I am a 15 year old student.

While walking with my friends, an event transpired that resulted in a branch hitting a car (it was not a malicious act) and leaving a minor to medium sized dent. After I was confronted by the owner I immediately was honest and gave him my name and my phone number (First name only) and said I would try to pay damages, however, I believe I am unable to do so, and telling my parents would be out of the question. Provided he has my first name and my number, and he knows the school that I go to, what could he do to me? Am I under any legal obligation, being a minor? What do I have to do? note: I was well mannered and did apologise profusely.

1 Answer 1


Tell your parents

Given the circumstances it is a near certainty that the least he will do if you do not pay for the damage is make contact with them. It will be far, far better for you if they learn it from you rather than him.

What could he do?

He (or his insurance company) can contact your parents - he will almost certainly do this.

He (or his insurance company) can sue you for negligence. Children are responsible for their own torts providing they have the capacity to recognize and avoid risk and harm - based on your question I have (and a court would have) no doubt that that you are. If you lose the case, and don't pay, he can have the government seize whatever you own in order to sell it to pay the debt you owe. If this happened in British Columbia or Manitoba he can sue your parents.

He could report you to the police - they may or may not choose to prosecute if what you did was criminal: it probably wasn't but the police may investigate to determine this. If he is insured he may be required to notify the police.

  • What means does he have for contacting my parents? A warrant is needed to track a phone number to a name and he does not have my last name. Are there any alternatives for telling my parents? It is simply out of the question at the moment. Wouldn’t he spend more money putting it through the legal system and lose more than the $250.00?
    – Kaveen K
    Oct 13, 2017 at 2:28
  • You asked what he can do - I have no idea what he will do. By the way, he doesn’t need a warrant to get your name (he isn’t the police), he needs a subpoena and if he wants to sue you he will get it.
    – Dale M
    Oct 13, 2017 at 2:40
  • Is it worth getting a subpoena? Wouldn’t it cost more than the repair fee? How would he serve me the subpoena?
    – Kaveen K
    Oct 13, 2017 at 3:15
  • As I said - I can't tell you if he thinks its worth it - economically? no if he wants to "teach you a lesson"? yes. He wouldn't serve you - he would serve the phone company - they would give him your name and address. He would then summons you.
    – Dale M
    Oct 13, 2017 at 4:10
  • Thank you very much for your help is there anything else I need to know? Or steps to take to prevent getting summoned? I’ve talked to him and said I will attempt to gather the money, but what if I honestly can’t?
    – Kaveen K
    Oct 13, 2017 at 11:42

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