What is the potential liability for an accident caused by an underage unlicensed driver?

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What is the potential liability for an accident caused by an underage unlicensed driver?

My daughter is 17, soon to be 18. She does not have her drivers license. Her best friend allowed her to drive his car. While pulling into the driveway she hit a friend’s truck. The truck was pushed into a utility gas line. There was damage done to the car she was driving, the gas line, and the truck. The car she was driving has insurance. Will that cover her since the owner was aware she didn’t have her license? The truck is still in the previous owner’s name; the state has it and is taking along time to process it. Does the previous owner get the money? Or current owner?

Asked on August 25, 2011 Illinois

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If your daughter who does not have a driver's license was negligent in causing the accident and the resulting damages, she could be held responsible for the degree (percentage) that her negligence caused the resulting damages in the end and be responsible for such dollar amount should the individual's whose property was damaged decide to sue her or their insurance carriers under "subrogation laws" could file suit against your daughter for damage payments.

Potentially your daughter's best friend could be liable for negligence as well for letting an unlicensed driver drive the car causing the damage.

In all likelihood the insurance carrier for the car that caused all the problems (driven by your daughter) will end up paying off all of the damage claims to the owners of the property damaged assuming there is adequate coverage for what happened.

Good question.

 


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