Insurance: options when hit by uninsured motorist

muklukmukluk Member Posts: 38
I was rear-ended while stopped waiting to turn left. The other driver provided me with insurance information. I notified my insurance agent. When he contacted the other driver's insurer, it turned out that his policy had expired. Given this situation, my insurance agent said that my insurance can pay for it (and I have a $500 deductible) or I can pay for it myself. It seems to me that the other driver is liable. I have not yet contacted him regarding his stance on reimbursing me for the cost of repair. I intend to get some estimates and then contact the other driver. I have not yet filed an accident report (no police at scene, no injuries). Should I see if the other person is willing to pay my repair bill and only file an accident report if he isn't? Or should I go ahead and file an accident report anyway? If I file an accident report I would think he would be cited for not having insurance. This would be fine with me, however, he may be more likely to reimburse me if I note that I have not yet filed a report and the consequences if I do. Any advice on this matter would be greatly appreciated!!! For what it's worth, the accident occurred in Ohio and I do not know the other driver's financial status (as in does he have money to reimburse me).
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Comments

  • andys120andys120 Loudon NHMember Posts: 22,666
    the difference being I filed an accident report the day of the incident. I contemplated suing to recover my deductible but would've had to pay to file a lien and decided not to since the owner of the car (a welfare case) appeared to have no attachable assets other than a crappy old car (w bad brakes?!)

    2001 BMW 330ci/E46, 2008 BMW 335i conv/E93

  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 24,875
    about 13 years ago. I got run off the road and hit a traffic light pole. Other guy kept on going, and they never did track him down. It happened so quick that I couldn't get a tag #.

    Anyway, in my case, they actually gave me book value for the car, and the only deductible I had to pay was something like $100 or $150, because I wanted to hold onto it for parts.

    Honestly, I think it should be the insurance company's job to go after the other guy and get you reimbursed for the deductible. Of course, I wouldn't hold my breath on that one!
  • highenderhighender Member Posts: 1,358
    I got hit by, of all things, a clueless person opening a car door while I was driving by....

    we both had insurance...but the other side said it was my fault....

    so I let my insurance company handle it...and they paid for all except the deductible...and were going to go after the other insurance company for the losses...and them the police report came out and said the other party was liable....so they ended up paying....

    they still owe me part of the rental car fees.

    The point I'm getting at is sometimes you can elect to have your insurance company do the footwork...especially if you are covered but not at fault....then they will reimburse all of your expenses...and go actively after the other insurance or person.

    However, because the other side may have your addresss, I would caution against taking an aggressive approach , and advise calling and seeing if the person is willing to take care of all damages himself first. If he does not, or shirks the responsibility, document all this and then go after him either through insurance compa=ny or small claims....
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    It's a tough situation. Even if you get a judgment on the person, you still have to figure out how to collect.

    I think the dollar amount would be a factor for me in deciding how to go on this one.

    I'm not clear on one thing--why are you reluctant to let your insurance company pay? Also, isn't there mandatory insurance laws in your state? If so, you should file a police report I think. Are you familiar with the laws inyour state regarding when an accident report is necessary or are you making assumptions?
  • muklukmukluk Member Posts: 38
    Thanks for all of the input. I got my first estimates today from the body shop of the local subaru dealer. To just tweak the bumper back would run $128.70. To fix it "like new," which would include replacing the reinforcement beam, would cost $739.11. If I'm paying for it myself I suppose I would go with the cheaper option. The concern with having using my insurance would be that I would pay the $500 deductible (unless the other guy is willing to) and then the insurance would cover the rest (239.11). People seem to think that it wouldn't be worth given that they might be inclined to increase my rates (that's my reluctance about letting my insurance company pay. Of course I would ask my agent about this but who knows if I would get a straight answer. There are mandatory insurance laws in Ohio but for what it's worth, the guy at the body shop, did not seem to think much would happen to the guy. With regard to the accident report I believe it is mandatory if the damage is greater than $400 (but it isn't clear if they mean one or both cars). I know the dollar amounts may seem minor to some folks but I am a poor graduate student and money is an issue. Any addition comment on my dilemma would be greatly appreciated.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    Is this a particularly nice car otherwise? Does having a tweaked rather than a "like new" bumper greatly diminish its value?

    Unless this is an expensive, nearly new car, I'm inclined to suggest that you fix it yourself, file an accident report and ask the driver by registered letter to pay for the repair. If they refuse or stall, sue the driver immediately in Small Claims Court. The mere fact that he has no insurance should guarantee you a slam-dunk victory in Small Claims.

    Of course, then you have to figure out how to get your money. If he refused to fix the car, I think he'll stiff you as well in Small Claims, but then he has a judgment on his credit record, and for $128 he would really have to be a dope to do that.

    Anyway, I'm not a lawyer, I'm just telling you how I would handle it. This advice is all on the presumption that your car will not suffer grievous loss of value by a patch up repair.
  • muklukmukluk Member Posts: 38
    My car is a 2002 Subaru Outback. I am the original owner and this the car's first (and I hope last) accident. It is my first ever new car and I hate to see it messed up. If money were not an issue, my preference would be to have it fixed "like new." Reasons not to do that would be that I am out either $500 for the deductible with a possible (probable?) increase in my insurance rates or I am out $739.11. If I knew for sure that the other driver would cover the cost (or even a decent percentage of it) I would go with the more expensive repair but who knows about that. I'm just sorry the whole thing happened. With regard to insurance laws, according to the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles, uninsured motorists "will lose their license for at least 90 days if they drive without insurance" they will also supposedly lose license plates and vehicle registration, pay reinstatement fees of $75.00 for first offense, pay a $50.00 penalty for failure to surrender drivers license, plates, and registration, and be required to maintain special FR coverage "high risk" insurance coverage on file with BMV fo at least 5 years. If involved in an accident without insurance, they may have a security suspension for two years and a judgment suspension for seven years.
    Given all that is at stake maybe I could get the guy to pay for the entire "like new" repair. Does it sound like I need a lawyer? Should I go ahead and file an accident report? Again any advice, comments would be greatly appreciated
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Alamogordo, NMMember Posts: 7,677
    mentioned, but not just any court. Take them to the People's Court. I'm not really kidding, I have heard that the TV show pays the judgements on those shows. At least some of them, you'd have to ask. Have you chatted this thing out completely with your own insurance agent? I'd definitely get it fixed and if you have to make your insurance provider do their job and go after the guy without insurance, to collect for the full amount to fix the car, do it. Ask them how much it would raise your premiums...it's a fair question, indeed. Yeah, car accidents are so full of bunk.

    2021 Kia Soul LX 6-speed stick

  • nornenorne Member Posts: 136
    One thing to remember. Accident claim is still counted as a claim whether it was your fault or not. If you decide to let the insurance company pay for the damages, they can raise your rates when time to renew the policy. Yes, you can switch companies but they will ask you the same question. Any accident in the past 5 years fault or no fault?
  • ghuletghulet Member Posts: 2,564
    ...no doubt is filmed in California, so I imagine any possible claimants (and defendants) would need to find a way to California (and pay for it). Over a relatively paltry sum ($740 in this case), it'd hardly be worth it. Both my brother and I have had people give us false information (phone numbers, addresses, names, or all of the above) when being involved in their-fault accidents here in Chicago; in one case, there was little damage, in the other, the damaged car was an old SAAB. Bottom line, in Chicago (and likely other places), it isn't usually worthwhile to pursue much litigation if the other party isn't willing or able to pay you in the first place. I'm not saying to lie down over it, but at the same time, you have to know when to cut your losses. I would first try the legitimate, legal routes (insurance, small claims court), but beyond that, I wouldn't hold your breath. Unfortunately, as the police are seldom willing or able to intervene (indeed, in Chicago they won't even come to the accident scene or issue citations unless someone is practically mamed or dead), the reality is that the innocent party(ies) are often left holding the bill.
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Alamogordo, NMMember Posts: 7,677
    they're too busy with "more important troubles in Chicago" or they just don't care?

    2021 Kia Soul LX 6-speed stick

  • marsha7marsha7 Member Posts: 3,703
    but I must respond to this as a personal injury lawyer (and, no, I do not chase the ambulance, contrary to what you may think)...first, whenever you have an accident, ALWAYS call the police for an accident report...even if no one is cited, you often need an objective report of the accident for the opposing insurance to pay, assuming the other guy is at fault...once you drive away from the scene, anyone can deny they were involved in the wreck...the police report is objective documentation of the accident...even if no ticket is issued, if the officer just writes in that "Vehicle #1 was at fault for failure to yield" it helps your case...too many folks are just plain dishonest and will not report the wreck to their insurance, and it will be up to you to prove to his insurance that the wreck occurred...the accident report will do that...in Georgia, a FAULT STATE (as opposed to no-fault) if you take them to small claims court and receive a judgment, if they do not pay, send the judgment and the report to DMV and the person's license will be suspended until he pays...fairly effective unless he files Chapter 7 bankruptcy...it also pays to carry Uninsured Motorists Insurance (UM) on your policy, because it is no coincidence that the worst drivers, causing the most accidents, will allow their insurance to lapse due to inability to pay...not to sound elitist, but if you drive in the inner city, the poor, who have clunker cars and also have nothing to lose (i.e. judgment proof) will often be uninsured...sad, but true...I believe it is YOUR responsibility to insure your self against what can go wrong, do not depend on the other guy to carry his insurance like the law requires...always have Med-Pay, UM, Rental Car Insurance, maybe even towing if you do not belong to AAA or a Motor Club...I see too many cases where the at-fault is uninsured, my innocent client was injured, client does not have UM, no med-pay to pay doctor bills, no collision to pay auto damage, and they ask me what can we do...I tell them to go to small claims court on their own, and expect to win the case and lose the war...they get mad because the other guy was uninsured, I tell them they need to pay for all the extra coverage so they are protected, stop assuming the other person has the same sense of responsibility to be insured...judgments are rarely collected, unless they have property to file against (the poor usually rent), or a job on the books (ha! ha! ha!) with wages you can garnish...
  • reddogsreddogs Member Posts: 353
    Thank you marsha7 for you highly informed opinion, now if you were in the real life down here in Florida yould know most drivers let their insurance drop or just carry the minimum with no collision. When they do hit you, they are just as likely to keep going and you are lucky if you see what color the car was much less the licence plate. My sister got hit in the trunk/quaster panel with over $2300 in damages and the car sped away, and this is while she was searching for a body shop to get a quote for a parking lot fender bender which the person at fault refused to even acknowledge he had hit her (Someone saw him back up into her car but wouldnt go with her to report it). So there was nothing to report except her car was hit twice by person unknown and her insurance has since been jacked up for all her troubles. Thats life in the real world, maybe you'll come down to Miami some time and get a taste.........:0)
  • marsha7marsha7 Member Posts: 3,703
    I really do have a taste of the real world here in GA, but obviously not in FL...we do have hit-and-run here, too...often, sadly, the ones who are most often the uninsured are the immigrants, another reason in my mind to lock the borders and place INS agents in every hospital ER in the nation...but you seem to have a more prevalent problem in FL than we do in GA, but the state says that something like 1 in 4 drivers has no insurance...a good reason to maintain collision and uninsured motorists riders...I guess the "real world" may be different for different states with different geographical problems...
  • andyman73andyman73 Member Posts: 322
    Just the other day, there was an article in the papers about a hit and run. Apparently an older Caddy hit a house and then drove off. House is a 200+ year old restored log cabin. Young couple just finished restoring recently. Put a rather large hole in the livingroom wall. Anybody wanna bet the Caddy driver wasn't insured? Police found a broken Caddy wheel cover at the scene. That is how they know it was a Caddilac.
  • reddogsreddogs Member Posts: 353
    I guess all the "real world" Cubans, Dominicans, Argentinians, Italian, German, Brazialian, Jamaicans, Mexicans, Venzualans, and Isreali immigrants need to get out of Miami and leave it to the "natives" with insurance. Very nice, real PC, very understanding...
  • PF_FlyerPF_Flyer Pennsylvania Furnace, PAMember Posts: 9,372
  • sean3sean3 Member Posts: 158
    involved in an accident i described in the Mitsubishi Galant Forum, by an uninsured driver, she got a ticket for the wreck and no Ins also, I contact Farmers (my ins agent) and they are dragging there feet, I have uninsured motorist my car is an '04, and they say they have to conclude what happened themselves, and generally uncaring, I py my premiums, and this is my First accident, and they are treating me like a crook,they did send me a rental car quickly, probably because i requested one, and pay a premium for that to, I expect the other driver will not have to answer to anything, if my todler son were with me, i would have reatined a layer, but whats the point? Not like I'll ever see any $ from her, she was very rude and had a bad attitude towards me and the officer, Her fault, no insurance, I think insurance should cover there insured no mater whos at fault, that way there would be no suprises?'s, kind of lke No-fault, before this accident, I thought Farmers was top notch, but now I see there stand on,she actually had the nerve to tell me this after i filed the claim, "Gets you back where you belong" ? huh whats that, treating you like a stranger, when you've payed $1,000's in premiums,and now you need a small legitimate ruturn on what you payed to protect, Does anybody know of an Ins. Company that treats customers like customers?
  • rickvhrickvh Member Posts: 28
    How long ago did this occur? What has happened since you've actually made the claim? Every insurance company is going to take some time to figure out if a car is repairable or has to be totalled.

     

    Is it just your agent that isnt treating you right? Or is it claims too? Could you give a little more detail about why you are being treated badly? I'm definately on your side on this, but i'd really like to know the details of what makes this a bad experience for you.

     

    You have collision and uninsured motorist, you are covered up to your limits. You will be paid on your losses, it just takes a little time. Sometimes months for bodily injury claims. The car should be settled within a month in almost any case.
  • mirthmirth Member Posts: 1,212
    If you're in the military, or have a parent who's in the military or is a veteran, then you can join USAA. As far as I can tell, they're the best, and they cover in every state.

     

    If not, I've heard good thing about AAA, and their rates seem to be pretty good.
  • marsha7marsha7 Member Posts: 3,703
    highest rated companies for financial stability, ranking #1 or #2 with Moody's, Fitch, Standard & Poor's, and Weiss Ratings...ignore any insurance rated by A.M. Best, as they are funded by the very insurance companies they rate, I believe, so everyone that pays to them gets a good rating...kinda like the Better Business Bureau...if you pay for a membership, you instantly are granted a "good" rating with BBB, but if you are not a member, they will wait 6 months without complaints before granting you a "good" rating...seems like the fox doth sometimes watcheth the henhouse, eh???
  • cadillacmikecadillacmike Member Posts: 543
    USAA has top notch claims service. And they have NO AGENTS! all direct 800 number access. Very quick claims turn around too. I was "side ended" by an UM a few years back, USAA stepped in and aside from my needing to shell out for the deductible, they were very efficient.

    Supposedly State Farm is good too. They actually handled a claim that I had on one of their insureds last year quite handily.

    And no I don't work for them.
  • mirthmirth Member Posts: 1,212
    ...USAA is the best. But if you're not in the military or have a relative in the military, you can't get USAA.

    Thank god my dad was in the Navy way back when.
  • marsha7marsha7 Member Posts: 3,703
    this topic came back to life...kinda like the resurrection...
  • dadwithteendadwithteen Member Posts: 3
    I have a 16 yr old teen who was involved in an accident. He was driving down the lane in a parking lot. Just when he was coming next to a parked vehicle the other car began to back up. He was shocked and unfortunately reacted by putting on the brakes, stopping right in the path of the other car. The other driver did not see him and continued backing up into our car. He left a dented scratch on 3 side panels of our mini van and also damaged 2 moulding strips.

    The other driver convinced my son that it was all minor and no report or insurance exchange was needed. My son has since learned thru friends that this guys isn't very responsible (surprise, huh?) and may not even have insurance.

    I am wondering if we are better off handling this out of pocket or pursuing the other driver. It was also suggested to us that reporting this as a hit-and-run parking lot accident it could be advantageous. None of us (including my wife) has any accidents on our records.

    Thanks in advance for any tips.
  • audia8qaudia8q Member Posts: 3,138
    I think the guy backing out is at fault.....even though your son stopped he was still in the travel lane and has the right of way. I would go after the guy and get him to pay for the damage.

    What does everyone else think??
  • mirthmirth Member Posts: 1,212
    ...definitely go after the guy. I'm sure your son was in shock from the accident, and this guy took advantage of him.
  • marsha7marsha7 Member Posts: 3,703
    and molding strips, it sounds like the damage might be a few hundred $$$...of course I could be wrong, it could be a new Lexus 430 and the damage exceeds $5,000...if it is low, I would pay out of pocket and tell your son this mantra...NEVER LEAVE THE SCENE OF AN AUTO ACCIDENT WITH A POLICE REPORT, REGARDLESS OF WHAT THE OTHER PARTY NEEDS, WANTS, DESIRES...the only official record of any wreck is the police report, anything not written is not worth the paper it's not printed on...never violate this credo, as it will be valid for as long as oil is pumping from Saudi Arabia... ;););)
  • knollknoll Member Posts: 1
    I HAVE A FRIEND WHO WAS RECENTLY INVOLVED IN AN ACC. SHE WAS DRIVING HER DAUGHTER'S CAR AND WAS HIT WHILE PULLING OUT OF A FRIEND'S DRIVEWAY. SHE WAS INJURIED AND HER DAUGHTER WAS INJURIED WHO WAS IN THE CAR ALSO. RIGHT NOW SHE IS BEING PUT AT FAULT FOR THE ACC SINCE SHE WAS PULLING OUT BUT SHE IS TRYING TO GET THE PR AMENDED TO SAY THE OTHER CAR WAS SPEEDING.HER DAUGHTER HAS UM AND LIABILITY. WHO PAYS???
  • medicjamesmedicjames Member Posts: 1
    :sick: I feel for you Just 3 days ago here in Ga I was hit by a driver and found out that the car he was driving was not his and the insurance was canceeled about 3 weeks ago. I only have liability and a totaled car w/ medical bills So what Do I Do?
  • marsha7marsha7 Member Posts: 3,703
    medic: forgive me, as this will come across as rude and insulting, but your experience as stated above is the EXACT reason why YOU should always carry medpay (for doctor bills) and uninsured motorist insurance (for the pain and suffering from the injuries, AND for the property damage portion to repair your vehicle, subject to your deductible)...you are going to pay for everything from your wallet...after paying for all those expenses, you will understand why I believe that the insurance pemiums you probably thought were too expensive will now become quite cheap when compared to what you are about to pay...legally, of course, you have the option to sue the person who hit you and get a judgment, but if he is uninsured, I would bet he has no assets and your judgment would be meaningless and uncollectable...a possible exception, if he has had the same job for over 5 years, he may not want to leave it, and you may be able to garnish his paycheck...but if he is a self-employed anything, you will be SOL...now buy the needed insurance, which won't help this wreck, but I think you now see the need for it...I believe all uninsured drivers should spend a week in jail for no ins, and that would make many think twice before allowing ins to lapse...

    knoll: I think your daughter was at fault...it may be next to impossible to prove the other party was speeding, but there is no question that anyone leaving a driveway must yield to all oncoming traffic from either direction...your daughter in no way can argue that she had the right of way, and the other party can simply argue that she was closer than your daughter thought she was, and your daughter exercised poor distance judgment...unless one of thsoe neighborhood radar units can prove her speed...heh, heh, heh...
  • jlawrence01jlawrence01 Member Posts: 1,757
    I agree with both your opinions.

    Don't make the assumption that garnishment will be an option. Some states will allow you to garnish a debtor's wages for a indefinite period of time until a debt is repaid. Some states make you file the garnishment order EACH week which makes it a cumbersome way to collect monies owed.
  • warginiawarginia Member Posts: 1
    close relative of mine got hit making a left turn where there was an arrow. she got hit in right rear, was given a citation for failure to yeild right of way. the charge was dimissed in court. the other drivers insurance told her she still has to pay for the damage to the other car, and they are not paying her anything for the damage to her car. is she up a creek or what? oh yea she was uninsured at the time.
  • mirthmirth Member Posts: 1,212
    If the court ruled it wasn't her fault, she doesn't have to pay them. In fact, she could probably get a lawyer and get them to pay HER damages.
  • marsha7marsha7 Member Posts: 3,703
    one of the problems we experience with that situation is this: when the court dismisses the ticket charged against a party (who was wrongfully assigned fault) that does not mean that the police go back and charge the other party with fault...in a perfect world, the police would leave the courtroom, drive out and ticket the other party, thereby re-assigning fault...but it really just falls thru the "cracks of justice" if you get my drift...by default it sorta gets reclassified as a "true accident" which splits fault 50-50 and in GA, 50-50 means neither party can recover from the other...now, if you had some eyewitnesses and wanted to pay a lawyer to represent you, that sounds good on paper, but no lawyer will do it on contingency, because of the slim chance of winning AND RECOVERING MONEY...you will pay the lawyer by the hour...my guess no one would touch it for less than $1500-2500 just because of the aggravation factor...to me, one would be a fool to pay a lawyer like me 2 grand to try and recover vehicle damages under 4 grand, it would just pay to use your collision and pay a $500 deductible...just because I am a lawyer does not mean that it makes sense to pay me to do something, when your money is better used elsewhere...IMHO
  • ncdealcatcherncdealcatcher Member Posts: 1
    We were hit head-on today by a drunk old man! It was clearly his fault and he tried on and on to get us NOT to call the cops. He kept saying that he was gonna be in big trouble.....and also that he done auto body repair and he could fix my truck. NO CAN DO--I called the police and got the accident reported.

    I have a 1995 Nissan Truck with 339,000 miles on it and I am in NC.

    We were at a stand still waiting to turn out into the road and the man was turning into the drive where we were sitting--ramming into the front driver's side quarter. Luckily nobody got hurt! It bent my front bumper in real good, cracked my windshield, and dented my driver's side door along with giving me an enormous oil splatter under the hood and warping the cradle. The man told MANY lies to the Trooper......he gave about 3 different address's among those lies. Heck, I still don't know if any information he gave to the trooper was correct. He had a huge "rap sheet" including other accident's and DUI's. He was cited with no insurance, no registration, he still had a license plate for Maine and he had lived here for 8 years he said, He also had Maine Driver's License that were expired. And to boot, he was drunk! He was just plain "UP A CREEK". He was put in jail and his car impounded and his court appearance is July 5th.

    My predicament is this:
    I have collision insurance ONLY through my Lender/Lienholder, and they have it appraised at around $4500.

    I carry uninsured motorist's coverage through a personal carrier along with Liability etc.

    Would you call the Lender/Lienholder first since they are technically the owners of the vehicle OR would you just go ahead and turn it in on personal insurance for underinsured motorists? Kelly blue book value is about $1100 not even considering the mileage on the truck..........if they knew the mileage they would wonder how in the world it is still running!!

    I'm just afraid of what will happen considering that the damage's alone are more than the truck is actually worth and considering that I owe way more than the truck's worthiness on the loan to the leinholder, I don't know what they will do!

    I just don't know which way to turn--I need advice QUICK!
    Joy in NC
  • marsha7marsha7 Member Posts: 3,703
    Bravo for calling the police...too many people feel sorry for the other party...the drunk SOB should spend a year in jail...maybe 1000 years, but cut the time in half for good behavior!!!

    Your situation is difficult...someone is going to appraise the damages to your vehicle, check the odo, and realize the damage is in excess of the vehicle's value...once damage exceeds 80% of value, that is almost always totalled...but you owe more than its value (this is the reason why everyone who takes out a loan on a car, buy or lease, should always buy GAP insurance, as it pays this gap between what the car is worth and how much you actually owe)...

    Since the lender has it on the books for $4500 (how?) they might be your best bet...but when they see the odo, do not be surprised if the value suddenly drops like a rock...

    My prediction? Sadly, you will have to pay out the difference between $1100 and what you owe, which will probably be quite painful to your wallet...the leagl term for the difference is called "deficiency"

    FWIW, it is deficiencies like yours, with many clients over $10,000 that pushes them into bankruptcy, simply because they cannot afford the 10 grand in a lump sum, and they cannot see paying for a car that is now used as a boat anchor for the QE2...
  • jlawrence01jlawrence01 Member Posts: 1,757
    ALWAYS call the police for an accident.

    I have seen cases where someone with a good heart has let the drunk off just to have the drunk come back and sue THEM for damages. At that point, it becomes a "he said, she said" with the victim on the defensive.

    Besides, the next time, he might kill someone.
  • marsha7marsha7 Member Posts: 3,703
    who hit you is your MOTHER, who nursed you in your first 9 months on this planet...GET A POLICE REPORT!!!...if it is your mother-in-law, that goes double...:):):):):)
  • rburgandyrburgandy Member Posts: 1
    This is my situation and I appreciate the help. My friend was coming out my subdivison and was trying to make a left at a stop sign. There was a car stopped in front of her, trying to turn left into the subdivision (he had his signal on, but did not move, perpendicular to my friend). My friend hit the gas to turn left but never made the left, he got hit by a motorcycle in the front drivers side wheel/fender. The guy in the motorcycle was hurt but it could have been worse. The cops came and gave my friend a ticket for failure to yield while turning left, even though he never made the turn. He was basically moving up to turn left and the bike hit him before he could turn.

    So since he got the ticket, he is at fault for now. The bike rider is doing better and we all just found out, he has no insurance! (my friend has full coverage by GA law).

    SInce he has no insurance and its illegal to drive in GA, its illegal to own a motor vehicle without insurance, what are the ramifications to my friend? Is he still responsible for medical expenses etc? Is the bike rider, sadly, out of luck?

    Finally, my friend goes to court for the ticket at the end of the month. What would happen if he is found guilty? What if he is found innocent? My friend has nothing resembling a traffic citation, none, a clean record! What if he pleas nolo in court?

    Thank you in advance your help is greatly appreciated. This is in GA.
  • mirthmirth Member Posts: 1,212
    ...by saying "My friend hit the gas to turn left but never made the left" you really mean, "My friend pulled out beyond the stop sign in front of the oncoming traffic (i.e. the motorcycle), but hadn't actually turned the wheel to the left yet". If that is the case, your friend is at fault because the motocycle had the right of way - your friend should not have pulled into traffic until it was clear. It doesn't matter if she actually completed the turn. She'll still have to pay.
  • black_tulipblack_tulip Member Posts: 435
    Find out about your state law. I read here on Edmunds(so take it with a grain of salt), that in VA, you lose the right of way if you are on the road illegally,i.e. no or expired license, no insurance etc. If that is the case in GA, your friend may be off the hook as far as the ticket goes. I kind of like this law: scum that choose to drive without a license or insurance should not have any rights at all.
  • mirthmirth Member Posts: 1,212
    ...but it doesn't change the fact that the friend caused the accident. And the guy had a license, just no insurance. So he may be out of luck for his motorcycle, but her insurance company is likely going to be tapped for the medical bill. Even if he had insurance, her company would be paying.

    I've had friends that, due to economic hardships, were unable to pay for insurance, but still had to drive to work to keep their jobs and scrape out enough to live by. Sure, there are probably freeloaders too, but I'm sympathetic to people who just don't have enough money to pay, but are forced by circumstance to drive.
  • black_tulipblack_tulip Member Posts: 435
    I've had friends that, due to economic hardships, were unable to pay for insurance, but still had to drive to work to keep their jobs and scrape out enough to live by.

    Sorry, we will have to agree to disagree. Would you consider stealing to feed your family OK, if you are out of work? I do not, and that's exactly how I see breaking any law, no matter what the excuse is.
  • gregjohnsongregjohnson Member Posts: 117
    Hi there,

    It's really late, please pardon my brevity.

    SInce he has no insurance and its illegal to drive in GA,

    Yes

    its illegal to own a motor vehicle without insurance

    No.

    , what are the ramifications to my friend?

    Poor

    Is he still responsible for medical expenses etc?

    Yes

    Is the bike rider, sadly, out of luck?

    No, they have a liability claim against your friend. They will probably face criminal charges themselves, but your friend is still at fault based on the very limited description you gave of the bike.

    So since he got the ticket, he is at fault for now.

    Umm, unless you have a good bit of disposable income and want to make a point, this is going to remain the case. Getting cited like this means you will have to prove he was not at fault, and I mean like someone had a videocamera that just happened to catch the whole thing on tape. Your friends and acquaintances riding with you are better than nothing, but... Would you lie for a friend? OK, fair enough, you're a good person. Do you know anyone who would lie for a friend? See my point?

    I wouldn't try it without an attorney, the burden will rest on you and the DAs around here are vicious when they win.

    The bike rider is doing better and we all just found out, he has no insurance!

    Which really doesn't matter since they aren't liable and you'd claim against UM if they were.

    (my friend has full coverage by GA law).
    No. You are scaring me with your ignorance here - you;re going to hurt yourself if yiu aren't careful. Running this by an attorney is well worth your money.

    Finally, my friend goes to court for the ticket at the end of the month.
    Bad idea, unless they're a lot better in court than this post. UNLESS they're going to take the deal the DA offers, in which case

    What would happen if he is found guilty?
    Something between nothing and a year in jail and a $1000 fine. Most likely is $500 out the door.

    What if he is found innocent?
    Then nothing. He goes home.

    My friend has nothing resembling a traffic citation, none, a clean record!
    Good! With any luck they aren't over 18 and the new hadn't worn off yet. The first scratch is always the worst, and now they can focus on important things, like paying attention to motorcyclists.

    What if he pleas nolo in court?
    "Nolo contendere" used to mean "no contest", but now it means "Guilty, but I like being fancy about it". More importantly, nolo may dodge some unpleasantness right here & now, say with points on your license, but it is treated as guilty for pretty much all intents and purposes in the future. If you're going to fight today's system, you must go to a jury and get acquitted. Everything else is just shades of guilty, and is percieved as having dodged your just deserts.

    As I said above, dropping $120 running this by an attorney is a must for you, you really need it.

    Oh, look. It's 5am. Goodnight all.

    -Greg
  • marsha7marsha7 Member Posts: 3,703
    has done such a good job, why comment??? :shades: :shades:

    Hi greg, I see you in the other accident topic :shades: :shades:

    It sounds like the friend is at fault for failure to yield...I assume the cycle rider would receive a citation for no insurance, which may be a $500 fine (I wish they would double or triple it, to really slam folks who do not cover themselves with insurance, even if this wreck was not the cyclist's fault)...

    Yes, I feel for those who may not have the $$$, but it is in the public interest for all to be insured...if they cannot afford it, then carpool with someone, pay them fairly for their fuel, and, in effect, "split" the cost of vehicle and insurance...how would you feel if an uninsured driver struck your 4 year old daughter, and, rather than cover the damages, could only respond, I could not afford insurance, but I drove anyway...sorry, not a good answer...no insurance, no drive, no exceptions...
  • gregjohnsongregjohnson Member Posts: 117
    has done such a good job, why comment???

    Mmmm, further proof that fools rush in where angels fear to tread... I'm just an accident junkie at this point, gotta have my fix... Think I'll go hit somebody just so I can post tomorrow. Yeah, that's it.

    Yes, I feel for those who may not have the $$$, but it is in the public interest for all to be insured...

    Well sorta kinda maybe...

    I'm uncomfortable making the argument that insurance up to the expected damage without medical costs is against the public interest. I do, however, firmly believe that the congresscritters are a lot smarter than they let on and that if they were sincere about minimum liability coverage they'd just tack the premium on to the gas taxes.

    Voila - Everybody's insured by definition, the rates are directly proportional to distance traveled and how fast you got there, and the private companies are out of the government-mandated insurance game.

    Of course the "safe" driver's would wail and moan about subsidizing "unsafe" driver's but that argument is silly because if you hit someone you are no longer a "safe" driver. Thus, the whole "public interest" argument is an exhortation to get the pound of flesh up front, putatively for the benefit of the "safe" driver. (Not that jurisdictions would pocket the fines for not carrying insurance or anything- Can't happen here. )

    Cheers until the next tragedy,

    -Greg
  • gregjohnsongregjohnson Member Posts: 117
    how would you feel if an uninsured driver struck your 4 year old

    I think I'd probably say something like "25,000? DOLLARS!?! You're telling me my daughter's foot/leg/life is worth twenty-five thousand dollars"...

    There would be more, but it's wouldn't be car -related...

    -Greg
  • cadillacmikecadillacmike Member Posts: 543
    Almost the exact same thing happened to my wife. Only this time the motorcycle really did come out of nowhere. My wife got ticketed, but so did the motorcyclist - for driving with a suspended license! :surprise: Oh well there went his lawsuit opportunities... :D
  • cadillacmikecadillacmike Member Posts: 543
    Right on,

    Now what about that legal doctrin of contriburoty negligence, orwhatever the technical term is. Id won't help the car driver with medical bills (actual expenses only), but it sure should help in the event the moritcyclist tries to sue!

    Righer [email protected]?!??? :confuse:

    It help my wife, that's for sure!
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