Danger of Civil Litigation in Chain of Responsibility

An accident occurs between a Truck and a Car.  The Car’s legal rerpresentatives launch a civil suit against the Truck driver and his insurer.

End of story and it happens nearly every week in Australia, the last one I read about saw a $200,000 payout.

Now think about it in Chain of Responsibility terms.

The Civil Litigation legal team can look to include Companies and Individuals who were involved in the:

  • Contracting of the Truck driver;
  • The scheduling or task setting;
  • The packer of the load;
  • The loader
  • The receiver of the load;

And the Supervisors, Managers and Directors of all of the above!!!

Prove Your Innocent

Civil litigation is a business, so as such they are going to chase the best options for a the maximum payout.  Including all of the other parties in the Chain of Responsibility, now means more insurers and more balance sheets are included.

The problem for the included parties is that they will have to prove they are innocent and have abided by all Reasonable Steps.  The problem is that the Prosecution does not need to define what are Reasonable Steps.

One Major Legal Firm estimates the value of Chain of Responsibility to legal firms at $100 million dollars per annum and growing at 10%!

Enforcement Authorities and Lawyers Agree

Enforcement Authorities and leading Legal minds we have spoken to, agree that Civil Litigation under the Chain of Responsibility framework could pose a far greater threat to Directors and Companies, than criminal prosecutions.


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Mike Wood

Mike is qualified in both Civil and Mechanical Engineering, with Post Graduate qualifications in Logistics and Business Administration and is a qualified RABQSA/Exemplar auditor. The initial phase of his career involved public roads and transportation authorities in technical and management roles with both VicRoads and the Victorian Ministry of Transport and designed Melbourne’s time public transport system Mike then moved into private industry and over several years, held General Manager positions with major logistics service providers with turnovers in excess of $500 million. As his expertise and knowledge grew he moved into consulting and became Principal Consultant with Dawson Consulting, one of the largest Supply Chain and Logistics consulting companies in Australia Mike is now Managing Director of LATUS Business Solutions, which is a highly regarded Business Improvement practice, operating in 3 major area; • Supply Chain & Logistics design; • Compliance implementation & management; • Risk analysis& Safety management • Leading training provider (RTO) in the area of Lean Logistics & Business He has been a Director of transport and logistics industry associations in Queensland and Victoria.

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