One of the many tragic aspects of losing your loved one in an accident is the amount of unanswered questions. It’s perfectly natural to want to uncover all the circumstances surrounding the accident itself, to piece together the events which resulted in your loved one’s death. It is also perfectly natural to want to hold those responsible to account. But this becomes decidedly more complex when the individual responsible is a minor.
How do we legally determine responsibility?
If an individual harms another individual with malicious intent, then they are held accountable under the law. Likewise, if an individual’s carelessness or negligence is responsible for a fatal accident, then they are also accountable.
The definition of “wrongful death” is essentially a loss of life as a direct result of another party’s negligence or willful act. Regardless of whether they meant to cause the accident or not, the individual responsible can be called to account. This is true of minors as well as adults and this is why you need the support of a winning negligent death attorney in West Houston to fight for your rights and benefits.
The Insurance Angle
If a vehicle driven by a minor causes a fatal accident, then it is the right of the deceased’s family to liaise directly with the minor driver’s insurance provider. As long as the correct policy was in place, the insurer will likely cover the damages and wrongful death claim within the boundaries specified in the policy.
However, these “boundaries” often fail to cover the full extent of the mental anguish, financial pressure and various other aspects of your loss. That’s why it’s best to employ the services of a personal injury lawyer to file a wrongful death claim on your behalf.
What is the civil liability for providing alcohol to minors?
Underage drinking is strictly prohibited under state law. Anybody who has provided alcohol to a minor has committed a crime, and is liable for any illegal activity committed by the intoxicated minor, including property damage and causing a fatal accident. If you are planning to pursue a wrongful death claim in these circumstances, the defendant might be either the minor’s parents or the adult who provided the alcohol.
However, there are occasions where the liability is not so clear-cut. For instance, it is possible to file a claim against the minor’s parents if their negligence allowed the minor in question to cause the accident. But sometimes the parents in question are deemed to have behaved responsibly, and were therefore unable to prevent the incident from occurring. In these circumstances, the minor in question may be charged as an adult. That means they are the sole defendant in the lawsuit.
Speak to a West Houston Wrongful Death Attorney Today
The Stephens Law Firm’s specialist wrongful death attorneys are experienced and skilled enough to handle all aspects of a wrongful death claim. They understand how traumatic and financially devastating the loss of a loved one can be, and they will do everything in their power to obtain the benefits you deserve.
If you have suffered a bereavement as a result of an accident caused by a minor, give us a call for a free consultation now.