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Accident - 8.24.11 Summons - 3.19.13 Insurance company originally said everything is fine, obviously not the case. what next?

Manhattan, IL |

I spoke to my old insurance company and asked why no one has contacted me regarding this since last august (2012), at which time I was told that this will close without any repercussions. Needless to say, I receive a summons last night to the lovely tune of $50k! I certainly cannot afford anywhere near that now or ever probably. So the insurance company will have the summons sent over in an hour or so, they get their attorney to look at it and assign a litigator. I need to know whats the worst case, middle ground, best scenario, and if it will cost me anything? I assume the attorney will try and get them to seek their funds from underinsured on their policy. hopefully... my policy had $20k/40k coverage and shes claiming bodily injury. So I guess she didnt accept original offer?

I just wrote a followup and the website crashed! ok to sum that up, I was at fault yes, and hopefully my insurance company will try and settle again prior to getting to court right? I openly admitted and went to court to pay my ticket and get my license back about two months after the accident, the lady was there and was in perfect health, she showed no physical injuries of any sort! So with that in mind, how can she have accumulated 50k+ of medical expenses - UPDATE: 7.8.13 - After MANY grueling months, I got a call from 21st saying that they settled! no overages were documented that I know of, thank god! :) I sincerely appreciate everyone's input and help. I have much better coverage now via Progressive with my wife and I left the job that caused all that stress in my life and may have been partly at fault for the accident! (120mi round trip everyday makes you very tired!). Thanks again everyone!

Attorney Answers 7


  1. Contact your insurance carrier at once and let them know about the Summons. They will tell you what happens next.

    View my website & give me a call for a FREE consultation if you are a California resident 877-427-2752 or you can email me at Michael@Kingofpersonalinjurylaw.com www.KingofPersonalInjuryLaw.com I am licensed in California only and my answers on Avvo assume California law. Answers provided by me are for general information only. They are not legal advice. Answers must not be relied upon. Legal advice must be based on the interplay between specific exact facts and the law. This forum does not allow for the discussion of that interplay. My answer to any specific question would likely be different if that interplay were explored during an attorney-client relationship. I provide legal advice during the course of an attorney-client relationship only. The exchange of information through this forum does not establish such a relationship. That relationship is established only by personal and direct consultation with me followed by the execution of a written attorney-client agreement signed by each of us. The communications on this website are not privileged or confidential and I assume no duty to anyone by my participation on Avvo or because I have answered or commented on a question. All legal proceedings involve deadlines and time limiting statutes. So that legal rights are not lost for failure to timely take appropriate action and because I do not provide legal advice in answer to any question, if you are an interested party you should promptly and personally consult with an attorney for legal advice. Also, see Avvo's terms and conditions of use, specifically item 9, incorporated by this reference


  2. This happens when your insurance company offers to settle a case for half the medical bills ect. Best thing you can do is tell the truth. If your at fault admit it and move on. Worst case scenario you deny your at fault, insurance company defends the suit. It drags on for years. The plaintiff isn't going after your money. Just the insurance.

    Know YOUR Rights. Take Action Now. CALL 855-648-4695. Legal disclaimer:This message does not constitute legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. Any statements are made for general informational purposes and do not constitute legal advice. Mr. Crockett is licensed in Texas in Illinois only.


  3. Relax. Your old carrier will cover you up to your policy limits of $20,000 per person and $40,000 per incident. The $50,000 is just the jurisdictional amount that must be plead for Law Division.

    This is what you do: get the suit papers to your old carrier ASAP and keep confirmation of this transmission and of the lawsuit. Make sure you follow up and confirm they will appear for you. They will hire lawyers per your policy.

    Now, it is possible the case is a bad one liability-wise or damages-wise. Your carrier will attack all that on both ends and make sure they cover your back. If it turns out there may be a chance the case is worth more than your policy, they will notify you to obtain separate counsel.

    Since I don't know the liability or the injuries, it is impossible to know if the $20/40 coverage is enough in this case. It is the bare minimum required by law so I suggest you up this in the future.

    Good luck!

    Stephen L. Hoffman
    Law Office of Stephen L. Hoffman LLC
    Chicago, IL
    773-944-9737
    Email: stephen@hofflawyer.com
    Website: www.hofflawyer.com
    Blog: www.hofflawyer.com/blog/

    This answer posted on Avvo is for informational and educational purposes only. There is no attorney-client relationship created or formed and you should not rely on this as legal advice. The suggestion is made that if you wish to protect your rights, you consult with an attorney immediately.


  4. Take a deep breath, this is not uncommon. Just make sure you have passed on the summons and complaint to your insurance company and that they know you have been served. They will take it from there. Make sure you communicate with your insurance company and attorneys as the request and appear at any court date, deposition or other appearance they require of you. As long as you do that they will cover the cost of litigation and up to your policy limits.

    Many times attorneys file suit claiming in excess of $50,000 even if the case is not worth that much. Just because they ask for it that does not mean that the value of the case is worth more than your policy. In the event that you do not have enough insurance coverage, yes, the worst case scenario is that you could be held personally responsible for any excess over your limits; however, this is rare and unlikely to occur unless you have some significant assets.

    My office handles many types of litigation, including insurance defense and plaintiff's personal injury matters. If you feel the need to discuss this further you are welcome to call for a free consultation; however, I wouldn't lose too much sleep over this just yet. 630-679-0930


  5. I agree with other counsel, your old insurer will provide counsel for you. With such a low limit, though, you will probably receive a reservation of rights letter indicating that you are responsible for any amount above the $20,000. You may want to have your own counsel monitoring the situation to make sure that the insurance lawyer is doing everything that he or she can do to look out for your interests.

    Mr. Padove is licensed to practice law in Illinois and Indiana. The response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship. The response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter within the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that, if known, could significantly change the reply and make it unsuitable. Mr. Padove strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney in your state in order to ensure proper advice is received. If this information has been helpful, please indicate below. Burtonap@aol.com (219) 836 2200


  6. You should not be too concerned at this juncture. You don't even have an unassigned defense attorney yet. Once an attorney is appointed by your insurance company to defend you, you should schedule a face-to-face meeting with the attorney and review everything with your counsel. Your counsel will be interested in hearing your observations about the woman's appearance in court. Set up the appointment as soon as possible.

    Legal Disclaimer:

    If this information has been helpful, please indicate below.

    Mr. Lundeen is licensed to practice law in Florida and Vermont. The response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship. The response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter within the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that, if known, could significantly change the reply and make it unsuitable. Mr. Lundeen strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney in your state in order to ensure proper advice is received. r

    This ans. does not create an attorney/client relationship.


  7. Give all the paperwork to your insurance company to defend.

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