Laws For Parents: How Can You Be Responsible For Unlawful Acts By Kids?

For those who are parents, it would seem obvious that you are responsible for your kids. That can also include being responsible for actions they take to do damage to property or others. Some states have parental responsibility laws in place that will hold parents fully responsible for things that children do if they cause damage or harm. The following are some things all parents need to know about parental responsibility laws:

Age of Children

Parental responsibility in the eyes of the law pertains to any children who are considered a minor in that state. Some states say that minors are anyone under the age of 18, while others consider all under age 21 a minor. You will need to check the laws in your state to be certain.

Actions Parents Are Responsible For

The laws vary from state to state, so the actions will not be the same everywhere. Some states have no financial limits on damages done by kids. Others will have a cap on the amount parents will need to pay. Some states will only hold parents responsible if children commit a willful or malicious act. This can include inflicting violence on another person or intentionally causing property damage.

Minor Drivers

When it comes to minors who are of driving age, these laws can also come into play. Parents will have to pay for the damage and injuries if they are caused by an accident where the child is at fault in some states. Other states have sponsorship laws. This requires that anyone who is a minor will need to have a sponsor in order to obtain a license. If the driver causes damage, the sponsor is the responsible party, whether or not they were a part of the accident. The sponsor can be a parent or legal guardian, leaving parents paying for any and all major damage.

Having a child that causes injury or harm, whether on purpose or by an accident, will often cause the parent to have to pay up. If you have any questions on what type of responsibility you will have, you should research the law in your state to find out. You may also want to contact an attorney at a law firm like Lerner, Piermont & Riverol, P.A.  if you cannot find any clear answers. If your child has caused damage or harm, see your lawyer right away to see how much, if any, responsibility you will have for that damage.