Importantly, the Court agreed that there are many factors in addition to merely possessing a valid driver’s license to consider before supplying a car to just anyone. If there were reasons to believe a person cannot safely operate a car, the car rental company had a responsibility not to rent the car, even if the person was licensed. Under circumstances where the car rental company acknowledged that the driver was unfit and it knew enough that further inquiry was warranted, the Court determined that the car rental company could be held liable.
Evidence was presented that newspaper articles, governmental publications and others knew and used methods to rapidly determine one’s driving record.
In fact, the car rental company itself filed suit over 50 times for negligent entrustment because it recognized a duty not to supply a person with a dangerous instrumentality existed.
No one should be able to supply a dangerous instrumentality to someone who is incompetent without being responsible for the harms and losses.