If a person allows an intoxicated friend to drive his car, the driver may hold the owner of the car liable for negligent entrustment of a vehicle to an intoxicated driver.
This type of negligent entrustment is a first party cause of action. To prove liability on the owner of the car, the driver or persons injured must show the following:
- The owner knew the driver was intoxicated or was likely to be intoxicated.
- The owner knew the driver was likely to drive while intoxicated.
- Under the above circumstances, the owner entrusted his car to the driver.
While these three elements are necessary, it is also important to evaluate the extent of the knowledge the owner had when lending his vehicle in comparison to the responsibility of the driver who has been drinking and then decides to drive.
Before allowing anyone to drive your car, make sure they are trustworthy, responsible, and not under the influence of any drugs or alcohol. If you allow someone to drive your car and they are negligent, you may be held responsible for their actions. Be sure to have the most liability insurance you can afford to protect you, your family, and your assets.