When a teenager borrows the family car, that teen’s parents have given what is known as implied consent to the teen driver’s excursion. Hopefully, that mother and father know that the person borrowing the car has a license. Ideally, the two of them have thought ahead to this moment, and have agreed that their son or daughter appears to be responsible.
Under those circumstances, an insurance company would not be inclined to question the level of the implied consent that has been granted by those same parents. Still, an insurer might question that same level, if one friend has borrowed another’s automobile. Yet the court assumes an acceptable level of implied consent, unless one licensed driver has chosen to steal another person’s auto.
Who becomes responsible for damages at the time of a collision involving a borrowed car?
If insurance companies chose to put tight restrictions on such borrowing, families might feel reluctant to purchase an insurance policy. Parents can be spared some of their driving time, if a son or daughter can do a few errands. For that reason, every policy will cover such damages up to a limit, regardless of the name of the licensed driver that was sitting at the wheel.
Yet the fact that the policy will cover at least some damages does not mean that insurance companies want to encourage thoughtless actions by any parents. Every parent should know that in the event of collision, that same accident goes on the record that is kept by the company from which the car insurance has been purchased.
Moreover, if the collision has resulted in damage to the colliding vehicles, and if the level of that same damage has exceeded a certain limit, then the owner of the car must cover the cost of the damaged vehicles. Furthermore, that same person must cover the expenses linked to any other accident-related costs. In the worst case scenario, the car’s owner would have to cover all accident-related expenses, if he or she could be found guilty of negligent entrustment.
What is negligent entrustment?
That is willingness by the owner of an automobile to lend that same vehicle to someone that does not have a license, or to someone that has a history of drug or alcohol abuse. That term could also be used in a court of law if a car’s owner had lent that particular vehicle to someone that has demonstrated irresponsible behavior in the past.
According to personal injury lawyer in Huntsville, the owner of an automobile would also be guilty of negligent entrustment if that same person gave his or her auto to a teen that has a learner’s permit, knowing that the same teenager planned to drive somewhere without being accompanied by an adult. The same charge could be made against an adult that has allowed a friend with a suspended license to drive that same adult’s car.