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Being sued 1 year after fender bender where I was at fault, what happens now?

Los Angeles, CA |

I was involved in car accident about 1 year ago. I rear ended the car in front of me on an exit ramp. When we exchanged information, the other party I hit was in a rush to leave. No police report was filed, and the only info i got was the passenger's insurance. The driver was his brother but he didn't give me his info. After a few weeks, they filed a claim and my insurance claims adjuster said they would take care of everything. No word from my car insurance or from the other party since...until now. So what should i do? Apparently, my car insurance still says the claim is "pending". Does that mean my car insurance doesn't want to pay them? Am I going to have to file for bankruptcy? I think I'm being a bit dramatic but this is a first time for me, or my family to be involved in.

Attorney Answers 4


  1. The terms of your automobile insurance policy likely dictate that in the event that a lawsuit is filed against you, your insurance company will provide you with legal representation. It's advisable, however, that you check the terms and conditions of your policy to confirm this, and relay any new or recent information to your claims adjuster.

    Disclaimer: This does not constitute legal advice. No attorney-client relationship has been formed through this answer.


  2. You will be fine. You had auto insurance at the time of the collision and in Texas, like most states, your auto insurance company will take care of this claim if it does not exceed the amount of your coverage (which probably is not the case here with a fender bender). If a lawsuit were filed your auto insurance company would hire an attorney to defend you in court. Just call your claims adjuster and ask him for a status check on the claim. You will be fine.

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  3. Relax. If you had liability coverage, your insurance company will appoint a lawyer to defend you. The fact that your insurance company states the claim is pending does not indicate that they do not want to pay. You will not have to file for bankruptcy. To make you feel better, you may want to contact your adjuster and confirm that the insurance company will take care of your defense. Good luck.

    This response is for information purpose only and does not constitute a legal advice. This response does not create an attorney-client relationship.


  4. First and foremost, you will want to check the terms and conditions of your policy. Assuming it provides coverage for the accident, and that you had the appropriate liability coverage in place at the time of the accident, your insurance carrier will provide you with an attorney to undertake your defense.

    You will want to make sure that your carrier is on notice of the lawsuit: I recommend forwarding the claims adjuster a copy of the complaint/summons via certified mail, return receipt requested. Stay in touch with your carrier, and make sure that they are aware of the pending suit and any upcoming deadlines in the case, until they undertake your defense..

    This answer is provided for informational purposes only. It does not constitute legal advice, nor does it form an attorney-client relationship.

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