Teenage drivers are often excited to get out on the road—but their inexperience can lead to accidents. While many teens approach driving responsibly, accidents involving young drivers can result in serious injuries or fatalities. Who’s responsible when a teen driver causes an accident?

Driver liability

Teen drivers, like all motorists, have a duty to operate their vehicles safely and obey traffic laws. However, due to their relative inexperience behind the wheel and propensity for risky behaviors, teens are more likely to be involved in accidents.

If a teen driver’s negligence or recklessness contributes to an accident, they may be held liable for resulting injuries and damages. Examples of negligent behaviors include texting while driving, running red lights, following too closely or driving while impaired by drugs or alcohol.

In some cases, the driver’s parents may also be held liable for failing to adequately supervise their teen’s driving activities. This could include allowing them to drive without proper training or supervision, or knowingly entrusting them with a vehicle despite knowing of their reckless driving behaviors. Furthermore, if a parent owns the vehicle involved in the accident, they may be held vicariously liable for any damages caused by their child’s negligence while driving that vehicle.

Vehicle owner liability

If the vehicle involved in the accident is owned by someone other than the teen driver or their parents, that vehicle owner may also be held liable for resulting injuries and damages. Vehicle owners have a duty to ensure that their vehicles are properly maintained, insured and operated by competent drivers.

If the vehicle owner knew or should have known that the teen driver posed a risk due to their lack of experience or history of reckless driving, they may be held liable for entrusting the vehicle to the teen driver. However, if the teen driver was not using the vehicle with permission, that may be a bar to recovering compensation.

Third-party liability

Finally, liability for accidents involving teen drivers may extend to other parties, such as employers, schools or other entities that contributed to the circumstances leading to the accident. For example, if a teen driver was driving as part of their job duties or while participating in a school-sponsored activity at the time of the accident, their employer or the school may share liability for resulting injuries and damages. Similarly, if an accident was caused by a defective vehicle or part, the manufacturer may be responsible.

If you’ve been injured in an accident involving a teen driver, call the Law Offices of Tim Misny right away.

Discuss your accident claim with a Columbus personal injury lawyer right away

The Law Offices of Tim Misny can help you with your accident claim. When you’re the victim of negligence or recklessness, I’ll Make Them Pay!® Call my office at (877) 614-9524 so that I can evaluate your case right away.