There was a car driving down on a street in LA. My car was parked on the street and I opened the door. Shortly after, an SUV hits my door and there were damages to car. My auto insurance (progressive) has made the decision that it wasn't my fault. The issues that the other party has filed a small claim suit against me for the damages on the car. Is there any way of winning this case? What is the best way of going on this?
The devil is on the details. The case may be decided on such details as how close the other car was when you opened the door, how fast the other car was travelling at the time, whether it was safe for you to open the door under the circumstances, whether it was safe for the other car to be travelling in the manner it did, and other pertinent facts. It may be helpful if there are witnesses who will be able to support the proposition that you were acting reasonably and that the other driver was not. Credibility of you as a witness viv a vis credibility of the other driver will also be important.
This response is for information purpose only and does not constitute a legal advice. This response does not create an attorney-client relationship.
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Personal Injury Lawyer
Mr. Lee provides a perfect response, which I second.
Despite the fact that Progressive has determined that you are free from fault, you can still be held responsible after a trial in the Small Claims Court. The good news is that Progressive is required to defend you in that matter and should hire a lawyer to protect your interests. The best and only thing for you to do is to tell your side of the story.
At the end of the day, there is a good chance that you will be determined at fault, in whole or part, as you have an obligation to make sure there are no vehicles approaching before you open your car door. Good luck.
The aforementioned opinion does not constitute legal advice and is for general educational purposes only. See an attorney licensed in your jurisdiction for competent legal advice. No attorney-client relationship has been formed through the within legal question and answer session.
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