What Victims Should Know About Holding Celadon Group Accountable After An Accident
If you've been involved in an accident involving a Celadon Group vehicle, you're probably dealing with a host of problems as a result. Trying to handle every complex step of ensuring that the company lives up to its legal obligations shouldn't be one of them.
One thing someone who's just been injured or lost a loved one in a commercial truck accident may not be in a position to consider is the role of a company's credibility. While many trucking companies will make whatever promises they need to in an attempt to persuade victims not to pursue legal action, sometimes a company's prior behavior makes believing those promises a pretty risky bet. Acclaimed Dallas truck accident attorney Michael Grossman explains how this applies in the case of the Celadon Group.
Questions Answered on This Page:
- What is Celadon Group?
- How many crashes has Celadon Group been involved in?
- What is the significance for victims of recent accusations against the company?
What is Celadon Group?
Indianapolis-based Celadon Group is currently the 35th largest trucking company in the U.S. Comprised of Celadon Trucking Services, Hyndman Transport, Osborn Transportation, A & S Kinard, and Taylor Express, as well as various logistics and truck repair companies, it generated revenues of just over $1 billion in 2017.
The company's fleet of 3,200 company-owned tractors, along with 650 lease-to-own or owner-operated trucks with which it's affiliated, traveled around 350 million miles last year. That's most of the distance from the Earth to Jupiter. Government statistics also indicate the company's trucks have been involved in 432 crashes, of which 128 led to injuries and 18 resulted in one or more fatalities.
It's worth pausing here to note that this data does not address the question of fault for any of these incidents, only the number that have taken place. While the exact amount is impossible to know without further investigation, it's almost certain that at least some percentage of them can be attributed to the negligence of a Celadon Group driver.
While it may not be apparent just from examining Celadon's current revenues or the size of their fleet, recent media reports raise profound questions about their credibility. With several industry groups leveling credible allegations of significant financial misdeeds, victims who've been injured by the careless behavior of a Celadon driver have even more reason than they otherwise would to be suspicious that the company will do right by them.
How Do Recent Allegations Affect Celadon Group's Credibility?
In order to better understand Celadon Group's current legal issues, it's helpful to first back up a bit and discuss the benefits and obligations of being a publicly traded company. While it brings significant benefits in terms of access to capital, the flip side of those benefits is being subject to significantly more scrutiny, from regulators, investors, and the general public.
Among other things, public companies are required to honestly disclose their financial situation by filing a form every year with the Securities and Exchange Commission, called a 10-K. When a company fails in that most basic duty, as Celadon is alleged to have done, it rightly loses the trust of the investing public.
This brings us to the substance of the charges against Celadon. In financial disclosure forms submitted to the SEC from 2014 to 2017, the company now admits that it overstated its profits for the three-year period by as much as $250 million. That agency, in cooperation with the Department of Justice, has since launched a criminal investigation into the alleged fraud, and the company's stock has also been removed from the New York Stock Exchange as a result of their failure to produce accurate amended returns by the SEC's deadline.
While this may be an interesting story for people closely following the financial ups and downs of companies in the commercial trucking industry, you may be wondering why it matters to you as a victim of an accident involving one of Celadon's vehicles. The answer is pretty simple: after a crash, almost every trucking company tries to discourage victims from hiring an attorney by, for example, making vague promises to handle a victim's property damage or medical bills, often in return for a waiver of their right to sue. When they do so, they're essentially saying, "Trust us to do the right thing and take care of you."
As someone who regularly takes these companies on in court, you might expect me to say that this is just a baldfaced lie, but I genuinely believe that most trucking companies think they're being honest when they say they'll "do the right thing." It's just that their definition of "the right thing" rarely matches an injured person's expectations, given the massive losses that person and their family have incurred from the crash.
On top of this, when a company like Celadon has a history of not being completely honest with people they're asking to invest money in the company, on whom their future viability depends, what are the odds that they're going to be completely above-board in their dealings with someone who's been injured or lost a family member due to their driver's negligence?
To be fair, I honestly don't know how much the alleged misdeeds of Celadon's prior management reflect on its current executive leadership, but I do know that if I or someone I love were injured or killed in a crash involving one of their drivers, I wouldn't want to just take it on faith that they'd mended their ways and would do right by me.
How Grossman Law Offices Can Help You Hold Celadon Accountable
In light of everything that's now been revealed about Celadon Group's alleged financial misconduct, it's even more important that victims of an accident involving the company's semi-trucks not just take their promises of full and fair compensation as gospel, but instead get the experienced assistance they need to protect their interests.
Given all of the difficulties that victims and their families already face after a commercial truck accident, the process of trying to obtain fair compensation for their losses isn't something they should have to handle alone. That's why we've been helping them successfully hold companies like Celadon accountable for almost thirty years.
If you've been injured or lost a loved one in a crash involving a Celadon Group semi-truck, call us today at 855-326-0000 to find out how our team of attorneys can help. We're available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
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