Boca Raton Car Accident Lawyer On Vicarious Liability of Parents of Teen Drivers

By Osborne & Francis
July 18, 2024

Teens often fail to recognize the impact of reckless driving on their parents and their own pockets, reports Boca Raton car accident lawyer Joseph Osborne.

For teens, the day they finally get their drivers license is one of the most exciting days of their lives. However, with this newfound freedom and independence comes great responsibility that is too often neglected. Teens frequently fail to recognize the high risk associated with reckless driving, and the extent of the damage they can cause themselves and their parents pockets, reports Boca Raton car accident lawyer Joseph Osborne.

In fact, this risk is so high that The Center for Disease Control and Prevention reports that the biggest factor of death among teens is reckless driving. Young drivers, ages 15-24 represent only fourteen percent of the US population, however they account for nearly 30%, about nineteen billion dollars, of the total costs of motor vehicle injuries nationwide. These costs more often than not fall to the parents as a result of the vicarious liability law.

Despite their adolescence, teens are held to the same standards as all other drivers, reports car accident injury lawyer Osborne. The driver involved in a car accident in which they are at fault as a result of careless driving is financially responsible for the accident due to civil liability. However, since parents are usually the ones purchasing cars for their children, the fault and responsibility for the accident extends beyond the teenage driver to the owner of the vehicle if the teen is driving a car that is registered in the parents’ name.

Our car accident law firm has seen many cases in which vicarious liability leaves parents financially vulnerable. One case example involves a college student driver who was driving a car that was registered in his father’s name. The teenager got into an accident with a motorcycle with two passengers. Although the driver originally thought the collision was nothing more than a fender bender, the crash caused the passenger in the back to lose her foot. The passenger was immediately rushed to the hospital and is now pursuing a lawsuit against the driver. However, due to the ownership of the vehicle, the father is legally responsible for all damages cause by the accident.

So how can a parent limit their liability?

The best car accident lawyers would recommend that in order to protect their assets, parents should not let teens drive a car that is registered in their name. If the car is gifted to the teenager then the car should be registered in the name of the teenager and a sufficient insurance policy purchased. This ultimately makes the teenager the owner of the vehicle and responsible for that vehicle in the case of an accident. Without ownership of the car, the laws imposing vicarious liability will not apply to the parent.

If you are the parent of a teenager who has been involved in an accident, contact an experienced Boca Raton car accident lawyer at Osborne & Associates online now or call us at (561) 293-2600. We handle car accident cases and we can discuss your case, how the law may apply and your best legal options to protect your rights and obtain compensation for your injuries.

Erica F.

5 star icon

"Best personal injury attorney around, I could not be happier! I was seriously injured in a car accident and Osborne and Francis helped me through the entire process. I was blown away by how knowledgeable the staff and attorneys are at this incredible law firm. I would not hesitate to recommend this law firm to friends and family!"

C. Smith

5 star icon

“I am so thankful for EVERYONE, the entire staff at Osborne & Francis Law, for mentoring me through the mediation process with my hip replacement failures. I didn't realize how MUCH pressure they relieved me of by helping me deal with the reality of this traumatic time in my life, as it was OVER so quickly with a positive result. My family is grateful to have their mom HAPPY & FOCUSED on the future, rather than worrying over what happened in the past! FAST FORWARD, we are LIVING LIFE to the fullest once again!”

E. Holland

5 star icon

Dennis and the other Osborne & Francis staff were amazing! Our case was HUGE and required tender loving care. Everyone on our case did their part by putting all the puzzle pieces together. We were given step by step updates and put at ease when our nerves got the best of us. For every inquiry we made we received a timely response...You are appreciated!

T. Andrews

5 star icon

“Attorneys Greg Francis and Ryan Fletcher at Osborne & Francis Law Firm represented me in my personal injury case.The defendant drew a line in the sand and was adamant on a settlement amount I was almost willing to accept. After the dust settled and the smoke cleared, we settled for 3 times that amount!!! When they say ‘Real Tough Lawyers,’ they mean it.”


5 star icon

Quick and fair resolution to a unique case. On advice of my own attorney, I engaged Joseph Osborne of Osborne & Francis of Boca Raton, FL. Mr. Osborne had considerable experience in cases such as mine and the results showed that. Mr. Osborne and his staff were very helpful, kept me up to date, and listened to my input. The settlement was very fair as far as I am concerned.

J. Davis

5 star icon

“I couldn’t have asked for a better lawyer/ firm — everything was done professionally exactly how I wanted. Due to COVID my personal attorney Mr. Garcia was still able to make things work in a timely manner and he never made me feel like he wasn’t working. Overall I’m happy with how my case turned out and I would recommend him and this law firm to anyone. 100% satisfied.”

Ready For Your Free Consultation?

Fill Out Our Form For Your Free Consultation

Hiring a lawyer is the first step towards recovering a better quality of life. At Osborne & Francis, we devote our undivided attention to each client, and all communications are held in the strictest privacy. Contact us by filling out the form or calling us directly at (561) 621-1385.

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.