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If someone hits me in a car accident and believes I am at fault, can they sue me?

Livonia, MI |

Last fall I was In a car accident where the other party hit me and totaled my car in my work parking lot. They believe I am at fault which I strongly disagree with. They are now trying to sue me for $5,000.

My insurance had expired at the time of the accident.

Attorney Answers 9

  1. Well it's true that they did sue you. The question is whether they can win. Of course, you should just turn the lawsuit over to your insurer, who will defend and protect you up to your policy limits. If you were uninsured, you will need an attorney to protect your interests. I can help on this front. I'm also in Livonia.

    My answer to you question does not constitute legal advice. Only an in person or telephone consultation will result in an attorney/client relationship. Call me at (313)402-0853 to discuss your matter further.

  2. I see you are from Livonia, Michigan, so it raises a few questions and concerns right away to me. The $5,000 number doesn't make any sense. First, Michigan is a mini tort state, so the most they can get from you is $1,000 for the mini tort, assuming you were actually at fault since I see you strongly disagree with the other driver in this regard. As to the rest, the other driver would be collecting whatever No fault PIP benefits for wage loss, medical bills or replacement services from HIS OWN insurance company, not through you. That's very important because that leaves only a claim for potential pain and suffering as compensation for his or her injuries. For this, you need only turn it over to your own insurance company and they will defend the claim and pay out as appropriate, assuming the other driver has an injury that qualifies under Michigan law. This outline of the 3 cases under Michigan law for auto accidents should help:

  3. The $5,000.00 figure doesn't make sense. What damages are they suing for? Did you get served with a complaint? Turn it over to your insurance company immediately!

    Always consult an attorney IMMEDIATELY as there are time limitations on filing a lawsuit.

  4. Anyone can commence a lawsuit against anyone. Winning is a whole different story. Report this to your insurance company and they will assign a defense attorney to represent you as well as pay any judgment up to your policy lilmits.

  5. Without an insurance policy and company to defend you, you are going to be personally liable for this lawsuit. I advise you to hire your own lawyer asap.

  6. In Michigan-- if you had insurance on your car, the other driver or his insurance company can only pursue you for up to $1,000 (mini tort) for the damage of your vehicle. They have to prove that it is your fault. Now, you say you don't have insurance-- this opens you up to personally liability to all damage to the vehicle as well as potentially pain and suffering damages if they pursue that. Again, they have to prove it was more your fault/that you were negligent. I would consult a lawyer in person. Also look how the insurance 'lapsed'-- there maybe something there (unlikely); sometimes the insurance company does not 'cancel' it properly.

    not a complete and all encompassing informative guide to the law. Every year, the Michigan Law changes in some fashion. New laws are passed and the Court of Appeals and Supreme Court decide cases that change the law. As a result, we recommend that you contact a licensed attorney who specializes in this area of the law.

  7. Since you did not have insurance, if you are sued, you'd want to retain one of the above lawyers in your state to defend.

  8. Yes, they can sue you. Perhaps you should attempt to work out an amicable settlement and obtain a full and complete release from the other party. If you are sued, I suggest you retain a civil defense attorney to assist you.

    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.

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

  9. I think the $5,000 figure may be because they filed against you in small claims court and I think that is the new jurisdictional limit. You should contact one of the AVVO attorneys to find out for sure what the relationship is between the 'mini tort' and the fact that you auto insurance had lapsed. No matter what, do not ignore the court papers. make sure you file some kind of denial to the complaint.

    Each employment situation has unique facts and circumstances. This means that information and advice cannot be taken literally and should be used as only informational. The information provided here is not legal advice and should not be interpreted as such.

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