What happens if a student driver hits another car?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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What happens if a student driver hits another car?

Yesterday I hit another car it was my fault. I don’t have a driver’s licence but have a permit. I was in the car with my friend who has DL. Nobody got hurt but now she’s called me and says that they guy we hit is going to sue us. Who is responsible in this situation if I dont have DL yet?

Asked on June 1, 2018 under Accident Law, California


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

The person who was at-fault in causing the damage is always responsible (or if they are a minor, their parents/legal guardians are responsible), regardless of whether had a DL or not. When you damage another's property through being careless or negligent, you are responsible for the cost of the damage.
The owner of the car (if it is not the at-fault driver) is also responsible, since a person is liable for the careless acts of those he or she lets use his or her car. (Exception: if the driver stole the car, then the owner is not responsible.) The person whose can is damaged can sue the driver, the car's owner (if it is a different person), or both.

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