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Can I sue the registered owner (business) or the responsible driver for negligence & accept the Ins. Co's settlement also?

Norwalk, CA |

A woman crashes her husband's company owned car into my parked car at work, she jumps a curb, plows into my car & pushes it 4 ft over into the next parked car. Witnesses see her trying to flee the scene, When I arrive, I see her stumpling out of her car, her speech is slurred & she's almost incoherent, she admitted to two witnesses that she was drunk. She also admited to the police that she was checking her blackberry when the accident occured. The police arrived 3/4 hrs later, believed she was under the influence of RX drugs instead, they didn't arrest or cite her, but let her go. I had to call the PD's watch commander 5/6 days later just to get a property damage report completed, & none of it mentions the above facts. The Ins. Co. wants to total out my car, & I can't afford a car note.

There were no injuries in this accident, the car's hit were unoccupied. Also videotape of the accident exists on my company's security cameras, but I'm not allowed to view it.

Attorney Answers 2


  1. Are you talking about accepting YOUR insurance company's settlement, in addition to suing the driver and her employer?

    By accepting your insurance company's settlement, you may be giving them your rights to file a lawsuit. Most insurance policies have a subrogation clause, which means they step into your shoes when they pay a claim. That means they would be entitled to sue the responsible driver to recover their losses.

    If you are talking about taking a settlement from the company that insures the other driver and/or her employer, it would depend on the nature of the release you signed. Most releases require you to agree that all claims are satisfied by the payment you receive.


  2. The driver and likely her employer are responsible. Their liability would be covered by their insurance. Your property damages could also be covered by your insurance. You should make a claim to both and see if one offers more money than the other. Once you accept a property damage settlement you will not be able to sue them for property damage, only personal injury and/or mental distress.

    Peter :)

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