Can a caregiver be charged if the disabled person in their care drives and injures or kills someone?

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Can a caregiver be charged if the disabled person in their care drives and injures or kills someone?

He has had 7 strokes and has poor vision. I’m his primary caregiver along

with his wife. He is not willing to give up his car key and will often just take

the car on a whim when we are showering, sleeping, etc. Should he drive and injure or kill someone can we also be charged as he is obviously not able to make sound decisions?

Asked on October 23, 2018 under Accident Law, Florida

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

If he is still considered legally competent (i.e. has not been determined to be legally INcompetent and had a guardian appointed), then no other person would be criminally charged if he kills or injures someone: one adult, regardless of relationship, is not criminally liable for the actions of another legally competent adult unless the first one assisted or facilitated it (i.e. it's one thing if he has his own keys; do NOT lend him your keys, however, since they you are assisting him). If he has been judged to be incompetent and a legal guardian appointed, under certain circumstances, the legal guardian could face charges; he or she could also certainly be sued.


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