Girardi | Keese

Memorial Day Crash and Graduated Licensing Requirements

As most Californians know, it takes time for new drivers to develop the skills and judgment needed to safely operate a car. Sadly, five teenagers died in a Memorial Day crash that likely involved inexperience on the part of a 17-year-old South California driver.

In cases like this, observers often jump to conclusions and assume that the teenage driver was behaving recklessly or negligently. Contrary to these assumptions, driver inexperience can cause serious or fatal car accidents even when a young driver is carefully trying to follow traffic laws.

This does not mean that a young driver who causes a crash like this cannot be liable. Negligence law in many areas allows a victim's family to pursue a claim based on a doctrine called "negligence per se." Negligence per se allows claims to proceed where a defendant broke a safety-related law - even if the plaintiff cannot show whether any actual negligence occurred.

Under California law, teenage drivers must complete a graduated system of licensing requirements. One of those requirements is that teenage drivers cannot transport passengers under age 20 for the first twelve months. Based on the ages of the victim in this crash, it is possible that the wreck indicates a violation. Depending on a number of different legal rules, this could mean that negligence per se would apply in this kind of car accident case.

Source: Fox News, "5 California high school students identified as victims of fiery car crash," May 29, 2013 

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

IN THE NEWS

The Soto Verdict

Girardi | Keese attorneys have won a $2.3M verdict for a Long Beach resident run over by a Parks & Rec truck. Read more here.

The Madero Verdict

Attorney Christopher T. Aumais persuaded a San Bernardino County jury to deliver an  exceptionally high verdict in an area known for low jury awards.

A Champion of Justice

Partner Amy Fisch Solomon was a Champion of Justice in 2015, proving that success in law isn't just about the size of your verdict or settlement.

Own a VW Diesel?

Read about VW's emissions scandal and 
our class action against the automaker.

Referrals

Learn About Our Referral Network Read More

Our Attorneys

Meet our award-winning team Read More

AWARDS & RECOGNITION

The true measure of a lawyer isn’t the awards, but what the awards say about the lawyer: dedication and commitment to the client.

Super Lawyers Distinguished AV | Lexis Nexis | Martindale-Hubbell | Peer Review Rated For Ethical Standards and Legal Ability American Association For Justice Consumer Attorneys Association Of Los Angeles Consumer Attorneys California Supreme Court Icon 7 Icon Best Lawyers | Best Law Firms 2014 | U.S. News American Board of Trial Advocates Law Dragon America's Top 100 Attorneys | Lifetime Achievement