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My daughter was in a fatal car accident in CA. It was declared non-negligent now she is being sued for millions & has no asset

Corona Del Mar, CA |

She served 30 days house arrest and community service. The family is sueing for punitive and wrongful death. The punitive was thrown out now the family is rewording it and presenting it again. Police report said she ran a red but there were many errors in the report. It takes everything she makes to live on what are her options.

Attorney Answers 7

Posted

Terrible tragedy all around. Report the incident to her and or your insurance carrier, speak with a local and qualified personal injury attorney, and likewise bankruptcy attorney.

Personal injury cases only; I'm good at it; you be the Judge! All information provided is for informational and educational purposes only. No attorney client relationship has been formed or should be inferred. Please speak with a local and qualified attorney. I truly wish you and those close to you all the best. Jeff www.nyelderinjurylaw.com

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Posted

Your daughter is essentially judgment proof. If there was insurance that covered the vehicle, then the insurance will defend the case and settle as it sees appropriate. The family may, understandably, be running on emotion. Sooner or later they will likely realize that your daughter has nothing to pay a judgment and will settle for the policy limit or otherwise resolve the case. If you don't have insurance you might want to talk to a lawyer about how to resolve the case.

Good luck.

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3 comments

Richard Andrew Harting

Richard Andrew Harting

Posted

Consult with a bankruptcy lawyer - the sooner the better -

Edna Carroll Straus

Edna Carroll Straus

Posted

Unless it was DUI. "non negligent" is a DMV call not a legal one.

Edna Carroll Straus

Edna Carroll Straus

Posted

or if she is a minor, they end to tender this to their auto carrier and homeowners as well.

Posted

It is important that you work with an attorney on all relevant issues. Get in touch with one as soon as possible.

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Posted

I want to start by extending my sincerest apology. Make sure your insurance company is aware of all pertinent information. The insurance company will utilize their attorneys to counter the lawsuit.

Mike

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Posted

I presume your daughter served time on house arrest and did community service in lieu of some sort of possible jail sentence. So, it sounds like she was in violation of a criminal statute when the collision occurred.

If she was convicted of a crime or pled to a lesser crime related to the accident, the fault may be hers despite errors contained in the traffic collision report.

If there was a criminal aspect to her operation of the vehicle, a punitive damage award may or may not be dischargeable in bankruptcy. Your daughter needs to ask that of a bankruptcy attorney.

As to the remaining claims, your daughter needs to consult with her attorney assigned to her by her insurance company and she has to listen to what he/she has to say. If she did not have insurance, then contact an attorney to discuss further.

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Posted

The term judgment proof is most commonly used in tort law contexts to refer to defendants or potential defendants who are financially insolvent. Even if a plaintiff were to secure a legal judgment against an insolvent defendant, the defendant's lack of funds would make the satisfaction of that judgment difficult, if not impossible, to secure. In such cases plaintiffs might move for wage garnishment based on the judgment. However, if the debtor is retired or collecting social security or other social welfare this is not possible.

Judgment proof is not a defense. If sued, the defendant cannot claim "judgment proof" as one would other affirmative defenses. Judgment proof instead refers to the inability of the judicial lien holder to obtain satisfaction of their judgment.

An individual who is unidentifiable or has left the jurisdiction is often considered to be judgment proof

The materials available at this web site are for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. You should contact your attorney to obtain advice with respect to any particular issue or problem. Use of and access to this Web site or any of the e-mail links contained within the site do not create an attorney-client relationship between Howard Roitman, Esq. and the user or browser. The opinions expressed at or through this site are the opinions of the individual author and may not reflect the opinions of the firm or any individual attorney.

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Posted

You left out one or two MAJOR details--is your daughter a minor? Does she live with you? Is she on your vehicle insurance?

Whoever took this case either think there is insurance or --given your address-- money and other assets available to pay a judgment. Attorneys do not take worthless cases on contingency.

The DMV "declared non-negligent" designation has no bearing on legal liability.

Assuming you have insurance, tender the claim to them ASAP.

Ms. Straus (aka Carroll) may be reached at 800-400-8978 during regular business hours, Pacific Time, or anytime by email at: ECSEsquire@AOL.com. All of Ms. Straus’ responses to questions posted on Avvo are intended as helpful information based upon the facts stated in the question, and are not to be relied upon as a final legal opinion. It may not be what you wished to hear, and it does not create an attorney-client relationship. Ms. Straus is licensed to practice law in California. If you would like to obtain specific legal advice about this issue, you must contact an attorney who is licensed to practice law in your state, and retain him or her. Me Straus provides “unbundled” services if you need specific assistance with a specific issue.

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