Monday, November 1, 2010

Negligent 4-Year Olds

The story of the 4-year old bicyclist (on training wheels) being sued for knocking over a senior is all over the Internets and while I prefer to be the first Blawgger to discuss a legal case I find at local news websites, this now-chewed story deserves a remark. 

You can read Professor Eugene Volokh left his usual insights at the libertarian blawg Volokh Conspiracy, I have a slightly different take.

These "outrageous" stories are noxious.  What is alleged to have happened was a non-negligent 87-year old woman, on the sidewalk in front of her her residence--was knocked down suffering a hip fracture which required hospitalization and surgery.  The question is who should bear the burden of loss as a result of a serious personal injury?  Tort law provides an ancient procedure for obtaining an answer yet we get lost in the seeming absurdity of a lawsuit vis-a-vis a little girl. 

In reality, while the named child is the putative party, the representative for the elderly victim is bringing an insurance claim.  An insurance policy, generally speaking, a "homeowners' insurance policies" provide coverage for the "insured" youngster for persons including innocent elderly ladies trying to walk up the sidewalk. 

Yes, of course, the insurance company's representatives want you to be shocked, disturbed and outraged that a lawsuit against a 4-year old is permitted in this "litigious society."  Bull.

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