The Chicago mother of an unlicensed driver involved in a hit and run incident that killed a man is being sued for improperly letting her son use her car. The lawsuit seeks damages for wrongful death caused by the car accident.
Her son faces criminal charges of leaving an accident scene and reckless homicide. Killed in the single car accident was a 26-year-old male passenger riding as a passenger in the vehicle. The driver recently turned himself in to Illinois State Police after earlier driving away from the accident scene. The accident occurred on the Dan Ryan Expressway.
The unlicensed driver was going south in his mother’s 2004 Lincoln LS when his car hit a barrier wall on the expressway close to an exit. In addition to the passenger who died, another passenger also suffered injuries described as serious.
The lawsuit asserts that the driver was speeding at the time of the accident. It also contends that the mother, by knowingly lending her car to her unlicensed son, acted negligently in a manner that helped cause the accident. The lawsuit was filed by the dead passenger’s brother, on behalf of his estate. A wrongful death lawsuit can only be filed by the executor or administrator of the dead person’s estate.
While the driver himself could be sued and held liable, it is often possible to hold others liable for the damages caused in a car accident, such as the vehicle owner, or a person or company employing a driver to perform work involving the use of a vehicle. The lawsuit seeks damages of over $100,000 which would be used for the support of the dead passenger’s two surviving sons.
Source: Chicago Tribune, “Family of man killed in Dan Ryan crash sues driver’s mother,” Jennifer Delgado, Dec. 10, 2012