The section 1542 of civil code of the state of california? Does that mean after release in full of claim i owe nomore money?

Asked about 4 years ago - Bakersfield, CA

I was in a auto accident and a all parties signed a release in full of claim. I was talking to my probation officer and was told i have a restituion fine now.I was wondering doesnt the release in full claim and payment received by the parties from my insurance cover my restituion?Otherwise the parties will be getting paid twice????

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Frank Wei-Hong Chen

    Contributor Level 20

    Answered . Civil Code section 1542 provides: "A general release does not extend to claims which the
    creditor does not know or suspect to exist in his or her favor at the time of executing the release, which if known by him or her must have materially affected his or her settlement with the debtor."

    In a written settlement agreement, the parties typically WAIVE Civil Code section 1542. However, if your insurance company is paying the injured parties, this does not mean after the parties sign this release that you have no liabiity,.

    The full release of all claims just prevents the other parties from suing you again (including claims against your insurance company). However, your insurance company still has the right of subrogation (which is a legal term meaning the right to seek reimbursement for what the insurance company had to pay out to those other parties).

    In short, there is no double recovery to the injured parties.

  2. Steven Mark Sweat


    Contributor Level 19

    Answered . Yes. The civil settlement should resolve the criminal restitution issue. You should point this out to your criminal defense attorney.

  3. Gregory Garth Brown

    Contributor Level 12

    Answered . Well, the short answer seems to be that, if they were fully compensated by the settlement, there shouldn't be any "restitution" ordered. The Criminal Courts I believe would not be bound by a civil settlement but, again, if they have been paid, and "restitution" would be a double recovery, the criminal courts would likely not order it. It would be unfair and not what "restitution" is designed to accomplish.

    I hope this helps and wish you the best with this troubling situation.
    If you find my answer helpful, please click the ‘thumbs-up’ tab below. Thank you.

    Since a great deal of information would need to be analyzed for a complete legal evaluation, this answer is offered for informational purposes only. It is not offered as, and does not constitute, legal advice

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