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$1 Billion Jury Verdict Awarded in Negligent Hiring Case


A Florida jury recently returned a verdict of $1 billion in a negligent hiring case. According to the news report, in 2017, an 18-year-old student was stopped in traffic on the interstate due to a semitruck crash when he was struck and killed by another truck from behind. The family’s attorney said the driver was “driving over his legal limit of hours and without a commercial driver’s license when he caused the crash that blocked the interstate” while the other truck driver “was going 70 mph on cruise control when he slammed into stopped traffic.” After five days of testimony, the jury awarded $100 million for the parents’ pain and suffering and $900 million in punitive damages, finding that the trucking company involved in the first accident hired “a dangerous driver” and “did little to nothing toward safety and background checks before letting their driver behind the wheel.”

A claim of negligent hiring is made by an injured party against an employer. The basis of the claim is that the employer knew or should have known something about the employee’s history which indicated dangerous or untrustworthy propensities. Some of the most effective ways of avoiding these claims include pre-employment background checks and employee drug testing. Hire Image has extensive experience working with employers to provide the services they need most to understand who they are hiring.

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