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Friend asked son to drive their car

by Jim

A friend, who is an inexperienced driver, asked my son to drive their car during a recent snow storm.

My son agreed to help and do the driving but slid into a curb causing damage less than $1000.

There was no collision insurance on the car. The other party has asked that my son pay for the repair. Is it right that he should pay. It seems decidedly unfair.


Hi Jim,

Well, I think ethically speaking he should not owe for the damage. He was doing something for his friend at his request.

However, legally speaking it is possible that he would owe for the damage. He was the driver and he had to exercise due care. The fact that he lost control can show that there was no due car (even in bad weather conditions).

There is a bailment here, this is a highly disputed area of the law. Read about bailments

here: You can argue your son was the bailee for the benefit of the owner (take him somewhere), but again the issue of negligence here can be hard to overcome.

This goes to the maxim: "no good deed goes unpunished".

I hope this clears up some confusion.

Good Luck,

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