Who is Liable if a Driver's Ed Student Crashes?
- the instructor for his or her careless supervision or instruction, or
- the driving school for the negligent actions of its employees, or for its failure to properly maintain its vehicles.
Let’s take a closer look at each of these options.
Claims Against the Student Driver
Should a driver’s ed student’s carelessness cause your accident, you may be able to seek compensation for your injuries from the student -- or his or her insurer -- directly. Your insurance claim or lawsuit would follow a liability theory called "negligence." Basically, if the student was not driving in a reasonably safe manner based on the circumstances, and caused a traffic accident, the student can be held liable for any injuries and vehicle damage stemming from the crash. Even when students are learning how to drive, if they’re out on the roads and highways they still have a legal duty to drive in a reasonably safe manner. That means obeying stop signs and traffic signals, checking blind spots before changing lanes, yielding correctly, and obeying posted speed limits.
While it's unlikely that the student driver has his or her own car insurance policy, if it's a teen student, chances are he or she is a covered driverunder a parent or guardian's car insurance policy. Read more about the Who is Liable if a Driver's Ed...