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Employee Use of Automobiles on Company Business

Many companies allow their employees to use their personal vehicles for work-related purposes, such as delivering goods, running errands, or attending meetings. However, when an employee gets into an accident while using their personal vehicle for work-related purposes, it can raise questions about liability and insurance coverage.

In Kentucky, employers can be held liable for damages caused by their employees while driving their personal vehicles for work-related purposes under certain circumstances. This is known as "vicarious liability."

Vicarious Liability:

Vicarious liability is a legal principle that holds an employer responsible for the actions of their employees when those actions are taken within the scope of their employment. This means that if an employee causes an accident while using their personal vehicle for work-related purposes, the employer may be held liable for any damages caused by the accident.

However, in order for vicarious liability to apply in Kentucky, the following conditions must be met:

  1. The employee must have been acting within the scope of their employment at the time of the accident.

  2. The employee must have been authorized to use their personal vehicle for work-related purposes.

  3. The accident must have occurred during the course of the employee's employment.

If these conditions are met, the employer can be held liable for damages caused by the accident, including property damage, medical expenses, and lost wages.


Insurance Coverage:

When an employee uses their personal vehicle for work-related purposes, there may be questions about insurance coverage. In Kentucky, employers are required to provide workers' compensation insurance to cover injuries sustained by employees while on the job.

However, workers' compensation insurance typically does not cover damage to an employee's personal vehicle or liability for damages caused by the employee's actions. Therefore, it's important for employers to ensure that their employees have adequate insurance coverage for their personal vehicles and consider purchasing commercial auto insurance to cover any liability for accidents that occur while the employee is using their personal vehicle for work-related purposes.


In Kentucky, employers can be held liable for damages caused by their employees while using their personal vehicles for work-related purposes under certain circumstances. Employers should ensure that their employees are authorized to use their personal vehicles for work-related purposes and consider purchasing commercial auto insurance to cover any liability for accidents that occur while the employee is using their personal vehicle for work-related purposes.


If you're an employer in Kentucky, it's essential to consult with an experienced employment law attorney to ensure that your company is in compliance with Kentucky's laws regarding vicarious liability and insurance coverage for employee car use. If you're an employee who has been involved in an accident while using your personal vehicle for work-related purposes, you may want to consult with a personal injury attorney to understand your rights and options for seeking compensation.

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