For many teenagers, driving is a milestone that, for them, represents their maturity and independence. Unfortunately, the excitement of being able to drive on their own and the lack of knowledge of possible legal repercussions can lead to tragic motor vehicle accidents.
Usually, there is little to zero confusion about responsibility in car crashes. However, the question of liability often arises when the driver at fault is a teenager.
Under Florida’s no-fault car accident laws, the involved parties’ respective car insurances will cover the damages of the accident up to a certain limit. However, victims can seek compensation if the damages were substantial and the insurance cannot fully cover them.
Who can be liable?
Just because the driver at fault is a teenager, it does not mean they are free from responsibility. Although their parents will represent them in court, teenagers can be sued for their negligent actions or conduct.
Nonetheless, there are instances when the responsibility extends to others, such as:
- The teen’s parents: Parents have the responsibility to discipline their children when it comes to driving. If a teen’s parents allowed them to drive fully knowing they are still inept, then they can be liable for the damages their child caused.
- The vehicle owner: The owner of the car the teen used when the accident happened can also be liable under the Florida Dangerous Instrumentality Doctrine if they consented to the teen’s use.
- The car manufacturer: While it is difficult to prove, the vehicle manufacturer can be liable if the crash resulted from a car defect or design flaw, such as a brake malfunction.
Claiming damages as a car crash victim can be overwhelming, especially if you are in the middle of recovery. When the accident involves teenage drivers, it adds another layer of complexity to the situation. One way you can overcome this by making use of available resources and seeking the assistance of an experienced car accident attorney.