Can I sue my stepfather’s homeowner’s insurance?

My 16 year old son was staying at my mother and stepfathers home. My stepfather provided him with beer. He had his gun laying out and my son was intoxicated playing around with the gun and accidentally shot himself in the face with it. He’s in ICU. I’m wondering what I need to do or what to do or if there’s anyway I can sue his homeowner’,s insurance for medical

expenses, mental anguish and what else should I file for on this lawsuit.

Asked on September 22, 2016 under Personal Injury, Louisiana

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Prior to filing a lawsuit, it may be possible to settle the case with the homeowner's insurance carrier.
Notify the homeowner's insurance company in writing of your son's personal injury claim.
When your son completes his medical treatment and is released by the doctor or is declared by the doctor to be permanent and stationary, which means having reached a point in his medical treatment where no further improvement is anticipated, obtain his medical bills and medical reports.  His personal injury claim filed with the homeowner's insurance carrier should include those items.
Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbursement.  The medical reports will document the nature and extent of your son's injury and will be used to determine compensation for pain and suffering which is an amount in addition to the medical bills.
If the case is settled with the homeowner's insurance carrier, NO lawsuit is filed.
If you are dissatisfied with settlement offers from the homeowner's insurance carrier, reject the settlement offers and sue the property owners for negligence.  I know that is difficult since the property owners are your mother and stepfather.
You will need to be appointed guardian ad litem to file a lawsuit on behalf of your son because he is a minor.
In addition to the civil case (lawsuit), the district attorney will probably bring criminal charges against your stepfather for contributing to the delinquency of a minor  by providing beer and reckless endangerment for not securing the gun.
With regard to the civil case (lawsuit), if the case is NOT settled with the homeowner's insurance carrier, the lawsuit on behalf of your son against the property owners must be filed prior to the expiration of the applicable statute of limitations or your son will lose his rights forever in the matter.
 


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