Rosenbaum & Rosenbaum, P.C. | March 4, 2016 | Car Accidents
The general rule is no, your children are people and are held to their own standards. Though this is the general rule, there are exceptions. This article will explore those exceptions and how you can hold their parents accountable for their actions.
For example if a child hits you with a boat and causes a serious accident, you should obviously focus on your medical problems. But, when the dust settles, you need to take an objective review of the facts. As a child they probably don’t have a lot of assets or insurance with which you can recover compensation for your injuries. It is not natural for you to assume that you can hold someone else liable but it can happen. For example, if the other parent knew that their child is a reckless driver of boats or cars and they lent the child the keys anyway, this could result in the parent’s being personally liable.
This extends beyond car or boating accidents, this covers any time in which either parent has prior knowledge of their child’s predispositions. They are the parents therefore they are the ones best positioned to control and guide your child.
This is what is known as “negligent supervision.” Essentially, either parent knows their child has this bad habit and failed to control them. Parents must remain vigilant and guide their children to the responsible choices because, even an accidental or wrongful death, could result in their personal liability.
Parents may also be held liable under a theory known as “vicarious liability.” This is the same legal theory that holds employers liable for the actions of their employees. For example, a father lends their keys to their son to pick up some milk. The father knows his child does not have a driver’s license. On the way the son gets into an accident and someone is injured or killed. The father could be vicariously held liable because he entrusted his son with the keys.
If you were in a car or boating accident then you probably want to consult with a lawyer. It is not natural to assume that you can hold someone liable for the actions of another. Speaking to a professional can help apprise you of all your legal options