Many people fail to understand the legal rights of children in cases where a child is injured in a car accident in which their own parents are driving. Yesterday, a story about a child who was suing her parents after being injured in a drunk-driving crash became news. This interested me because, for any injured child to obtain compensation after an accident caused by a parent driver, the child obviously has to sue the parent. This is not news; it is the reality of our system of insurance company liability.
The facts of the news story are tragic. The mother of the child was driving after binge drinking when she crashed the car, a BMW, into an embankment. The child’s sister and a friend were killed. The child was seriously injured, suffering spinal injuries that left her in a cast for 10 weeks.
I have handled similar cases, and in most of them the parents understand that the child has to sue them to get the insurance company to pay money damages for their pain and suffering, medical expenses and other damages. Parents need to support their children in these cases.
This case involved a parent who had consumed alcohol at several bars, got severely drunk and then picked up children from school. In cases like this, the injured child may also have grounds to sue the bars who over-served the parent. A lawsuit against a bar is based on a state’s dram shop law, and lawyers call these claims “dram shop claims”. I investigate every car accident case to determine if there is a dram shop claim because injured clients may be entitled to additional compensation if a bar is also liable for the accident.
Attorney Eric Hageman represents accident victims nationwide in personal injury and accident wrongful death lawsuits against drivers, bars, trucking companies and others. He has won millions for his clients, including a recent $2,560,000 recovery for husband and wife whose vehicle was rear ended by a big truck. See our top cases.
The article referenced here can be found at: http://shine.yahoo.com/parenting/12-old-sues-parents-drunk-driving-car-accident-190600659.html. I discussed the case based on accident laws in the United States. The accident happened in Ireland.