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Can I Sue The Person Who Hit Me (I Was A Pedestrian) If Their Insurance Coverage Is Only $25,000 And My Injuries Are More?

Bronx, NY |

I Was On The Sidewalk When A Ford F350 Jumped The Sidewalk And Struck Me, ...... Now I Have Internal Derangement And Meniscular Tear In My Right Knee, Buldging Disc In My Neck, My Attorney Tells Me That If These People Live In An Apartment And Their Insurance Policy Is $25,000 With No Exsess Then Most Likely They Have No Assets So She Suggests That We Settle For The $25,000 Even Tho My Injuries Are More Than That Because It Would Take Years To Take It To Trial Even Tho I Would Potentially Get More If That Were To Happen, My Attorney Says That He Is Waiting Some Affidavit From The Defendant Stating They Have No Assets And Release Form So We Can Settle...... Its Been Like 3 Weeks With No Response And The Problem Is I Dont Want To Settle For $25,000 , I Want To Sue For $100,000 Each.

Attorney Answers 16

  1. You can't get blood from a stone. You can win $1,000,000, but if they have nothing you will get that. Your attorney is right.

    If this Answer was of assistance please mark it as "helpful." Mr. Pascale is licensed to practice law in the State of New York. 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 time-lines that, if known, could significantly change the reply and make it unsuitable. Mr. Pascale strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney in their state in order to insure proper advice is received.

  2. Has an action been started? Have depositions been taken? I usually like to complete discovery in these situations so that I can make sure that there are no other avenues of coverage available.

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  3. An asset search is probably warranted. If your attorney searched for other potential avenues of recovery, the policy limits may be all that is available. A judgement for more than the policy limit is only as good as the paper on which it is written if the defendants do not have any resources to satisfy the judgement.

  4. I'm sure your attorney is likely doing the best he can for you. If he could get $100,000 he obviously would. Its in his interest as well as yours to get all he can for you. However, you have to be realistic. If they have no assets, while it certainly is unfair to you, where will the money you seek come from?

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  5. You can go to trial and spend money on a doctor but the defendant can file for bankruptcy.

    The above answer, and any follow up comments or emails is for informational purposes only and not meant as legal advice.

  6. You need to retain counsel........................

  7. If it happened in new York, get a new York attorney and go at it, but, if 25k is the coverage, unless your suing Donald trump, etc , you might not be well positioned to recover more than 25k from this person, regardless of what a jury would eventually award you. Good luck.

  8. I'm sure your lawyer would like to sue for 1 billion, but the reality is there is 25k

  9. You must immediatley notify your own auto insurance company if you own a car or live in a home or apratment with anyone else who owns a car. You may have additional coverage under your own auto policy or the policy of spomeone with whom you reside. This is important to do. Check this out asap. You also through an attorney have to determine whenther any one else such as an adjoining property owner or the City may have some rersponsibility for the accident. An attorney should help you and look for additional insurance.

  10. I understand your concerns, but as your lawyer indicated, your recovery is limited to how much money the defendants have (including their insurance coverage and personal assets), and if you have under-insurance protection. Do you have under-insurance protection (and if so, how much)? Contact your lawyer so that he/she can discuss this with you in more detail.

  11. The problem here is that the insurance company is only required to pay the maximum amount for which the person paid, so $25,000. Unless the person has assets, there is nothing more to go after so no point in suing. Your attorney is right.

    I am licensed in Pennsylvania. This post is not legal advice, but instead contains general educational information. Please do not act or refrain from acting based upon what you read in this post. Also please remember that this post does not form an attorney/client relationship between you and me. If you have specific legal questions, you should contact an attorney in your state for assistance.

  12. If you take it to trial and obtain a verdict over 25k you get the 25k from insurance and then any amount in excess would come from the defendants (owner and operator of the vehicle). But your lawyer can investigate the assets of these individuals to see if they have anything you can collect. Also if the vehicle was being operated in the course of the drivers employment you can sue the employer and they may have other insurance coverage.

  13. It seems your attorney is giving you sound advice. I am hesitant to give you any other legal advice as you are represented by what appears to be a competent attorney.

  14. The attorneys have given you some good advice on this question. You should listen closely to what your attorney has told you, he or she is the one who has been practicing law and litigating cases.

  15. Yes you can. You can obtain a judgment and try to collect it. It may take years and you may never receive a dime or the defendant may come into some money and you may have a victory. The defendant can also file bankruptcy. You should have a proper asset search done by a qualified professional before you settle. I would never accept an affidavit. Also do you have any underinsured coverage that may apply?

  16. There are ways to "open" the policy so you are not capped at the policy limit, but you first have to give the insurance company the opportunity to tender the policy limit. If they tender the $25k, then they are off the hook and you would have to go after the defendant personally. If they do not have significant assets, and they usually don't if they have a $25k policy, then you're better off taking the $25k.

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