Holding a Third Party Responsible For Your Charlotte, NC Car Accident
Only two drivers are generally involved in many car accidents: the person who was driving the vehicle that caused the mishap, and the individual who was harmed because of the main driver’s carelessness. Commonly, the second driver would almost certainly be able to recover damages for the misfortunes caused by the tortfeasor and their insurance company. Be that as it may, a third-party who did not directly cause the accident but possibly contributed to it by allowing the negligent driver to drive their vehicle may also be held accountable in some accidents due to North Carolina’s legal position of negligent entrust.
Determining the at-fault parties in an auto accident can be difficult. If there were multiple drivers and vehicles involved, it may add to the complication; therefore, if you were hurt in an accident, it is important to discuss your legal rights with a Charlotte auto accident lawyer.
Can the Owner of a Vehicle be Held Liable for the Tortfeasor’s Actions?
Most companies are aware that if one of their employees is involved in an auto accident while they are performing a duty related to work, then the company may be held liable for the accident. However, many people don’t know that there are many third-parties that may be held liable for an accident, even if they were not actually present at the accident. For example, if you knew, or should have known, that someone was unfit to driver but chose to loan them your vehicle anyway, the owner of the vehicle may be held liable. An unfit driver is usually classified as a driver who is reckless or negligent, or may hurt someone when they are driving, including:
- Someone who is under the influence of alcohol or narcotics, or may become under the influence
- An underage driver
- An unlicensed driver
- A driver that has limited driving experience, such as an underage driver
- A driver that has a history of at-fault accidents
- An elderyly driver
- A driver that has a medical condition that may affect their driving, some as epilepsy or narcolepsy
To hold the vehicle accountable, the victim must be able to show that the owner knew, or should have known, that the driver was likely to injure someone while driving. While this may be difficult, it is not impossible. For example, if a family member allowed a relative to drive their car knowing that they had vision problems may have a hard time proving that they didn’t know that their vision issues may impair their driving and pose a risk to others. Or, if someone knows that another individual is intoxicated and allows them to drive their car anyway, they could be held accountable under negligent entrustment.
The Liability of Parents
Parents that allow their minor driver to drive their car, knowing that their child is inexperienced and potentially reckless, may also be held liable in North Carolina under negligent entrustment. If this occurs, the parents may be required to pay damages for injuries resulting from the accident that their child caused, even if the child was not on their insurance policy. If a relative uses their car, including extended family such as nieces and nephews, and the owner of the car knows that any member of their family may drive it, they may be held liable under the family purpose doctrine.
Your Charlotte Auto Accident Lawyer Will Pursue Compensation for Your Injuries
When someone is attempting to recover compensation for their injuries sustained in an accident, third party liability plays an important role. Medical treatment and costs to repair damaged vehicles are expensive and may overwhelm the injured parties finances. The victim may not be able to work, or have to work within a limited capacity, due to their injuries. This lack of wages, or reduction in wages, may make it difficult – or impossible – to pay for their medical treatment such as surgeries, prescriptions and physical therapy, in addition to their regular household expenses such as rent, food and gas. If a victim loses their life in an accident, it may leave to their loved ones struggling as well due to the financial burden.
Luckily, negligent drivers and those being held accountable can be required to pay damages to the victims and their families for these sorts of misfortunes. A victim may also be able to pursue damages for medical bills, lost wages, and loss of future earnings from a third-party if they are able to prove the theory of negligent entrustment or the family purpose doctrine. While recovering damages can’t fully compensation for the loss of a loved one or the significant injuries that may result from an accident, it can help victims get started on the path to recovery and healing.
Call us Today to Speak With an Accomplished Charlotte Auto Accident Lawyer
At Hurt.com, our law firm is devoted to helping victims of auto accidents hold the negligent drivers responsible. We comprehend that car crashes are traumatic and life-altering, and go to great lengths to help our clients by handling court filings, treatment plans and settlement negotiations on their behalf so that they can focus on recovering. Victims deserve to have someone on their side, so if you reside in the Charlotte, NC area and were injured in an auto accident caused by someone else, reach out to us by filling out the Free Case Evaluation form or starting the free online chat with a member of our experienced NC auto accident law firm team.
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