FROM THE CRAIGHEAD COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT, WESTERN DISTRICT
[NO. 16CV-15-206] HONORABLE JOHN N. FOGLEMAN, JUDGE
Scriber P.A., by: Jeff Scriber, for appellant.
Law Firm, by: Kevin Staten and Brian A. Brown, for appellee.
D. VAUGHT, Judge
Sue Garrison appeals the Craighead County Circuit Court's
grant of appellee Al Aquino's motion for summary judgment
on the issue of imputed negligence under Arkansas Code
Annotated section 27-16-702. We see no error and affirm.
August 2013, Sue was involved in a car wreck with Austin
Aquino, who was sixteen years old at the time. During the
accident, Austin was driving a vehicle owned by his maternal
grandmother. As a result of the wreck, Sue sustained
injuries. She filed a lawsuit against Austin and his parents,
Al Aquino and Carrie Wade. Al and Carrie are divorced, and
Carrie has primary legal and physical custody of their three
children, including Austin. Al exercises visitation but lives
in Texas, while Carrie and the children live in Jonesboro.
Sue's lawsuit alleged negligence against Austin and
alleged that Austin's negligence was imputed to Carrie
and Al pursuant to Arkansas Code Annotated section 27-16-702.
moved for summary judgment, arguing that he had not signed
Austin's driver's-license-application form, was not
authorized under the statute to do so, and had no authority
to grant or withhold permission for Austin to drive while in
Carrie's custody. After a hearing, the court granted
summary judgment in favor of Al, and Sue initiated this
Sue raises three points on appeal, but her first two points
argue the same issue: that the court erred in interpreting
section 27-16-702 as not imputing Austin's negligence to
Al. The statute provides, in pertinent part:
(a)(1)(A) The original application of any person under
eighteen (18) years of age for an instruction permit, a
learner's license, an intermediate driver's license,
or a motor-driven cycle or motorcycle license shall be signed
and verified before a person authorized to administer oaths
by either the father or mother of the applicant, if either is
living and has custody.
. . . .
(b)(1) Except as provided under subdivision (b)(2) of this
section, any negligence or willful misconduct of a minor
under eighteen (18) years of age when driving a motor vehicle
upon a highway shall be imputed to the person who signed the
application of the minor for a permit or license, regardless
of whether the person who signed was authorized to sign under
subsection (a) of this section, which person shall be liable
with the minor for any damages caused by the negligence or
. . . .
(c)(1) If any person who is required or authorized by
subsection (a) of this section to sign the application of a
minor in the manner therein provided shall cause, or
knowingly cause, or permit his or her child or ward or
employee under eighteen (18) years of age to drive a motor
vehicle upon any highway, then any negligence or willful
misconduct of the minor shall be imputed to this person, and