Many in Bethesda may think that those who seek legal action following a car accident are simply trying to profit off their incidents. Yet if you have been involved in your own accident, you can attest to the fact that such action is likely not your first choice; rather, it may be your only choice. Seeking added compensation may be the only way you can afford the expenses the accident has left you with. What might happen, however, if the person that hit you was not driving their own vehicle? Many have come to us here at Lewis & Tompkins, P.C. in such a situation worried that they may be left without sort of recourse. 

If you share the same concern, not to worry; the law does indeed allow you to hold the party that entrusted the driver that caused your accident with their vehicle responsible thanks to the legal doctrine of negligent entrustment. Maryland state court rulings have established that vicarious liability can be assigned under this doctrine if you are able to prove that the owner of the vehicle supplied it to a driver and that because of the driver’s youth, inexperience or other driving deficiencies, the owner knew (or should have known) that loaning out the vehicle presented an unreasonable risk of harm. 

The elements for applying negligent entrustment in the District of Columbia are somewhat different. The district’s only official stance on the subject applies it to employers who allow employees with poor driving tendencies to operate company vehicles. 

You can learn more about assigning liability for a car accident by continuing to explore our site.