CAR ACCIDENTS CAUSED BY TEEN DRIVERS
Inexperience and immaturity tend to make teenagers some of the risky drivers on the roads. In fact, the latest findings indicate that teen motorists are about three times more likely to be involved in car crashes, when compared to drivers who are 20 and older.
When teen drivers do cause auto accidents:
- Various parties may share liability for those crashes.
- Victims can turn to Colorado Springs Car Accident Attorney Wm Andrew “Drew” Wills II for key insights regarding their recovery options – and for the highest quality representation moving forward.
Attorney Drew Wills II has more than 30 years’ experience helping car accident victims navigate the recovery process so they can secure the compensation they deserve.
Call (719) 358-2762 or Email Us for a Free, No Obligations Case Review
Drew is ready to learn more about your crash, talk about your potential claim and explain your legal options during a free case evaluation. While we look forward to hearing from you whenever you need more information specific to your circumstances, we also invite you to explore the following for generally important information regarding liability and the recovery options for auto wrecks caused by teen drivers.
How Do I Know If a Teen Motorist Is At Fault for My Accident?
There may be some clear signs that a teen driver involved in your wreck may be at fault for it. For instance, if a teen motorist is issued a citation or is arrested by police after the crash, there’s a good change (s)he is at least partly to blame
for the accident.
In many cases, however, there may not be tell-tale signs of fault right after the accident occurs. In these circumstances, evidence like the following can be useful in determining whether a teen driver is among the at-fault parties:
- Pictures of the accident scene
- The crash report issued by police
- Witness statements
- Cellphone records
- On-scene evidence, like tire tread marks, damaged roadway features, etc.
Attorney Drew Wills II can help crash victims make fault determinations so they can identify all liable parties and seek the full compensation to which they are entitled.
Can I Sue a Teenager Who Caused My Crash?
Yes, as part of the responsibility of holding a driver’s license, a teen can subject to liability for any auto accidents (s)he causes.
Please note, however, that it’s usually in accident victims’ best interests to first file claims with the auto insurance provider for the at-fault teen (rather than initially filing a lawsuit against the teen). Attempting to seek recovery from the insurer first may provide for quicker, more cost-effective resolutions.
If, however, an insurance company denies liability, mishandles the claim or fails to offer a reasonable settlement, filing a lawsuit against the insurance company and/or the at-fault teen may be the best course of action.
Aside from the Teen Driver, Can Other Parties Be Liable for Teen Driver Accidents?
Yes, depending on the details of the crash, a number of other parties may share liability for it. These may include (and may not be exclusive to):
- The parents of the at-fault teen driver – Colorado’s “family car doctrine” states that parents can be liable for the auto accidents that their minor children cause when driving a vehicle owned by the parents, as long as the parents are the heads of the household and the minor had express or implied permission to drive the vehicle. This applies regardless of whether the child holds a valid driver’s permit or license.
- Establishments and/or individuals who served the teen alcohol – Colorado’s dram shop law states that bars, restaurants or any establishment that serves alcohol can be held liable for the car crashes caused by patrons they have overserved. Consequently, if an alcohol-serving establishment provides liquor or beer to a minor who then gets behind the wheel and causes a wreck, that establishment can be liable for the resulting damage.
- Other motorists involved in the accident – If a teen motorist and other drivers share fault for causing a crash, the other at-fault drivers can also be liable for the resulting damage.
- Other parties – When other factors (like faulty automotive equipment or unsafe road conditions) contribute to crashes, additional parties (like an equipment manufacturer or a municipality) can also be liable for these accidents.
Can I Still Be Entitled to Compensation If I May Have Been Partly At Fault for the Crash?
It depends on your level of fault in causing the accident. If you were no more than 49 percent at fault for causing the crash, then, yes, under Colorado law, you can still be eligible for compensation for your crash-related injuries and losses. The recoveries from these claims will be reduced proportionally to your level of fault.
The following example clarifies how Colorado’s modified comparative fault, 50 percent bar rule works:
A distracted driver crashes into your vehicle while you are stopped at a green light. The distracted driver is found to be 90 percent at fault while you are found to be 10 percent at fault. Your claim, which is valued at $75,000, would then be reduced by 10 percent, resulting in a recovery of $67,500 (i.e., $75,000 minus $7,500).
Contact a Colorado Springs Car Accident Attorney at Wills Law, P.C.
If you or a loved one has been hurt in a car crash caused by a teen motorist or any negligent party, contact Colorado Springs Car Accident Attorney Drew Wills II for a free, no obligations case review and crucial information regarding your legal options.
Call (719) 633-8500 or email the firm.
With Attorney Drew Wills II in your corner, you can expect to have a highly competent attorney who listens, treats you with respect and keeps you informed about the progress of your case. You can also expect professionalism, trust, confidence and integrity while Drew works relentlessly to help you secure the best results possible.
From offices in Colorado Springs, Attorney Drew Wills II represents clients throughout El Paso County and Colorado.