When accidents occur, drivers are often held liable for the accidents. However, most people are unaware that the blame for an accident could shift to someone who was not even driving. In some instances, the person responsible for the accident might not even be at the scene when it occurs.
Florida holds the owners of vehicles for damages and injuries they cause. For you to be held responsible, you have to satisfy one of the following criteria:
- Accident results in the death of an individual
- The accident ends in permanent or significant loss of a body part, such as a limb
- Accident results in an injury deemed permanent by a medical officer
- The accident caused permanent or extensive scarring
When such accidents occur, the driver and the vehicle owner could be held liable for the accident. It is also important to note that the owner does not have to be there when the accident occurs. Florida law argues that owners hand out a dangerous instrument to another party and must be responsible enough when designating such instruments.
Here are more resources for you to find out more about accident liability.
It is usual to hold a driver who hits another car liable for the accident. However, this is not always the case. If you engage in reckless driving such that another driver takes evasive action, such as swerving, and they cause an accident, you will be liable.
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Family Purpose Doctrine
It simply means that parents are responsible for their children’s actions. A parent who gives a child a car to drive and the child causes an accident will be liable for the accident. Therefore, as a parent, you have profound responsibility over your child and handling your family vehicle.
Sometimes an organization could be held responsible for the negligent actions of an employee. As such, if an employee causes an accident driving a company vehicle the company will be responsible for their actions.
If you hand your vehicle to someone who shouldn’t drive because of their inebriety or dangerous driving, you could be held responsible for accidents they cause. Therefore, before handing those keys to someone to drive your car, make sure they can safely drive the vehicle.
What You Need To Know
Human error contributes significantly to road crashes. Crashes have caused more than 2,994 deaths and many more injuries in 2022 alone. Please review the FLHSMV crash dashboard for detailed information on road crashes.
The Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) has adequate resources to help if you have any queries about road safety and motor vehicles. They have offices in various locations in Florida. Find out the most convenient location for you.