My husband was in a hit-and-run accident but there was a witness that got the licensce plate of the other driver. We're in the "investigation" process and are waiting for the other driver's insurance company to accept liability. They're saying that it could be that the person driving at the time of the accident wasn't supposed to be driving and so they might not take responsibility. What can we do?
Contracts / Agreements Lawyer
File a claim with your own insurance company. They will pay you and then will collect from the other insurance company. If there is more owed to you than your insurance company pays, sue the other driver. Sue the car owner too, if they are not the same person. If the other side's insurance company offers you a settlement, you can take it or not. If there is no offer or if you don't accept it, the litigation continues and the judge or jury decides.
Get a personal injury attorney to do the litigation. You will almost always get more that way, even after the attoreny takes a share.
This answer must not be relied on as legal advice for the reasons posted here: http://mcgyverdisclaimer.blogspot.com . And I am not your attorney.
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Personal Injury Lawyer
I would advise hiring a personal injury attorney. FIrst of all, if the facts you represented are correct, the other driver was at fault. Whether or not he was supposed to be driving is not your problem. That is an issue that the owner of the car and the driver of the car (if different) and their respective insurance companies need to sort out. If the other driver or driver/owner does not have insurance or does not have adequate insurance you will be looking to your own policy under your UIM/UM (Underinsured/Uninsured) motorists policy to pay. In effect, you make a claim and/or possibly sue your OWN insurance company. You didn't mention the time that you've been dealing with here but WA insurance companies are under time constraints to deal with their cases. WA law takes this very seriously. You also didn't mention if there was anything besides property damage. If there were any injuries I would highly recommend hiring an attorney to handle your claim. If it is just property damage you will probably receive an offer soon. Under WA law the insurer is required to give you a quote that is not just the "Blue book" value of the car. A lawyer can advise you of these regulations as well. You can also look at the RCW or WAC's on this issue. Check out http://apps.leg.wa.gov/wac/
As per the usual disclaimer, I am not your attorney and this general advice does not establish the attorney/client relationship. Best of luck.
Personal Injury Lawyer
I TEND TO TAKE AN AGGRESSIVE APPROACH TO MY CASES (ESPECIALLY OF THIS NATURE). I WOULD GET MY OWN PRIVATE INVESTIGATIOR ON THE CASE TO LOCATE THE HIT AND RUN DRIVER, IN FACT I WOULD DO INVESTIGATION OF MY OWN. FIRST, I WOULD REVIEW ALL REPORTS, CHECK FOR CAMERAS WHICH MAY BE IN THE AREA, LOOK FOR OTHER POTENTIAL WITNESSES. IN ADDITION, I WOULD ALSO WORK WITH THE INSURANCE COMPANY AND PRESS THE LIABILITY ISSUE.
WHAT HAPPENED TO YOU IS CRIMINAL! IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO DISCUSS THIS FURTHER FEEL FREE TO CONTACT ME.
EVAN M. OSHAN
ATTORNEY AT LAW
P.O. BOX 861
MERCER ISLAND, WA 98040-0861
310 906 7137
UNDERSTAND THAT THE OPINION EXPRESSED ABOVE SHOULD NOT BE RELIED UPON SINCE I AM NOT YOUR ATTORNEY AND IS ONLY OF A GENERAL NATURE.