am i responsible for medical bills for accident my minor daughter was in on golf cart

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am i responsible for medical bills for accident my minor daughter was in on golf cart

my daughter was driving my golf cart on the road in our neighborhood.her friends
saw her and wanted to ride so they got on. her friend grabbed the steering wheel
and they went into the ditch and her friends arm was broken.

Asked on August 22, 2017 under Personal Injury, Louisiana

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

You are liable IF your daughter was at fault: a person who is at fault in injuring another is personally liable if he or she is an adult, but if a minor, his or her parents or legal guardians would be liable. In the situation you describe, your daughter should not be liable if someone else grabbed the wheel from her; the one who grabbed the wheel should be the at fault, and so liable, person.
That said, if the bills are low, it may be better to pay, if the payment includes a settlement that this is payment in full of all claims and they cannot sue you again, rather than defending against the case in court: 1) at a minimum, you'll lose a day or two to the case, which if you work, costs you money anyway; 2) if you don't hire a lawyer but they have one, you'll be at a disadvantage and the odds of losing will be higher (see 3), next), but if you hire an attorney, that cost could equal or exceed what you'd pay for low bills, anyway; and 3) even if you and they neither have lawyers, while the facts you describe are in your favor, no  case is every 100% guaranteed--judges sometimes do odd things--so you could spend time defending the case and still lose.
If the amount is very large, then defend on the basis that under the facts, your daughter was not at fault; and strongly consider hiring an attorney.


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