It depends on the degree of fault between the commercial truck driver and the other motorist. Under the California legal doctrine known as "comparative negligence," the amount of a party's liability for the accident is determined by comparing his or her carelessness with that of the other party. That party's portion of liability determines the percentage of the resulting damages he or she must pay. Interestingly, in most states besides California, a person can't recover anything if his/her own carelessness was 50% or more responsible for the accident.  California allows recovery beyond the 50% mark; so a person in California can be 85% at fault and another driver 15% at fault.