We were recently successful in a lawsuit launched on behalf of a brain injured young man who was a passenger in a vehicle that went out of control while participating in a street race. Clearly the driver of the vehicle that crashed was to blame for this accident, but what about the other vehicle involved in the street race?
This other vehicle never impacted the car that crashed, neither did it swerve towards or encroach in any way into the lane of the crash vehicle.
However, we successfully argued that this other vehicle was also to blame on the basis that the drivers of both vehicles, explicitly or implicitly by their actions, agreed to race and encouraged each other to race reaching speeds of in excess of 100 kmh. Clearly this was a dangerous and unlawful activity that created a significant risk of an accident such as the one that, in fact, occurred.
We also argued that the other driver, by helping to set this street race in motion, was part of a joint activity or joint venture which was both risky and illegal resulting, we claimed, in both vehicles being to blame for our client’s injuries. In tort law or negligence law, a “joint venture” is when all the parties acting in pursuance of a common end are responsible for the entire result, even if they did not physically participate in the injurious act.
Our successful joint venture argument was exceedingly beneficial for our client who received a very large settlement.