Our daughter is 18 and still in high school, but will be going away to college this fall. She owns a car and has her own car insurance. We still claim her as a dependent on our taxes. Are we liable for any of her actions so we can be sued if she causes injury or property damage? Do we need to keep her car under our umbrella insurance policy?
I agree with attorney DeLuca. I will bet that this is not a case where the accident has occurred, but a "what if" question. Some of the other parties' right to sue you will depend on who paid for the car, or countersigned any loan. Also how the insurance was paid for and whether your daughter works and earns the money to pay for the car and insurance. The real bottom line is the policy limit your daughter has. If she opted for the lowest cheapest limits then there could exposure. If she has a high BI limit then the chances of anyone suing you drops. Most cases resolve within the BI policy limits or for them. Now lets talk PD limit. What if she hits a new Porsche GT? Ohmigod, not that..........
Advice given in this forum does not create an attorney - client relationship. No advice should be relied on without consulting with a local attorney.
If she owns the car and was driving it at the time of the accident, it is difficult to think of a plausible scenario whereby you could be found liable for the damages. Of course, if the injured party does make a claim against you it will be necessary to inform your insurance company and consult with an attorney.
Rhode Island is a very small jurisdiction so it's important that you consider the possibility that people who you know may see your question or that the facts discussed here may be subject to discovery requests if you become involved in litigation. Please remember that it is not possible to give proper legal advice without a thorough consultation and this answer is meant only to provide you with some guidance. Contact an experienced attorney at your earliest convenience to discuss your case thoroughly. The above was provided purely for informational purposes and does not create an attorney-client relationship between the questioner and the attorney.
Since she alone owns the car and was driving the car unless you plied her with liquor you should not have liability exposure. Confirm with local counsel.
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