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Stevens v. Veenstra

Michigan Court of Appeals
573 N.W.2d 341 (1998)



Aaron Veenstra (defendant), a 14-year-old, took a driver’s education class. While practicing driving with the driving instructor, Veenstra ran into James Stevens (plaintiff), causing injury. Stevens brought a negligence suit against Veenstra. The trial court instructed the jury to hold Veenstra to the standard of care for a reasonably careful minor of the same age, intelligence, and experience as Veenstra. The jury found in Veenstra’s favor. Stevens appealed, arguing that the trial court’s jury instructions were improper because a minor engaging in a dangerous adult activity, such as driving, should be charged with the adult standard of care. Veenstra argued that because he was driving during a driver’s education course, a minor-specific program, he should not be charged with the standard of care for an adult activity.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Murphy, J.)

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