Martinez, Hart, Thompson & Sanchez, P.C.
800-698-1773 | 505-633-8770

Car accidents and the family car doctrine

Any driver on the road can be dangerous when they are inattentive, intoxicated, or otherwise negligent behind the wheel, but young people can pose risks based on their sheer inexperience. These drivers may quickly become overwhelmed by traffic, road, and weather conditions, which can cause their judgment to become muddled. These drivers may also engage in risky behaviors such as speeding.

As a result of their acts or inactions, these young motorists can cause serious car accidents that leave innocent individuals with severe injuries. These victims may suffer broken bones, torn ligaments, damaged muscles, and even brain and spine injuries. Permanent disfigurement and disability are very real possibilities, and the worst wrecks can result in death. In addition to these physical losses, victims can be hit with unexpected and unjustified emotional and financial losses, such as medical expenses and lost wages.

Typically in these instances a victim is able to recover compensation by suing a negligent driver, but what about when that driver is a teenager who may not even have a job? Under these circumstances, a victim may be able to pursue a personal injury lawsuit against a teenager's parents under the family car doctrine. Here, parents can be held liable for their children's negligent actions, even if the child isn't included on the insurance policy. This places the responsibility on parents to ensure that their children are mature and responsible enough to drive safely.

Lawsuits that follow in the wake of a car accident can result in the recovery of compensation, but there are often complex legal issues that must be addressed. This is why car accident victims should think about discussing their circumstances with a qualified legal professional who may be able to help them develop strong legal arguments that can either help them leverage a favorable settlement during negotiations or a succeed at litigation.

 

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Martinez, Hart, Thompson & Sanchez, P.C.
1801 Rio Grande Blvd NW
Suite A
Albuquerque, NM 87104

Toll Free: 800-698-1773
Phone: 505-633-8770
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