to do so). Take the trucking company employee handbook and show when a driver was supposed to have an employee review and when it was missed (and how many more weeks or months it took to complete, even in the face of the handbook recommendations).

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Author: Travis Luther

Travis Luther is the founder of TrialLine.net