Teen Driver Accidents
Because of their relative lack of experience, teenage drivers are more likely to be in a motor vehicle accident than are drivers of many other age groups. Teens also tend to underestimate the magnitude of danger involved in risky behaviors. If you or a loved one has been struck by an irresponsible teenage driver, the Pembroke Pines car accident lawyers at Cohn & Smith can help you seek fair compensation for your injuries or your loved one’s loss.
Although teens are generally more likely to be in an accident than other drivers, some of the more common scenarios leading to teen driver accidents include:
- Distracted driving, such as texting, cellphone use, or other use of electronics;
- Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, including underage drinking;
- Failing to obey traffic signals and follow the basic rules of the road; and
- Tailgating, exceeding the posted speed limit, or driving too fast for weather or traffic conditions.
Most car accident cases in which one party seeks to recover damages from another proceed under the general law of negligence. To say that a person, business, or governmental entity was “negligent” means that this party failed to act in the manner that a reasonably prudent person would have acted under the circumstances. In some cases, this means that something was done that should not have been done. In other cases, it results when there was an omission, or a failure to act.
Just as with other civil lawsuits, the burden of proof is on the plaintiff to prove each element of their teen driver accident case by a preponderance of the evidence. This standard, unlike the “beyond a reasonable doubt” standard required in criminal cases, only requires the plaintiff to prove that, more likely than not, his or her version of the facts should be accepted as true.
Four things must be proven in any negligence case. First, the plaintiff must prove that the defendant owed him or her a legal duty of care. Second, the plaintiff must show that the defendant breached that duty. Third, the plaintiff must demonstrate a link of causation between the defendant’s breach of duty and the injuries. Finally, actual damages must be identified. If these elements are shown, the plaintiff may seek compensation for damages such as pain and suffering, medical expenses, lost wages, and property damage.
It is important to remember that there is a firm deadline for filing your claim. Referred to as the “statute of limitations,” this time limit is the outermost period of time during which a claim may be legally asserted. Claims not filed in a timely basis are almost always dismissed on procedural grounds. Furthermore, it is unwise to wait until just before the statute of limitations runs to seek legal counsel, since this may limit the scope of the investigation of the accident and may also cause a case to run afoul of other procedural rules.Explore Your Options with a Car Accident Lawyer in Pembroke Pines
At Cohn & Smith, our Pembroke Pines attorneys know what it takes to vigorously represent injured people and the families of those killed in fatal accidents. We can help investigate and litigate any and all claims that you may have against a teen driver, his or her parents, their insurance company, your own uninsured/underinsured motorist insurance carrier, and any others who may bear responsibility for the crash. To schedule a free consultation to discuss a teen driver accident with a motor vehicle collision attorney, call us at (954) 431-8100 or contact us online. We can assist injured individuals throughout South Florida, including in Fort Lauderdale, Aventura, Weston, Sunrise, Hollywood, Davie, and North Dade County.