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Started by terryshelly , Yesterday, 02:14 PM
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4 replies to this topic
Posted Yesterday, 02:14 PM
My daughter was recently in a one car auto accident http://www.tauntongazette.com/article/20140321/LIFESTYLE/140329025/11757/LIFESTYLE where the driver feel asleep at the wheel and did not survive. My daughter fortunately only suffered bumps and bruises. Two others were severely injured and have extensive medical bills. There was one other passenger who also only suffered bumps and bruises. They were in my car I had given the driver permission to drive my car. My insurance has paid the two boys with the extensive medical bills two hundred thousand dollars. They also received one hundred thousand dollars from the drivers insurance. These two have recently gotten an attorney and we have received a letter of excessive exposure from our insurance. My question is can we be sued for their pain and suffering, or the rest of their medical expenses? And what exactly does the letter of excessive exposure mean? Should we seek and attorney?
Posted Yesterday, 02:52 PM
My daughter was recently in a one car auto accident where the driver feel asleep at the wheel and did not survive. My daughter fortunately only suffered bumps and bruises. Two others were severely injured and have extensive medical bills. There was one other passenger who also only suffered bumps and bruises.
So that's a total of five people in the car, right?
My question is can we be sued for their pain and suffering, or the rest of their medical expenses?
I'm not completely sure who "we" are, but anyone can sue anyone for anything. Assuming you meant to ask whether you have any liability here, that depends on the applicable state law (you didn't identify the state where this happened) and on whatever facts are relevant under the applicable law. It's highly unlikely that you have any liability solely because the accident happened in your car (indeed, I assume you are pursuing a claim against the driver's insurance for the cost to repair or replace your car). The only other likely theory under which you might have liability is if you negligently entrusted your car to the driver. Read this article ( http://en.wikipedia....ent_entrustment ) for a very general discussion of the theory.
And what exactly does the letter of excessive exposure mean?
I have no reason to think it means anything other than exactly what it says, but I obviously haven't read it, and you didn't quote it. Based on your characterization of the letter, I assume that your insurer is putting you on notice of the possibility of a claim in excess of your coverage. The big question I would have if I were you would be why the heck the insurer paid out $200k without getting a full release from the claimants.
Should we seek and attorney?
In the event you get sued, your insurer should retain and pay for an attorney to defend you.
Posted Yesterday, 06:52 PM
The big question I would have if I were you would be why the heck the insurer paid out $200k without getting a full release from the claimants.
That was my question, too, but you beat me to it.
Warning: Legal issues are complicated. Explanations and comments here are simplified and might not fully explain the ramifications of your particular issue. I am not a lawyer. I do not give legal advice. I make comments based on my knowledge and experience. I guarantee nothing. If you act on my comments without the advice of an attorney, you do so at your own risk.
Posted Today, 03:48 AM
The we in this case is myself and my husband. We live in South Carolina. What is a full release and how could that help us?
Is the limit of the coverage for medical expenses $200k? I'll presume so.
I'd like to think you'd google the topic of car accident insurance settlements beforehand, but ... your insurer should have insisted on the "boys" (or their parents, if adults) signing a general release of all claims against you, its client, before coughing up dough to them. In fact maybe the insurer did so, and it may have, but the additional fact that the insurer sent you an "excessive exposure" letter but (evidently) hasn't explained what it did and why seems odd. (It's clear you haven't even bothered to call and ask them, since you don't mention calling to ask and them refusing to explain.)
As for the theory on why you'd be pursued, I'd posit that your kid is a minor and that the boys weren't belted in and someone hopes to point out that the driver of the car shouldn't have moved an unch unless the boys had their seatbelts secured.
"My question is can we be sued for their pain and suffering, or the rest of their medical expenses?"
Anyone can be sued for anything.
"And what exactly does the letter of excessive exposure mean?"
If the limits of your policy have been paid out and someone's still coming after you, the insurer is obligated to send you a letter saying that there's a possibility you're exposed financially. (Again, it seems you have not contacted your insurer about this letter, and that doesn't make a lot of sense.)
"Should we seek and attorney?"
I'd at least consult one on the topic of the insurance company's handling of the claims, if the insurer isn't talking.
I'll echo PG's advisory "warning" with a twist: (Many) legal issues are complicated. Explanations and comments here might not fully identify or explain the ramifications of your particular problem. I do not give legal advice as such (and such is impermissible here at any rate). Comments are based on personal knowledge and experience and legal info gleaned over a quarter century, and every state has differing laws on and avenues to address most topics. If you need legal advice, you need to consult (and pay) a professional so that you may have someone to hold accountable. Acting on personal and informational advice from a stranger on the internet is a bad idea -- at least not without your own thorough due dilience/research and confirmation as it applies to your situation.
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