I have a minor step daughter that drove under the influence and was not caught. I own a home as separate property from her father. We are currently all on the same insurance policy, am I at risk of losing my home and does me getting my own policy shield me from risk if she gets into an accident under the influence?
If the car is in your name and you negligently entrusted the car to her while she was under the influence your assets may well be at risk. Confirm with local counsel.
There a a couple potential ways for you to be liable:
1. You own the car. You are liable for permissive use of your car, up to $15k/person, $30k/collision for bodily injury;
2. You are aware of your step daughter's propensity for drunk driving and allow her to drive your vehicles, creating negligent entrustment. This liability is essentially unlimited;
3. You have adopted your step daughter. Custodial parents or guardians are liable for the wilful misconduct for an amount not to exceed $25,000 for each wrongful act of their children.
If you are not the parent or guardian, and don't own the car, and the step daughter's mother has no ownership interest in your home or other valuable assets, your liability risk appears to be minimal. Your step daughter's risk is massive if she continues on this path.
I am not your attorney and don't know anything about your problem. Do not rely on my response other than as information used to hire an actual attorney.
If you don't own the car as she was driving, and she is not your legal child and you did not not make the keys to the car accessible to her, you should not have any liability unless you were the one that provided her with the alcohol.
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