Who is Liable if an Adolescent Causes a Car Accident?

Car Accident Claims for Minors 317-881-2700

Car Accident Claims for Minors 317-881-2700

In almost all automotive accident cases, the main objective of both parties is to prove who is responsible for the resulting damages. Avoiding liability and recovering compensation depends on which parties acted negligently to cause the accident, and to what degree. This means, a party involved in the accident will be proven at-fault and held liable for any economic damages and losses suffered by the injured party.

Although this is standard procedure under law, there are circumstances in which a person who was not present or driving the vehicle can be sued and held liable for a motor vehicle accident. This is referred to as “vicarious liability”, or “imputed negligence”, and it plays a major role in situations where minors cause serious car accidents that involve injury to one or more parties.

Vicarious Liability

Even if a person was not driving their vehicle, or even present at all during the accident, there is still a possibility that they could be sued for damages in a car wreck. This is mostly common among parents who lend their vehicles to their children, or have their children’s vehicles in their name. If a minor causes a car collision that results in another person’s injury or death, the parents of that minor can be held liable for all damages under vicarious liability law. There are a few separate ways in which this can occur.

Negligent Entrustment

The law may perceive a parent, also referred to as an “entruster”, as negligent if they allow their teenager to drive a vehicle in their name knowing that their child is reckless, untrustworthy, inadequate at driving, or unlicensed. If a child falls under any of these descriptions, and subsequently causes a serious accident, the guardians can be held accountable for the damages.

They can be sued for high amounts of compensation to cover automotive repair costs, hospital bills, medical expenses, lost wages, prolonged therapy, lifelong disabilities, pain and suffering, wrongful death, and much more. There is virtually no limit to which a victim can sue a negligent parent after their teenager causes them serious injury from a motor vehicle accident.

Family Purpose Doctrine

In the case that a member of the family borrows another family member’s vehicle, with or without permission, and then causes an accident, the car owner can be held liable for the damages incurred. This holds true regardless if consent was granted or not. In other states, whoever signs for a minor’s Drivers’ License is the authority that can be held accountable if a minor causes serious injury to another person while driving.

Indianapolis Car Accident Lawyers

Personal Injury Law Firm 317-881-2700

Personal Injury Law Firm

Call Craven, Hoover, and Blazek P.C. at 317-881-2700 for motor vehicle accident claims in Indianapolis, Indiana. If you or a loved one was recently injured in a car accident caused by a minor, call our licensed personal injury attorneys right away. There is a statute of limitations in Indiana that regulates the amount of time a victim has to legally pursue compensation for a serious injury. When you need strong and successful legal representation following a serious car accident, we are the trusted personal injury lawyers to trust. Schedule a free initial consultation, today!