Can I be held liable if a non-related adult member of my household has an accident while driving a vehicle owned by me?

UPDATED: Dec 8, 2011

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Can I be held liable if a non-related adult member of my household has an accident while driving a vehicle owned by me?

This member of my household does not have a drivers license because he is an undocumented immigrant. I know him to be a safe driver and know that he has had no accidents for the 3 years I have known him. Would my allowing him to use my vehicle be consider negligent entrustment?

Asked on December 8, 2011 under Accident Law, Illinois


S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Your liability for allowing someone to drive your car who did not have a license would constitute negligent entrustment.

Even without the issue of negligent entrustment, you would still be liable for the accident since you are the registered owner of the vehicle.

Your liability for the accident would include property damage and personal injury.  The personal injury claims would be for each occupant of the vehicle.  Personal injury claims wjould include the medical bills, pain and suffering and wage loss.  Compensation for the medical bills is straight reimbuirsement.  The medical reports will document the nature and extent of the injuries and will be used to determine compensation for pain and suffering.  Compensation for pain and suffering is an amount in addition to the medical bills.  Compensation for wage loss is straight reimbursement.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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