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Could they sue me for additional money for their car, or for injury?

Tampa, FL |

In June of 2013 I was in an accident and it was considered to be my fault. I figured my car insurance agency at the time would figure everything out. But today (9 mos later) my grandmother received a notice in the mailbox from a process server stating I needed to contact them. I called and they asked for my new address and that it was from a car accident. I called my old car insurance (which I dropped the month after my accident because I no longer had a car, as my insurance only covered the other persons car and mine was totaled). And they said that they paid for the other persons car but that the other person had a lawyer and that usually means they go after people for injury. I thought that in FL though its no fault, and they go after their insurance for injury? I am poor...

So if you have no vehicle anymore, no home, a job that pays so little that you still qualify for government benefits... what can they get out of you?

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Attorney answers 10


Sadly, you are about to be poorer.......this sounds like a subrogation claim, where the other persons insurance paid them UM benefits and are suing you to recover them. You may want to talk to a bankruptcy attorney ASAP.



So if you have no vehicle anymore, no home, a job that pays so little that you still qualify for government benefits... what can they get out of you? Can they really take your rent money and make you and 3 kids homeless? Because with my income that's pretty much all the $ I have.


If they go after you for damages your insurance should cover you up to your policy limits, if they are seeking excess they can go after you personally. No fault doesnt mean that they get paid from their own insurance on damages. It has to do with the PIP benefits an insurance provides their insured.

The information provided is for general informational purposes only and is not intended to be legal advice. No attorney-client relationship is formed nor should any such relationship be implied. The information provided is of a general nature is not intended to substitute for the advice of an attorney.


If this happened in florida, consider consulting a florida attorney asap.


I guess the question is whether you had bodily injury liability insurance. From the sounds of it, you didn't, so you can be held personally liable for the damages caused. No fault simply means PIP is in place, so there is a way for anyone involved in a car accident to get medical care, despite themselves even being at fault. I always tell my clients to be sure to buy bodily injury as well as uninsured motorist. You simply need it in this state, despite it not being "required." You may wish to consult a personal injury attorney, but they will likely require a retainer. You could also consult with a bankruptcy attorney as well if a judgment is obtained against you.


Your understanding of the Florida law is, unfortunately, inaccurate. You are still subject to suit for any personal injury you caused to the other party or parties. Did you not purchase bodily injury liability insurance for the car involved in the accident? If you had no bodily injury coverage, you are going to be responsible for any of the provable damages done to any person, minus any set off for PIP coverage etc. You should review your old insurance policy and confirm if you had B. I. liability coverage.

In the future, you should always protect yourself with adequate bodily injury liability coverage.

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.


If you don't have proper coverage, you'll be learning a hard lesson.


If you had an adequate insurance coverage and you injured person in a crash you may end up being sued. Assuming you are not driving under the influence at the time of the crash, even a large judgment against you could see wiped out in bankruptcy. If you have a little in the way of assets and were not driving while impaired judgment made fact not be collectible against you.

This is a summary based on incomplete facts. You should not rely on it as legal advise. No attorney-client relationship is intended to be formed.


Sounds like that lawyer is going to be trying to get blood out of a stone...

No information provided in response to these questions can be relied upon in any way without further personally consulting with Attorney Kerrigan and Attorney Kerrigan consulting personally with you regarding your specific legal situation.


Your insurance company may have resolved the car damage claim, but the injury claim looks like is still open. The other party may be looking to recover money for their injuries, and in doing so the amount of the claim may exceed your Bodily Injury limit at the time. For example, if your BI limit was $20,000 but their injury claim is worth $50,000, then they may look to you for the other $30,000. And so, the insurance company is simply putting you on notice of this potential injury claim. Florida is a No-Fault state, but that only means that your insurance company pays for your own medical bills under your PIP regardless of who's fault it is. The No-Fault law does not do away claims for injury.


They can get a judgement against you. If you have no assets they wont be able to collect. It will affect your credit rating.

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