Parental Liability of Injured MinorsPersonal Injury law may seem complicated enough, but what happens when a minor is involved in the case? There are two ways a minor can be involved, they can be the injured party or the one who caused the accident. In either case, parental liability becomes a factor. Parental liability law varies from state to state and a lot of cases become a judgment call based on the actions of the parent and minor.In any state, an injured child is given the same right to compensation as an adult. The only difference, in this case, is that they would not be the one responsible for their medical bills and a parent or guardian could seek their own settlement to cover the medical expenses. An injured minor could sue for pain and suffering, medical bills and hard costs. A minor can also be compensated for lost future earnings if there is evidence of a permanent injury that will, in fact, affect their future earnings.
While an injured minor case may seem very black and white, when the minor is responsible for the incident, things become much greyer. Usually, a child less than eight years old is not expected to understand what careful action is, therefore, the duty of care cannot apply to them. If a child in this age group is responsible for your injury, you will likely need to hold their parents liable for not controlling their child. There are cases where you can hold the child accountable, in these cases, you will have to prove that the child was not as careful as the majority of their peers.
In most cases, the parent or guardian’s homeowner’s insurance will cover the cost of the incident. In the event that your incident is not covered, you would need to sue the minor to receive compensation when they are considered the age of majority and can work to pay off your debts. These cases are very complex and time-consuming and should be pursued only if the incident is severe.
The age of majority can vary from state to state as well, typically we consider minors to be under the age of 18, but some states consider the age of majority at 19 or even 21. Most children are more aware and responsible for their actions at this age and once minors are legally driving they are almost always considered liable for their own actions.
When automobile accidents involve a minor, the minor should have been added to the family insurance plan. While insurance should cover the costs, the injured party can still sue the parents in certain cases. If a parent is negligent and has knowledge of their child’s reckless driving, they can be held liable for entrusting their child with an automobile.
If you have been involved in an incident with a minor you should contact a Personal Injury Lawyer Covington GA to learn more about your state liability laws.