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What is Negligent Entrustment of a Motor Vehicle in Kentucky?


When we’re retained to represent a new client who was injured in a motor vehicle accident, we look for all possible individuals or entities from whom we might be able to recover damages. Including those who might be liable for damages under negligent entrustment. In Kentucky, negligent entrustment is a civil theory the courts recognize.
Negligent entrustment is a common law theory of liability. It occurs when one person entrusts somebody else with something potentially dangerous. When used negligently, it causes injury or death to another person. For example, let’s take a look at motor vehicles. Suppose a person leaves their car and keys with someone who causes an accident while driving. In Kentucky, under negligent entrustment, that owner could be liable, whether the driver had permission to use the vehicle or not.

Knowledge is Pivotal to Negligent Entrustment

Accident victims who claim negligent entrustment must prove irresponsibility by the owner. For example, in the case of the car owner, proof must show that the individual:
  • Didn’t have a driver’s license.
  • Is an alcohol or drug addict or otherwise unfit to operate a motor vehicle.

The same legal theory might apply in another circumstance. Let’s say an owner leaves a vehicle, in a public parking garage at the airport in Louisville or Lexington. They happen to leave the keys in the ignition and doors unlocked. Someone could easily take the car on a joyride and cause an accident.

Negligent entrustment isn’t often seen in motor vehicle personal injury claims and lawsuits. But, it could be critical if there’s an injury, and the driver didn’t have insurance. Proving that the driver was using the owner’s vehicle with his or her permission is a question of fact for a jury to determine.

Experienced Help

After becoming an accident victim on account of the carelessness and negligence of somebody else, you can contact us for a free consultation and case review with a knowledgeable and experienced Kentucky car accident lawyer. Once you decide to retain us to represent you, we’ll search out all possible avenues of potential liability on your behalf. After that, our goal will be to obtain the highest possible settlement or award that you deserve.

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