Actions and Suits in Particular Cases

ORS 30.765
Liability of parents for tort by child

  • effect on foster parents


In addition to any other remedy provided by law, the parent or parents of an unemancipated minor child shall be liable for actual damages to person or property caused by any tort intentionally or recklessly committed by such child. However, a parent who is not entitled to legal custody of the minor child at the time of the intentional or reckless tort shall not be liable for such damages.


The legal obligation of the parent or parents of an unemancipated minor child to pay damages under this section shall be limited to not more than $7,500, payable to the same claimant, for one or more acts.


When an action is brought under this section on parental responsibility for acts of their children, the parents shall be named as defendants therein and, in addition, the minor child shall be named as a defendant. The filing of an answer by the parents shall remove any requirement that a guardian ad litem be required.


Nothing in subsections (1) to (3) of this section applies to foster parents. [1975 c.712 §§1,4; 1977 c.419 §1; 1991 c.968 §5]

Notes of Decisions

Allegation of intentional use of automobile by unemancipated minor, even without intent to damage it, was sufficient to bring complaint within terms of this section. Francis v. Farnham, 58 Or App 469, 648 P2d 1349 (1982), Sup Ct review denied

This section makes parents responsible for their children's intentional torts and general and special damages that flow therefrom and general damages, including cuts, bruises, bleeding and emotional distress are recoverable as "actual damages." Garrett v. Olsen, 71 Or App 93, 691 P2d 123 (1984)

Parent's liability for check forged by unemancipated minor child includes amount of check and costs, but trial court erred in awarding punitive damages, prejudgment interest and attorney fees in summary judgment in favor of credit union, where nothing in statute confers right to damages other than actual damages. Rogue Federal Credit Union v. Phillips, 121 Or App 630, 855 P2d 1146 (1993)

Law Review Citations

28 WLR 455 (1992)


Last accessed
Jun. 26, 2021