Dealing with the aftermath of a joyride accident

On Behalf of | Feb 22, 2024 | Motor Vehicle Accidents

The allure of driving a car might call out to your curious or rebellious child, tempting them to take your car for a joyride. Unfortunately, their lack of experience can quickly turn an exciting time into a nightmare. A single mistake, such as a wrong turn or stepping on the gas at the wrong time, can lead to a terrible accident. As a parent, you might find yourself dealing with the aftermath.

Your insurance company may refuse to pay

Although your car was driven without consent, it was still by your child, making liability tricky. This could put you in a tough spot with your insurance company.

Consider reviewing your insurance policy closely. If the plan includes your child, you might receive some coverage for the damages of the accident. However, be prepared for the possibility that your insurance provider may tag the incident as unauthorized use and deny your claim altogether.

Claiming theft may not hold up as well, particularly if the insurance company does not recognize children borrowing the family car as thieves.

There is a chance you will have to pay for the damages out of pocket, given that your child likely lacks the financial means to do so.

You could face a lawsuit

Even if your insurance provider attempts to settle with the victim, the victim may not be satisfied with the amount. If they believe that they deserve more compensation, they could pursue a personal injury lawsuit against you, the parent.

What to do after a joyride accident

In the wake of a joyride accident, your first step should be to ensure your child sees a doctor. Once things have settled down, consider contacting a car accident attorney. Facing a personal injury lawsuit may entail building a solid defense. A lawyer can help collect evidence, determine liability and develop a legal strategy for you while protecting your rights.

No parent wants to wake up to a call about their child being in a joyride accident. Yet these unexpected events do happen. Knowing your rights, responsibilities and legal options is crucial to prepare you for potential car accidents. Additionally, as a parent, it’s on you to shape your children into becoming responsible drivers.