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Old 11-30-2023, 09:15 AM
 
Location: Sylmar, a part of Los Angeles
8,328 posts, read 6,419,063 times
Reputation: 17439

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A guy on a bicycle ran into my car and hit his head and they got a law firm. They claim I hit him. My coverage is 50,000 and my claims adjuster says they are going to claim more than that. What of my assets can they take? How can I protect myself? I am extremely worried. Will they sue me?
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Old 11-30-2023, 10:46 AM
 
Location: Florida and the Rockies
1,970 posts, read 2,233,552 times
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Do you have umbrella coverage? If not, I would get it (at least one million $) asap, although it is too late for the accident, the courts might consider some of his expenses to be the date of surgeries (future) rather than the date of the initial accident. Meaning you might get coverage on those. Definitely prepare to fight. Write down your version of events and get witness statements.

The auto claim, if it is issued by the same insurer as your homeowner's claim, may be able to roll into some liability coverage there. I'm shocked any California auto policy has a 50k liability limit -- that must be close to state minimums.

What is the total value of your estate? If we are talking about millions, you need to speak with an attorney. Possibly you can title some assets into trusts, but again it may be too late.
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Old 11-30-2023, 11:01 AM
 
Location: East of Seattle since 1992, 615' Elevation, Zone 8b - originally from SF Bay Area
44,551 posts, read 81,085,957 times
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I would definitely talk to your own attorney, because the plaintiff can indeed sue you for the balance. Keep in mind that his lawyer is looking for a percentage of the award, so will go for as much as possible. The courts can attach property, bank accounts and wages if the award is greater than the insurance and you fail to pay the difference.

I just checked and my bodily injury liability is $300,000, limited to $100,000 per person. The biggest question is of witnesses. If they have one and you don't, the judge is likely to take their story. Cameras from local business or homes can also be helpful to your case, if you or your attorney can find them.

Good luck, I hope you get this worked out.
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Old 11-30-2023, 12:03 PM
 
Location: The DMV
6,589 posts, read 11,277,081 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by westender View Post
Do you have umbrella coverage? If not, I would get it (at least one million $) asap, although it is too late for the accident, the courts might consider some of his expenses to be the date of surgeries (future) rather than the date of the initial accident. Meaning you might get coverage on those. Definitely prepare to fight. Write down your version of events and get witness statements.

The auto claim, if it is issued by the same insurer as your homeowner's claim, may be able to roll into some liability coverage there. I'm shocked any California auto policy has a 50k liability limit -- that must be close to state minimums.

What is the total value of your estate? If we are talking about millions, you need to speak with an attorney. Possibly you can title some assets into trusts, but again it may be too late.
This - umbrella coverage is fairly inexpensive relative to car insurance. Albeit for mine - my auto insurance had to be at a certain level before the umbrella can be offered. I'm assuming this is the general practice. You can't just opt for the minimum auto coverage and subsidize it with a high umbrella.
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Old 11-30-2023, 12:28 PM
 
Location: San Diego
5,733 posts, read 4,688,017 times
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Dash cams can be of invaluable worth in situations like this. Without video evidence, you absolutely need witnesses.
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Old 11-30-2023, 01:43 PM
 
14,400 posts, read 14,286,698 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by V8 Vega View Post
A guy on a bicycle ran into my car and hit his head and they got a law firm. They claim I hit him. My coverage is 50,000 and my claims adjuster says they are going to claim more than that. What of my assets can they take? How can I protect myself? I am extremely worried. Will they sue me?
Why did he run into your car? Were you stopped or did he run into it because you were driving through an intersection and he had the right of way? It makes a big difference.

If you are responsible for the accident than, yes, they can claim more than the amount of your insurance IF he has medical expenses and injuries that make the claim worth more than $50,000.

Your best course of action is to do what your insurance company asks you to do. Cooperate fully. You may even want to seek consultation with a lawyer of your own choosing (at your expense).
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Old 11-30-2023, 08:15 PM
 
Location: Sylmar, a part of Los Angeles
8,328 posts, read 6,419,063 times
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I am waiting to see if they do indeed go over my insurance coverage. At what point should I get an attorney, I am thinking as soon as I know they are going over my insurance coverage.
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Old 11-30-2023, 09:50 PM
 
Location: Sandy Eggo's North County
10,292 posts, read 6,813,150 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by V8 Vega View Post
A guy on a bicycle ran into my car and hit his head and they got a law firm. They claim I hit him. My coverage is 50,000 and my claims adjuster says they are going to claim more than that. What of my assets can they take? How can I protect myself? I am extremely worried. Will they sue me?
Depends on how good of an attorney they get.

Yes, they can sue you.

If it was your fault, then they can prevail.

If it wasn't your fault, then it could only cost you a coupla hundred thousand. (Attorney's fees and court costs.)

If it's "partially" your fault, then it'll be somewhere between a coupla hundred and a few million. If the kids has a brain bleed, then your damages can rise dramatically. Rider wearing a helmet? (This is important.)

You have a "general liability policy?" Even just a few million could keep your estate intact. Or not. Good luck on this.
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Old 12-01-2023, 07:29 AM
 
303 posts, read 237,078 times
Reputation: 730
Not everything results in a lawsuit in real life.

Talk to your insurance company regularly. If you don't understand something they're telling you, ask questions. If they use legal or insurance jargon, ask them to explain it.

They sue whoever has the money. Typically it's the insurance company who has money.

Don't answer it here on a forum, but a lot depends on how the accident happened. You chasing him down, honking and yelling, is different than you sitting at a red light minding your own business.
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Old 12-01-2023, 11:56 AM
 
Location: 5,400 feet
4,858 posts, read 4,794,690 times
Reputation: 7942
Quote:
Originally Posted by V8 Vega View Post
I am waiting to see if they do indeed go over my insurance coverage. At what point should I get an attorney, I am thinking as soon as I know they are going over my insurance coverage.

If your insurance covers the event, the insurer will provide an attorney to defend the case. They will not simply write a check for $50K. You need to discuss the case and the process for defending the case with that attorney and get their assessment after whatever evidence is gathered and evaluated. At that point, you can decide when to have your personal attorney or seek out a good defense counsel and discuss the process with that person.
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