flashing school zone 15mph but guy was doing at least 30
Your roommate's failure to have a valid license is not what caused the accident. The accident likely resulted from either careless (inatttentive) driving on the part of the rear driver or a sudden (unexpected) stop by your roommate; or some combination of those two possibilities. You should make a claim for the damage to your vehicle with the other driver's insurance (or other owner's insurance, if the owner of the other vehicle is anyone besides the driver).
File your claim against the adverse driver's insurance carrier. Your roommate's lack of a license has no bearing in analyzing negligence. Hopefully you have your vehicle fully insured for both property damage and liability coverage for bodily injury in the event your car is involved in another collision. I suggest you not allow your roommate to drive your vehicle until he has a license and his own insurance.
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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.
You should not be liable for the accident if he was rear ended. However, you should not allow him to drive your vehicle if he has no license. Your insurance company will settle this with the other insurance company. If they do not I would suggest you seeing an auto accident attorney in your area.
Check out my website below and give me a call for a free consultation if you are a California resident 877-427-2752 or you can email me at Michael@Kingofpersonalinjurylaw.com
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You should make a claim against your own insurance company. It should pay you fully for your damages, minus any deductible you might have. When it pursues the claim against the other driver's insurance company, you should recover your deductible.
If you do not have insurance on the vehicle, you should sue the other driver and owner of the vehicle that rear-ended your vehicle.
In the analysis of the civil case, the fact that your roommate did not have a valid license is irrelevant.
However, I would suggest that you not allow your roommate to borrow your truck until your roommate gets a valid license. Allowing your vehicle to be driven by a driver who has had his/her license suspended could have criminal and civil consequences to you in the future.
There are several issues here- a property damage claim and a possible injury claim- neither are effected by her license status. The value of every claim is chiefly based on what damages/injuries/losses you have and how we prove them. These were clearly caused by the rear-ending party.
Essentially, insurance carriers try to negotiate every dollar they can, because every $100 means millions in the end to the Board of Directors. My recommendation is let an attorney handle this if they are giving you a hard time. I spent 8 years working for insurance companies and over a year working for the largest personal injury firm in the country before setting out to give clients personal service and help them fight these fights.
Was your roommate injured? Even in soft tissue injuries, those tissues stretch and scar, or cause corresponding pressure on nerves in the spinal cord, leaving behind permanent problems for some. I have had clients need surgeries years later because of a bulging disk and have their entire world collapse for what seemed inconsequential at the time. Insurance companies want you to settle as soon as possible and treat as little as possible. Attorneys matter. They change their gameplan when a lawyer is involved.
For that reason - and the misinformation by TV lawyers and referral services- is why people should consult lawyers who take the time like on sites like this. Because of the economy, more lawyers are jumping into personal injury and should stick to what they know. Personal injury law REQUIRED knowledge about medical science and biomechanics (the forces on a body in a wreck) far greater and more specific than you'd think. The other side has doctors and millions on their side to say nothing is wrong or fight the claim. If you have any further questions, feel free to email me- firstname.lastname@example.org. Check out our website- www.knowthelawyer.com. We'd love to help you. Our number is 800-6-know-law. We are here to help.
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